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Ithaca Finance Secures $2.5M in Pre-Seed Funding to Develop On-Chain Options Protocol

Decentralized finance (DeFi) startup Ithaca Finance has successfully raised $2.5 million in a pre-seed funding round, co-led by Cumberland, a crypto trading firm, and Wintermute Ventures, a venture capital firm.

Ithaca Finance is focused on creating composable options infrastructure within the DeFi space. The startup aims to increase options trading volume on-chain to meet the rising demand for structured products in the cryptocurrency markets. Currently in testing on Arbitrum, Ithaca’s protocol utilizes an algorithmic market maker model to bootstrap liquidity.

Dimitrios Kavvathas, CEO of Ithaca Finance and a former leader at Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, and crypto lender Amber Group, expressed gratitude for the investors’ support. Kavvathas emphasized the company’s commitment to revolutionizing the digital asset options trading landscape with the guidance and partnership of its investors.

Ithaca Finance’s technical team brings a wealth of experience from both traditional finance and crypto startups. The startup plans to expedite the path to institutional-scale options trading volumes across blockchains by breaking down options contracts into fundamental building blocks. This permissionless infrastructure aggregates liquidity, facilitating risk transfer across various assets and time horizons.

After an initial invite-only launch, Ithaca Finance is set to open its protocol to the public later in Q1 2024. The funding round saw participation from GHAF Capital, Room40 Ventures, and various angel investors. This development aligns with the broader recovery trend in DeFi, with the total value locked (TVL) in the sector currently exceeding $56 billion.

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