Bitwala: EUR 15 million cash injection for Berlin crypto start-up

1.12.2020 | 11:00

New products should attract more users across Europe. For this, the Berlin crypto bank Bitwala receives an investment of millions from Earlybird and other venture capitalists.

The Berlin crypto bank Bitwala recently received funding of over 15 million euros, as Gründerszene reported on Saturday. This was largely led by existing donors like Earlybird. The venture capital firms Global Brain and Bitcoin Cycle were also involved. The latter had already joined a financing round just over a year ago, in which Bitwala raised 13 million euros. The money is to be used to increase the number of users and to publish new products.

Crypto finance: something is brewing

According to their own statements, the Berliners currently have 150,000 customers in 32 countries who hold Bitcoins with a total value of 60 million euros. They use the service to invest in crypto currencies themselves, to store their assets or even to create the assets. Deposits of up to 100,000 euros are secured with the German crypto bank, and the Berlin start-up is working with the banking-as-a-service provider Solarisbank.

The crypto exchange Bitpanda from Vienna recently completed a financing round of over 52 million dollars with the top venture capitalists Hedosophia and PayPal founder Peter Thiels Valar beyond the borders in German-speaking countries . The company valuation is currently said to be over 300 million euros. Bitwala ranks well behind with 64 million euros, but is one of the leading financial crypto providers nationwide.

Bitwala and Co come at the right time

Such services are currently in great demand, also because of the explosive developments in the course. Bitcoin has stabilized above $ 19,000 after yesterday’s all-time high. Observers assume, however, that private investors will increasingly turn to the topic again in the future. Not least because institutional investors recently announced that they had invested in crypto.

As big as N26?

As Benjamin Jones recently made public to the Handelsblatt , the crypto financial service provider wants to be „at least as big as N26“. For this purpose, the company had recently poached the Chief Product Officer Kristina Walcker-Mayer from the online bank. In addition, both Bitwala and N26 share a similar, even partially the same, investor audience. In order to be realistically as big as the smartphone bank, the Berliners would have to try to convince even more investors in the future who, as an external party, can give a current rating. So far, funding has largely come from existing donors.

Officially a crypto bank since 2018

Bitwala was founded in 2015 by Jan Goslicki, Benjamin Jones and Jörg von Minckwitz and started out as a crypto exchange platform. In 2018, the crypto bank had to change its business model because its partner company Wavecrest no longer received a license from Visa. Bitwala then switched its product to its own blockchain-based bank account with a crypto wallet. The account now runs through the banking-as-a-service provider Solarisbank.

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