Sam Altman, OPenAI CEO, and Worldcoin co-founder | Photo courtesy of Gearrice

Tools for Humanity, the company co-founded by OpenAI’s CEO Sam Altman has raised $115 million in its Series C funding. Tools for Humanity released Worldcoin, the Ethereum-based token stands out for its model that rewards individuals simply for their uniqueness.

Blockchain Capital led the funding round which saw participation from Tools for Humanity’s previous investors in addition to new investors including Bain Capital Crypto, a16z Crypto, and Distributed Global.

Tools for Humanity intends to use the funds on various projects including World ID, World App, and a cryptocurrency wallet debuted recently.

Sam Altman’s Worldcoin – The Decentralized Privacy Solution in The Age of AI

According to a report by The World Economic Forum on the impact of AI on growth, generative AI is revolutionizing various fields such as healthcare, finance, education, and more in 2023.

However, as useful as the generative AI technology is, some dangers could potentially come from applying it across all sectors of the global economy, as WIRED reported this week on the flaws discovered in ChatGPT and related chatbots.

With the potential dangers of AI still largely unknown, the developers of Worldcoin believe “we need decentralized, privacy-preserving solutions that can prove humanness online and empower people across the world to take control of their identity and finances,” Akarsh Sanghi, who heads product and business operations at Tools for Humanity said in a statement.

Sanghi added that the funds will support existing projects at Tools for Humanity but also help develop new products and technologies that allow people across the globe to take part in “the growing digital economy.”

Although Worldcoin is known for its decentralized structure and aspirations – to establish genuine and distinct digital identities, it is also working on a noteworthy concept of implementing a universal basic income model.

This concept will come in handy if artificial intelligence takes over numerous job opportunities from humans. The topic of the impact of AI on the global labor market is considerably debated.

“As we embark on the age of AI, individuals must be able to maintain personal privacy while proving their humanness,” Alex Blania, CEO and co-founder of Tools for Humanity said. “In doing so we can help ensure that everyone can realize the financial benefits that AI is poised to deliver.”

Tools for Humanity’s valuation was not revealed during the announcement, however, a report published by The Block earlier in the year indicated that the startup was looking forward to raising “up to $120 million at a valuation of $3 billion.”

The company has been successful in attracting talented professionals from diverse backgrounds that are contributing to its growth.

Tools for Humanity, headquartered in San Francisco, California, boasts a dynamic team comprised of individuals who previously worked for renowned companies such as the Electric Coin Company, Revolut, Uber, Block, Twitter, and Apple.

Universal But Not for People Living in The US

The Ethereum-based crypto project which hopes to transform into a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) in the future could be the answer to having a universal basic income model.

However, people living in the US and those in other “restricted” jurisdictions are not allowed to receive Worldcoins. Tools for Humanity says that it has so far registered more than two million people around the world.

The company initially faced criticism over reports that it was planning to incorporate retina scans in the verification of account holders on Worldcoin as opposed to the universally agreed bot model.

Worldcoin’s biometric imaging device | Image courtesy of Worldcoin

Proof of Personhood, as Tools for Humanity refers to its controversial verification system, does not store the eyeball scans for longer than necessary. Still, there are questions about the level of trust a company can demand from people.

Despite the criticism, Tools for Humanity continues to build with Blockchain Capital General Partner Spencer Bogart saying his team is not concerned and is so far satisfied with the progress.

Bogart, however, insists that it is essential for Tools for Humanity “to adopt a transparent approach by sharing additional information, as this would instill a sense of assurance among a wider audience.”

“Overcoming this significant obstacle is crucial for Worldcoin, as skepticism is a natural response until individuals are genuinely confident in the company’s claims,” he added.

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