Kraken launches venture fund to invest in crypto and fintech startups

Crypto exchange Kraken has launched a venture fund to invest in crypto and fintech startups.

Kraken Ventures is targeting early-stage startups across verticals that include blockchain, crypto, decentralized finance (DeFi), and fintech.

"We felt this was the perfect time to launch Kraken Ventures because we are at an inflection point in both fintech and crypto, but still very early in the life cycle of both industries," Brandon Gath, general partner of Kraken Ventures, told The Block.

The fund will invest globally, although a majority of its investments are expected to be in North America and Europe, said Gath. The average check size per startup will fall in the range between $250,000 and $3 million, he said, adding that the firm has the flexibility to invest outside of those ranges.

Kraken Ventures has "multiple investments" in its pipeline and plans to announce them "over the next couple of months," said Gath.

The fund is being led by Gath, together with Kirill Gourov and Akshi Federici, senior leaders at Kraken. A fourth partner is expected to be added during the first half of this year.

Kraken rivals Coinbase and Binance both have dedicated venture arms, Coinbase Ventures and Binance Labs, respectively.

This report has been updated for clarity.