At a time when Coinbase went public in the United States for an eye-popping $100 billion valuation, the crypto network was valued at $500 million.
CoinSwitch Kuber, which uses an app to support retail investors invest in cryptocurrencies, announced on April 22 that it had raised $25 million in a Series B funding round from Tiger Global Management, valuing the company at about $500 million. Sequoia India and Ribbit Capital are among the other investors.
CoinSwitch, a global aggregator of cryptocurrency exchanges, was created in 2017 by Ashish Singhal, Govind Soni, and Vimal Sagar Tiwari. It unveiled Kuber, an India-focused crypto investment platform with 4.5 million users, in June 2020. According to CEO Singhal, the company’s annual revenue is about $50 million.
“We want to make crypto investing easier for Indians while also educating them about the asset class,” says the company. There have been several sceptics of cryptocurrencies. We will invest in educating investors and believe we have a chance to become India’s leading crypto startup,” he added.
In January of this year, it received $15 million from Ribbit, Sequoia, and others.
Tiger’s investment comes on the heels of Coinbase, a US-based crypto exchange, making a splash on the NASDAQ, where it launched at a $100 billion valuation.
Though bitcoin is the most well-known cryptocurrency, CoinSwitch allows users to invest in hundreds of other currencies and has benchmarked it against the Indian rupee, with investors able to put as little as Rs 100 into the burgeoning yet potentially risky asset class.
In India, cryptocurrency has had a turbulent history, with the government regularly trying to outlaw it, yet more recently appearing to be warming to the concept that it can be used as an investment tool rather than a currency replacement, as it has been in some other countries.
According to Singhal, the platform is being used all over India, not just in metro areas, suggesting widespread interest in the new asset class.
Since cryptocurrencies are theoretically unregulated and intended to be independent of governments, a company like Coinbase might open offices in other countries, eliminating the need for country-specific crypto platforms.
“No, I believe you need a company that understands the Indian consumer, mindset, and regulatory environment. We want to cater this asset class to Indian investors, and I believe an Indian company is needed to do so,” Singhal explained.