A subsidiary of blockchain startup Circle created to build an ethereum payments network has raised $20 million in a Simple Agreement for Future Tokens (SAFT) sale.

Called CENTRE, the business is aimed at providing a way for different payment applications to connect through the use of tokens issued on the ethereum blockchain. The plan will see CENTRE employ its CENT token as means to access the network, as well as connect applications that don’t share a common national currency.

The funding will go toward developing the network as well as setting up a non-profit foundation that will operate independently of the Boston-based startup. A representative said that the $20 million in funding is being held by the CENTRE subsidiary, separate from Circle.

Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire and president Sean Neville wrote in a blog post:

“As a result of this funding, the CENTRE Foundation now has the capital to recruit talent, invest further in research and development, build partnerships, and become a non-profit entity independent of Circle.”

The CENTRE sale is the latest instance in which the SAFT – based on the Simple Agreement of Future Equity (SAFE) contract employed by accelerator Y Combinator – has been employed.

Allaire and Neville wrote that the sale comes ahead of a planned public sale of CENT tokens, the date of which has not been released.

Disclosure: CoinDesk is a subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which has an ownership stake in Circle. 

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