Gemini, the crypto exchange founded by the Winklevoss twins, will leverage its $400-million funding round to create a "Gemini experience" across multiple metaverses.
An equity growth financing round of $400 million closed on Thursday at a valuation of $7.1 billion for Gemini, marking the firm's first external financing round. Among the investors were Morgan Creek Digital, ParaFi, Newflow Partners, and Marcy Venture Partners.
The Commonwealth Bank of Australia, which has also launched the first crypto trading service in Australia from a big four bank, also participated in the round.
In the announcement, Gemini stated that it would use the funding to develop simple, innovative, and secure products, as well as expand geographically.
Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss revealed their plans to expand Gemini's reach into the metaverse in an interview with Forbes published on Thursday.
The company is aiming to spread itself out across multiple metaverses instead of building numerous "branch locations" in meatspace—a reference to the popular meme-based description of physical reality:
The Gemini experience will be built in different Metaverses, where you will be able to trade on Gemini but instead of with your phone it will be immersive."
Morgan Creek general partner Sachin Jaitly is joining the board of directors as part of the $75-million investment his firm made into the crypto exchange. According to Forbes, the twins will retain 75% of ownership over Gemini.
Mark Zuckerberg, whom they famously battled in court over Facebook ownership more than a decade ago, will once again be in competition with the pair. Zuckerberg was sued in 2004 for stealing their intellectual property in order to create Facebook; the case was settled in 2011 for $65 million.
Cameron told Forbes that unlike centralized roadmaps for the metaverse from companies such as Facebook or Fortnite, Gemini believes the decentralized route will lead to greater user benefits:
"But there is another option, which is the decentralized Metaverse, where individuals have greater freedom, autonomy, and opportunity, and where technology safeguards their rights and dignity."
"Decentralization is a spectrum," Cameron said, adding that, "we'd like to continue the move in the direction of empowerment."
At the start of April, the twins purchased land in The Sandbox metaverse in preparation for their plan to open Gemini's crypto exchange and nonfungible token marketplace, Nifty Gateway, in the game-to-earn focused virtual world.