Yellow card, a crypto startup based in Johannesburg, has closed a $15 million Series A round to expand its cryptocurrency exchange-
The funding round, the largest for any cryptocurrency exchange in Africa, was co-led by Valar Ventures, Third Prime, and Castle Island Ventures. Other influential firms like Square Inc, Blockchain.com Ventures, Coinbase Ventures, Polychain Capital, BlockFi, Fabric Ventures, Raba Partnership, MoonPay, and GreenHouse Capital also participated. James Fitzgerald, Founding Partner at Valar Ventures, referred to the firm’s participation by stating:
“Africa is poised to benefit tremendously from cryptocurrency’s potential to transform financial services. We believe in Yellow Card’s vision of a Pan-African cryptocurrency platform. What cemented the deal is their multi-national team, which we believe has the local knowledge, technical expertise, and unequivocal passion to address the basic financial services needs of the continent.”
The startup launched its exchange with the mission to open the world of crypto to millions of people in Africa. Since its founding in 2019, the startup has seen its team grow to 110 employees across 16 countries, expanding its presence to more than 12 countries in the African region, and growing its user base by nearly 30x since the start of the Covid19 pandemic. Chris Maurice, co-founder and CEO of Yellow Card, said about the startup’s mission:
“Our mission has always been to make cryptocurrency accessible anywhere and everywhere across the African continent. Now, we have the backing to make that a reality, alongside an amazing team of investors who share our vision.”
As the crypto industry continues to grow worldwide, emerging economies have seen an increasing demand for digital currencies and the services they offer. A recent report by Chainalysis listed 6 African nations among the top 20 economies adopting cryptocurrency. The support by some of the most important firms in the industry is a reflection of the increasing interest in the region, which could allow the crypto startup to eventually become a major player on the global stage.