Researchers From Stanford University Working on New Privacy-Focused Blockchain

Cryptography researchers from Stanford University are developing a new privacy-focused layer-1 blockchain.

According to a new press release, the Espresso Systems project aims to build a blockchain combining “proof-of-stake consensus and a [Zero-Knowledge]-Rollup mechanism to achieve high throughput and low fees.”

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Espresso Systems has already raised $32 million in funding led by Greylock Partners and Electric Capital with participation from Sequoia Capital, Blockchain Capital, and Slow Ventures. Other backers of the project include investment funds such as Polychain Capital, Alameda Research, Coinbase Ventures, Gemini Frontier Fund, Paxos, and Terraform Labs.

One of the project’s touted main features is Configurable Asset Privacy for Ethereum (CAPE), a smart-contract application enabling users to customize the privacy levels of the tokens they mint. CAPE currently runs on any Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM)-compatible blockchain, but the project plans to make it run natively on Espresso in the future.

Explains Espresso Systems chief executive officer Ben Fisch in a new interview,

“CAPE allows asset creators to consider configuring a flexible viewing policy, or even a freezing policy, that gives them more visibility and control over assets that are totally confidential and private to the rest of the public viewing of the blockchain.”

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