Mexican cryptocurrency exchange platform Bitso has begun operating in Colombia, its fourth market, where it hopes to accumulate 1 million clients just this month, co-founder and Chief Executive Daniel Vogel said.
Bitso is among Latin America‘s growing collection of “unicorns” – companies with a valuation of at least $1 billion – and is worth some $2.2 billion, following a 2021 funding round where it raised $250 million. Bitso currently has 4 million customers in Mexico, Brazil and Argentina.
Bitso will offer customers instant transfers via the PSE payment system, sales of cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ether, as well as use of its new investment platform Bitso+.
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“With our launch in Colombia we hope to hit 5 million customers and we think we can do that this month,” Vogel told Reuters in a phone interview.
“We see Colombia as a key market for us, which we are entering with this expansion plan from the point of view of our products, hiring people (and) growing in the country – it is a very dynamic market in terms of cryptocurrencies,” he added, though he declined to say how much Bitso would invest in the Andean country.
Vogel, an economist and systems engineer who graduated from Stanford University, ruled out more investment rounds in Bitso’s immediate future. “We’re really focused on continuing to grow this business but for now there is no need to raise more capital,” he said.
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Founded in 2014 in Mexico, Bitso, which operates with bitcoin and ether, debuted in Brazil in December 2020, serving institutional investors, but it only started operating with investors in general in May 2021. Months later, in July 2021, Bitso became Mexico’s second unicorn and the first crypto startup valued at over $1 billion in Latin America.
Funds including Cometa, Pantera, Coinbase Ventures, QED Investors, Kaszek, Tiger Global, Coatue and Bond have invested in Bitso to date.
In an interview with LABS shortly after Bitso became a unicorn, Javier Martínez Morodo, the startup‘s chief growth officer, explained how the startup reached a $1 billion+ valuation in just seven years. “First because of the traction it has. Today we have 2.2 million users, a number that grows more than 10% per month. When projecting this growth rate in new countries and regions, the critical mass is very relevant. Second, because we are already a profitable company. We’re not like many new startups whose expenses and costs exceed revenues. And third, because much of the assessment [regarding the company’s valuation] is due to the potential to scale its operations regionally.” Here you can read the complete interview.