Polychain capital, square cryptocurrency Steve Lee Invest in Bitcoin broker from $ 5.7 million


A series of investors are backing bitcoin brokerage firm River Financial for $ 5.7 million.

According to the company's announcement, the San Francisco-based startup closed the seed round joined by Polychain Capital, Slow Ventures, Castle Island Ventures, DG Lab Fund, Cygni, Pfeffer Capital and IDEO CoLab Ventures. A number of individual investors also participated, a River spokesperson, including Steve Lee of Square Crypto.

Launched in 2019, River's first funding round, adds its name to a growing, distinct group of crypto asset managers by focusing entirely on the first and largest cryptocurrency. by market capitalization.

Bitcoin is the heart and soul of the operation, co-founder and CEO of River, Alex Leishman, said in a phone interview with CoinDesk. Leishman, who left Polychain to start a venture, said his fund wants to go in a different direction from LINE than Coinbase or other exchanges, hinting at criticism at retail exchanges. to offer lesser known alternative cryptocurrencies.

We make bitcoin better than any other financial institution

Fresh capital will be used to replicate the river, especially as it seeks licenses across the United States. The company now offers a spot market, cold storage solution and private customer product for home offices or high net worth individuals in 15 states with 25 plans for this summer. , Leishman said.

Our founder sees River Financial as the bridge between the traditional financial gap and Bitcoin, the founder of Capital Polychain Capital Olaf Carlson-Wee said in a statement. The development of finance has only occurred faster after the current global economic crisis, it has shed light on the loopholes in traditional financial systems likely to be filled by Bitcoin.

Big picture
With macroeconomic instability, River - like many other bitcoin companies - enters strongly in 2020. Leishman said the company's volume has increased 80% from the previous month since January and the number of its customers has doubled over the same period. The startup is paying close attention to profitability at the end of the year, he added.

Read more: ’Great lockout is increasing the demand for Bitcoin depository solutions

Notably, the Inverse River consumer component includes an almost doubtful demographic: baby boomers. That generation accounts for 77% of the firm's market so far, Leishman said. Investors over 55 years old are seeking an anti-inflation barrier due to the erratic US Federal Reserve's monetary policy to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Just like the boomers participating in the late bitcoin game, River River's entry into the bitcoin asset management space also led to underestimated payments.

Lightning Labs co-founder and CEO Elizabeth Stark - a company adviser - told CoinDesk that River embraced the novel bitcoin technology that helped it scale faster.

Stark pointed out the integration of the River River with the Lightning Network as an example and said that Leishman is still a top priority of bitcoin technology. River also retained Blockstream co-founder Jonathan Wilkins as chief security officer (CSO), a January tenant.

Read more: Co-founder of the startup finance chain that is Bitcoin-only

There, Elephants still have a lot of technologies that inherit Bitcoin [in the market]. River is Bitcoin's future technology, according to Mr. Stark Stark.

Stark said the first dynamics in the cryptocurrency market such as exchanges often do not implement scaling techniques, such as segregated witnesses (SegWit) or batch. These technical upgrades keep the network healthy, but also support the average user buying experience.

Not only that, Stark said Leishman has a customer service routine that you struggle to find elsewhere: Registering a personal phone with normal users.