- Artist Emily “pplpleasr” Yang co-founded the NFT platform Shibuya, which has garnered $6.9 million in seed funding.
- The platform will grow its staff and try to bring on new creators in order to release more original video programs.
- Andreessen Horowitz and Variant Fund co-led a seed round for Shibuya, a platform that allows NFT owners to engage with its own content.
Shibuya, an interactive video platform powered by Ethereum NFT and co-founded by artist Emily “pplpleasr” Yang, revealed today that it has raised startup investment.
In a round that was jointly managed by VC powerhouses Andreessen Horowitz and Variant Fund, Shibuya garnered $6.9 million. Famous angel investors like NBA player Kevin Durant, entertainer Paris Hilton (who created the NFT), Alibaba co-founder Joe Tsai, and Aave founder and CEO Stani Kulechov also participated in the round.
Shibuya’s Web3 hook is that viewers may buy NFTs, a kind of decentralized, choose-your-own-adventure story that allows them to vote on the plot’s course between chapters while also funding new content.
Although the platform was initially self-funded, the subsequent falls in the cryptocurrency and NFT markets persuaded the founders to seek funding in order to advance.
When it came to self-funding, pplpleasr said, “What became more important to me was that we can continue developing out this idea with that safety in mind of being able to focus on what’s important, and not having to worry about the market.”
Shibuya has now added the second chapter of “White Rabbit,” and the third is scheduled to be released in January. The business intends to use the funds to grow its workforce as it looks for potential creative partners to create new interactive, NFT-driven cinematic projects that will premiere in Web3.
Pplpleasr, who gained notoriety in Web3 through her NFT artwork for DeFi protocols, declared that she and Kuciara will be actively involved in the platform’s upcoming wave of projects to guarantee high-quality outcomes. The goal, she said, is to “be the A24 of Web3,” referring to the cult-favorite independent cinema company that produced “Moonlight” and “Everything, Everything, All At Once.”
Shibuya was established in March with the release of the first episode of the original anime series “White Rabbit” by Pplpleasr and co-founder Maciej Kuciara, a concept artist on multiple Hollywood blockbusters.