CoWDAO closes a $23M investment round

The fundraising will be leveraged to establish CoW Protocol as the primary price finding layer for all digital assets traded on EVM chains, as well as funding the ecosystem development.

CoW Protocol
4 min readMar 29, 2022


CoWDAO, the steward of CoW Protocol, is the first DAO to be autonomously spun out from an existing DAO, the GnosisDAO. Cow Protocol has a unique founding story, it has been incubated for four years by GnosisDAO, and once it gained significant traction in 2021, it started a public spin off process on the GnosisDAO forum.

A proposal was submitted to the GnosisDAO to effectively spin out the Cow Protocol Team and deploy CoWDAO and the COW Token. Due to the decentralized nature of DAOs, the snapshot proposal already had the necessary code for anyone to be able to deploy it if the vote happened to be successful. After the successful vote, a CoWmunity member went ahead and deployed the transactions that effectively created the CoWDAO and the vCOW token airdrop.

The spin off included an innovative fundraising mechanism with community investment options, in which some users of the protocol were given the opportunity to have access to the same deal as private investors had. Like Private Investors, CoWmunity traders were given the opportunity to exercise an investment option that would give them a certain amount of vCOW tokens at a given price and vested linearly over 4 years.

Once the window for exercising the investment options was closed, the CoWDAO successfully raised $23 Mln funding from both private and CoWmunity investors.

These funds will be used to develop the CoW Protocol ecosystem, hire additional team members, fuel the project’s expansion into new chains where MEV protection is most needed, as well as to amplify the marketing activities of the protocol.

“We envision CoW Protocol becoming the core settlement layer for decentralized trading across Web3. Through CoW Protocol’s batch auctions, traders can achieve significantly better prices by being able to trade P2P, co-share execution costs, and avoid value extractions of rent-seeking third parties. These price benefits grow exponentially with an increasing user base, which we hope to bootstrap with help of the COW governance token” says Anna George, Product lead at CoW Protocol.

The outstanding support from the CoWmunity is very exciting and makes the CoW Protocol ecosystem healthier in terms of decentralization as no single holder has >1% of vCOW supply, with the exception of GnosisDAO.

CoWDAO is thankful for the support from our CoWmmunity as the 90.9% of the investment options allocated to traders in Ethereum were exercised, while at the same time, also having 50.2% of the investment options allocated to traders in Gnosis Chain being exercised.


CoWDAO token distribution can be considered quite successful and loyal to its ethos of decentralization. The investment round contains 57 participants from the private round (VCs, Angel Investors… etc) and > 5000 CoWmunity participants (power traders or GNO holders who qualified to obtain an investment option alongside the airdrop claim).

Some of the investors in include top VCs and market makers such as: 1kx, Delphi Ventures, Dialectic, Blockchain Capital, Cherry Ventures, Collider Ventures, Ethereal Ventures, Longhash Ventures, the LAO, Robot Ventures, SevenX Ventures, imToken Ventures, 0x Labs, Atka, Kronos, Profluent, mgnr, Protofire, DystopiaLabs, P2P, HackVC, Prycto and more.

Additionally, CoWDAO also has top angel investors such as: Hasu, Cobie, Poolpitako, Will Villanueva, Gonçalo Sá, Shreyas, Will Price, Del, Will Harborne, Fernando Martinelli, Federico Nitdi, Itamar Lesuisse, Andrey Balysnikov, Shresth Agrwal, Hart Lambur, Light and more.

About CowDAO

CowDAO is an open organization of developers, traders, market makers and many more community members aligned with its vision. CowDAO is focused on fair and decentralized trading systems — in particular, building, maintaining and advancing the Cow Protocol. Cow Protocol technology powers a network of traders and solvers, enabling trustless and efficient peer-to-peer trading. Leveraging batch auctions as a key concept uniquely positions Cow Protocol as native trading infrastructure for discrete-time settlement layers like Ethereum and enables fair and accessible trading to its users.

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CoW Protocol

CoW Protocol finds the lowest price for your trade across all exchanges and aggregators, such as Uniswap & 1inch — and protects you from MEV, unlike the others