A bitcoin wallet provider closes a financing round, obtaining more money than any virtual currency start-up before now.
Coinbase has raised $75 million in Series C financing, the company announced on its blog today. This brings the total amount of capital raised by the company to $106 million – far more than the sums received by other bitcoin companies such as Xapo ($40 m) or Blockchain ($30 m).
Subscribers for the round include the venture capital firm DFJ Growth and existing Coinbase investors such as Andreessen Horowitz and Union Square Ventures. But Coinbase also received backing from “three of the world’s most respected financial institutions” – the New York Stock Exchange, USAA Bank, and BBVA, a powerful Spanish-Mexican bank. As Coinbase proudly declares on its blog, “this marks the first time that financial institutions have made a major investment in a Bitcoin company”.
Coinbase has been one of the most important Bitcoin wallet providers, providing assistance to merchants who wish to integrate Bitcoin into their payment systems. It hosts 2.1 million consumer wallets and is used by 38,000 merchants including Dell and Overstock. It charges a 1 percent transaction fee for every purchase or sale of bitcoins.
The money will be used to upgrade Coinbase’s developer platform and improve its mobile technology. Another goal is international expansion: by the end of the year, the company plans to provide services in 30 more countries. The blog post states that “strategic partners” from different countries participated in the investment round, “including NTT DoCoMo, Japan’s largest mobile telecommunications operator”.
The company proclaims that it will “remain focused on helping Bitcoin continue to grow in 2015 and beyond”. Its CEO Brian Armstrong said in an interview: “We are building a company where the world is going, not quite where the world is today”.