Reddit meme-inspired Taproot Wizards raises $7.5M

Bitcoin, often referred to as the grandfather of crypto, is not always recognized for its innovation or pushing the envelope. However, Taproot Wizards, a Bitcoin-focused project inspired by the original Bitcoin wizard Reddit meme, is striving to change the perception of the blockchain. The project has secured $7.5 million in a funding round led by Standard Crypto, according to Taproot Wizards co-founders Udi Wertheimer and Eric Wall, who shared the news exclusively with TechCrunch+. They opted not to disclose a valuation.

Taproot Wizards, aims to revive the culture of building on Bitcoin by making it magical again.

“We’ve been in Bitcoin for over a decade. We have these memories of how Bitcoin was. It was very experimental, but it changed,” Wertheimer said. “We want to bring back the culture of building on Bitcoin and make it magical again.”

Other investors in the funding round include Geometry, Collider Ventures, StarkWare, UTXO Management, Bitcoin Frontier Fund, Masterkey, and Newman Capital. The funds will be allocated to rebuild Bitcoin’s “wizard village,” symbolizing the ecosystem’s ambition to compete with major blockchains like Ethereum and Solana. “We want to enable or introduce a new way of being a Bitcoiner,” Wall said.

Standard Crypto co-founder Alok Vasudev likened this investment to the one Yuga Labs made in Bored Ape Yacht Club, expressing the potential for building the brand and creating additional collections under the umbrella. He also emphasized the intriguing infrastructure opportunities for a more dynamic Bitcoin ecosystem. Standard aims to be an active participant in this movement rather than just a steward of an NFT collection.

“The reason we went for a larger round is because we think time is of the essence,” Wertheimer said. “We care a lot about Ordinals and Taproot Wizards, but our mission is bigger than that; we want to bring innovation back to Bitcoin.”

Taproot Wizards has a limited mint of 2,121 wizards, paying homage to the total supply of bitcoin: 21 million. Of that total, 2106, or 99.3%, have been inscribed, but less than 1% — 20 Taproot Wizards’ Ordinals — have been distributed so far. Wertheimer noted that they are not sharing the exact pacing of its releases to prevent the hype from fading quickly. “We want to find people on a mission, not those focused on JPEGS,” he said.

Active community members who participated in its “wizard school” or are die-hard fans, including those who got tattoos or sent in videos of them showering in wizard outfits, have been rewarded with Ordinals.

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