Hedera Protocol recently announced the establishment of a $250 million fund dedicated to DeepTech. The objective is to promote web3 education and encourage its adoption in Saudi Arabia.
An X announcement disclosed that the partnership will span five years. Between the Hedera Fund and Saudi Arabia, Hedera Hashgraph has also introduced the launch of the DeepTech Venture Studio. This project aims to implement solutions in a range of industries, such as AI, blockchain, and other deep technologies.
The announcement said, “The DeepTech Venture Studio will be specially designed to empower local Saudi companies as well as international companies interested in operating in the Kingdom. The studio will develop innovative solutions and benefit from deep technology such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, robotics, the Internet of Things, virtual reality, and quantum computing.”
According to Zepzi, who is affiliated with the Hedera HBAR Foundation, Hedera has set aside $50 million for supporting tech startups in Saudi Arabia. The Ministry of Investment Association has contributed $200 million towards this cause. However, it’s important to note that only companies operating within Saudi Arabia and utilizing Hedera’s Hashgraph technology are eligible for investment from DeepTech.
$50 MM from @The_Hashgraph
$200 MM from private Saudi investors
This is a 100% Hedera powered venture studio that enables the convergence of deep technologies that intersect exclusively on Hedera.
A prerequisite to…
— Zepzi (@Zepzi) February 6, 2024
HBAR trading volume skyrockets 400% post link-up
According to reports, the HBAR token surged 400% in trading volume following the announcement. However, trading volume has slipped a bit as of this writing. The token is trading at $0.07512 on CoinMarketCap, up over 3% in the past 24 hours.
Hedera (HBAR) is showing performance compared to the cryptocurrency market, which has increased by 2.10%. It is also outperforming Layer 1 (L1) cryptocurrencies, which have seen a rise of 2.10%.
It is worth noting that the Hedera Council has dedicated around 5 billion HBAR, which is the currency of Hedera Hashgraph, to promote the development of the ecosystem and improve decentralized governance. A significant portion of this funding is set aside for assisting systems like the HBAR Foundation, the Hashgraph Association, and the DLT Science Foundation.
The partnership was formalized through the signing of a memorandum of understanding during a meeting in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Recent web3 developments in the Middle East
A series of web3 initiatives have recently heightened attention towards the Middle East. On Dec. 12, Coinbase debuted Project Diamond, a smart contract platform aimed at institutions that has been integrated into the Abu Dhabi Global Market’s (ADGM) RegLab sandbox. This platform conducted its pilot on Nov. 10, showcasing the issuance and completion of a digital debt instrument denominated in USDC within the ADGM.
Earlier, on Dec. 7, a collaboration was established between SBI Holdings, a financial services entity in Japan, and Aramco, the state-owned oil giant of Saudi Arabia. They signed a memorandum of understanding to investigate potential investments in each other’s digital asset portfolios.
Furthermore, on Dec. 4, the Phoenix Group became the first digital asset company to be listed on the Abu Dhabi Stock Exchange (ADX), allegedly signifying a growing acceptance of cryptocurrency ventures in the region’s traditional financial markets. On Nov. 29, Iota announced the launch of its Abu Dhabi Iota Ecosystem DLT Foundation.