Japan finds new tech unicorn in crypto trading platform Liquid
There are many companies that aspire to be successful in sectors of all kinds, but very few attain the coveted unicorn status, in which they obtain a valuation of over $1 billion. While there are many successful blockchain and cryptocurrency startups, it appears as though the Japanese crypto trading platform Liquid has officially hit unicorn status.
The parent company of Liquid is Quoine, a fintech company that is actually licensed by the country’s Financial Services Agency (FSA). For those who follow cryptocurrency news regularly, they might recognize the name of the company from its involvement in a court case against electronic market liquidity provider B2C2 over 3,000 Bitcoin Core (BTC).
The valuation is the result of the company’s Series C funding. One company that has participated in the funding is IDG Capital, which has also invested in some of the most well-known companies in the cryptocurrency space, such as Coinbase and Ripple. Chinese crypto miner manufacturer Bitmain also participated. The amount of money raised was not significant compared to the company’s valuation, as it is reported that only $9 million was raised so far.
The platform had previously raised $20 million from venture capital. This included money from notable Japanese firms such as JAFCO, SBI, and Mistletoe. Liquid raised an impressive $100 million in its initial coin offering (ICO) that was approved by the FSA.
Proceeds from the latest funding round “will be used to fuel global expansion, product development of the core trading exchange business and entering into the security token market,” according to the company.
In a statement, Liquid CEO Mike Kayamori said the startup hopes “to make financial services accessible to all,” and the recent funding round puts Liquid “in an incredibly strong position to make a global impact in 2019.”
He noted, “As we enter into a new age of digital disruption in financial services, consumers are increasingly placing a higher value on digital assets and technologies they can trust and use with greater ease. Our vision is to make financial services accessible to all, which means bringing more people into the digital asset space so that anyone can be a part of it.”
Another unicorn in the Japanese tech startup space is the artificial intelligence firm Preferred Networks, which is backed by well-known companies such as Toyota, Hitachi, and more. Many cryptocurrency proponents are familiar with the first cryptocurrency-related unicorn—Coinbase.
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