Today blockchain startup Dune Analytics announced it raised $69.2 million in a Series B round led by Coatue, including funding from existing investors Multicoin Capital and Dragonfly Capital. The startup’s $1 billion valuation comes just six months after its August 2021 $8 million Series A.
There are several types of analytics platforms in the crypto world. Some target government and corporates and emphasize forensics such as Chainalysis, TRM Labs and an Elliptic. That’s not where Dune is positioned.
Dune is a community platform. It enables anyone in the crypto community to easily query blockchains using the conventional database query language SQL. Plus, the results can be included in user friendly dashboards and shared with others. One of the most popular dashboards is for measuring the trading volume on the OpenSea NFT marketplace.
The problem Dune addresses is the difficulty for the average person to query blockchains. Native blockchain transactions are not user-friendly, and it is a massive task to convert them to databases.
On the flipside, there’s plenty of competition for published analysis, including the likes of Glassnode and Nansen.
While the Dune platform is free to use, it takes rather a long time for the queries to process. A hefty subscription of $390 per month allows users to skip the queue and keep queries private.
Dune plans for those who create and share useful dashboards to be compensated, we assume with a token.
“Despite being radically open, web3 data remains largely underutilized. At Dune, we want to make this intelligence readily accessible and reward the analysts working to turn this data into digestible, real-time actionable insights,” said Dune Analytics Co-founder and CEO, Fredrik Haga.
“In legacy finance, only insiders get access to valuable data. Dune supports the next generation of analysts who will neither wear suits nor work for investment banks.”
So far, the blockchains supported are Ethereum, Polygon, Optimism, Binance Smart Chain and xDAI. It plans to add all Layer-1 and Layer-2 smart contract platforms.
Despite this utility, it’s still missing several heavily used blockchains—especially those popular for NFTs such as Solana, Flow, and even WAX.
Blockchain analysis is a fascinating sector. But the question is whether blockchain’s transparency will be sustained. For some aspects, it probably will remain transparent. But as corporates look to adopt public blockchains, increasingly, the data will be obfuscated.