Austria-based cryptocurrency trading platform Bitpanda has secured a $170 million Series B funding round led by Peter Thiel’s investment company Valar Ventures. The deal has catapulted Bitpanda’s valuation to $1.2 billion and the platform became the first unicorn company to come out of Austria.
Bitpanda, a fintech company founded in Vienna, Austria, was founded in 2014 by Eric Demuth, Paul Klanschek and Christian Trummer. The platform currently has 2 million users and more than 330 team members.
“Since we joined the board last September, we have continued to be impressed with the work that Eric, Paul and the team are doing. One of the positive changes caused by the pandemic was an increased interest in personal finance, and Bitpanda’s broad offer and commitment to demystifying investing for a new breed of retail investors means it is perfectly positioned to take advantage of the trend,” said James Fitzgerald, Founding Partner of Valar Ventures, in a statement. “With over 700,000 new users in just 6 months, we know that people want access to the platform, and we’re excited to bring Bitpanda to every investor in Europe.”
With the PSD2 payment service provider license, Bitpanda serves as a popular trading platform for both beginners and professionals. With Bitpanda, users can currently trade Bitcoin, Ethereum, and more than 50 cryptocurrencies.
“We are shifting to become a pan-investment platform, not just a crypto broker,”said Eric Demuth, the CEO of Bitpanda.
The platform wants to make investing in cryptocurrencies as easy as ordering a pizza or calling a taxi. Bitpanda, which accepts Euro, Swiss Franc, British Pound and US Dollars, also offers different payment options.
Bitpanda serves in France, Spain and Turkey as well as Italy and Poland. The company plans to expand into more markets this year by establishing centers in Madrid, Barcelona, London, Paris and Berlin.
It also notes that new investment options and partial trades that will allow people to invest small amounts in the stocks they want to support will be added to the platform in April.
“We are profitable, and we have been for four years, but in September we changed strategy and wanted to become ‘the’ investment platform for all of Europe,” Demuth said. “We needed more partners and more capital to get more top talent and this is why we did the Series A last year. Then over the past two months, we talked to our investors and said what do you think, it seems like there is some momentum. They said ‘we are in.” No roadshow needed, we will help you. We will call our contacts and they’ll join, too.”
“In today’s financial world everything is connected,” said Klanschek. “We saw huge growth on Bitpanda after the Covid stock crash in March 2020.”