Liquid.com, a Japan-based crypto currency platform, announced the successful completion of its Series C fundraising round, which has seen the company reach a total value of over $1 billion – making it one of only two tech unicorns (unique and exceptionally valuable) in the country’s startup industry. Liquid took less than five years to obtain the coveted $1 billion title.
The C Series funds are used for global expansion and product development. The Series C investment round was led by IDG Capital and Bitmain Technologies – one of the world’s largest (and most controversial) manufacturers and users of crypto currency mining rigs. The former has already invested in Coinbase, Ripple, Bitmain and Kakao’s crypto currency company, while the latter recently entered ErisX (an asset derivatives and crypto trading platform) to obtain a license from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
Bitmain co-founder Jihan Wu, who recently resigned as CEO after a lousy year, stated in a press release
JAPAN IS ONE OF THE LEADING NATIONS WHEN IT COMES TO REASONABLY REGULATING THE CRYPTO INDUSTRY, AND THE LIQUID GROUP HAS PROVEN TO BE AN EXEMPLARY ACTOR WITHIN SUCH COMPLIANT RULES. THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT AND UNIQUE DIG IN GLOBAL COMPETITION.
Young Gao, General Partner of IDG Capital, said:
IDG HAS BEEN ACTIVELY INVESTING IN THE GLOBAL CRYPTO SECTOR SINCE 2012 AND HAS BEEN ABLE TO IDENTIFY SOME KEY INDIVIDUALS EARLY ON. WE RECOGNIZED THAT TOKYO HAS BECOME A TOP TARGET FOR CRYPTO INNOVATION AND IT IS AN HONOR TO HELP VISIONARY PIONEERS LIKE LIQUID FOUNDERS MIKE KAYAMORI AND MARIO GOMEZ LOZADA IMPLEMENT THIS INNOVATION.
IDG Capital and Bitmain Technologies are not the only high profile investors providing Liquid with funds. The company has already received more than $20 million from JAFCO, SBI, B Dash Ventures, Mistletoe and ULS Group through an initial coin offering worth over $100 million, Japan’s first regulated ICO.
Liquid CEO Mike Karamori was understandably enthusiastic after the successful fundraising round:
WITH THE ADVENT OF A NEW ERA IN WHICH THE WORLD OF FINANCIAL SERVICES IS CHANGING, CONSUMERS ARE INCREASINGLY LOOKING TO DIGITAL ASSETS AND TECHNOLOGIES THAT THEY CAN TRUST AND USE MORE EASILY. OUR VISION IS TO MAKE FINANCIAL SERVICES ACCESSIBLE TO ALL, WHICH MEANS BRINGING MORE PEOPLE INTO THE DIGITAL ASSET ARENA SO THAT EVERYONE CAN PARTICIPATE. THIS FIRST ROUND OF SERIES C FINANCING BY OUR TWO HIGHLY RESPECTED INVESTORS IDG CAPITAL AND BITMAIN PUTS US IN AN INCREDIBLY STRONG POSITION TO MAKE A GLOBAL IMPACT IN 2019.