Web3 startup Starlight debuts corporate cards for crypto firms: Exclusive

Web3 startup Starlight debuts corporate cards for crypto firms: Exclusive

Starlight, the web3 startup backed by Brevan Howard, has launched corporate cards that it hopes can simplify expense payments for cryptocurrency businesses. These cards allow for both fiat and crypto payments, which can be tracked via a treasury dashboard on the platform. Considering recent events, other providers are ceasing their services to cryptocurrency companies. For example, on November 18, Ramp suspended payments for its cryptocurrency business cards.

Starlight, a Web3 payments startup backed by Brevan Howard, has launched corporate cards to simplify expense payments for cryptocurrency businesses. The cards allow for both fiat and crypto payments, which can be tracked via a treasury dashboard on the platform; These payments are then loaded through a crypto wallet available through Starlight or a checking account. Funds held in escrow are FDIC-insured, according to startup. The cards have adjustable limits for currencies like Bitcoin, USDC, Ether or Fiat. “These cards mean that if you’re a DAO or a crypto company, you can spend with crypto in the real world,” Founder and CEO Gray Nguyen said in an interview.

This could come with your Amazon Web Services purchases or airline tickets.”

The goal of creating corporate cards for cryptocurrency companies connects Starlight with several other venture capital firms that have formed in recent years, trying to simplify payments for cryptocurrency companies. Rain raised $6 million from Lightspeed Ventures in April this year to launch corporate credit cards for DAOs. Starlight raised $5 million in seed funding that same month, a round co-led by Abstract Ventures and A*Capital with participation from Brevan Howard. Sequoia-backed multinationals also launched crypto-treasuries corporate cards earlier this month.

Nguyen said that many cryptocurrency startups currently use a personal wallet to fund cryptocurrency-related expenses or rely on exchanges to house government bonds. Registrations can take months to complete, leaving cryptocurrency startups vulnerable to possible payout disruptions, as in the case of FTX.

The FTX fallout 

The goal of creating corporate cards for cryptocurrency companies connects Starlight with several other venture capital firms that have formed in recent years, trying to simplify payments for cryptocurrency companies. Rain raised $6 million from Lightspeed Ventures in April this year to launch corporate credit cards for DAOs. Starlight raised $5 million in seed funding that same month, a round co-led by Abstract Ventures and A*Capital with participation from Brevan Howard. Sequoia-backed multinationals also launched crypto-treasuries corporate cards earlier this month.

Nguyen said that many cryptocurrency startups currently use a personal wallet to fund cryptocurrency-related expenses or rely on exchanges to house government bonds. Registrations can take months to complete, leaving cryptocurrency startups vulnerable to possible payout disruptions, as in the case of FTX.

Conduit, a DeFi API startup that raised a $17 million round in January, was among that hits. NFT startup Tokenproof and Re Protocol, founded by Karn Saroya, also saw their ability to issue through Ramp reduced, according to Ramp’s Twitter support page. In a direct message last week, both Tokenproof founder Alfonso Olvera and Conduit’s Kirill Gertman confirmed that their spending limit had been reduced or revoked in the days following Ramp’s email, two days after Genesis Global Capital suspended trading. “We’re always monitoring and responding to what’s happening in the market,” said a spokesman for Ramp. “In light of unprecedented events in the crypto ecosystem, we conducted a thorough risk assessment of companies on our blockchain platform in the crypto space.” Based on the findings of this review, NFT and DeFi are taking proactive steps.

“According to the spokesperson, the company has since reinstated many of the original spending limits, but the incident highlights some of the issues cryptocurrency firms face when dealing with fiat and crypto. In a Telegram message, Conduit’s German stated that the incident prompted him to look for another provider.

Indeed, Starlight’s customers are heavily biased towards cryptocurrency companies, with community platform NFT Highlight and DAOs like CabinDAO using its services. Still, Nguyen hopes it can expand to larger companies interested in crypto payments and big companies, S&P 500-type companies. They came to us, and we showed them how we could simplify the process,” he said. The Web2 space with Ramp and Brex started with the small ones and then spread to the larger companies.

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