Blockchain based mobile voting platform Voatz has just announced it has raised $7million in a Series A funding round, led by Techstars and Medici Ventures. The company said in a press release that it will use the funds to increase accessibility and usability of its platform, and to grow its security as it launches new pilot programmes across the US and abroad.
The Voatz platform allows citizens to vote in elections and other voting events via their smartphone or tablet.
In March of this year, the company announced it would launch a pilot programme with the City and Council of Denver, Colorado. This system would allow military personnel who are deployed at the time voting takes place, to vote during the city’s 2019 local elections. It will also be available for US citizens that are living or working abroad. The pilot was successful and followed on from success in West Virginia during 2018.
Voatz was trialled in 24 counties in the State during the 2018 Midterm Elections and it allowed overseas citizens and deployed military personnel to cast their vote. This was the very first time that mobile voting secured via a blockchain infrastructure had ever been used in a US Federal Election.
President of Medici Ventures, Jonathan Johnson said:
“What Voatz is doing to allow more registered voters to participate remotely in elections in a safe and secure way is important. It bodes well for more widespread adoption of the Voatz application. That’s one reason we’ve increased our investment in the company by leading this Series A round.”
The Voatz platform uses a combination of encryption, biometrics, and blockchain technology to create a secure, convenient, and auditable way of managing voting. As well as the pilots in Denver and West Virginia, the platform has also teamed up with universities, unions, church groups, state political parties, and nonprofits in order to administer elections.
Since it launched in 2016 it has facilitated a total of 39 elections.
Managing Partner at Urban Innovation Fund, Julie Lein said:
“Voatz has the potential to revolutionize the way we vote. By providing access through a mobile device, Voatz can dramatically increase citizen participation, and the company is committed to ensuring everyone votes safely and securely. We’re excited to back Voatz to make voting more accessible and secure.”
Investors who were involved in this latest round of fundraising have described the platform as “radically more inclusive” and said it is “on the right track for delivering large scale impact.”
Nimit Sawhney, CEO and Co-Founder of Voatz expressed his gratitude to investors for their continued support in accelerating and deploying the technology. He reiterated their commitment to the steady progress of mobile voting that is backed by blockchain technology, in the hope that it will improve the existing election infrastructure.
The continued expansion and development of the Voatz platform, as well as its successful use in US state elections is a significant vote of confidence for blockchain technology. Its use by potentially millions of individuals in such a delicate sector will do a lot to bolster its image, and credibility at a crucial time in the sectors development.