If there were any doubt about a cryptocurrency boom, we need look no further than at the explosion of growth of certain companies in the space.
One such company is BlockFi, which today announced it has closed on a massive $350 million Series D funding that values it at $3 billion. While this news in and of itself is certainly attention-getting, it’s even more impressive when you consider the startup just raised a $50 million Series C last August at a $450 million valuation. The latest financing brings its total equity raised since inception to about $450 million, with the company raising $100 million across its seed and Series C rounds.
Zac Prince — who comes from a background in consumer lending — founded BlockFi with Flori Marquez in 2017. The Jersey City, New Jersey-based startup raised $1.6 million in a seed round of funding that closed in 2018 and was led by ConsenSys Ventures and included participation from SoFi.
Prince describes BlockFi as a financial services company for crypto market investors that offers a retail and institutional-facing suite of products. On the retail side of its platform, people can use its mobile app to earn a yield on their crypto holdings (6% on Bitcoin, 8.6% on stablecoins), buy and sell crypto and get low-cost loans secured by the value of their crypto portfolio “so they can get liquidity without selling,” he said. Specifically, clients can buy and sell digital assets (from Bitcoin, Ethereum and Link to Litecoin, PaxG and multiple stablecoins) directly on BlockFi.
The startup is also a lender and provider of trade execution services to institutions participating in digital asset markets.
It’s a model that seems to be working in a big way. Since the end of 2019, BlockFi has seen its client base grow from 10,000 to more than 225,000. Today, BlockFi has 265,000 funded retail clients and over 200 institutional clients.
And it’s lent over $10 billion to its retail, corporate and institutional clients.
Over the past year, BlockFi has also accomplished the following:
- Increased the number of assets on its platform to $15 billion, compared to $1 billion last March — with a 0% loss rate across its lending portfolio since inception.
- Bumped its monthly revenue to over $50 million, up from $1.5 million a year prior.
- Boosted its headcount to about 530 people, compared to 100 last March.
“In less than six months since we completed our Series C, Bitcoin and other digital assets have assumed a central role in many investors’ portfolios and in broader financial markets,” Prince said. “Our conviction that digital assets are the future of finance has been vindicated by our client base, which grew 10 times year over year in 2020 and has more than doubled since the end of 2020.”
New investor Bain Capital Ventures, partners of DST Global, Pomp Investments and Tiger Global co-led the Series D, which included participation from a slew of other firms including existing backer Valar Ventures,…