Sports NFT Firm Candy Digital Raised Over $38M Amid Founder Strife
Sports-focused non-fungible token (NFT) company Candy Digital announced a Series A extension funding round earlier this month but didn’t specify the monetary amount. The news followed media reports that sports merchandiser Fanatics was selling its 60% stake in Candy Digital but, again, the amount wasn’t included. A new filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Wednesday finally provided some financial figures.
According to the filing, Candy Digital had raised $38,449,997 from 14 investors in an equity offering, more than half of the $68,188,480 overall that the company is seeking to raise in the sale. The offering opened on Jan. 3 – the day before CNBC reported that Fanatics was selling its stake to a group led by well-known financier Michael Novogratz's Galaxy Digital.
Candy Digital was established in 2021 by Galaxy Digital, Gary Vaynerchukk and Fanatics during a sports NFT boom and debuted with a Major League Baseball (MLB) partnership. The startup raised a $100 million Series A round in October of that year at a $1.5 billion valuation. However, NFTs – digital assets backed by technology that proves ownership – became one of the hardest-hit crypto verticals when the bear market began in earnest in early 2022.
Read more: What Are NFTs and How Do They Work?
Candy Digital revealed its Series A1 extension on Jan. 5. The round was co-led by Galaxy Digital and ConsenSys Mesh, with participation from 10T Holdings, and ConsenSys, among others. In the press release, CEO Scott Lawin said Candy Digital would use the funding to continue scaling its platform and forming new partnerships with brands and institutions.
The SEC filing doesn’t provide context for the offering, so it isn’t clear whether the amounts represent all or part of the Fanatics stake sale and/or the funding round. CoinDesk reached out to Candy Digital for comment but had not received a response by publication time.