Tag Archives: funding

Australian Bitcoin Exchange CoinJar Raises $500,000 AUD

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CoinJar, a consumer Bitcoin exchange and digital wallet provider, has secured a round of equity investment from several prominent Australian technology investors.

Leading the investment is Niki Scevak of Blackbird Ventures. Other investors include entrepreneur Torsten Hoffman; RetailMeNot founders, Guy King and Bevan Clark; game developer Rob Murray; and serial technology investor Chris Hitchen. The combined investment is reportedly in the region of $500,000 AUD.

“Bitcoin is a game-changer, but the process of buying, selling and using Bitcoin is still relatively hard. CoinJar changes that by making Bitcoin more accessible and, eventually much more useful. Their approach of offering a secure consumer wallet and merchant payment capability for bitcoin in addition to a liquid exchange is what makes them interesting; as consumer and business adoption of Bitcoin becomes more mainstream, CoinJar is well-placed to be a significant participant,” said investor, Chris Hitchen. “The team, product and vision are all strong and I’m excited to be involved.”

Australia Bitcoin Retailer Millennius

The Melbourne based startup co-founded by Asher Tan and Ryan Zhou operates a platform where users can buy, sell and transact in bitcoin. It also provides merchant services for those looking to accept bitcoin as a medium of payment.

Bitcoin companies have gained strong interest from venture capital firms around the world as interest in the cryptocurrency, along with its price, has risen to new heights. China and Singapore are among the countries which have recently seen a wave of Bitcoin related investment deals.

“Bitcoin is moving past a purely speculative play. It is only a matter of time until business and consumers take full advantage of Bitcoin as a solution to digital payments,” said Asher Tan, co-founder and CEO of CoinJar. The company has already seen partnerships with a wide-range of goods and services providers including Australian utility vehicle producer Tomcar and crowd funding website, Pozible.

With over 10,000 Australian users, the company is looking to expand globally. CoinJar is a graduate of Australian startup incubator, AngelCube.

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Circle, A High Profile Bitcoin Startup, Raises $9M with Seasoned Team

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“We’re as excited about Bitcoin and digital currency as we were when we first discovered the Internet in 1990.” — Circle launch announcement

Jeremy Allaire is a seasoned entrepreneur. In the late 1990s, he developed the web development platform ColdFusion that was widely adopted and later acquired by Macromedia in 2001. Mr. Allaire then started an online video platform called Brightcove that went public in 2012.

Now Mr. Allaire has raised $9 million for his new venture called Circle, a company that is embracing the Bitcoin revolution.

“Bitcoin and digital currency represent a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to shape the future of the Internet and global commerce,” said Jeremy Allaire, founder and chief executive officer of Circle Internet Financial, Inc. “There’s a tremendous opportunity to make payments easier, more secure and less costly for consumers and businesses. Digital currency can dramatically reduce the friction and costs currently experienced in the world by merchants and consumers.”

Circle Jeremy Allaire Bitcoin

Jeremy Allaire photo by Keith Teare

Circle promises to enable global digital currency and transforming the world economy with secure, simple, and less costly technology for storing and using money. Circle is building a suite of online products for end-users, businesses and charities aimed at enabling greater ease-of-use in online and in-person payments, enhanced security and privacy for consumers, and lower costs for businesses in accepting digital payments.

The Circle platform will be built on top of open protocols such as Bitcoin. Circle has also announced that it is a gold member of the Bitcoin Foundation.

The company’s $9 million Series A funding comes from Jim Breyer, Accel Partners and General Catalyst Partners. Jim Breyer will join the Board of Directors of Circle, as will David Orfao of General Catalyst Partners.

“It is rare to find a world-class entrepreneur embarking on a path to bring innovation to the global financial marketplace,” said Jim Breyer, Partner, Accel Partners. “The dramatic global growth in mobile, social and online commerce is creating the need and potential for a real global digital currency. With Jeremy’s vision for Circle and track record as an Internet pioneer, the opportunity here is to potentially build a significant global company. I’m very pleased to be working with Jeremy again.”

Circle Internet Financial Bitcoin Startup

Unlike other companies in the Bitcoin space that have skirted regulatory gray areas, Circle is taking the challenge head on. Circle is regulated by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”), a bureau of the U.S. Department of Treasury, as a money transmitter and is seeking appropriate state licenses. Circle also recently hired John Beccia as General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer. Beccia, former Chief Regulatory Counsel for the Financial Services Roundtable in Washington, D.C. brings decades of operating experience in banking, compliance and risk management.

Circle’s funding was first announced in a New York Times profile piece published last night. Read “Bitcoin Pursues the Mainstream“.

Learn more at www.circle.com.

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Cruise Ship Startup Community Blueseed Gets Bitcoin Funding

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Blueseed Bitcoin Funding

Blueseed Continues Full Steam Ahead with Bitcoin Funding

Blueseed is a live/work/play startup community for 1000 entrepreneurs, on a cruise ship to be stationed 30 minutes by ferry from the coast of Silicon Valley.

The location is in international waters, outside U.S. jurisdiction, and allows entrepreneurs from anywhere in the world to start or scale their companies without needing U.S. work visas. Instead, easier-to-obtain B1/B2 business/travel visas will be used to arrive on Blueseed and to visit the mainland in order to connect with the Silicon Valley ecosystem.

Blueseed creates a new class of real-estate – technology-enhanced and ocean-based – and differentiates from existing business accelerators by creating an entire ecosystem (mentors, talent pool, investors, service providers etc.), and enabling a very close-knit community, modelled after university campuses. So far, with no dollars spent on marketing, over 1300 entrepreneurs from 400 startups in 66 countries have expressed interest.

Blueseed Announces Funding from Bit Angels

In light of last week’s major developments within the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Blueseed is announcing reaching a new milestone towards launching its startup ship for entrepreneurs – receiving the first investment from the first group of angel investors focused on the digital currency Bitcoin.

Last week, the House Republican Conference strongly opposed the Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill passed by the Senate, which among its 1198 pages included a section for granting an “INVEST” visa to international startup entrepreneurs. This development is unfortunately detrimental to the chances of a startup visa being enacted. Blueseed represents a viable, entrepreneurial alternative to this political problem.

Last week as well, the SEC announced that it will be lifting the ban on general solicitation, an 80-year old measure that has been preventing startups from publicly disclosing their ongoing fundraising campaigns. Blueseed will be able to take advantage of the opportunity to publicly announce its next fundraising round once the new provision becomes effective, in order to raise the amounts needed to launch the community.

Blueseed is also proud to announce receiving the first investment from Bit Angels, the first Bitcoin angel investors group. The group’s goal is fostering the growth of startups that promote Bitcoin, the decentralized digital currency. The Bit Angels regard Blueseed as an upcoming Bitcoin-friendly jurisdiction, with a streamlined legal and regulatory system, accelerating the growth of the Bitcoin ecosystem. In another first, Blueseed has received one investor’s contribution directly in Bitcoins. Leading the Bitcoin round was Jered Kenna, co-founder of Tradehill, the largest Bitcoin exchange in the U.S.

Learn more at Blueseed.

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Winklevoss Twins Invest in Bitcoin Startup BitInstant

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Winklevii Bitcoin News

Winklevii Invest in BitInstant

“We’re definitely pretty fascinated by it. The classic issue with Bitcoin is that it’s very early days.” — Tyler Winklevoss

The WinkleVoss twins, the two Harvard graduates who sued Mark Zuckerberg over the creation of Facebook, have been getting into Bitcoins. First, it was learned that they own 1% of the Bitcoin economy, and today TechCrunch learned that the Winklevii have invested in BitInstant, a Bitcoin startup.

BitInstant, a New York City based startup that operates an online platform for buying and selling Bitcoins, has raised $1.5 million in a seed funding round led by Winklevoss Capital with the participation of other strategic investors including money services veteran David Azar. The investment was closed this past fall, but the Winklevosses are just now publicly announcing it in the lead-up to the Bitcoin Foundation’s 2013 Conference being held in Silicon Valley this weekend.


Via TechCrunch.

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