Change has closed a $4.5M (€3.7M) crowdfund from 50 private investors at a $214M (€175M) valuation for its cryptocurrency investing platform for retail investors.
Following the neobroker model, Change charges no fees on Bitcoin trades, has a low minimum deposit of €10, and has built a user-friendly interface geared towards beginners.
The firm was founded in 2016 and has reached the $1 billion volume traded on the platform as it boasts 85,000 verified customers. Change is backed by over 7,000 private investors and has raised more than $21M (€18M) in funding.
Headquartered in Tallinn, Estonia, Change will use the funding to grow the team, further develop its platform and expand in European and Asian markets.
Investors are primarily composed of Change’s original crowdfunding members, who’ve continued to be involved in the project since 2017, as well as existing shareholders.
Kristjan Kangro, Founder and CEO of Change, said: “We started with a mission to empower everyone everywhere to benefit from investing – be it with cryptos or more traditional trading instruments. Not only did this mean creating a platform that was simple to use, but it also meant being independently funded and driven by our community.
“To see so many of our original investors from back in 2017 continuing to believe in and support us is incredibly inspiring. Together we’ve achieved tremendous growth over the past year especially, and our ambitious expansion plans aren’t showing any signs of slowing down.”
As a community-driven investing platform, the neobroker co-founded by Kristjan Kangro (CEO) and Gustav Liblik (CPO) using crowdfunding as a tool for expansion comes naturally.
The firm is backed by Roger Cook, former Global CEO of DHL and Hans van der Noordaa, former CEO of the Retail Division of ING Bank and Chairman of Deloitte.
Change’s goal is to become the most used, simplest investment app in the EU., but competition is fierce. Also coming from Estonia is Lightyear, the TransferWise of trading apps which is backed by Wise co-founder Taavet Hinrikus and Teleport co-founder Sten Tamkivi. This platform, however, does not seem to focus on crypto.
BitPanda follows a similar path and has already 1.2 million customers in Europe as it offers over 30 digital assets, form cryptocurrencies as bitcoin to precious metals as gold as well as stocks and ETFs, with a minimum of one euro. Except for stock trading, BitPanda charges commission.