- Four former Tencent execs founded the startup.
- The cross-chain protocol supports Ethereum, Tron, Binance Smart Chain, Nervos CKB, and Polygon.
- It hopes to integrate mainstream public chains in the future.
Open-source decentralised identity protocol, .bit, today announced that it has raised $13 million in a Series A funding round from CMB International, HashKey Capital, QingSong Fund, GSR Ventures, GGV Capital, and SNZ.
The decentralised identity protocol aims to become a universal Web3 identification system, similar to what its competitors Unstoppable Domains and Ethereum Name Service offer (ENS). Like ENS, which only allows domain names ending with .eth, .bit only offers its users an alias ending with its namesake. To receive cryptocurrencies, users could just give the sender their .bit alias instead of a 35-character wallet address.
Similar to Unstoppable Domains, .bit is cross-chain as it supports Ethereum, Tron, Binance Smart Chain, Nervos CKB, and Polygon. However, .bit considers itself more of an identity solution provider rather than a domain name service. Users of .bit would connect their alias with the addresses of their crypto or NFT wallets that .bit supports, and all the data and assets from those wallets will be displayed on their .bit page.
One of the co-founders of the startup, Tim Yeoh, said that .bit is “neutral” and “chain agnostic”, and that the company has plans to integrate other mainstream blockchains in the future, such as Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Polkadot, and Solana.
Since launching exactly a year ago, more than 38,000 independent addresses have registered for more than 110,000 .bit accounts in 180 countries and almost 100 mainstream wallets and dApps have already integrated with .bit. The company charges an annual subscription fee for its domain names and other identification services.
The startup comprises a small team of ten spread across the U.S., China, and Singapore, led by Tim Yeoh, Specer Shaw, Jeff Jin, Kyle Wright, who were colleagues at Tencent.
Initial applications for .bit’s decentralised identity protocol include cryptocurrency transfer, decentralized domain resolution, personal profile display, and more. The protocol aims to eventually be used as membership and credential management for DAOs, brands and IPs, celebrities and fans, clubs and communities.
Forthcoming features under development include NameDAO, which will assign a portion of .bit protocol revenue to DAOs, and sub-accounts which will be issued to DAO members, brand adopters, and loyal supporters to strengthen web3 communities, and further lower the threshold for registering accounts, 4-9 digits accounts available to 100% and open up 3 digits accounts. Specific rules for registering the accounts will be announced on .bit’s official Twitter.
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