BitMEX’s research arm sheds light on who funds development of the open source software behind Bitcoin.
According to a BitMEX Research report published on March 28, blockchain firms Blockstream and Lightning Labs are the largest contributors to Bitcoin development. On the other hand, Bitcoin research firm, Chaincode Labs, is the largest financial supporter of Bitcoin Core software development. The researchers note:
“We conclude that the situation is more healthy than it has been in the past, with respect to the availability of finance, transparency, and the degree of distribution among financial backers.”
BitMEX researchers used publicly available information and data obtained from the individuals involved to create what they believe is the most comprehensive picture of open source Bitcoin developer funding.
According to the data, Blockstream and Lightning Labs both employ 8 developers to work on Bitcon, followed by Square Crypto which employs 7. Also MIT’s Digital Currency Initiative (DCI) has 6 developers dedicated to Bitcoin, as does Chaincode and Purse.
Number of Bitcoin Core developers funded per firm. Source: BitMEX Research
BitMEX researchers also looked at activity in the Bitcoin Core repository in an effort to identify the top contributors and determine their source of funding. This data shows that 11 out of the top 33 most active Bitcoin developers are independent, 7 are paid by Chaincode, 3 by Blockstream.
Funding of top 33 Bitcoin Core developers. Source: BitMEX Research
Bitcoin development sees stable funding
As an increasing number of companies and institutions view Bitcoin as an important piece of infrastructure for the future of finance, the project sees an increase in entities that fund its development. As Cointelegraph reported at the beginning of the current month, Square Crypto, the payments company launched by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, is now supporting Bitcoin development with grants.