ORA Secures Major Funding to Advance AI Model Tokenization

Oracle protocol ORA has secured $20 million in funding to develop AI model tokenization technology on the blockchain.

PancakeSwap has teamed up with Allora Network to launch an AI-powered prediction market on Arbitrum, aiming to enhance trading strategies through advanced machine-learning capabilities. Meanwhile, Bitcoin miner Hut 8 has secured a $150 million investment from Coatue Management to build AI infrastructure, highlighting the growing demand for computing power among AI firms. 

Oracle Protocol ORA Secures $20 Million in Funding to Tokenize AI Models Onchain

Oracle protocol ORA has successfully closed a $20 million funding round. The investment was led by prominent firms Polychian, HF0, and Hashkey Capital, among others. This funding will drive the development of ORA's innovative technology for tokenizing artificial intelligence (AI) models onchain, an advancement poised to revolutionize the intersection of AI and blockchain.

According to the announcement on June 26, the funds will be primarily allocated to research and development within ORA’s ecosystem. The focus will be on enhancing oracles and blockchain infrastructure, ensuring robust and scalable solutions for the growing demands of blockchain-based AI applications. 

ORA's opML is a groundbreaking technology that enables blockchain networks to perform AI model inference with added layers of verifiability and traceability. This means that every AI interaction, including the models used, data inputs, and resulting outcomes, is meticulously recorded and can be independently verified. Such capabilities are crucial for maintaining trust and transparency in AI operations onchain.

A standout feature of ORA’s technology is the Initial Model Offering (IMO). This new mechanism allows for the tokenization of AI models, providing a unique investment opportunity. Utilizing an ERC-20 token framework, IMO enables token holders to own a stake in AI models and share in the revenue generated by these models. This model democratizes access to AI investments, opening doors for broader participation in the AI economy.

Every time an AI model is used onchain, a fee is incurred. These fees are then distributed to IMO tokenholders through the ERC-7641 Intrinsic RevShare Token, an extension of the ERC-20 standard developed by ORA. This mechanism ensures that revenue is equitably shared among those who invest in and support the AI models, creating a sustainable and incentivized ecosystem.

ORA made significant strides with the launch of its onchain AI oracle on Optimism’s OP mainnet in April. The team proudly claims that their operational oracle is uniquely capable of handling AI models of any size, setting a new benchmark for performance and scalability in the industry. The integration of optimistic systems and zero-knowledge technology ensures that ORA’s solutions offer secure, efficient, and privacy-preserving onchain machine learning capabilities.

Developers are actively exploring various applications for ORA’s technology. One promising area is the processing of insurance claims directly onchain, using predefined rules to streamline and automate claims management. Additionally, ORA’s AI oracles are being developed to detect anomalies, which can play a critical role in security and compliance by identifying deviations from normal patterns. Another significant application is in dispute resolutions and settlements, where AI oracles can analyze data impartially to make fair and unbiased decisions.

With the recent infusion of $20 million, ORA is well-positioned to advance its technological capabilities and expand its ecosystem. The tokenization of AI models and the innovative revenue-sharing mechanisms highlight the protocol's potential to transform both the AI and blockchain industries. 

ORA’s journey is just beginning, but the potential applications and benefits of its technology are vast. By bridging the gap between AI and blockchain, ORA is setting the stage for a future where AI models are not only more accessible and verifiable but also more integrated into the fabric of decentralized systems. The next steps in ORA’s development will be closely watched by industry stakeholders and investors alike, as they represent a significant leap forward in the capabilities and applications of blockchain-based AI.

PancakeSwap Partners with Allora Network to Launch AI-Powered Prediction Market on Arbitrum

In a related development, PancakeSwap, the renowned multichain decentralized exchange (DEX), has forged a partnership with Allora Network to introduce an innovative AI-powered prediction market on the Arbitrum blockchain. This groundbreaking collaboration aims to enhance trading strategies for users by leveraging advanced machine-learning capabilities.

The new prediction market will utilize AI-driven price feed data sourced through Allora Network. With Allora’s sophisticated machine-learning models, PancakeSwap users can now forecast Ether (ETH) price movements on Arbitrum with greater accuracy. This integration is a significant step forward in the application of AI within the decentralized finance (DeFi) space.

In a recent interview, Chef Gyoza, the product manager at PancakeSwap, elaborated on the decision to collaborate with Allora Network. He highlighted the impressive track record of the Allora Labs team, previously known as Upshot, in producing highly accurate price predictions.

“Over the last three years, models built by the Allora Labs team have effectively produced price predictions for more than 400 million assets with a 95–99% confidence for the most accurate predictions,” Gyoza stated.

The core functionality of the AI-powered prediction market revolves around Allora’s price prediction models. These models forecast the likelihood of various crypto assets’ prices rising or falling, providing valuable insights for PancakeSwap users to make informed trading decisions. The AI’s performance directly influences the payout process, which adjusts over time based on the accuracy of predictions and user participation in the market.

“PancakeSwap users will be able to follow or oppose the AI’s prediction. With the AI’s performance and record in our tests achieving close to 65% accuracy, users will have to choose when to oppose the AI, which will naturally have higher odds,” Gyoza explained.

Addressing concerns about potential market manipulation, Gyoza emphasized the transparency and security measures implemented in the prediction market. Users can track all round history, price feed history, and AI prediction history through a dedicated history tab on the prediction page. All results are settled onchain via PancakeSwap’s prediction v2 contract, ensuring integrity and preventing exploitation.

“The AI prediction is only issued after rounds are locked, preventing manipulation as users do not express directional positions,” Gyoza added.

While acknowledging that the prediction market is still a nascent product, Gyoza expressed confidence in its potential to grow and influence liquidity and volatility on the platform. 

“At the moment, we don’t think that it’ll influence the market to a large extent, as it’s still a nascent product. However, we believe that with Allora as a partner, we can expand the predictions to many other markets, both on and offchain,” he noted.

In addition to the AI-powered prediction market, PancakeSwap has recently announced the upcoming launch of CupcakeHop, an AI-powered portfolio management tool developed by Bril Finance. Set to debut in August, CupcakeHop aims to offer tailored investment strategies and real-time risk management to a broader audience, further cementing PancakeSwap’s commitment to integrating AI into its ecosystem.

The partnership between PancakeSwap and Allora Network marks a significant milestone in the DeFi landscape, showcasing the transformative potential of AI in enhancing trading strategies and market predictions. As these innovations continue to evolve, they promise to provide users with more accurate tools for navigating the complexities of the cryptocurrency market.

With the successful implementation of AI-driven technologies, PancakeSwap is poised to remain at the forefront of DeFi advancements, continually exploring new ways to empower its users and optimize their trading experiences. The future looks promising as PancakeSwap and Allora Network work together to push the boundaries of what is possible in the world of decentralized finance.

AI's Insatiable Demand for Power: Bitcoin Miners Like Hut 8 Reap the Benefits

As the relentless pursuit of power by Artificial Intelligence firms continues, Bitcoin (BTC) miners are capitalizing on the opportunity, with Hut 8 (HUT) leading the charge. On Monday, Hut 8 shares outperformed most of its peers following a substantial $150 million investment from Coatue Management, aimed at building AI infrastructure.

The $150 million investment from Coatue Management will be facilitated through convertible notes with an 8% annual interest rate and a conversion rate of $16.395 per share. This news propelled Hut 8 shares nearly 4% higher in Monday morning trading, contrasting with the broader trend where most Bitcoin miners were tracking BTC’s decline.

The positive impact of this investment extended beyond Hut 8, boosting other bitcoin mining-related data centers engaged in AI and high-performance computing (HPC). Soluna Holdings (SLNH) saw a remarkable surge of nearly 17%, while Applied Digital (APLD) experienced a 10% uptick.

The increasing need for computing power by AI and HPC firms is driving them towards the Bitcoin mining industry. BTC miners, with their existing computing infrastructure and established power supplier deals, are well-positioned to meet this demand. JPMorgan has noted that this growing need for power by large-scale data centers and AI firms could herald a new era of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) within the Bitcoin mining sector, especially for those miners with attractive power contracts.

A notable recent development in this trend is cloud computing provider CoreWeave’s 200-megawatt (MW) deal with Bitcoin miner Core Scientific (CORZ) for AI-related services. Furthermore, CoreWeave offered to acquire Core Scientific for over $1 billion, though Core Scientific rejected the offer, citing undervaluation of the company. Interestingly, Coatue Management is also an investor in CoreWeave, highlighting the significant interest in leveraging Bitcoin miners' infrastructure for AI services.

In its Monday press release, Hut 8 emphasized the critical need for power in the AI sector. Traditional data center operators are struggling to meet the surging demand for AI compute capacity due to power shortages, lengthy lead times to bring new capacity online, and the extensive upgrades required to support the latest high-density compute technologies. Hut 8 sees an opportunity to bridge this gap, leveraging its infrastructure to support the burgeoning AI industry.

The convergence of AI and Bitcoin mining industries is poised to reshape the landscape of both sectors. For BTC miners, this trend offers a lucrative avenue to diversify their revenue streams and capitalize on their existing capabilities. The infusion of capital from major investors like Coatue Management not only strengthens the financial position of these miners but also underscores the strategic importance of their infrastructure in the AI era.

The collaboration between AI firms and Bitcoin miners also demonstrates the evolving dynamics of the technology and energy sectors. As AI continues to advance, the demand for robust and scalable computing power will only grow, presenting further opportunities for innovative partnerships and investments.