German peer-to-peer bitcoin loan platform Bitbond has netted €5m in debt financing to fund new loans through its SME lending platform.
Launched in 2013, Bitbond provides a platform to connect lenders and borrowers while facilitating loans in bitcoin. The platform also checks the credit-worthiness of applicants and the purpose of the loan while determining an interest rate for a loan. To facilitate its global marketplace, the startup uses the Bitcoin blockchain for international payment processing.
In an announcement this week, the Berlin-based company announced that it received €5 million in debt commitment from Obotritia Capital, a commercial real estate firm based in Germany. Terms of the debt investment also include an undisclosed stake purchased by the German investor in Bitbond.
“The debt commitment by Obotritia brings Bitbond to the next level in our efforts to provide universal SME financing,” said Bitbond CEO and founder Radoslav Albrecht in a statement. “The next step is to work with partners. Such partners could be online marketplaces who want to add value to their platforms by giving their merchants access to instant cash through Bitbond.”
Earlier this year, Bitbond closed a successful equity funding round of $1.2 million in new capital. The bitcoin startup revealed the funds would help fuel its push to rope in new users in potential markets. With it, the online lending marketplace had raised a total of $2.3 million in funding at the time, adding to a mid-2015 angel funding round of €600,000.
Thus far, the marketplace claims to have facilitated over 1,700 loans across 120 countries since its launch, totaling over a million dollars. Bitbond also operates with a regulatory license from BaFin, Germany’s financial regulator. Issued in October 2016, the license allows Bitbond to operate independently of banks and makes the industry startup one of the earliest firms to be regulated in the bitcoin lending space.
More recently, Bitbond partnered prominent pan-African bitcoin startup BitPesa to help deliver bitcoin loans to African small and medium enterprises.
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