Update 16:30 GMT: Bitwala CEO Jörg von Minckwitz reached out to CCN and his comments about the seed-funding are included below.
Netherlands-based Bitwala, a crypto-to-SEPA service that enables fiat-currency transfers toward settlements from users who pay in bitcoin has announced the closure of its first seed funding round, raising €800k in the process.
Bitcoin startup Bitwala, a Bitcoin services provider that uses its own bank account to provide fiat-currency transfers to settle payments for users who pay in bitcoin has announced the closure of its initial funding round.
The funding round, closed in March and revealed today, notes that this is the very first funding round for a startup that began in 2012.
Prominent investors include German VC investment giant HTGF and frequent bitcoin- and blockchain-investor, Barry Silbert’s Digital Currency Group.
Located in Berlin, the bitcoin services company gained support from High-Tech-Gründerfonds (HTGF), an investment firm that frequently invests in disruptive innovation in Germany, with nearly €500M worth of portfolio under management, spread across 400 investment startups.
The funding round, organized as a private-public partnership(s) also includes federal entities such as the Federal Ministry of Economics and the KfW Banking Group – owned by the German Federal government. Other investors include Carl Zeiss, Daimler, Deutsche Post DHL & Deutsche Telekom, among others.
Speaking to CCN in the past, Bitwala CEO Jörg von Minckwitz revealed that the company plans to expand on implementing currencies beyond the Euro.
The company has since followed up on the claim and has added several other European currencies including the British Pound in a “beta” phase which includes a 0.5% service charge + €15 for every transaction. The USD is also supported, albeit in a ‘beta’ stage wherein a $20 fee is included, along with the 0.5% service charge.
Once the currencies become the norm beyond a beta phase, like the Euro, it’s likely that Bitwala will continue to process bitcoin-to-SEPA transactions with the staple 0.5% service charge.
Furthermore, the newly raised funds may aid Bitwala’s effort in seeking expansion to territories beyond Europe. Minckwitz further revealed to CCN that the company is looking at Asia and Africa as viable territories in the future.
Update: Bitwala CEO Jörg von Minckwitz reached out to CCN to reveal that the inclusion of global currencies beyond the Euro is very much a part of the company's plans.
"Bitwala aims to be the first true alternative to a bank account. We will include all major currencies worldwide within the next months to give everyone in the world access to Bitwala," Minckwitz revealed.
He also commented about plans to expand Bitwala beyond Europe, with the newly acquired funds:
Our funds will mainly be used for technical improvements and expanding globally. We are the market leader in Europe but in our next steps we are expanding to Asia, Africa and the US. We will grow massively within the next months
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