Cryptocurrency loan exchange Secured Finance has raised $4m (£2.9m) in a seed funding round, more than double its initial target.
The raise was co-led by crypto trading firm GSR Markets, research firm Protocol Labs, venture capital company FinTech Collective, investment arm Huobi Ventures and technology investment business HOF Capital, and featured individual investors such as Twitch co-founder Justin Kan.
Secured Finance is looking to revolutionise decentralised finance by offering investment-bank-grade financial products and services for cryptocurrencies. It uses decentralized ledger technology to create derivative exchanges for loans, forwards, swaps, and options.
“Today, we stand at a critical juncture in the journey to democratising the finance system,” said Masakazu Kikuchi, co-founder and chief executive of Secured Finance.
“Our vision is to become leaders in decentralised finance and to spearhead this movement through the creation of an institutional-grade peer-to-peer cross-chain settlement protocol.
“The tremendous interest and backing of our investors and strategic partners will enable us to grow the Secured Finance team and secure regulatory approval and legal compliance for our platform across jurisdictions globally.”
Demand for cryptocurrencies is growing rapidly. Recently-published research from UK money-based app and crypto platform Ziglu found that one in 10 UK adults currently own cryptocurrencies and 11 per cent are considering buying some for the first time over the next 12 months.
The sector has seen a series of successful fundraises lately, reflective of this growing demand. Earlier this month, a US website that lets users back alternative investments including P2P loans and cryptocurrency raised $6m.