David Marcus Launches Bitcoin Payments Startup Lightspark


David Marcus, former cryptocurrency head at Meta, is launching Lightspark, another payments company that will use crypto as its central payment tool. The startup, which will have Marcus at the helm as CEO, also features some of Meta’s former employees and will explore the possibilities of using the layer 2 Lightning Network (LN) as a vehicle for bitcoin payments.

Meta’s Former Crypto Boss Kickstarts Lightspark

David Marcus, former cryptocurrency project boss at Meta, is doubling down on the importance he thinks crypto might have for payments in the future. Marcus announced this week on social media he and others were launching a cryptocurrency company called Lightspark that aims to harness the capabilities of crypto for the payments area.

Marcus is not alone in this task. He took on some of the former Meta employees for this startup. While the details of the company are still scarce, Marcus explained that Lightning Network (LN), the second layer scalability protocol for Bitcoin, will be involved. On this, he stated:

As a first step, we’re actively assembling a team to dive deeper into the Lightning Network.

While the company is still in exploratory phases, Marcus has been able to attract major names in the VC arena, including A16z and Paradigm, who have co-led an initial investing round with an undisclosed amount raised. Other VCs that participated in the round include Thrive Capital, Coatue, Felix Capital, Ribbit Capital, Matrix Partners, and Zeev Ventures.

Bear Market and Lightning Network

To some, the timing of the launch of Lightspark might not be the best, as the market faces a downturn with the collapse of the Terra ecosystem and the fall of the stock market. However, Marcus brushed off these comments on social media explaining that:

Downturns are good moments to focus on building and creating value with mission-aligned people. We’re excited to dive into Lightning, learn more, and work alongside the community.

Lightning Network, with its negligible transaction fees, can be very attractive for a payments company, though it has not been without criticism in the crypto community. The technology, that was proposed back in 2015, has come a long way since its launch, having now 3,807.15 BTC stored in its system, with more than 17,000 active nodes, according to 1ML, a Lightning Network statistics site.

What do you think about Lightspark, the newly launched crypto payments company? Tell us in the comments section below.