South Korean internet giant Kakao this week announced that its newly established non-profit entity headquartered in Singapore — the Klaytn Foundation — will lead the development and global expansion of the Klaytn blockchain, according to a company release.
- The Klaytn Foundation, together with Krust, Kakao’s newly established global accelerator unit, and GroundX, which launched Klaytn, Kakao’s public blockchain project, in 2019, aims to “aggressively expand” Klaytn’s ecosystem globally, the company said.
- To support its expansion plans, Klaytn intends to use its US$300 million Klaytn Growth Fund to fund developers, accelerators and investors and to support developer communities through education and community activities. Krust and GroundX will also drive efforts to launch Klaytn-based global applications and incubate blockchain startups.
- Since the launch of the Klaytn blockchain, Kakao has launched KakaoTalk-integrated digital wallet Klip and a Klaytn API service to facilitate the development of Klaytn-based applications. The total value locked in decentralized finance protocols on the platform to date stands at US$1.2 billion, according to the Klaytn Foundation.
- In July, Kakao’s GroundX beat rivals Naver and SK C&C to partner with South Korea’s central bank in the country’s central bank digital currency project.
- Kakao joins a growing list of blockchain and crypto companies that are setting up in Singapore, which is rapidly emerging as a blockchain hub in Asia thanks to its progressive regulatory regime and talent pool. Singapore’s blockchain ecosystem has expanded considerably in recent years. In 2020, there were 234 blockchain-related entities represented across decentralized finance, financial services, smart cities, protocols, enterprise solutions and infrastructure, an increase of 50% from 2019, according to the 2020 Singapore Blockchain Ecosystem Report.
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