The 10 Coolest Blockchain Startups Of 2019 (So Far)

CRN takes a look at the 10 coolest blockchain startups of 2019 so far. These startups tackle everything from identity verification and storage to supply chains and IoT networks.

Blockchain Startup Funding Continues To Soar

Even as regulators begin to crack down on some blockchain and cryptocurrency companies, venture capital funding for startups in the space is by no means slowing down.

Back in April, Reuters reported that VC funding had already reached $850 million so far in 2019, putting it on pace for another record-breaking year.

While many blockchain startups are focused largely on the financial sector, some are looking at the distributed ledger technology as a way to solve issues around identity verification, data storage, supply chains and Internet of Things networks.

What follows is an overview of the 10 coolest blockchain startup of 2019 so far, most of which are creating offerings for enterprises.


CEO: Kari Thor Runarsson

Authenteq provides a blockchain-based automatic identity verification platform that can prevent users from creating unauthorized accounts on web services.

The Reykjavik, Iceland-based startup raised a $5 million funding round led by Draper Associates and Capital300 earlier this year.

The company's platform uses a combination of a machine learning-powered liveness check, identification scan and facial recognition as part of its verification process.

Cambridge Blockchain

CEO: Matthew Commons

Cambridge Blockchain is a digital identity enterprise software provider that uses blockchain technology to establish an independent source of validation.

The Cambridge, Mass.-based startup became the first blockchain company to receive an investment from PayPal, which was added to its Series A funding round in May.

The company's IDBridge platform is aimed at helping financial institutions comply with new data privacy rules while improving the efficiency of identity compliance checks.


CEO: Susanne Somerville

Chronicled aims to bring trust, efficiency and automation to global supply chains by creating decentralized blockchain networks for supply chains spanning multiple independent parties.

The San Francisco-based startup raised a $16 million Series A funding round led by Mandra Capital, with participation from other investors, at the beginning of the year.

The company is piloting the MediLedger Project with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to help drug supply chain stakeholders track prescription drugs throughout distribution.


CEO: Marc-Antoine Ross

Dfuse is a provider of blockchain-based APIs that make it easier for developers to build high-performance, decentralized applications.

The Montreal-based startup raised a $3.5 million seed round last month that was led by Intel Capital and Multicoin Capital, with participation from other investors.

The company's product line enables real-time updates on the state of the blockchain, irreversible blockchain transactions, transaction query capabilities and on-demand development environments.


CEO: Amir Haleem

Helium is building a peer-to-peer network for the Internet of Things by encouraging consumers to install gateways in exchange for cryptocurrency.

The San Francisco-based startup recently launched its "LongFi" wireless network that the company said has 200X the range of Wi-Fi at 1/1000th of the cost of a cellular modem. That coincided with the company raising a $15 million Series C round, bringing total funding to $51 million.

The company is supporting the buildout of its network with the sale of Helium Hotspots, which are $495 gateways that consumers can buy and connect to Wi-Fi in exchange for the possibility of receiving the company's cryptocurrency. Early customers include Nestle, Lime and InvisiLeash.


CEO: David Vorick

Nebulous provides a decentralized cloud storage platform called Sia that uses blockchain to offer what the company said is a more robust and affordable alternative to major cloud providers.

The Boston-based startup raised a $3.5 million pre-Series A funding round led by Bain Capital Venture Partners, bringing its total funding to $6.3 million.

The Sia storage network offers node operators the company's Siacoin cryptocurrency in exchange for providing storage, which costs roughly $1 per terabyte a month.

NXM Labs

CEO: Scott Rankine

NXM Labs is an Internet of Things security provider that is using blockchain to allow connected devices and systems to manage their own security without the need for human intervention.

The San Francisco-based startup raised a $5.5 million pre-Series A funding round from investors earlier this year to commercialize its SecureSuite software platform.

The first commercial use of NXM Labs' technology will be through a connected vehicle solution it developed with Sprint that can deliver secure, high-speed Wi-Fi to preowned vehicles.


CEO: Matthew Gregory

Ockam is developing a serverless platform for the Internet of Things with the goal of enabling companies to build secure connected device systems.

The San Francisco-based startup raised a $3.2 million seed funding round from investors, including Core Ventures, Okta and SGH Capital, in June.

Ockam's platform comes with a blockchain-based device and service registry, decentralized identifiers, key and credential management, and end-to-end encrypted messaging.


CEO: Colin Gounden

Via is helping energy and utility companies tackle asset management and operational issues with a blockchain-based application that enables data pooling and smart contracts.

The Somerville, Mass.-based startup raised a $7 million seed round in June that will help the company expand network coverage for its Global Data Asset Collaborative program, a predictive maintenance application that uses equipment data from multiple companies.

The company's Trusted Analytics Chain allows multiple energy companies to pool their data together anonymously for advanced analysis.

Xage Security

CEO: Duncan Greatwood

Xage Security provides what it calls the first blockchain-protected security platform for industrial Internet of Things deployments.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based startup was most recently awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to demonstrate how a decentralized security model can protect the national power grid.

The company has raised a total of $16 million from investors, which includes Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures, GE Ventures and March Capital Partners.