NBA Player Spencer Dinwiddie’s Crypto App Calaxy Raises $26 Million

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Calaxy by Spencer Dinwiddie, a social token platform based on the Hedera Hashgraph, has just closed a $26 million funding round and named a new CEO.

The strategic funding round was co-led by the HBAR Foundation, which hosted console gaming giant Ubisoft to its ecosystem in February, and Animoca Brands, which recently acquired three game studios in its quest to dominate the Web3 gaming space.

Polygonwho has become a destination for applications leaving the Terra network, also participated in the round.

When this launched last summerthe platform had raised $7.5 million in seed funding and gifted Calaxy Creator tokens from actress and singer Teyana Taylor and NBA star Iman Shumpert.

Since then, the platform issued one billion Calaxy Creator (CLXY) tokens in April and currently has a fully diluted market cap of $546 million, according to Live Parts Watch.

The new funding will be used to expand the Calaxy platform as the team prepares to release beta later this summer.

“We’re developing the ecosystem further. So it’s both the app and the protocol itself,” Dinwiddie said. Decrypt on a call last week. “You know, the token also serves as a governance component. And being a protocol, we want other decentralized applications to be built on it.”

Dinwiddie co-founder Calaxy COO and former Wall Street banker Solo Ceesay will take over as chief executive.

“We envision a world where anyone, regardless of their level of experience with crypto, can use our mobile and web apps to connect with their favorite content creators,” Ceesay said. Decrypt in an email. “Ultimately, we want to be the project that set the standards for Web3 social tokens and fan engagement.”

Dinwiddie and Crypto

The change means Dinwiddie will take on the role of executive chairman, a step down from day-to-day operations at Calaxy. The pursuit of social tokens, let alone an entire platform and protocol, has almost not happened for Dinwiddie.

He first gained attention in crypto circles in 2019 when he fell out with the NBA after saying he would tokenize his $34 million contract. They blocked his efforts twice. When he finally started selling tokens in 2020, he only managed to raise $1.35 million.

Since then, he has found his access to big names to be a huge asset as they strive to bring more people to the Calaxy platform.

“I think our secret sauce comes down to our network,” he said. “Like at the end of the day, I mean, not congratulating myself, but it’s definitely a different experience when a phone call can put you in touch with, you know, Ezekiel Elliott or Matt James or LeBron James, for that matters.”

Even though the league and other skeptics have warmed to crypto out of financial interest rather than enthusiasm for the technology, Dinwiddie said, that’s better than being openly mocked.

“I would say it’s a lot more fun not catching balls all the time,” he said. “When I first spoke of [crypto], I was either crazy, and it was, you know, ‘Shut up.’ Or I was just being made fun of about it.”

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