What is ConsenSys Mesh?
Our history since 2015 and our future building in Web3
Our mission at ConsenSys Mesh is to champion the global adoption of Web3. Not only does Web3 create new ways to share information and value, it also creates opportunities for new communities to flourish. Through the investment, incubation and acceleration of decentralized projects, Mesh is helping build the age of community.
Since its founding in 2015, ConsenSys has been a melting pot of people with different backgrounds who all share the same philosophy: that we can build the systems and structures society needs through decentralized blockchain projects. As such, ConsenSys has existed in service of the advancement of decentralized systems which elevate the people behind the technology. Historically our focus ranged on everything from building and designing software stacks to supporting blockchain growth through investment, incubation, and education.
A company with such a broad mission was bound to face challenges, particularly when the organization functioned in such a unique way. Not only was there patient funding for internal projects, but developers and contributors were given the opportunity to work on the projects of their choosing, many of which resulted in foundational Ethereum innovations, while others proved to be either too difficult or before their time. The flexible environment ConsenSys became known for, while ultimately resulting in long-term success, was not immune to short term challenges.
One of those challenges came about due to the economic conditions of 2020 with the COVID pandemic in full swing, when we made a reflective decision of growth which sought to ensure the continued success of the organization. ConsenSys Software Inc. (now commonly referred to simply as “ConsenSys”) was spun out to work on a focused blockchain product stack that includes Mesh incubated projects like MetaMask and Infura, building on Ethereum and layer 2 solutions. Meanwhile ConsenSys Mesh (a.k.a. Mesh) continues to focus on championing projects that further our industry. By spinning out ConsenSys Software, just as we have spun out countless other projects in our ecosystem, the potential of both was unlocked.
To truly understand the Mesh identity and vision however is impossible without understanding the wider context of technological innovation within which we find ourselves.
In the 1960s, Canadian media theorist Marshall McLuhan explained the evolution of technology as a process for creating mechanisms of human communication which brings us ever closer to a “global village.” Mass technological communication, although ostensibly existing in a realm adjacent to direct person-to-person interaction, makes the world a smaller, more immediate place by billowing our access to information and to each other.
In considering the evolution of the internet, this concept bears out exceptionally: every person now has the ability to step into the driver’s seat, creating and relaying content en masse. But that ability has come with risks in the form of overwhelming reliance on third parties to act as our go-betweens. These third parties rob individuals of our ability to manage our own identities and interactions online. A global village has been created, but we have lost our agency as citizens along the way. As ConsenSys founder Joseph Lubin puts it: “there has been a fundamental loss of trust in the societal structures we find ourselves in.”
The world we are building at Mesh aims to restore this trust. Mesh continues today, just as it has over the last six years, to amplify and accelerate Web3 projects and people, all working towards the same community-oriented goal of a decentralized, more human-centered internet. Mesh takes essential innovations from the realm of Ethereum software development and fosters its real-life applications. We do this in tandem with our community: an expanding portfolio of like-minded developers, founders, researchers, investors, and companies.
As an ever-evolving ecosystem, Mesh currently houses a portfolio of over 190 company positions representing more than 249 founders, and more than 5,000 individual community members (what we call the “Meta-Mesh”). Mesh counts companies and projects devoted to DeFi, DAO governance and tooling, and software and blockchain protocol development, extending across the worlds of tech, finance, art, social media, entertainment, gaming & more, and offers the intensive 12-week accelerator Tachyon for early start-ups bursting onto the scene. Essential to Mesh’s incubation and accelerator model is a Research & Development team that spearheads groundbreaking technological advancements and serves as the backbone of the technical support Mesh provides to portfolio companies along with the wider ecosystem.
We strive to meet founders where they are and equip them with the resources, connections and capital they need to be successful. We believe every person is important in the act of creating a transparent and decentralized world. ConsenSys Mesh is, in its essence, all about the transformative power of our ties. We use our knowledge and expertise to champion the age of community and the global adoption of Web3, and we invite you to join us.
Resources to learn more:
⚫️ Marshall McLuhan’s bibliography: https://www.marshallmcluhan.com/biography/
⚫️ Why Joe wants to #Decentralize the world: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GGzUW914fEY
⚫️ A Fireside Chat: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4KjctLYj8a8
⚫️ Joseph Lubin on the Inevitability of Ethereum https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdiTiGboZeI
Originally published at Mesh.xyz.