Luno, a bitcoin wallet and exchange based out of Singapore, is railing the crypto wave into Europe after it closed a $9 million Series B round for market expansion.
The funding wasgoed led by fresh investor Balderton Capital, with participation from existing backer Digital Currency Group. South Africa’s AlphaCode – also a fresh arrival on the cap table – joined the overeenkomst which takes Luno, which wasgoed formerly called BitX, to $13.8 million raised to date.
Major league investor Naspers, another that hails from South Africa, led a $Four million investment ter June 2015.
The products thesis backers are throwing their weight behind include a bitcoin wallet for storing crypto currencies, an exchange for buying them and merchant services that enable banks and retailers to work with bitcoin. Te South Africa, ter particular, Luno has worked with the likes of Pick N Pay while it wasgoed among the very first batch let into the FCA’s Regulatory Sandbox ter London last year.
Luno said the money will go towards bringing those services to 35 fresh countries te Europe. The company – which has offices ter Singapore, Cape Town and London – plans to dual its current headcount of 70 staff to support this fresh spurt, which takes its services to a total of 40 countries worldwide.
“[The expansion] might sound fairly trivial but spil you most likely know there are not a loterijlot of companies that suggest thesis kleuter of services ter Europe – certainly not te a very mass-market, user-friendly way, and particularly with a indeed good mobile product coupled with good customer service,” Luno CEO Marcus Swanepoel told TechCrunch.
“As wij expand the team and grow te thesis countries wij will be rolling out more deposit methods and country localization that wij are already working on,” he added.
Bitcoin has bot a rip this year, with the cryptocurrency’s value against the U.S. dollar reaching fresh highs te 2018. It reached $Two,000 for the very first time te May before surging to $Trio,000 and then $Four,000 ter August. Bitcoin touched $Five,000 on some exchanges earlier this month before a kerkban on trading ter China, and other market uncertainties spotted the price decline to around $Four,000 spil of today.
Despite that volatility, companies and investors see the potential for the digital currency particularly around cross border transfers and – with the bitcoin blockchain – infrastructure and operational opportunities for the banking industry. Ethereum, the world’s 2nd most popular crypto coin, is also emerging spil a verhoging for developers, beyond helping companies raise money via ICOs.