Bitcoin payments startup BitPay looks to expand after raising $30 million

BitPay wants to expand to emerging markets and be an alternative to cash and money transfers, its CEO said

Bitcoin payment processor BitPay has raised $30 million to fund its international expansion.

The Atlanta-based company helps businesses accept payments in bitcoin with its range of plugins for 22 e-commerce system. BitPay takes the bitcoin exchange rate risk, paying its customers in bitcoin or a variety of currencies including US dollars, euros and pounds sterling.

Over 30,000 organizations already use its services, according to the company's website, including blogging platform WordPress and the space tourism company Virgin Galactic owned by Virgin Group Chairman Richard Branson.

Branson and Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang are part of the group that will invest $30 million in BitPay, the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday. The investment follows an earlier $2.7 million investment round and is the biggest venture capital investment in the digital currency industry, valuing the company at about $160 million, according to the report.

The deal, expected to be announced on Tuesday, will help BitPay to expand its business outside the U.S., BitPay CEO Tony Gallippi told the newspaper.

The startup has offices in Amsterdam, Buenos Aires and San Francisco, but will now focus on emerging markets such as India and other countries where a large part of the population doesn't have bank accounts, Gallippi said.

Regulators and governments around the world are struggling with accepting bitcoin as a currency. The EU, Denmark and New Zealand for instance all issued warnings against the technology, questioning its viability. The currency is also very volatile, leading at least one expert to conclude that it could become harder for Bitcoin startups to land investments.

However, despite the volatility of the digital currency and setbacks like the recent demise of the Mt. Gox Bitcoin exchange and hack attacks targeting Bitcoin's transaction network, Gallippi is confident Bitcoin is here to stay, he told the newspaper. His investors also aren't worried about the fluctuating bitcoin prices. They are betting that the digital currency will emerge as the Internet payment method of choice, according to the report.

BitPay is not the only Bitcoin startup landing a big investment. By the end of last year venture capitalists invested at least $50 million into the industry. Half of that amount went to Coinbase, a bitcoin bank, in December.

Loek is Amsterdam Correspondent and covers online privacy, intellectual property, open-source and online payment issues for the IDG News Service. Follow him on Twitter at @loekessers or email tips and comments to loek_essers@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or
Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags business issuesinvestmentsBitPay

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Loek Essers

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >

Mobile

Sansai 6-Outlet Power Board + 4-Port USB Charging Station

Learn more >

Victorinox Werks Professional Executive 17 Laptop Case

Learn more >

Exec

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?