Web3 Foundation Grants Program Reaches 100 Projects Milestone

Web3 Foundation Team
Web3 Foundation
Published in
4 min readMay 13, 2020

It takes a thriving community to build a thriving ecosystem. That’s why we created the Web3 Foundation Grants Program — to help steward and support teams building decentralized technologies for the future of Web 3.0. Today we’re pleased to announce and celebrate a major milestone in pursuit of that goal: our 100th project funded.

Since we first announced the grants program in December of 2018, we’ve received a steady stream of grant applications and accepted 100 projects in 5 waves. Funded projects include teams building at every layer of the Web3 technology stack for a wide range of applications and real-world use cases. Significant development progress has already been made, with 25% projects having already delivered all the work covered by the scope of their grant.

The ongoing success of the grants program demonstrates the vision and drive of the teams involved, as well as the growing awareness that a new paradigm for web technologies is needed — one that protects users’ interests and provides a more efficient, secure environment for markets to prosper. We’re proud that so many teams want to play a part in building the future of the decentralized web.

Projects funded

The Web3 Foundation Grants Program funds software development related to Polkadot and the Substrate blockchain framework. We’ve awarded grants to teams building a full range of decentralized technology use cases, from finance to gaming, digital identity, privacy, IoT, supply chain management, social networking and others.

Below are just a few of the many promising projects we’ve funded, listed by use case:

Finance: Financial projects funded include LaminarChain, an open finance platform for synthetic assets and margin trading, Centrifuge, a financial supply chain platform, and Acala, a decentralized stablecoin platform.

Identity/claims: Another major use case for decentralized technologies is self-sovereign identity and verifiable claims. Funded projects building for this use case include KILT Protocol, Selfkey and Encointer.

Privacy: Privacy-focused projects funded by the grants program include ZeroChain, which brings zero knowledge transactions to Substrate, Zinc by Matter Labs, a zero knowledge programming framework, and SubstraTEE, which provides Substrate-based blockchains with a trusted execution environment for confidential state transitions.

IoT: Grant recipient Nodle is a promising representative of the Internet of Things use case. Nodle boasts the world’s largest ecosystem of connected devices and allows Substrate-based blockchains to securely identify, certify and verify IoT devices.

Social networking: A promising project demonstrating the social networking use case is Subsocial by DappForce, an open protocol and Substrate module providing front-end UI elements for decentralized social networks and marketplaces.

Funded projects also include development areas at all levels of the Web3 technology stack, from low-level infrastructure to ecosystem components such as wallets, parachains, layer-2 scaling solutions, bridges and developer tooling.

So far the largest segment of grant recipients falls under the category of runtime modules and chains, comprising 35 total projects. Many of these teams are building core Polkadot infrastructure and parachains (Polkadot native blockchains). Promising projects in this category include scalability solutions like Plasm, external bridges for Bitcoin (Interlay), Ethereum (CentrifugeChain), and Libra (pLibra), and alternative implementations of the Polkadot runtime like Chainsafe (in Go) and Kagome by Soramitsu (in C++).

The second most funded level of the stack has been developer tooling, projects aimed at improving developer experience and making it easier for teams to build Web 3.0 solutions. Funded projects building developer tooling include Ink! Playground, an in-browser IDE for developing Ink! Smart contracts.

You can find a complete list of grant recipients here.

Funding priorities for future grants

The Web3 Foundation Grants Program funds software development related to Polkadot and Substrate. Currently, our highest priorities are the components of the Polkadot stack where we’ve seen the least amount of development thus far. Among our top priorities are projects building blockchains with the Substrate framework. Other areas where we would like to see more development include user-friendly developer tooling, zero-knowledge proofs, blockchain gaming, file storage solutions and universal naming systems. This list is by no means exhaustive, and we welcome applications from teams building components that are not explicitly mentioned here. More information on funding priorities can be found here.

Grant applications are open! Here’s how to apply

We are continuously accepting new grant applications, and there are no deadlines to apply. You can apply to the program via two different tracks:

  • For teams seeking funding of $30k or less, the fastest way to apply and get approval is through the open grants program, which takes place entirely on github. Applications submitted via this track have been approved in as little as 24 hours.
  • Teams with more complicated applications, as well as those seeking larger grants or increased privacy, are welcome to apply through the General Grants Program, though this method will take longer for approval. In general, the best way to get your application approved is to include a thorough development roadmap.

Get in touch

If you have any questions about the grants process, feel free to reach out: grants@web3.foundation. For more information about the grants program, visit web3.foundation/grants/

We also have Riot channels for real-time discussions on Web3 and Polkadot:



Web3 Foundation Team
Web3 Foundation

Web3 Foundation is building an internet where users are in control of their own data, identity and destiny. Our primary project is @polkadotnetwork.