Startups working with blockchain and bitcoin technology around the world raised close to $300 million (£231.2 million) in funding in the first 6 months of the year, according to Juniper Research.
Over 30 startups raised $290 million (£223.5 million) but over a third went to just three companies in big ticket fundraises: Circle, which raised $60 million (£46.2 million) in June; Blockstream, which bagged $55 million (£42.4 million) in February; and Digital Asset Holdings, which raised $50 million (£38.5 million) in January.
Blockchain is a type of database technology first developed to underpin digital currency bitcoin. Instead of one central database of who owns what, blockchain allows for a network of identical, linked databases that talk to each other and are updated simultaneously.
Every time someone wants to make a change or add something onto the blockchain (the shared database), the majority of members of the network must sign off on it. This cuts out the need for middlemen in transactions, because the fact that everyone signs off means trust is built into the system.