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India’s Bitcoin Boom: Zebpay Forecasts 500k New Users Monthly in 2018; Hits 1 Million App Downloads

Last Updated March 4, 2021 5:01 PM
Samburaj Das
Last Updated March 4, 2021 5:01 PM

Indian bitcoin wallet and exchange platform Zebpay strikes a million downloads of its app-only service on Android and forecasts half a million new users a month, up from 200,000 currently.

Launched in 2015, bitcoin startup Zebpay is now among India’s major bitcoin exchanges alongside Unocoin and Coinsecure. Unlike its competitors, Zebpay has adopted an app-only model in a country where mobile tariffs are among the cheapest in the world with a soaring adoption rate of smartphones.

“We worked hard to understand and solve the pain point of understanding bitcoins,” explains co-founder Saurabh Agarwal in a Forbes  interview. “We made a key decision that mobile phones are huge in India and internet penetration is big through phones. So, we decided on an app-only presence in India.”

Zebpay hit half a million downloads of its app in May 2017, two years after its launch. It only took four months for the platform to double and notch up a million downloads  of its app, underlining the massive growth in adoption and awareness of bitcoin in India.

Zebpay’s founders are expecting the momentum to stick with the current bitcoin-only exchange planning support for other cryptocurrencies including Ethereum’s ether, Ripple’s XRP and Litecoin. Zebpay was adding 2,500 new users/day in May 2017. That number has more than doubled now, as co-founder Sandeep Goenka adds:

We are adding 200,000 users a month. After two months, we will be adding 500,000 users a month.

Earlier in August, India’s finance minister Arun Jaitley addressed the “notable growth” of India’s bitcoin market in recent years in a parliamentary session a month after Indian exchange Coinsecure had to shutter operations temporarily after it was unable to keep up with the “exponential growth” of bitcoin users in the country.

Tapping into the market’s potential, Polish bitcoin exchange BitBay launched a trading platform with support for multiple cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin in India.

Last month, the deputy governor of India’s central bank revealed the authority is working on a regulatory policy for the legality and regulation of bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in the country. All signs point to bitcoin gaining legality with bitcoin adopters likely to be taxed in the country.

Featured image from Shutterstock.