- Portal’s main products are Portal DEX, a bitcoin-based exchange that uses layer 2 blockchain “atomic swaps” to increase security, and Portal Wallet, a non-custodial app that lets users hold, receive, store, and transmit crypto across blockchains via Portal DEX.
- The company was founded when decentralized and centralized exchanges were increasingly targeted by fraudsters and hackers, particularly those who moved money between them using cross-chain bridges.
With USD 34 million from a seed funding round, Portal, a financial technology business developing a cross-chain decentralized exchange and wallet based on Bitcoin, debuted to expand its cryptocurrency offerings.
As per the company’s declaration, prominent venture capital firms in the cryptocurrency industry, including Coinbase Ventures, Arrington Capital, OKX Ventures, and Gate.io, were among the investors who contributed to the round. The venture funding round increases the company’s total funding raised to $42.5 million; an angel round of $8.5 million that concluded in 2021 was also included.
Portal offers two primary products: Portal DEX, a bitcoin-based exchange that enhances security through layer 2 blockchain “atomic swaps” of cryptocurrencies across blockchains; and Portal Wallet, a non-custodial application that enables users to hold, receive, store, and transmit crypto across blockchains via Portal DEX. A single event, as opposed to a series or multistep procedure, is permitted during an atomic exchange when transferring cryptocurrency between blockchains.
To diversify their holdings and lower their risk exposure, cryptocurrency investors frequently “swap” their holdings. They often “swap” their tokens from one blockchain to another because different blockchains may have varying transaction fees or speeds. Decentralized exchanges or services that employ specialized systems like bridges and wrappers to enable these swaps are frequently responsible for facilitating them. However, the more technological layers added to the process, the more susceptible the networks get.
The company was founded when decentralized and centralized exchanges were increasingly targeted by fraudsters and hackers, particularly those who moved money between them using cross-chain bridges. Over USD 2.5 billion has been pilfered by hackers from bridges alone in the last two years. Notable instances encompass the pilferage of $570 million from the cross-chain bridge of Binance Holding Ltd.’s cryptocurrency exchange and the misappropriation of $321 million from the token bridge of Wormhole.
Chandra Duggirala, Chief Executive and Co-founder of Portal, said, “Bridges, centralized exchanges and other custodial solutions that enable cross-chain exchange have been vulnerable and insecure for as long as they have existed. From the very early days of Mt. Gox to FTX, centralized exchanges have been a persistent source of risk to user funds. Now, the risk remains, but it has taken a new form in bridges and other custodial cross-chain solutions.”
According to Duggirala, Portal plans to address this problem by offering a feature that will forgo risky mediators like wrappers, bridges, centralized exchanges, and multi-hop decentralized exchanges for peer-to-peer swaps between various blockchains. He clarified that Bitcoin tokens may be instantly transferred between blockchains with Portal’s atomic swap feature, eliminating the need for intermediaries and allowing users to retain ownership of their tokens at all times.
“Portal is rapidly pushing ahead the Bitcoin ecosystem by enabling fast and low-cost economic activity without being beholden to third parties. As one of the largest asset classes, Bitcoin will be more accessible and secure for individuals thanks to Portal’s unique approach to access, security and products,” said Michael Arrington, Partner and Founder of Arrington Capital.
Portal plans to provide products in the upcoming months that were previously exclusive to big institutions and hedge funds with the additional investment. These consist of co-pilot investment applications fueled by artificial intelligence that optimize trading strategies and an application programming interface that facilitates the development of tools that integrate Portal DEX cross-chain exchanges into pre-existing cryptocurrency wallets.