NBA’s Spencer Dinwiddie Raises $26M for Crypto App

Calaxy, the social token startup co-founded by NBA star Spencer Dinwiddie, has raised $26 million to expand its operations, the company announced Tuesday.

The funding round was led by HBAR Foundation and Animoca Brands, with Polygon also participating.

The platform allows fans to connect with high-profile creators by purchasing video messages, online classes, video calls and fan club subscriptions.

The interface intentionally puts the crypto components of the platform out of sight, in a bid to attract mainstream users and celebrities who are not crypto natives.

Solo Ceesay, the company's co-founder alongside Dinwiddie, sees Calaxy as an emergent "Web 2.5" product that allows mainstream people to connect with blockchain services without needing to grasp the underlying technology.

“If everyone had to be an engineer to drive a car, we’d have a lot less people driving cars,” Ceesay said in an interview. “We took social token technology, but then also took the utility that you find from already validated Web 2 social platforms focused on monetization.”

While the social token environment is still in its early stages, Calaxy will have to compete with the same Web 2 platforms that it draws inspiration from, with OnlyFans and Cameo also making Web 3 bids to integrate non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

Calaxy previously received $7.5 million in investment in June, with NFL star Ezekiel Elliott and "The Bachelor" Matt James participating.