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Unocoin Raises Undisclosed Funding in Round Led by Tim Draper

Unocoin, India’s first crypto exchange, has raised an undisclosed amount of funds in a targeted $5 million round from a set of global investors. The Series A round has been led by Draper Associates along with participation from XBTO Ventures and 2020 Ventures, who are both investors in the digital assets industry. The funding round will raise Unocoin’s valuation to US$20 million.

Unocoin Fundraising will bolster growth

Tim Draper, founder of Draper Associates, is known for early investments in tech majors like Tesla, Skype and Twitter. The crypto exchanges are witnessing a massive jump in business and trading volume after the Supreme Court lifted the ban brought in by the Reserve Bank on the banks doing business with these entities. Following the lifting of this ban, Unocoin’s latest fundraise will bolster its continued growth in India, thus allowing it to build a stronger technology team and enhance its product infrastructure and offerings. 

Unocoin co-founders (L-R): Sunny Ray – President, Sathvik Vishwanath – CEO, Harish BV – COO, Abhinand Kaseti – CMO

Notable developments in the pipeline include expansion into Decentralised Finance (DeFi) with its own protocols and the implementation of a new AI-based chatbot system to improve customer support.

“We’ve seen a dramatic increase of crypto adoption in India following the lifting of an industry-wide ban by the Reserve Bank of India enacted in 2018. Customer growth rates have surged by more than 10X in the month the supreme court verdict was announced, accompanied by a 5X increase in trading volume in subsequent months. The funding will help us scale our business further, and give us a strong financial foothold to expand our platform’s offerings. We will double down on our efforts to improve our product features and offerings, which will enhance the overall usability and functionality for our customers”. 

Sathvik Vishwanath, CEO, Unocoin

Established back in 2013, Unocoin operated as amongst India’s largest BTC-INR trading platform that enabled users in India to transact and store Bitcoin. It faced difficulties in operations after the RBI crypto ban, but now seems well positioned for a bounce back. Today, other crypto assets that can be traded on the Uncoin Exchange include: LTC, XRP, ETH, BCH, BTG, and various ERC20 tokens.

Unocoin has several innovate firsts to its name in India – such as its Bitcoin Systematic Buying Plan (SBP), crypto lending, Crypto interest earning, Bitcoin Point of Sale (POS) App and Bitcoin Over-The- Counter trading (OTC) — all of which offers ready access to a wide array of digital products, both seamlessly as well as securely.

“The potential for widespread crypto adoption in India is massive. Many in India remain underserved by traditional payment systems, increasing bitcoin’s attractiveness as an alternative currency. We are proud of our team’s resilience and commitment amidst the regulatory shifts and are excited to work with our partners — both new and old — to shape the future of cross-border payments, microtransactions and lending in India.”

Sunny Ray, President of Unocoin

The RBI has, so far, not stated its stance on this issue post the ban. According to a Moneycontrol report, bankers say that they continue to do business with crypto platforms since legally they are bound to do so. 

“Running a cryptocurrency exchange is a tough business. Running a cryptocurrency exchange in India is an even tougher business. The fact that Unocoin survived and thrived is a testament to the team’s ability and grit. We can’t wait to see what’s next for them.” 

Larry Sukernik of Digital Currency Group Investments

Unocoin has been featured among the Top 20 companies in The Fintech20: India List, and have also won prestigious titles like ‘The Golden SABRE award’ in financial communications for the project. Apart from this, the team has also won awards like ‘Bit-by-Bit: Building Bitcoin in India’ and ‘TECH30’ from YourStory. There are a few other well-funded crypto trading platforms apart from Unocoin in India, like, WazirX and CoinDCX. 

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