India’s crypto trading startup CoinSwitch Kuber gets the unicorn status after a fresh round of investment led by venture capital giant Andreessen Horowitz (a16z). This is the first investment by a16z in India which shows its confidence in the country’s rapidly emerging crypto market.
Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) along with Coinbase Ventures has co-led an investment of $260 million in CoinSwitch Kuber, at a valuation of $1.9 billion. Some of the existing investors like Paradigm, Ribbit Capital, Sequoia Capital, and Tiger Global also participated in the recent funding round. This makes CoinSwitch Kuber the second crypto unicorn in the country.
Following today’s Series C round, CoinSwitch Kuber has raised $300 million to date. Interestingly, the crypto startup has seen its valuations becoming four-fold in just the last six months. Back in April during its Series B funding, CoinSwitch pegged a valuation of $500 million.
Registering Rapid Growth
The interesting part is that the exchange started operating in India last year only in June 2020. In a very short time period, the crypto trading platform has already onboarded 10 million users. Ashish Singhal, the founder of CoinSwitch Kuber said that the fresh funds shall be used to build new asset classes. He further noted:
“These would be standard asset classes that you see in the market, not related to crypto. A lot of people who invest with us are under the age of 28 and are first time investors who haven’t invested in any other assets other than crypto. These young users will want to grow with us as a platform, de-risk themselves from the volatility of crypto, and eventually have a portfolio which is balanced on the volatility end”.
However, Singhal said that investors won’t be able to buy traditional assets with these new asset classes. However, it will function alongside the regular crypto exchange. commenting on the first investment in India, David George, general partner at Andreessen Horowitz, said:
“We are incredibly excited about the crypto market opportunity in India, and with its breakout growth, CoinSwitch has emerged as the leading retail platform in the country. Ashish and the team have demonstrated strong execution abilities and the ambition to deliver an investment platform for the masses in India.”
India’s Evolving Crypto Landscape
Indian investors are actively participating in the crypto space. As per the latest Chainalysis report, India tops the global charts in terms of crypto usage. However, the regulatory action has still remained uncertain in the country.
But singhal remains confident about the regulatory developments, the way things are unfolding in India. “The tonality of the finance minister and other folks who regulate crypto has really changed. They’re sending clear statements right now, saying they won’t shut down crypto. We have also seen policy makers ask experts about how to go about regulating the crypto space. This funding, because it involves investors like a16z, who have never really invested in India before will also build confidence amongst regulators,” he said.
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