The startup of Cryptocurrency Circle raised $ 110 million in funding, valuing the company at nearly $ 3 billion. Cryptocurrency mining company Bitmain is leading the cycle.
Existing investors IDG Capital, Breyer Capital, General Catalyst, Accel, Digital Currency Group and Pantera are investing more money. Blockchain Capital and Tusk Ventures invest in Circle for the first time. Goldman Sachs has also invested in the company during a previous round.
It is difficult to describe Circle in a nutshell because the company has been active on all fronts. For a very long time, the company has been touted as a social payment company, a competitor of Venmo and Square Cash. But Circle is more focused than ever on cryptocurrencies.
The company operates one of the largest OTC trading desks for large investors and cryptocurrency exchanges. Circle Trade manages more than $ 2 billion a month in transactions and is able to respond to large orders and provide liquidity.
More recently, the company launched Circle Invest, a very simple mobile app for the US market. It allows you to buy and sell in a few clicks Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Classic Ethereum, Litecoin, Zcash and Monero. This is a good way to start with cryptocurrences without knowing the exchanges and types of commands. It could become a good Coinbase competitor for small cryptocurrency investors.
And Circle also acquired Poloniex, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the United States
But the most interesting projects at the moment are probably CENTER and a new coin in US dollars. There are so many different crypto-currencies, fiduciary currencies, exchanges and portfolios that it has become difficult to make everything work together. Cryptocurrencies still suffer from price volatility, so that bitcoin can not be the common denominator.
That's why Circle creates a token that is pegged to the US dollar. The USD Coin is based on an open source framework developed by CENTER and everything should be audited regularly.
CENTER is a Circle initiative to create a common framework for connecting all e-wallets. This protocol could allow you to send money to an Alipay user with your Square Cash balance.
It is clear that Circle wants to build the infrastructure of the cryptocurrency industry. The company will have to convince several industry players to work with Circle. But that could help the ecosystem of cryptocurrency as a whole.