Decentralized finance (DeFi) in a multichain world exists in silos. A new project is enlisting prominent backers to fix that.
Announced Tuesday, Umee has raised a $6.3 million seed round led by Polychain Capital and including Coinbase Ventures, IDEO CoLab, Alameda Research, ConsenSys and others.
The funding comes as DeFi finds its footing beyond its original home, Ethereum, and investors look for interoperability among various blockchains.
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“Our flagship product right now is cross-chain interest rates,” Umee CEO and founder Brent Xu told CoinDesk.
Xu, who previously worked at ConsenSys, also previously led strategy at Tendermint, helping to build out Cosmos and its Inter-Blockchain Communication (IBC) protocol.
DeFi has flourished on Tendermint-enabled networks such as Binance Smart Chain and Terra, but assets on those networks live at a distant remove from DeFi on Ethereum.
Umee aims to be a universal tool, Xu said, by “using bridge technology to connect between Ethereum and other blockchain ecosystems.”
In an introductory blog post published last month, the team elaborated:
“Umee will utilize the IBC protocol that was created out of the Cosmos ecosystem. … A key consideration of Umee will be to expand the DeFi activities between Cosmos and Ethereum while introducing additional composability with other protocols.”
“We’re very excited about expanding the ecosystem,” said Xu. “Not many teams have the same access to engineers as us.”