Domain Daily: What's Another $4.5 Billion?

The Dose

  • Web3 Funding Secured

  • Rise of Drones

  • Trillion in Trades

  • Welcome to the Club


Billions for Bargains

Venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) announced a new $4.5 billion crypto fund.

The Point: a16z has now raised $7.6 billion for crypto investments across four funds. With recession predictions looming, some startups are struggling to raise cash. And if history is any indication, now is the time for VCs to go bargain hunting. a16z believes it has the knowledge and know-how to separate the wheat from the chaff. And they're ready to "go big" as we enter what they believe to be Web3's "golden era." DeFi, Web3 gaming, and decentralized social media were among the areas the VC firm said they were targeting.

Fundamentals of Crypto


Take to the Sky

Walmart is expanding drone delivery to 4 million households across six states.

The Point: Speed is the name of the game when it comes to e-commerce. Walmart thinks it can get delivery times down to as little as 30 minutes by leveraging its stores and drones. That'd be a game-changer. But there's a catch. The drones need to be manually operated and maintain a line of sight with their destination. That means that if you live more than 1.5 miles from your local Walmart, you won't be seeing boxes of diapers drop from the sky anytime soon. Amazon's been working on its automated drone program since 2013, with little to show for it. Walmart is trying to jump ahead by using pilots rather than relying on AI. That might help Walmart take the lead now, but the manual approach will be tough to scale.

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Milestone

Uniswap, a decentralized exchange, has processed more than $1 trillion in crypto trades since it went live in 2018.

The Point: Decentralized exchanges (DEXs) are among the most significant DeFi innovations. When compared to centralized exchanges, they lower the cost of trading, increase speed and efficiency, reduce counterparty risk, and allow just about any token to be traded. Uniswap is far and away the biggest DEX. 42% of all DEX trades happen on its platform, according to research from The Block. For some context, Uniswap volumes are already comparable to those at Coinbase. Still, DEXs are mainly used by crypto wonks with little in the way of an accessible user experience. Once they become easier to use, they could make centralized exchanges (in both crypto and stocks) obsolete.

What is Defi?


Making the Cut

Speaking of milestones, Coinbase became the first crypto company to be included in the Fortune 500

The Point: The list ranks U.S. companies based on revenue. Last year's crypto bull market drove $7.8 billion in sales for Coinbase, good for 437th place. However, with trading volumes down in 2022 and the rise of DEXs like Uniswap, it looks like it’ll be a one-year residency. Coinbase already has a lot of ground to make up to match last year’s total. Its first-quarter revenue was 53% lower than in the final three months of 2021.

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