S’pore crypto startup SolanaFM founded by 3 SMU students raises funding from Coinhako,

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Homegrown crypto startup SolanaFM announced today (December 24) that it has closed its seed funding round led by digital assets platform Coinhako, and block explorer for the Ethereum blockchain Etherscan.

The funding amount is undisclosed, and will it be used to accelerate SolanaFM’s product development, with the primary focus of providing equitable access to Solana’s data and growing its user base.

“We were presented with multiple offers from other VCs and big players, but we decided to run with Etherscan and Coinhako because of their strong presence in the crypto space, similar line of business and clientele to SolanaFM and their mastery in crypto and business expansion,” said Nicholas, co-founder and CEO of SolanaFM.

With both Coinhako and Etherscan now onboard, the two entities will contribute their industry experience and expertise by taking on an advisory role and mentoring them.

SolanaFM was founded by three Singapore Management University (SMU) undergraduates — Nicholas Chen, Chin Bing Huang and Fathurrahman.

During their university summer break, the trio searched for interesting crypto hackathons to work on and that’s when they stumbled upon the Solana Season hackathon in May.

“We looked into possible solutions for the Solana ecosystem to expand and improve on its functional uses. We realised that Solana’s ecosystem needed a fast, scalable, and composable access to blockchain data so that developers can focus on building solutions on top of Solana. From there, we figured out a solution similar to Etherscan — who is one of our investors — and that is how SolanaFM was established,” recounted Nicholas, who is also the CEO of SolanaFM.

SolanaFM: First indexer for the most scalable blockchain

SolanaFM is the first indexer for the Solana blockchain that allows you to gather and process data with maximum efficiency.

It provides easy access to data within the Solana network, which contains full Solana historical data to easily create fast and scalable applications, or to simply facilitate indexing and querying services.

Simply put, it is an indexing engine that allows you to find different sets of data through simple queries. The platform makes it easier to use Solana by keeping all relevant information a few keystrokes away.

“SolanaFM is the simplest gateway to Solana’s raw data. We help our users (who are primarily ecosystem developers) by handling the complex task of archiving data throughout the history of the blockchain which enable users to build data-driven products with much ease,” explained Nicholas.

For example, data analytics platforms can gather historical Solana data from SolanaFM from the start of the network until today for further analysis. Deeper analysis such as NFT and transaction tracking can also be done to further improve the health of Solana’s ecosystem to reduce malicious activities.

solanafm
Image Credit: SolanaFM

According to Nicholas, the startup was first started with the idea of building analytical tools and dashboards for Solana projects.

“However, we later discovered that different protocols have different variations, wants and needs. This was not scalable and took much of our time. Thanks to the feedback given by our angels, we pivoted towards tackling a bigger problem yet to be solved in the Solana blockchain and that is the issue of providing raw data and queries.”

“From then on, we shifted our focus towards perfecting our services by improving read speeds and greater data output amongst many other technicalities. Since then, our infrastructure is ready to scale to handle Solana’s transaction speed and accommodate to our clients’ needs.”

Strong growth at the back of strong crypto adoption

Commenting on the crypto landscape in Singapore, Nicholas said that he observed strong support from the government with the introduction of the Payment Services Act, which has helped to build a safe, conducive and efficient environment for crypto companies to operate in.

Over the coming months, he foresees that bridging solutions between Centralised Finance (CeFi) and Decentralised Finance (DeFi) will surface, such as Coinhako’s Earn, enabling residents in Singapore to easily generate interest on top of their cryptocurrencies.

“From there, crypto solutions will generally become easier and more attractive to use, and we will eventually witness the true widespread adoption of cryptocurrencies in Singapore,” he added.

To date, SolanaFM has processed over 10,000 queries and a portfolio of over 50 trusted business customers, ranging from CeFi and DeFi companies and family offices.

Since August 2021, the startup has also been working closely with the Solana Foundation and other big players in the ecosystem such as Metaplex.

It is looking to explore more interesting partnerships and will be hosting a hackathon in the second quarter of 2022 in a bid to generate new creative ideas for its projects.

Sharing other future business plans, SolanaFM said that it will continually improve and perfect its services for users. As part of this effort, it will further develop its indexer to introduce more functions to provide better speed and security.

“Ultimately, SolanaFM’s goal is to become the data source to everything Solana. We want to make finance and NFT data in Solana readily accessible, and become the “golden spade” in the ecosystem,” summed up Nicholas.

Featured Image Credit: SolanaFM



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