UK-based DREAM.ac announced this week it has been selected by Asian accelerator Chinaccelerator to participate in its three-month startup acceleration program. The firm has also received seed funding from alt investment VC funds SOSV and Artesian Venture Partners.
Developed by Richard Foster, DREAM.ac seeks to address the global need for qualified blockchain teams by helping to source the talent required to deliver on the $12 billion in blockchain initiatives raised in 2017-2018 so far.
“We launched the first iteration of our online platform in 2016 and it has already matched a deep pool of highly-vetted, experienced blockchain experts with thousands of innovative organizations worldwide,” Mr. Foster said.
He soon noticed close to half of the firms using the site were trying to build their own teams.
“(That) is not easy when you aren’t too sure of the scope, you don’t know any of the individuals concerned or how they will come together,” Mr. Foster added. “Latest stats suggest around 92 per cent of blockchain projects fail and the lack of plugged in and clued up resource has to be a big factor in that.”
With the backing of the VCs and the accelerator, DREAM is set to apply its experience and use AI to iteratively learn from past project outcomes. In this way DREAM will be able to pre-qualify and recommend quality decentralized teams, from coder to marketer, that really can deliver more than the sum of their parts.
“Across our portfolio we see increasing demand for talent for blockchain projects that have raised significant amounts of money, however they are struggling to pull together teams who can actually deliver the product,” Chinaccelerator managing director William Bao Bean said. “We believe DREAM has the potential to become the first port of call for every blockchain build.”
DREAM advisors include Ethereum developer ERC20 author Fabian Vogelsteller and Daniel Shapiro, Ph.D and machine learning expert.
“DREAM is more than a ledger,” Mr. Shapiro said. “It connects people with projects in a way that feels intuitive. The machine learning techniques we designed for team assembly in DREAM are state of the art. The problem with traditional assignment algorithms is the set up with the wrong objectives, injecting bias towards pushing transactions. DREAM is different, our goal is to build the best teams including AI-based agents.”
DREAM will initially focus on the blockchain market, but longer term plans are to rollout across the full range of technologies.
“We believe DREAM supplies the missing-link in the blockchain ecosystem,” Mr. Foster said. “Our service will put together remote teams based on skills, fit and reputation to ensure projects have the best chance of succeeding from the very start.”
SOSV has a portfolio of 700 companies with $300 million under management and is the number four global investor in blockchain as reported by Crunchbase news. Artesian Venture Partners is an Australian venture capital firm with USD$255 million under management across three funds.