Barclays to buy stakes in $2 bn crypto firm Copper
The UK banking giant Barclays is set to join the pool of investors for crypto firm Copper
By Shashank Bhardwaj
Barclays is amongst the newest set of investors for the digital assets firm Copper. The exact valuation of this stake is currently unclear, with reports suggesting that the U.K. banking firm is investing “millions of dollars” in the crypto custody firm. The funding round is expected to close in the next couple of days. Copper, a unicorn valued at $2 billion, was established in 2018 and has the United Kingdom’s former Chancellor Philip Hammond as its senior adviser.
The crypto company, which has gained an eminent reputation in the rapidly-changing crypto sphere, is regulated in Switzerland after failing to register with U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority. While the company had earlier projected a valuation of around $3 billion, it has since trimmed down those targeted numbers given the crypto bear market in 2022.
Barclays is not the first big name company to show an interest in Copper since the crypto firm has also managed to secure investors from the global venture capital sector, such as LocalGlobe, MMC Ventures, and Dawn Capital. This proves that companies are looking into crypto for the future despite the ongoing discussions surrounding the stability of the market.
Marcus Sotiriou, an analyst at digital asset broker GlobalBlock, said, “This shows that although crypto faces significant hurdles, due to the macro environment and a lack of buyers, financial institutions are showing an increase in interest, and the long-term value continues to expand.”
The banking giant has had a turbulent relationship with the blockchain market in the past. In 2015, it became the first UK-based private bank to accept Bitcoin for charity donations. It also released a social payment application in 2016 that would allow users to convert British pounds into Bitcoin with the financial technology firm Circle.
However, the bank had also spoken out against the crypto market when it blocked customers from sending funds to high-profile crypto exchanges such as Binance. Barclays’ decision to buy stakes in Copper shows that the banking firm is positive about the future of the crypto market and the digital asset investment firm.
The writer is the founder at yMedia. He ventured into crypto in 2013 and is an ETH maximalist. Twitter: @bhardwajshash
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