Offchain Labs, a startup co-founded by a former Obama administration official, has raised a $3.7 million in seed funding. The round was led by Pantera Capital and included participants such as Compound VC. Offchain Labs co-founder Ed Felten, a computer science professor at Princeton University and former in the Obama White House, told CoinDesk his software-as-a-service (SaaS) startup will focus on “scaling smart contracts” for enterprise use cases. “We’re focusing on private chain, enterprise solutions and the gaming space right now,” Felten said. “The current product runs as a Layer 2 on top of ethereum, but it’s also compatible with ethereum [itself].” Stepping back, in 2017 ethereum quickly became overburdened when transactions tied to the digital collectibles app flooded the network. Felten said ethereum’s scaling situation hasn’t improved dramatically since then, which creates an opportunity for companies like Offchain Labs that can apply layered scaling solutions to this evolving infrastructure. “The on-chain costs, in ethereum gas costs, increase as the storage in your decentralized application gets bigger and the amount of code that needs to be executed gets bigger,” Felten said. “This limits the complexity and sophistication of the games you can have.” So Offchain is taking an experimental approach to solve this issue. Its founding team is comprised of academic researchers including Steven Goldfeder, a postdoctoral researcher at Cornell Tech who co-authored Princeton’s textbook on bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. “We think we can really cut down the price you have to pay for smart contracts, with the same level of trust and confidence,” Felten said.