May 23, 2024

Plume

By Chris Ahn

We’re excited to share that Haun Ventures is leading the seed round in Plume, with participation from Galaxy Digital, Superscrypt, Reciprocal Ventures, Selini Capital, Portal Ventures, SV Angel, a_capital, and angels.

One of the clearest use cases for blockchains is creating highly transparent and efficient markets for any asset. Open, decentralized protocols enable anyone to create digital representations of an asset, securely and transparently transfer this asset to anyone else, and program these assets according to a set of rules.

This use case has started to take off for real world assets (RWAs). The market for RWAs has grown rapidly over the last three years, from $1m in TVL to over $7 billion today*. The market includes  a wide range of assets like treasuries, money market funds, gold and precious metals, collectibles, and much more. RWAs possess a special feature that differentiate them from other crypto assets—which is that they’re uncorrelated to the rest of crypto. Uncorrelated assets are critical to building a robust DeFi ecosystem because they enable portfolio diversity and serve as the foundation for financial derivatives, enabling buyers to hedge out volatility.

Despite the unique potential of RWAs, RWA projects face two big challenges. First, they are difficult to launch, and second, they’re fragmented across ecosystems. RWA projects are more difficult to start because they may require regulatory compliance, the creation of entities, identity verification, and other complex legal and administrative work. This additional friction slows the creation of credible RWA projects. RWA projects are also fragmented across L1s and L2s today. Because RWAs are a specific vertical within DeFi, projects are seeking a higher density ecosystem with high intent users, and high-intent users are similarly looking for an ecosystem of credible projects.

Enter Plume. Plume is building the RWA Launcher, which simplifies the complex workstreams to launch an RWA project to a few clicks. This meaningfully lowers the barrier to starting an RWA project. In addition, because Plume is dedicated specifically to RWAs, it’s starting to build a network effect of high-intent users and credible projects that are looking for each other. In many ways, a network focused on a specific vertical is similar to vertical marketplaces in web2 like Airbnb, Zillow, or Uber. On the back of this thesis, Plume has already attracted over 80 projects who have committed to launching on Plume.

The Plume team is led by Chris Yin, whom I’ve had the pleasure of knowing for many years and is a repeat founder. Chris is joined by Teddy Pornprinya, Eugene Shen, and 12 other teammates who come from dYdX, Coinbase, and more. What’s special about this team is that they are both crypto native and commercial. They understand the needs and requirements of traditional asset issuers while maintaining the end vision for a robust DeFi ecosystem built with RWAs as the foundation. The real potential for RWAs lies at the intersection between crypto native markets and traditional assets, and the team understands this opportunity deeply.

We’re excited to support Plume as they usher in a new chapter for RWAs and DeFi. Welcome Plume!

*Source: DefiLlama as of May 21, 2021 and May 21, 2024, respectively

Chris Ahn
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