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Helius Secures $9.5M Series A Funding to Boost Solana-Based App Creation

Shalini Nagarajan
Last updated: | 2 min read
Helius’ co-founders Liam Vovk, Mert Mumtaz, and Nicolas Pennie

Solana infrastructure startup Helius raised $9.5m in a Series A funding round, with Foundation Capital leading the investment.

Other notable investors include Reciprocal Ventures, Chapter One, Balaji Srinivasan, Anatoly Yakovenko, and Kyle Samani, it said on Thursday.

Mert Mumtaz, a former Coinbase software engineer, teamed up with Liam Vovk and Nicolas Pennie, former software engineers at Amazon Web Services, to create Helius during the crypto bear market of 2022. They wanted to build a set of tools empowering developers to create decentralized applications.

Mumtaz told Cryptonews on Wednesday that Solana witnessed tremendous expansion despite the challenging market conditions of 2022.

“Yet, there remains a concerning lack of simple and useful infrastructure and applications that developers can leverage to build their apps,” he said. The founding team wanted to offer the tooling needed to eliminate developer-facing challenges and unlock Solana’s “tremendous upside.”

To that end, Helius provides a set of robust tools that empower developers to efficiently build applications on Solana. By tackling the complexities of Solana’s scale, Helius allows developers to focus on improving user experience without worrying about intricate blockchain integrations.

Funding To Be Used For Technical Team Expansion

Helius plans to use its latest funding to recruit low-level systems and backend engineers, as well as enhance its technical infrastructure.

Mumtaz pointed out a major criticism about the crypto industry — that there aren’t enough real-world applications that help everyday folks. Most of the buzz revolves around speculation rather than creating things that truly matter, he said.

“To change this, we need to make it as simple as possible for developers to build apps that are cheap, fast, and scalable,” he added.

Helius’ founders are hoping to see developers building apps in various areas such as DeFi, NFTs, DePIN (decentralized physical infrastructure network), governance, payments, wallets, and data.

Helius’ Series A Reflects Growing Confidence in Web3 Tech

Since it started, Helius has supported platforms like Shopify, Discord, and Helium in the Solana ecosystem.

“These companies were searching for an out-of-the-box solution to help them more easily and efficiently build on the blockchain,” Mumtaz said. “They weren’t positioned to dedicate the weeks, even months, necessary to setting up the infrastructure themselves. Helius has the only relevant tooling to help teams like this, and they were able to benefit from our expertise and experience.”

In Oct. 2022, Helius secured $3.1m in a seed funding round led by Reciprocal Ventures and Chapter One.

Helius’ Series A round arrives at a time of a resurgence of venture capital enthusiasm in Web3 funding. According to PitchBook data, VC investment in crypto startups rose by 2.5% to $1.9b in Q4 2023, marking the first uptick since Q2 2022.

This data points to a sense of relief for crypto founders, who endured the challenges of the recent “crypto winter,” as fresh funding signals a positive change in market conditions.