Unicef funds start-ups with cryptocurrency

23 Jun 2020

CryptoUnicef, the United Nations Children’s Fund, has announced its largest-ever cryptocurrency investment funding of start-ups. 

Eight companies in seven countries will use Unicef’s crypto fund to develop prototypes, pilot, or scale-up their technologies. 

Amongst them are firms working on reducing the fallout resulting from the global coronavirus pandemic.

They are collaborating with national governments and local partners to send critical information on Covid-19, track the effectiveness of rice delivery to vulnerable communities, improve children’s literacy through remote learning, and work with those suffering from pandemic and isolation-related anxieties, according to the international organisation.

“We are seeing the digital world come at us more quickly than we could have imagined – and UNICEF must be able to use all of the tools of this new world to help children today and tomorrow,” says Chris Fabian, Senior Adviser, co-Lead, UNICEF Ventures. 

“The transfer of these funds – to eight companies in seven countries around the world – took less than 20 minutes and cost us less than $20. Almost instant global movement of value, fees of less than 0.00009% of the total amount transferred, and real-time transparency for our donors and supporters are the types of tools we are excited about.”

The eight firms announced by Unicef on Monday join three businesses who received crypto funds earlier this year.

As well as funding, the start-ups are also offered mentorship on expansion, product and technical assistance, open-source and UX and UI development, access to experts and partners, “as well as opportunities to showcase their solutions,” says the UN.