Aztec Community, a privateness layer for web3, has raised $100 million in a Sequence B round led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), the startup’s co-founders Zac Williamson and Joe Andrews exclusively told TechCrunch.

“At a high stage, Aztec is an encrypted version of Ethereum,” Andrews mentioned. “In total on Ethereum the entire lot is public, however we are making it encrypted. That scurry has taken us decades to play out.”

Aztec Community launched Aztec Connect, an ecosystem that integrates with Ethereum DeFi protocols like Aave, Lido and Part Finance, in July 2021. Sooner or later, it is going to integrate with Compound, and 5 different DeFi protocols, per its net region.

Encrypted blockchains provide transparency for the protocol however privateness for the customers, so of us aren’t required to demonstrate their identities when transacting, Williamson mentioned.

“The area isn’t nice to are living in without encryption,” Andrews mentioned. “Battle by intention of your day and take a look at what number of things you wouldn’t want of us to phrase. No longer all of it is contemptible; it’s correct your day-to-day existence. But consider how you bought that with no consideration. Doing things without privateness would be a barely frightening world and no longer one we want.”

Other than for a16z, there accept as true with been a “few predominant funds and fresh investors” within the round, however Andrews didn’t expose their names.

“We selected [a16z] to e book the round because they’ve been by intention of this earlier than with the dawn of the win,” Andrews mentioned. “It’s a identical situation to what we salvage ourselves in; sure, different, however the identical situation. We accept as true with this fascinating fresh technology and opportunity to transform the lives of everyone on the planet, however we want encryption to secure it a fact.”

The capital will mainly be traditional to rent extra engineers globally to manufacture the community, Andrews mentioned. Within the past year, the Aztec group has expanded from seven of us to about 40, however it surely hopes to double that number within the shut to term, he added.

In common, public blockchains lack a “lacking piece” of encryption, which can additionally enable extra use circumstances by offering privateness on a case-by-case foundation, Andrews mentioned. Including encryption to blockchain technology may perchance well well additionally “spawn a full wave of personal consumer finance,” among deal of things, he mentioned.

Whereas there are a selection of encrypted blockchains like Zcash and Iron Fish community, Aztec differentiates itself from them since it’s programmable, Williamson mentioned. “These ones are a bit like Bitcoin — what you are going to be in a position to attain to these networks is decided by of us that created it.”

Until no longer too long within the past, the technology for programmable encrypted blockchains didn’t exist, Williamson mentioned. “One of the reasons we may perchance well well additionally elevate $100 million is because our interior study and pattern made it a fact.”

The community is concentrating on a testnet launch within 12 months, however they hope it is going to be utterly deployed on the mainnet within eight to 24 months, Williamson mentioned. Aztec Connect will be grandfathered into the community as its first application, Williamson added.

Within the long term, the community wants to secure a tool the usage of which of us can transact and coordinate with the stage of encryption indispensable for mainstream blockchain adoption, Andrews mentioned.

“The function is to secure blockchains encrypted and use them to disrupt the traditional financial companies and products alternate to its core,” Williamson mentioned. “If we succeed, in two to 5 years banks may perchance well well accept as true with a ramification of sleepless nights.”