Vitalik Buterin Donates $300k to Ethereum Startups in Bizarre Twitter Thread

In a bizarre series of tweets, Ethereum’s founder Vitalik Buterin has granted more than $300,000 worth of ether to three Ethereum startups.

Buterin, whose Twitter name “Vitalik Non-giver of ether” pokes fun at those asking him for free cryptocurrency, granted the money in 1,000 ETH installments. The three startups in question include:

  • Prysmatic Labs – a startup building a sharding client for Ethereum 2.0.
  • Chainsafe Systems – a company building blockchain platforms and smart contracts for other startups.
  • Sigma Prime – a cybersecurity startup working on the lighthouse project for Ethereum.

Buterin handed out the grants in a Twitter thread discussing Ethereum’s lack of focus and urgency regarding scalability. Preston Van Loon of Prysmatic Labs joined the conversation to lament that his team didn’t have the resources to focus on Ethereum full time:

To which Vitalik Buterin replied:

Buterin went on to donate 1,000 ETH to ChainSafe after one contributor claimed he would drop out of university for a grant. The final 1,000 ETH donation went to Sigma Prime after one developer promised to hire new team members.

Buterin confirmed all transactions with a link to the Etherscan block explorer and followed up with a tongue-in-cheek warning: 

Further reading: What is Ethereum? Absolutely Everything You Need To Know

Ben Brown

Editor, Block Explorer News. Reach me at

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