FTX.US, an affiliate of cryptocurrency exchange FTX, has seen its valuation climb to $8 billion following the successful closing of Series A funding worth $400 million.
The US-based exchanges said Wednesday it raised the fresh cash from a clutch of traditional and crypto-centric investors including Paradigm, Temasek, NEA, Multicoin Capital, Tribe Capital and Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board. Additionally, the recent financing round saw participation form the VC arm of SoftBank, Greenoaks Capital, Steadview Capital, and Lightspeed Venture Partners, amongst others.
FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried said in December that he is looking to raise a total of $1.5 billion for both the global business and its US affiliate. The parent company, FTX Trading, was recently valued at $25 billion after a $450 million funding round. But the planned funding round would potentially value the cryptocurrency derivatives platform at $32 billion.
Brett Harrison, President of FTX US, commented on the news, “FTX US scaled rapidly throughout the course of 2021, and our Series A valuation reflects both what we’ve concretely accomplished and what we’ve laid the groundwork for in 2022. We are thankful for all of our investors, many of whom have supported FTX from its founding, and look forward to working with them as we enter the next stage of our expansion.”
FTX.US launches NFTs, derivatives and stock trading
“The FTX US team is laying the groundwork to become the dominant trading platform in the United States for all things crypto: spot trading, derivatives, and NFTs. They are growing market share as customers recognize the power and flexibility of the platform, and we expect that to accelerate as the product suite accelerates,” added Kyle Samani, Managing Partner at Multicoin Capital.
The decent valuation puts FTX US on par with those of more established US competitors. In November, cryptocurrency platform Gemini, founded by the Winklevoss twins, raised $400 million at a $7.1 billion valuation. New York-based Gemini’s first ever round was led by Morgan Creek Digital, with participation from the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and others.
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao also revealed that the American outpost of the world’s biggest crypto exchange may raise a “couple hundred million” dollars in a funding round, but he does not know the exact number. CZ said that Coinbase, which became the first crypto exchange to go public, helped set up a playbook for crypto firms to do IPOs.
The fresh capital injection comes on the heels of FTX launching a non-fungible (NFT) marketplace exclusively for customers living in the United States. The platform enables users to mint, buy and sell NFTs — all traded cross-chain across the Ethereum and Solana blockchains.
FTX.US kicked off these plans earlier in October when it acquired Ledger Holdings Inc., parent company of a CFTC-regulated digital currency futures and options exchange. Ledger was then rebranded as FTX US Derivatives, but both firms confirmed that that the acquisition and name change will have no effect on LedgerX’s daily operations.