December 9, 2021

Welcoming Palm NFT Studio to the M12 portfolio

Palm NFT Studio logo



We’re excited to welcome Palm NFT Studio— a one-stop shop for leading creators and brands to power their NFT projects across movies, games, music, and art —to the M12 portfolio as lead of their Series B funding round. 

Technological and societal paradigm shifts are ushering in Web3, which will fundamentally change existing technologies, business models, and the ways in which we interact. Palm NFT Studio is one of the critical building blocks for this next wave of the web—connecting brands, enterprises, creators, and consumers as they advance to Web3. 

Palm NFT
Artist Damien Hirst with The Currency artwork “Tenders”

We’re all very familiar with Web2—the interactive, engaging, and media-rich Internet that most of us are using today. In a typical browsing session, we exchange personal data to use apps and services provided by companies. In this Web2 paradigm, creators build content and generate audience followings on discrete platforms. Companies that provide publishing or sales services to creators dominate those relationships, taking a percentage of transactions or placing ads in front of a creator’s content—all in addition to controlling the algorithms that determine content distribution. 

The next phase of the web is no longer predicated on the monetization of personal data or reliance on centralized services to publish, consume, or transact. Web3 promises community-governed and interoperable, decentralized networks. The architecture evolution promotes direct value flow from the supplier to the consumer—from content creators to their audiences. Cryptoassets are key to driving this paradigm shift, which will disrupt traditional ad-supported business models and other rent-seeking intermediaries that have built strong moats in the Web2 world. 

Image of Pace Gallery NFT by Lucas Samaras
Image of Pace Gallery NFT by Lucas Samaras

NFTs (non-fungible tokens) represent a unique opportunity for crypto and distributed ledger technology to operationalize and monetize an existing offline behavior: collecting—whether it’s digital fashion, audio and music, video, sports moments, game assets, or fine art. These are just some of the early and obvious uses, but the potential of NFTs extends far beyond the conversion of physical assets to the digital world. Any scenario where a smart contract could streamline efficiency and safety—including real estate transactions, for example—could see NFT applicability. 

Many Web2 apps that we use today—like music streaming services or games with in-experience purchases—equate to “paying rent” to access content. But with transactions recorded on the blockchain, consumers have the opportunity to purchase and own content. Many elements of the broader decentralized finance ecosystem only serve “in universe” needs (think: an avatar’s uniform in a game environment), but art and entertainment are often collected outside of specific universe boundaries, making for an intuitive fit with NFT technologies. NFTs, in theory, are portable across protocols and applications on the blockchain. 

Palm NFT Studio assisted in launching the Palm Network, a fully EVM-compatible sidechain that allows users to establish NFTs on the network and improves transaction speeds without sacrificing interoperability. Any NFT assets created on the Palm Network or Ethereum mainnet are in the same form, language, and specification, and can be moved across the bridge from the Ethereum mainnet to the Palm Network sidechain or vice versa. 

There has been a lot of discussion about the sustainability impacts of crypto and NFTs, and it’s important to note that Palm NFT Studio is focused on designing technology with sustainability in mind. They’re conscious of the carbon impact of their platform and are taking steps to reduce the footprint of their solution. The company and third parties have run tests that show the Palm Network requires magnitudes less computation and subsequent energy to execute transactions than proof-of-work chains. Sustainable economy infrastructure company Patch found that the carbon footprint of one transaction on the Palm Network is equal to sending three emails. The Palm Network also has a carbon tax built into its bridge configuration, enforcing payment when mainnet resources are used. As customers and partners demand more sustainable solutions, Palm NFT Studio is building an attractive option for carbon-conscious participants.

Image of NFT from DC Comics’ DC FanDome 2021 drop
Image of NFT from DC Comics’ DC FanDome 2021 drop

Palm NFT Studio partners with leading creators and brands to power their NFT projects across movies, games, and art. The studio helps artists and rights holders leverage this new medium with bespoke strategic, creative, and technical services, built on top of a core platform that enables the rapid development of large-scale drops. Since its launch earlier this year, the company has introduced precedent-setting NFT drops—including Damien Hirst’s The Currency—and explored digital fan engagement with DC Comics’ DC FanDome 2021. Palm NFT Studio also partnered with Pace Gallery to launch Pace Verso, an art gallery for Web3.

Palm NFT Studio has an experienced management team and some of the best talent in the Web3 world. The company was founded by ConsenSys founder and Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin; film producer and Heyday films owner, David Heyman; founder of world class art services business HENI group, Joe Hage; and co-founder of ConsenSys protocol engineering group PegaSys, Daniel Heyman—Palm NFT Studio’s CEO. 

Dan has surrounded himself with a world-class leadership team as well: Chief Technology Officer Meredith Baxter is an experienced software engineering lead and core developer in the Ethereum ecosystem. Chief Content Officer Matt Mason has 20 years of experience across content, marketing, strategy, and product management. Head of Community Sian Morson is the editor-in-chief of TheBlkChain and a leading voice and organizer in the NFT community, elevating underrepresented creators. Executive Creative Director Straith Schreder previously oversaw commercial content strategy, development, and production at VICE Media Group. General Counsel Diana Stern was a founding member of Stripe’s global crypto team, designed the first enterprise smart contracts at large law firms, and has advised on crypto issues for over seven years.

This latest funding round will enable the company to scale its technology and launch more NFT projects on the Palm Network with leading creators across entertainment, fine art, and gaming. We’re excited to join the company board, and lead this latest funding round alongside investors Griffin Gaming Partners, RRE, Third Kind Venture Capital, Sfermion, the LAO, Warner Bros, and SKTelco. 

Congratulations to Dan and the entire Palm NFT Studio team on this major milestone. We look forward to your continued success!