Startup Tests New Ethereum Sidechain Following Coinbase Investment


Following investment from Coinbase Ventures, Offchain Labs has opened up the Alpha version of its Ethereum (ETH) scaling solution, dubbed Arbitrum.

Enterprise-focused blockchain startup Offchain Labs said that their solution will enable processing speed of more than 500 transactions per second for Ethereum applications, industry-focused news outlet Crypto Briefing reported on Sept. 5.

Arbitrum has reportedly secured new investment from Coinbase Ventures, the investment arm of major American cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase.

Faster than Ethereum

Deploying Arbitrum, developers can build smart contracts on Ethereum’s Solidity code. However, unlike regular Ethereum decentralized apps, such smart contracts are compiled by the new solution’s compiler. Both code and transactions are executed off-chain through sidechains or state channels, with Arbitrum claiming to be eventually much faster than Ethereum.

In early April, Offchain Labs raised $3.7 million in a seed round led by crypto hedge fund Pantera Capital. With the investment, Offchain aimed to solve major problems associated with enterprise blockchain implementations by bringing more scalability and privacy. At the time, Offchain co-founder Ed Felten said:

“We’re working to build a platform for smart contract development that provides what we think developers want, a combination of scalability so that you can scale to more transactions per second, more users, and to contracts that have more code and still have more data in them.”

Yesterday, Fred Wilson, a financier and co-founder of venture capital firm Union Square Ventures, revised his bullish opinion on Ether. Wilson acknowledged that the underlying Ethereum network is experiencing problems. He wrote:

“Ethereum, as many of you know, confounds me. It has shown the way to so many important things; smart contracts, programmable trust-free computing, potentially proof of stake, and a lot more. But it remains hard to build on, scaling issues abound, and many developers are looking elsewhere.”

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