MoonPay Raises $400 Million in Second Round Funding, Valuation Now at $3.4 billion

MoonPay Raises $400 Million in Second Round Funding, Valuation Now at $3.4 billion

US-based crypto payment startup, MoonPay has completed a $400 million capital injection raise bringing the total valuation of the company to $3.4 billion, a blog post from The Information reads. The funding aims to enhance the features of the platform and boost the global adoption of cryptocurrencies.

This funding round was co-led by venture capital firm Tiger Global Management and Coatue Management aiming to grow the user acquisition rates.

MoonPay launched in 2019 with a simple aim to increase cryptocurrency adoption across the globe. With a team of just two young entrepreneurs — co-founders Ivan Soto-Wright and Victor Faramond — the company set out to create a simple and secure software solution that would enable people from all over the world to participate in the “biggest digital revolution since the internet” the company’s blog reads.

The platform allows users to use their credit and debit cards to buy crypto assets or other digital assets on marketplaces such as OpenSea, Bitcoin.com, Abra, ZenGo, Spot, and Trust Wallet.

Last month, MoonPay partnered with the crypto wallet provider Blocto to provide a fiat on-ramp to the Flow blockchain and easier access to NFT marketplaces. Earlier in the month, the company announced a strategic partnership with Bitmart exchange allowing users to better optimize the trading experience.

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Author: Lujan Odera

New $263 Million Funding Round Sees BitPanda’s Valuation Rise to $4.1 Billion

New $263 Million Funding Round Sees BitPanda’s Valuation Rise to $4.1 Billion

BitPanda, one of the largest crypto exchanges in the world, has announced the completion of its Series C funding round.

The Vienna-based exchange confirmed the news earlier this week, with a CNBC report confirming that it had raised $263 million. The raise sees BitPanda’s valuation jump to a staggering $4.1 billion.

BitPanda’s Convenient Marriage to Valar Ventures

Per the CNBC report, the Series C round was led by Valar Ventures, a venture capital firm founded by Silicon Valley legend Peter Thiel. Other participants include REDO Ventures and British hedge fund billionaire Alan Howard. It is yet another show of support for the company, which has focused entirely on crypto and precious metals derivatives and trading since its inception in 2014.

The Series C funding round is the third time that Thiel’s Valar Ventures will be backing BitPanda. Valar has been there for the company every step of the way. Most recently with its Serie B round in March 2021. At the time, the company raised $170 million in a round that made it Austria’s first unicorn.

With the current funding round, BitPanda has grown over three times in valuation from its March raise. Speaking on the relationship with Valar, Eric Demuth, BitPanda’s chief executive, told CNBC:

“I don’t like to do fundraising. It’s very time-consuming.When you have partners you have a close connection with, and they have deep pockets, you don’t have to do the whole roadshow. Valar wanted to double down and we wanted to stay with them. It was quite an easy process.”

In total, BitPanda has now raised almost $500 million through its three financing rounds. The company has a lot to look forward to, especially as it is now trying a stock trading service that will run 24/7. Demuth told CNBC that the product will most likely be ready by the end of the year, putting BitPanda in the same terrain as companies like eToro and Robinhood that offer exposure to different assets across several classes.

Crypto is Swimming in Money

BitPanda’s successful capital raise is just the latest in what seems to be an endless stream of investments in crypto companies and affiliated services. Last week, top social media aggregation and forum platform Reddit announced the completion of its Series F round, where it raised about $700 million. The funding round puts Reddit at a $10 billion valuation.

Reddit has been popular among crypto traders and investors, with many forums dedicated to the space on the platform. But, its big jump came following the GameStop saga – as well as several other orchestrated crypto pumps that took place in the weeks following

TaxBit, a crypto tax startup, also raised $130 million last week in its Series B round, led by IVP and Insight Partners. The funding round brings TaxBit’s worth to $1.3 billion, with the company hoping to use the raised funds to scale its accounting and tax products and open new offices across the United Kingdom and United States.

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Author: Jimmy Aki

FTX Exchange Raises $900M At $18B Valuation; Binance Is Out, Coinbase and Many Big Giants Are In

Two-year-old cryptocurrency derivatives platform FTX has completed a series B fundraising round, the largest private equity round in the industry of a whopping $900 million.

With this, FTX now has a valuation of $18 billion, up from a mere $1.2 billion a year ago. This may feel fast, but it is the world “going in slow motion” while FTX is “going normal speed,” according to the founder and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried.

This makes sense given that FTX is the most rapidly growing business in the cryptocurrency space which has signed multiple high-profile marketing deals [Tom Brady & Gisele Bundchen Ambassadors, MLB Partnership, eSports Team TSM, FTX Arena, and Blockfolio Acquisition] to spread the word. The company also plans to use this fresh capital to expand its product offerings and for other investments.

“The primary goal of the raise was to [find] strategic allies who can help FTX grow its brand,” but the capital itself will be primarily used for acquisitions, said Bankman-Fried.

With this latest funding, 29-year old CEO Bankman-Fried, who previously worked for quantitative-trading giant Jane Street Capital LLC, has seen his riches grow by at least $7.9 billion.

Bankman-Fried who owns 57% of the company shares is now worth $16.2 billion and is the wealthiest known crypto billionaire, as per Forbes.

More than 60 Participants

The exchange raised the funds from a vast number of big names, more than 60, that includes the Paul Tudor Jones family, British hedge fund manager Alan Howard, Silicon Valley venture capital firm Sequoia Capital, hedge fund billionaire Daniel Loeb’s Third Point, private equity giant Thomas Bravo, another hedge-fund billionaire Israel Englander, and SoftBank Group.

Paradigm, Sino Global Capital, Circle, VanEck, Ribbit Capital, Insight Partners, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Altimeter, BOND, NEA, Willoughby Capital, 40North, Senator Investment Group, Multicoin, and Hudson River Trading also participated.

“Absolutely ecstatic to let you know that Sino Global Capital participated in FTX’s Series B round (in retrospect, it was inevitable),” tweeted Matthew Graham, CEO at Sino Global Capital.

“Today, SBF is no longer merely a titan of crypto. He’s now a titan of business, and he and our good friends at FTX are just getting started.”

Exchanges Making Strategic Investment

Amidst this, leading crypto exchange Binance recently exited its position in FTX. Binance made a strategic investment of an undisclosed sum in FTX in December 2019.

“We’ve seen tremendous growth from them, we’re very happy with that but we’ve exited completely,” said Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao.

“CZ” told Forbes that the withdrawal was part of “a normal investment cycle” and it was on good terms. “We’re still friends but we no longer have any equity relationship,” he said.

Coinbase meanwhile joined in through its investment firm Coinbase Ventures.

Coinbase recently made its debut on Nasdaq with an evaluation that briefly went past $100 billion and marked the Bitcoin top but FTX has no such plans yet. While “actively thinking about,” Bankman-Fried has no idea how this will end exactly, not to mention, there’s no “ticking clock on our need to go public.”

FTX has a native token FTT, a $3 billion market cap coin trading at $27.91, currently down over 56% from its all-time high above $63 two months back.

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Author: AnTy

BitDAO Raises $230 Million in a Funding Round Led by PayPal Co-Founder, Peter Thiel

BitDAO Raises $230 Million in a Funding Round Led by PayPal Co-Founder, Peter Thiel

  • The quiet market keeps rumbling as investors unload large amounts of cash on yet another blockchain project!

Led by PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, BitDAO, a new decentralized governance protocol, raised $230 million in a bid to build the largest asset pool led by a decentralized autonomous organization, commonly referred to as DAOs.

The funding round welcomed top investors alongside Thiel, who led the round, and three of his firms – Founders Fund, Pantera Capital, and Dragonfly Capital – also participated in the raise. Other investors in the round included hedge fund manager Alan Howard, Jump Capital, and Spartan Group.

A DAO represents an organization that has no central organization leading it. Instead, the governance of these organizations lies coded on smart contracts stored on a blockchain hence have immutable properties. BitDAO, now ranking as one of the largest DAOs, aims to “promote and propel the mass adoption of open finance and decentralized tokenized economy” with the latest funding, a statement reads.

The core objective of the funding is to grow the decentralized finance (DeFi) space by building research and development (R&D) centers, providing grants to DeFi developers, and topping up liquidity on blockchain projects.

In a press release, BitDAO stated its goal to promote and support the DeFi sector financially and in talent resourcing to boost industry growth. Moreover, the organization will also use the funding to employ hundreds of people innovating in the DeFi sector and solve various developmental challenges in the ecosystem.

The firm welcomed its first partner in the Bybit crypto exchange, one of the largest digital asset exchanges in the world. Bybit aims to make yearly contributions to the DAO of up to 2.5 basis points (bp) of its futures contracts’ trading volume directly to the BitDAO Treasury. As of current figures, the yearly contribution is expected to generate over $1 billion annually, the statement further reads.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Solana Leads $3M Funding Round in Blockchain Data Platform PARSIQ

Blockchain data monitoring startup PARSIQ has closed a funding round of $3 million, led by the Solana Foundation.

The funding round also included notable investors such as Axia8 Ventures, Mindworks VC, Krypital Group, CoinUnited, and others.

PARSIQ To Use Fund To Expand Product Suite

The PARSIQ platform allows users to customize their notification settings to block out undesired noise while receiving important information in real-time.

The blockchain data firm revealed that the fund raised would be used to expand its product suite.

PARSIQ tools include notifications for token transfers, price fluctuations, and other blockchain-related movements.

Apart from Solana, the PARSIQ tools are also compatible with Bitcoin, Ethereum, and some other blockchains.

Solana Founder Anatoly Yakovenko, while speaking on the investment, said access to blockchain data through apps like PARSIQ was critical.

He noted that PARSIQ would help developers of Solana-based projects worry less when building out their stack, allowing them to concentrate more on their product.

The investment into PARSIQ comes after Solana raised $314 million in a private token sale.

The sale was led by Andreessen Horowitz and Polychain Capital with participation from Alameda Research, Block change Ventures, CMS Holdings, Coinfund, and others.

Founded in 2017, Solana is an advanced open-source blockchain project focused on providing a highly scalable, secure, and maximally decentralized platform.

Dubbed the Ethereum killer, Solana has been active in building tools and networks for others to build on the platform.

It has several decentralized exchanges (DEXes) and protocols built on it such as Serum, Raydium, KIN, Audius, Mango Markets, Bonfida, Maps.me, Pyth Network, USDC, Phantom wallet, and more.

Solana Hackathon’s Step Finance To Aggregate With Solana’s DEXes

The Solana blockchain had attracted thousands of developers to its network, breaking records for the most number of participants in a hackathon this year.

The hackathon, in collaboration with Serum, had over 3,000 registrations and over 100 project submissions.

One of the projects that emerged from the Solana hackathon is Step Finance, a DeFi position manager and aggregator. Although Step Finance did not win any prize during the event, it appears to be doing very well.

Step Finance started aggregating Solana’s decentralized exchanges (DEXs), including automated market maker Raydium, SerumDex, and Orca, to give traders faster access to price information.

Step Finance’s trading dashboard, called the Step Dashboard, will enable traders to have access to $845 million of liquidity and execute trades quickly at low fees.

Earlier this year, the aggregator completed a private token sale for $2 million in a round that saw participation from various Solana backers including Almaeda Research and Raydium.

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Author: Jimmy Aki

China’s BSN Developer Raises $30 Million Series A Round to Boost Global Market Presence

China’s BSN Developer Raises $30 Million Series A Round to Boost Global Market Presence

Announced on Wednesday, China’s Blockchain Service Network (BSN) developer, Red Date, has raised $30 million in a Series A funding round led by Hong Kong crypto-focused firm, Kenetic. The funding aims to enhance development on the network, increase its team members and boost market adoption across the globe, a statement read.

The closed round funding also saw notable financiers join in, including the Prosperity7, the venture arm of the second largest firm in the world, Saudi Aramco, Swiss financial giant, Pictet Group, and one of the largest banks in Thailand, Bangkok Bank.

The Blockchain Service Network launched mid-last year with an aim to bolster the development of decentralized applications on public and private blockchains. Over the past year, BSN has seen notable blockchains partnerships, including Huobi China, which will provide DLT service solutions, Chainlink decentralized oracles, and Cosmos network.

The project was initiated under the cabinet-level economic policy committee, National Development and Reform Commission, and is being developed under the State Information Center of China.

The project aims at introducing innovative blockchain systems to developing countries in order to close the gap in financial inclusion. Speaking on the recent additional funding, Jehan Chu, managing partner at Kenetic, said Red Date would “use blockchain to help drive financial and technology inclusion for the next 50 years” to these countries. Chu added in a statement to Coindesk,

“There is a rebalancing of global technology infrastructure happening that gives greater access to underdeveloped and underrepresented countries.”

The new funding will also expand the team members working on BSN in order to fasten the launch of its cloud computing resources, which will greatly reduce the costs and barriers of building decentralized applications (DApps). Yifan He, CEO of Red Date, said,

“The Internet’s Golden Age was only made possible when the cost of building websites was reduced to near-zero.”

In a shared statement to BEG, Red Date also added the funding would be used to increase BSN’s presence in the global market and the domestic market as well.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Blockchain Company Paxos Closes New Funding Round Worth $300 Million

Blockchain Company Paxos Closes New Funding Round Worth $300 Million

Paxos, a blockchain startup with PayPal Holdings as a client, announced the recent conclusion of a Series D fundraising round.

According to company CEO Charles Cascarilla, the funding session led by growth equity investment firm Oak HC/FT saw $300 million infused into the New York-based firm.

Other investors include PayPal ventures, Declaration Partners, Mithril Capital, and others.

Paxos Valued At $2.4 Billion Following Latest Investment

The crypto company is now worth $2.4 billion, per an official release.

According to Paxos, the new funds will be used to accelerate the growth of its financial market infrastructure platform. Paxos would also use the additional funding to ramp up recruitment across major departments.

Also, additional liquidity would be added to the platform to improve their customer experience and increase the use of their on-chain tokens.

Cascarilla said that demand for Paxos’ enterprise solution had grown exponentially in the past year in speaking with the funding round.

He ties this down to the company’s approach in providing the most innovative and regulated enterprise solutions to aid the development of a digital economy.

Following this new funding round, Paxos plans to establish a National Trust Bank after it secured a preliminary charter from the Office of the Comptroller of Currency (OCC) in the past week. With the approval, Paxos becomes the third federally chartered financial institution to become a crypto custodian following in the footsteps of Anchorage and Protego.

The company has also applied for a Clearing Agency Registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission and eyeing a Major Payment Institution license with Singaporean regulatory authorities.

Cascarilla notes that this latest funding round is more of a “confidence capital,” noting that investors believe in their ability to scale the business for the next decade.

Paxos went mainstream following its partnership with payment giant PayPal back in 2020.

The agreement saw the blockchain company powering PayPal’s crypto trading service.

Owing to the success of this deal and PayPal’s desire to explore the larger crypto market, Paxos has also been tapped by the Silicon Valley firm to help its Venmo app offer crypto services.

The Larger Crypto Market Growing

Cryptocurrencies have experienced exponential growth, all thanks to the pandemic-induced lockdowns, which have seen more people rely on online payments.

Realizing the potential benefits crypto can bring to the financial space, institutional investors have flooded into the crypto space, making the once-disregarded sector suddenly significant.

And this acknowledgment was seen when Coinbase went public on April 14 with a projected $100 billion valuation. This milestone has seen many experts forecast a litany of crypto public listings.

One of these experts is Ripple’s CEO Brad Garlinghouse, who reportedly said that more initial public offerings (IPO) should be expected in the blockchain space in the next 12 months.

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Author: Jimmy Aki

JPMorgan, Mastercard, & UBS Invest in ConsenSys’ $65M Round to “Accelerate the Convergence” of DeFi and Traditional Finance

JPMorgan, Mastercard, & UBS Invest in ConsenSys’ $65M Round to “Accelerate the Convergence” of DeFi and Traditional Finance

ConsenSys, an Ethereum software company, announced the closing of a $65 million round to “accelerate the convergence” of DeFi and Web3 applications on Ethereum.

The companies that took part in this funding involve J.P. Morgan, Mastercard, UBS, Protocol Labs, the Maker Foundation, Fenbushi, The LAO, and Alameda Research.

“Enterprise Ethereum is a key infrastructure on which we and our partners are building payment and non-payment applications to power the future of commerce,” said Raj Dhamodharan, Executive Vice President of Digital Asset and Blockchain Products and Partnerships at Mastercard.

Other investors include CMT Digital, Greater Bay Area Homeland Development Fund, Quotidian Ventures, and Liberty City Ventures.

Interestingly, several funds invested with Ethereum-based stablecoins, DAI and USDC, read the official announcement by the tech company.

“We are proud to partner with preeminent financial firms alongside leading crypto companies to further converge the centralized and decentralized financial domains at this particularly exciting time of growth for ConsenSys and the entire industry,” said Joseph Lubin, founder of ConsesnSys who co-founded Ethereum. ETH 7.13% Ethereum / USD ETHUSD $ 2,302.61
$164.187.13%
Volume 29.46 b Change $164.18 Open $2,302.61 Circulating 115.46 m Market Cap 265.85 b
3 h CoinList’s Rally Network Liquid Token Sale Attracts 40k Users to Buy $22 Million in RLY 5 h JPMorgan, Mastercard, & UBS Invest in ConsenSys’ $65M Round to “Accelerate the Convergence” of DeFi and Traditional Finance 8 h CoinShares is Launching an XRP ETP (XRPL) as the Digital Asset Nears $2

The company currently has a headcount of 360 and plans to add another 100 employees by the end of this year.

ConsenSys’ list of products includes MetaMask with over 3 million monthly active users across, more than 150,000 developers use Infura’s APIs, and millions of developers using Truffle to create and deploy smart contracts. Meanwhile, its Protocols group, which develops Hyperledger Besu and Quorum, is building Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) for six central banks.

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Author: AnTy

MicroStrategy Wants to Buy More Bitcoin with Another Round of 0 Million Debt

MicroStrategy Wants to Buy More Bitcoin with Another Round of $690 Million Debt

“CEO Michael Saylor is carrying out one of the highest conviction investment thesis we have seen in public markets.” – Bitcoin Bull Anthony ‘Pomp’ Pompliano

The publicly listed company has made yet another bet on Bitcoin by announcing that MicroStrategy intends to offer $600 million worth of convertible senior notes, up to an additional $90 million aggregate principal amount of the notes. The official announcement reads,

“MicroStrategy intends to use the net proceeds from the sale of the notes to acquire additional bitcoins.”

Bitcoin proponent Michael Saylor, the chief executive of MicroStrategy, has already added a total of 71,079 Bitcoin to the company’s balance sheet and is now ready to add even more. MicroStrategy’s $1.145 billion Bitcoin investment has them owning 0.38% of BTC circulating supply.

In December, the company issued convertible senior notes to raise $635 million, whose entire proceeds were used to buy Bitcoin. Veteran investor Bill Miller was one of the buyers of MicroStrategy’s 0.75% convertible bond who called this “unique purchase” a “very little downside and an almost-free call option on Bitcoin.”

Now, yet again, MicroStrategy is ready to take up more debt due 2027, to buy even more Bitcoin, which has been hitting $50,000 for two days in a row.

With the latest jump in prices, the leading cryptocurrency’s market capitalization rose above $940 billion, just a few inches away from the trillion-dollar mark.

The notes will be issued via a private offering to qualified institutional buyers, which will mature on February 15, 2027, unless earlier repurchased, redeemed, or converted and will bear interest payable semi-annually in arrears on February 15 and August 15 of each year, beginning on August 15, 2021.

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Author: AnTy

Decentralized Exchange (DEX), dYdX, Raises $10 Million Following A Record 2020

Decentralized exchange dYdX has raised $10 million in Series B round led by Three Arrows Capital and DeFiance Capital, which the team calls “an important milestone.”

While a16z, Polychain Capital, Kindred Ventures, 1confirmation, Elad Gil, Fred Ehrsam continued their support, Wintermute, Hashed, GSR, SCP, Scalar Capital, Spartan Group, and RockTree Capital are the new investors in the DEX platform. Arthur Cheong, founder of DeFiance Capital said,

“We have been users since the early days and are excited to back dYdX in the current round to accelerate its mission to build the most powerful decentralized trading platform for cryptoassets.”

The funds raised will be used to add new assets and features, partnerships, strategically invest in international growth markets such as Asia, and further expand the team, which recently added six new members across engineering, design, & growth.

The DEX runs on smart contracts on the second-largest network, Ethereum, eliminating the need for a central exchange. The infrastructure of the decentralized exchange combines non-custodial, the on-chain settlement with an off-chain low-latency matching engine to deliver an institutional-grade, liquid, and low slippage trading experience.

The investment came after a “record” 2020 that saw the total cumulative trade volume across the perpetual, margin, and spot trading increasing 40x, reaching $2.5 billion in 2020, up from $63 million in 2019. Also, loan originations registered $17.4+ billion from dYdX lending pools.

In 2021, total cumulative trade volume has surpassed $3.5 billion, with the team preparing to launch Layer 2 solution with StarkWare for cross-margined perpetuals to scale lower cost in February.

Besides these metrics, dYdX users also jumped 4.8x with 38,588 unique wallets depositing funds into the exchange’s smart contracts.

dYdX, however, accounts for only 2.37% of total DEX volume, recording just over $5 million in volume in the last 24 hours. The majority of the DEX volume share is captured by Uniswap at 47.7%, followed by SushiSwap at 21.3%, and Curve and 0x at 11..21% and 9.69%, respectively, as per Dune Analytics.

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Author: AnTy