Google spends $1.5bn on blockchain companies in 10 months

Samsung was the most active company investing in blockchain, as it invested in 13 separate firms

In this photo illustration, the US multinational technology company and search engine Google logo is displayed on a smartphone screen                                 
Google parent company Alphabet has invested $1.5bn (£1.2bn) in blockchain companies between September 2021 amd June 2022 – Photo: Getty Images
                                

Google parent company Alphabet invested $1.5bn (£1.2bn) into blockchain companies in 10 months, making it the biggest public company financial contributor to the industry.

The figure comes from Blockdata, which provide insights into enterprise blockchain adoption. Alphabet invested in Fireblocks, a crypto custody firm; Dapper Labs, a non-fungible token (NFT) company; Voltage, an infrastructure provider for Bitcoin (BTC); and Digital Currency Group, a venture capital company focusing on the digital currency market.    

Alphabet made these investments between September 2021 and mid-June 2022, as did the other firms from the Blockdata research.

BlackRock, the world's largest asset manager came in second, with $1.17bn (£960m) invested in blockchain firms, which included the cryptocurrency derivatives exchange FTX.

Morgan Stanley, the US multinational investment management and financial services company, came in third with $1.10bn (£900m) invested into blockchain organisations.

Samsung, the South Korean multinational manufacturing conglomerate, was the most active company investing in blockchain, as it invested in 13 separate firms.

NFT firms most popular

Out of the 61 blockchain companies in the Blockdata survey listed as receiving investment from public companies, 19 were firms offering NFT solutions and services, with many of them in "industries such as gaming, arts and entertainment, and distributed ledger technology (DLT)".

Additionally, 12 firms invested in are marketplaces for supporting the buying and selling of NFTs and 11 were organisations which offer gaming services, which have considerable overlap with businesses that offer NFT solutions.

Blockdata said: “The popularity of NFTs can be mainly seen as an opportunistic move by corporations looking to capitalise on trends to meet where their customers are transacting.”

Banks increase exposure

Blockdata said that banks have started to “increase their exposure to crypto and blockchain services (some more than others) given increased client demand.” This has resulted in banks investing in “crypto custody, asset management, and trading” firms.

When it comes to what Blockdata called more traditional firms such as Samsung, and Microsoft, which came eighth on the list, they were already “supportive of the blockchain landscape” and have now progressed to trying to find “innovative companies and portfolios that add value to their core business growth and consolidation.”  

To construct this list, Blockdata assessed the total funding amounts of the rounds firms participated in, as they could not individually measure how much money corporations have invested, because they participate in funding rounds with multiple investors.

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