Circle Internet Financial, a crypto focused financial technology firm situated in Boston, MA, and the issuer of USD Coin (USDC), has agreed to a $400M fundraising round. BlackRock, Inc., Fidelity Management and Research, Marshall Wace LLP, and Fin Capital all made the investments.
After delaying its SPAC merger and doubling its valuation to $9B in February 2022, this funding comes at an opportune turning point. In July 2021, it was estimated to be worth $4.5B. Circle had cancelled its earlier agreement with Concord Acquisition Corp., a publicly-traded SPAC, at the time of the delay, only to re-enter into a merger agreement with the firm.
The original agreement was set to expire on April 3, 2022, but the new one has been moved back to December 8, 2022, with the possibility of being extended until January 31, 2023, depending on the circumstances.
The Centre Consortium released the USD Coin (USDC) in 2018, a stablecoin that is 1:1 tied to the US dollar. This means that each USDC is backed by a reserve of $1. Circle and Coinbase, the world’s largest bitcoin exchange, are both founding members of the Centre.
Exploring Stablecoin applications
BlackRock has entered into a strategic partnership with Circle and that includes researching capital market uses for USDC, besides the corporate strategic investment and role as a primary asset manager of USDC cash reserves.
The new funding will help in Circle strategic growth as global demand for dollar digital currency and related financial services grows. With over $50B in circulation, USDC is one of the most rapidly rising dollar digital currencies.
The CoinMarketCap data revealed that USDC is the second-largest stablecoin surpassing USD Tether (USDT) and it is also the fifth-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization. Its market capitalization increased by about 370 percent year on year, from $10.82B to $50.83B, and about $5B in volume was exchanged in the last 24 hours, which is almost a hike of more than 39 percent.
Besides the fact that USDC is the second most popular stablecoin, it comes with a market valuation of about $32B less than USDT and a 24-hour volume of nearly $73.6B less than the first.
“Dollar digital currencies like USDC are driving a worldwide economic transformation, and Circle’s technology infrastructure is at the heart of that transition,” said Jeremy Allaire, Co-Founder and CEO of Circle. “This fundraising round will drive the next stage of Circle’s growth.” “We are especially pleased to welcome BlackRock as a strategic investor in the company, and we look forward to growing our relationship.”
Founded in 2013 by Jeremy Allaire and Sean Neville, then global financial technology company helps companies use digital currencies and public blockchains for payments, trade, and financial applications all across the world. With nearly $50B in circulation, it is the issuer of USD Coin (USDC), a digital currency that powers always-on internet-native trade and payments. SeedInvest, a startup fundraising platform in the United States, is also run by the business.
Circle competes with the likes of Ethereum, Blockchain, Coinbase and Remitly. The startup also runs SeedInvest, a leading startup fundraising platform in the United States.