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As it develops its own Layer 1, VRRB Labs raises a pre-seed investment at a $20 million value.

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Pre-seed investment for VRRB (pronounced “verb”) Labs, a Miami-based cryptocurrency business building a Layer 1 blockchain network, totaled $1.4 million.

Taureon, Big Brain Holdings, and Jump Crypto were among the investors in the round. According to Andrew Smith, founder of VRRB Labs, it was an equity and token warrant round that valued the company at $20 million.


a ride on a roller coaster

Late in 2017, Smith originally conceived of a Layer 1 blockchain. He invested in ether (ETH) in the beginning. He liquidated the majority of his assets at $300, with an average cost of $8 per unit of ETH. Around $1,670 is where ETH is trading at the moment.

Smith stated that he had considered creating a new Layer 1 blockchain at the time since he wasn’t a big admirer of Ethereum’s decision to switch to a proof-of-stake consensus method owing to its downsides, including centralization. However, he was concentrating on his first firm, OWL ESG, which he launched in 2012. OWL ESG is a tech-driven environmental, social, and governance (ESG) data supplier. He is still the director of data science at OWL ESG.

In 2020, Smith formally founded VRRB Labs, which has been working on the project ever since. In May 2022, he received some pledges for the pre-seed round. Last December, amidst massive crypto failures, he formally closed the deal. It was a little like riding on a roller coaster. We sort of timed it.



Developer-friendly blockchain

Smith said that the existing Layer 1 blockchain projects aren’t focusing on the fundamental issue, which is enhancing the developer experience, when asked what drove him to start a new Layer 1 blockchain project in an already saturated market. It’s a significant concern that you’re expecting engineers to learn a new language, he remarked.

According to Smith, VRRB Labs is developing a language-neutral platform to enable developers in “creating, shipping, and running” apps more quickly. “Though I believe we are primarily putting the wagon before the horse there, we frequently hear about where the next billion users will come from. Where do the first million developers come from is the question that has to be raised “said he.

Smith continued by stating that although there are competing blockchain initiatives, there are still far fewer web3 developers than there are web2 engineers. According to Smith, VRRB wants to entice web2 developers to use their platform. Regarding the company’s go-to-market strategy, Smith explained that one of the goals is to acquire money and build up a larger war chest in order to offer grants and incentives to recruit developers.

In order to be to web3 what Amazon Web Services is to web2, Smith remarked, “We want to establish infrastructure and platform.”

According to VRRB, the “Proof of Claim” unique consensus method it is creating will assist resolve the blockchain’s scalability, security, and decentralization trilemma.

According to Smith, the first VRRB beta testnet is expected to launch next month. He emphasized that the mainnet is still a long way off on the roadmap.

VRRB Labs presently employs five individuals, and Smith has no immediate plans to grow the staff.