September 7th, 2021 – The Portuguese blockchain-based open innovation platform TAIKAI raised €2m in a funding round led by FinLab EOS VC Fund. Existing investor Bright Pixel and new investor Portugal Ventures also participated in the round. The investment is a strategic move for the German VC Fund managed by C3 Management GmbH, since TAIKAI uses EOSIO, the leading open-source software originated by Block.one. The new funding will fuel international expansion in Europe and Brazil and the development of hiring solutions for companies and startups.
The Portugal-based startup caught the C3 Management attention due to the use of their technology, but also to their potential of disrupting the hiring processes across the world. Founded in 2018, TAIKAI started as an open innovation platform, helping Portuguese companies reach new solutions and products through challenges to a community of developers, designers, and others. The pandemic brought them new opportunities since the lockdowns and remote work boosted the online format. Challenges can now address the needs of any company around the world and the solution can be developed by any innovator around the world too. Therefore, TAIKAI has grown and turned into a global open innovation platform with a community of more than 50,000 innovators. It also became a highly relevant, attractive pool of talent, which led to the company’s next step: disrupt hiring processes.
“We strongly believe blockchain technology can have a positive impact across industries. TAIKAI has enormous potential, not only because of its use of the EOSIO software but also for its ambition to become an integrated solution for innovation and hiring processes in any company, driven by an ambitious, talented team. It’s with great enthusiasm that we join this journey,” explains Theo Woik, Managing Partner of FinLab EOS VC Fund.
Mario Alves, co-founder and CEO of TAIKAI, sees this round as an opportunity to create a strong ecosystem of innovation. “TAIKAI has been receiving support from the community since its inception and has already helped more than 100 global companies solve their innovation challenges. Now it is time to go further and have a wider impact on businesses, addressing two of their most urgent needs – innovation and recruitment. That is why we will launch in September an acceleration program for startups.”
The Portuguese investors Bright Pixel and Portugal Ventures have also joined the new funding round, reinforcing the trust in TAIKAI’s team, solutions, and business strategy. Benjamin Júnior, head of investments at Bright Pixel, enhances that “The disruptive capacity of blockchain technologies is the order of the day, especially for its potential impact on several market segments. This vision of building a value proposition for the market was shared, from very early on, by the TAIKAI team and Bright Pixel, which, within the scope of its program, helped to create the MVP and followed the evolution of the product and the company. Thus, we are extremely pleased to see that the project has grown, attracted key national and international investors, and is now facing the challenge of reaching new markets. We are certain that the team with the help of these new partners will be up to the challenge”, says Frederico Santos, from Bright Pixel’s investment team.
Rui Ferreira, Vice President of Portugal Ventures, also adds “We are delighted to add TAIKAI to the Portugal Ventures portfolio, helping to grow its solution and fostering a culture of innovation in businesses, SMEs and Startups. The team led by Mario Alves and Helder Vasconcelos will embark on a new stage of business development with help from Portugal Ventures and its know-how in expanding to new markets, revolutionising recruitment in Portugal and Europe with its platform, which already has over 50,000 developers. TAIKAI is yet another reference project in Portugal, aimed at becoming the next European tech hub."
The funding round will support the international expansion and the development of hiring features. In order to do that, TAIKAI will grow its development, marketing and sales team to 24 people until the end of 2021. All job openings are available on the careers’ website.
FinLab EOS VC Fund is a partnership between Block.one and FinLab, an investor in financial services technologies and blockchain globally.
TAIKAI, founded in 2018, has the focus to create a talent marketplace to connect creators and companies, by crowdsourcing solutions for their challenges, using hackathons as a tool to find, test, validate new ideas, products and talent globally. Think Tinder for innovation and talent seeking.
C3 Management GmbH is an asset management company focused on managing venture funds which invest in exceptional blockchain technology companies worldwide. C3‘s mission is, among other things, to accelerate growth, development, and especially adoption of EOSIO-based blockchains and the EOSIO software. Towards this mission, C3 manages the FinLab EOS VC Fund, which is partly funded by Block.one and offers developers and entrepreneurs the funding they need to create community-driven businesses leveraging EOSIO. The EOS VC Fund focuses on early and growth stage technology companies and typically takes a minority equity stake. C3 operates worldwide and is located in Frankfurt, Germany.
Block.one is an asset holding and investment company that creates, incubates, and invests in businesses that build trust in transactions, transparency in systems, and efficiency in how our world works. Through strategic capital allocation and pioneering business ventures, Block.one has funded more than 100 innovative entrepreneurs to date. Block.one is also the creator of EOSIO, a highly performant open-source blockchain software, built to support and operate safe, compliant and predictable digital infrastructures. For more information, please visit Block.one.
Bright Pixel is an investment vehicle, founded in April 2016, with several mechanisms through which it actively supports and invests in early-stage projects of a technological nature. Among them, the 8 million euros fund, launched to invest in startups with operations centered in Portugal, stands out.
Portugal Ventures, a venture capital firm that is part of Portuguese promotional bank Grupo Banco Português de Fomento, has more than 140 portfolio companies and €184 million under management. It invests in startups in the pre-seed, seed and series A stages offering innovative solutions and with the potential to internationalise their business in the Digital, Engineering & Industry, Life Sciences and Tourism sectors. Since 2012, Portugal Ventures has already invested €171 million in 180 new companies. To learn more, visit portugalventures.pt.
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