Web3 Fan-Community and NFT Platform Highlight Announces $11 Million Raise

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Photo Credit: Andrey Metelev

Highlight, a newly launched Web3 fan-community and NFT platform, has raised $11 million in seed funding from individuals and companies including Three Six Zero CEO Mark Gillespie, Method Music, Visionary Music head Chris Zarou, and WME.

This latest Web3 startup with close ties to the music industry just recently unveiled the multimillion-dollar round, having gone live about two weeks back. Unlike the multitude of non-fungible token (NFT) marketplaces that have made headlines as of late, Highlight centers on enabling clients to connect with their fanbases by delivering these supporters “web3 community membership and rewards,” per higher-ups.

There’s “no crypto experience required” to do so, execs likewise indicated, and these “rewards” include NFTs, as mentioned. “With Highlight, anyone can mint non-fungible tokens (NFTs) that help recognize, reward, and delight your top fans,” company officials elaborated of the digital communities associated with the tokens.

“Beyond minting, we’re opening up access to the tools to create a beautiful custom-designed home for your token-holders, with rich integrations that offer ongoing utility and enticing access,” continued Highlight.

In terms of Polygon-powered Highlight’s technical characteristics, the fan-club startup provides “credit card processing, non-custodial wallet instantiation, fraud/risk prevention, customer support and more,” per its website, and “charges a flat 3% fee on all token sales.” The service is also equipped with “native interoperability for all the major NFT marketplaces.”

And besides rolling out NFTs, creators can “sell exclusive merchandise, tickets, experiences, or other offerings on Highlight through our third-party integration partners,” according to the same source.

Regarding the participants in Highlight’s initially disclosed $11 million raise, the round was led by two-month-old Haun Ventures, with additional support from participants including but not limited to WME, Coinbase Ventures, and Kevin Durant’s Thirty Five Ventures (a backer of SeatGeek and OpenSea).

Earlier this month, despite reports suggesting that NFT sales were “flatlining,” Universal Music’s 10:22PM minted 10,000 tokens for its Kingship “band,” while The Chainsmokers gave select dedicated fans streaming royalties (in the form of NFTs) from their newest album.

Meanwhile, Spotify allowed certain artists to plug NFTs on their profiles, and Australian NFT marketplace Serenade pulled down $4.2 million in funding. Before that, John Legend’s Our Happy Company raised $7.5 million and emphasized its goal of “democratizing NFTs for the masses,” whereas Warner Music Group finalized a pact with “digital mementos” creator POAP.

The latter platform’s operational specifics bear some similarities to those of Highlight, for “each POAP is a digital record held by collectors as digital proof that they attended, or participated in, a physical, virtual, or spiritual event,” the business made clear. Said digital records then connect owners “to an entire online community of like-minded people.”