Bitwala, the German-headquartered crypto-first bank app servicing the European Economic Area, today announced it has raised an additional €13 million in a Series A funding round to accelerate growth and offer B2B accounts.
International investors led by Sony Financial Ventures and NKB Group are investing in the company to help fuel expansion. The funds will support Bitwala’s growth strategy to attract new customers, recruit talent, and start offering bitcoin accounts for businesses.
The Bitwala team reports to maintain retail customers in all 31 countries of the European Economic Area (EEA), it offers a free current account with a built-in bitcoin wallet as well as seamless BTC trading options. Bitwala enables its customers to trade bitcoin directly out of a current account, hosted by Berlin-based solarisBank. Bitwala charges a competitive 1% fee for bitcoin trading, while the current account (B2C) and the Bitwala Debit Card come free of charge.
“I could not be more proud of the team! When we started in 2015, we were three founders and a dog: I never dared to imagine for Bitwala to grow into such a thriving business with so many talented people and thousands of customers across Europe. Today, we are offering a bridge for both mainstream users and blockchain buffs, who want to interact with the emerging blockchain ecosystem – the growing digital economy spreading across the globe. While there is still huge upside potential, it has already been a humbling experience to see the ecosystem grow and for Bitwala to play such an important part in that.”
– Bitwala’s co-founder and Chief Technical Officer Ben Jones
Euro deposits of up to 100,000 Euro are protected by German deposit guarantee schemes. To protect customers bitcoin holdings in a decentralized fashion, Bitwala offers on-chain multi-signature wallets.
“We started Bitwala to build something which many thought was not possible: Connecting Bitcoin to the conventional financial system and remain in line with supervisory requirements in one of the world’s strictest regulatory jurisdictions: Germany. We did it for the growing community of blockchain evangelists in Europe and are offering them an easy, swift, and safe place to build the world’s future economy. I want to thank the team for their daily dedication in making this possible.”
– Jan Goslicki, co-founder and Chief Compliance Officer at Bitwala
Notably, Bitwala is now Sony Financial Ventures’ first-ever investment into a crypto-first company through its partner Sony Financial and Global Brain, one of the largest venture capitalists from Japan. Global Brain, as the general partner of Sony Financial Ventures’ fund, engages Fintech startups across the world which have the potential of collaborating with business units of the Sony Financial Group.
“We share Bitwala’s vision of the future digital economy. Their smart positioning as the bridge between the conventional financial system and the blockchain promises great potential for mass adoption. Bitwala’s unique dedication to great online and mobile services, the team’s pioneering drive, and their outstanding professionalism are the hotbed in which our own blockchain expertise will help the company flourish.”
– Yasuhiko Yurimoto, Founder and CEO of Global Brain