Mumbai: Polygon, founded by three Indians, breached $10 billion in market capitalisation last week. And at $13 billion currently, it is among the top 20 crypto tokens globally, according to Coinmarketcap.com.
Polygon (previously Matic Network) has seen its market cap surge ten-fold since February, owing to increased adoption of its blockchain by players in gaming, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and DeFi (decentralised finance).
In March, Nasdaq-listed Coinbase allowed users to trade the Polygon coin.
“Growth has been significant. Some part of it is speculation—as with any cryptocurrency— but we have also expanded our vision and scope of work,” said co-founder Sandeep Nailwal. “A combination of real-world application and user adoption has had a snowball effect.”
Polygon’s other co-founders are Jaynti Kanani and Anurag Arjun.
Between January and May, the number of applications built on Polygon, which is based on the Ethereum blockchain, rose eight times to almost 400.
Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey used one such application to mint his first tweet as an NFT, said Nailwal.
“We want to establish India as a blockchain powerhouse,” he said, adding that the goal was to become the third-most valued crypto project in the world behind Bitcoin and Ethereum.
In April, Polygon partnered with Infosys Ltd.’s consulting arm to include NFTs, DeFi and insurance in its ecosystem.
The Indian blockchain startup space is still nascent compared to ones in the United States, Europe and China. In a space dominated by Western players, Nailwal said it took time for the industry to notice its work. “There is a premium on Western projects. We have to work five times harder to get attention,” he said. “But once we rebranded, brought on more people and built a global team, people started to take notice.”
The company recently added Mihailo Bjelic from Serbia as a co-founder.
In 2019, Polygon’s token was distributed through Binance’s Initial Exchange Offering and the startup raised over $5 million. However, regulatory uncertainty in India, including speculation about a likely blanket ban on cryptocurrencies, has made it hard for the blockchain industry to grow and left investors wary about India.
Changpeng Zhao, the founder and chief executive of the world’s largest crypto exchange, Binance, recently told ET that crypto curbs could cause India to miss out on a huge market and several multi-billion-dollar firms.Internet Explorer Channel Network