AngelList spinoff startup Republic raises $12 million to tokenize startup investing
Enthusiasm for crypto assets has transformed startup investing from a localized ecosystem existing in pockets around the world, into a global interconnected community. Republic, is a spinoff of AngelList, a startup crowdfunding platform. The startup allows non-accredited investors to invest in privately-held businesses.
The company recently announced that it has raised a $12 million round to finance the tokenization of its platform and the development of its own security token. The round was led by Binance Labs and NGC ECO Fund, with participation from East Chain Co, Oyster Ventures, FBG Capital, Hazoor Capital, ZK Capital, ZhenFund, and others.
Founded in 2016 as a spinoff of AngelList by veterans Kendrick Nguyen and Paul Menchov, Republic is an investment platform providing retail investors around the world with compliant access to curated startups and blockchain projects. Republic operates under U.S. equity crowdfunding regulations, and is under the supervision of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. To date, the acceptance rate of companies applying to fundraise on Republic is well below 10%, while funding success rate exceeds 90%.
“Underlying our goal of becoming the marketplace for private investing is our mission to promote broad, diverse participation in all forms of entrepreneurship. The global crypto fever has moved the needle forward almost overnight, but it has also introduced new regulatory and business complexities,” says Kendrick Nguyen, CEO of Republic. “We believe cross-border collaboration is necessary to navigate these complexities and help the industry grow quickly, but responsibly. Republic is delighted to have influential partners and investors from different regions of the world join forces on this shared vision.”
Republic began curating and offering token sales in late 2017 under the brand Republic Crypto, providing compliant and fair access to both non-accredited and accredited investors. Since then, dozens of startups and crypto projects have raised on Republic from tens of thousands of investors worldwide. Republic’s tokenization project aims to incentivize and engage all participants on the Republic platform with the introduction of a Republic token, which will carry functional uses as well as economic rights. It is also working on tokenizing all financial products offered on the Republic platform to enhance their liquidity and transferability.
“Republic brings new investment opportunities for retail investors to participate in well-curated startups,” Ella Zhang, head of Binance Labs, commented. “Binance and Labs team are working towards the freedom of value-exchange, and Republic’s democratization of access to startup investing aligns with our values.”
Tony Gu of Neo Global Capital concurs, “Republic has demonstrated their capability of choosing credible projects and keeping the process transparent and compliant with rules and regulations. NGC believes transparency and compliance are critical factors for mainstream adoptions of crypto assets and blockchain technologies. Hence, we’re excited to support Republic’s tokenization effort and, as an early investor, we look forward to working with Republic and its partners in setting a new standard for open and compliant token offerings.”
Last year, Republic raised seed capital from a cohort of venture firms across the US, including Oyster Ventures, AngelList, RenGen, NextGen Venture Partners, and Grand Central Tech, all of whom have expressed confidence in Republic’s crypto ambition. “I am thrilled to see the platform evolve to fully utilize crypto to democratize and align incentives in the growing ICO economy,” says Sophie Liao of Oyster Ventures. “Republic is well positioned to revolutionize the whole token-pre-sale landscape.”