Web3 Identity Startup Humanity Protocol Reaches Unicorn Status with $30M Seed Round

The company is building a Web3 identity system that verifies people’s online identities by using the scans of their palms.
Image source: Humanity Protocol

Quick take:

  • Kingsway Capital led the round with participation from Animoca Brands, Blockchain.com and Shima Capital.
  • The company plans to use the fresh capital to expand its team and build more partnerships.
  • The announcement comes ahead of Humanity Protocol’s testnet launch in Q2 with a waitlist of about 500,000.

Humanity Protocol, a digital identity startup using blockchain technology to verify people’s online identities by scanning their palms has raised $30 million in a seed round that values the startup at $1 billion, Bloomberg reported.

The UK-based investment management firm Kingsway Capital led the round with participation from Web3  investment companies Animoca Brands and Blockchain.com and venture firm, Shima Capital.

Humanity Protocol Founder Terence Kwok said his company also raised about $1.5 million from influential crypto figures in a “key opinion leader” round.

Both fundraisings were completed via simple agreements for future tokens (SAFTs), according to the report. 

His company is building a blockchain-based system that addresses one of the biggest concerns about the emergent industries of artificial intelligence, deepakes and digital IP, proving whether or not someone is a real person online.

Funded late in 2023, Humanity Protocol plans to use the fresh capital to expand its team of about 20 people and build more partnerships.

The fundraising also comes ahead of the decentralised identity startup’s planned testnet launch in Q2, having already onboarded 500,000 users to the waitlist.

Highlighting the growing need for fool-proof online identity verification systems, the Humanity Protocol founder Terence Kwok said:  “We look at artificial intelligence. We look at all the deepfake videos that are coming on.”

Humanity Protocol has established a clear action plan, with Kwok stating that the next steps will see his company release an app that “can use a phone camera to scan people’s palm prints to determine their identity.”

Humanity Protocol now joins Sam Altman’s Worldcoin, which uses an orb to scan individuals’ eyes for identity verification. Worldcoin has faced multiple challenges with several regulatory authorities banning it from their countries amid security risks. 

However, Kwok believes that biometrics technology has matured in recent years, with leading smartphone maker Apple also implementing FaceID in its iPhones. 

According to Kwok, the Humanity Protocol system is less invasive in the way it verifies human identity. “It’s not your face and it’s also not your eyeballs,” he said. “It’s much less dystopian.”

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