Azteco – the only provider of vouchers for small amounts of Bitcoin for everyday use – announced recently that it has raised $6 million in seed funding. This funding round was led by Jack Dorsey with participation from Lightning Ventures, Hivemind Ventures, Ride Wave Ventures, Aleka Capital, Visary Capital, Gaingels, David Van Der Weele, and Sunil Rajaraman.
Launched in 2014, Azteco uncovered that over 2 billion people worldwide have a smartphone but lack access to traditional financial services. And for these people, bitcoin presents a low-cost, secure, and flexible alternative to traditional banking that removes payer fraud and allows the unbanked population to store value, make purchases, and access credit without a traditional bank account. Azteco’s simple to use technology and voucher system allows consumers to instantly save, spend, and send small amounts of bitcoin, enabling economic and long-term financial stability and freedom.
What the funding will be used for: The seed funding will support Azteco in its mission to provide the billions of people who face untrustworthy or volatile economic conditions with a solution that promotes financial inclusion and long-term stability. And Azteco vouchers can be fulfilled online and at hundreds of thousands of retail locations in over 195 countries, enabling people to spend, save, and send small amounts of bitcoin to friends, family, and merchants. The company plans to use the investment for product development and market expansion in Latin America and Europe.
“This investment is a catalyst to help us achieve our mission of bringing unconditional financial freedom and control to the next billion users. This funding will fuel our market activation and product refinement efforts, enabling us to reach consumers more effectively, to develop deeply intuitive products and empower individuals worldwide to participate in global commerce regardless of their financial or technical experience level.”
— Paul Ferguson, Co-founder of Azteco
“Azteco is not just an innovative bitcoin company; it is essential for worldwide adoption of consumer bitcoin. Its simple, frictionless solution for mobile voucher top-ups benefits those most in need. Azteco’s critical mission is to provide access and inclusivity to the often-overlooked and most underserved global demographics. Many individuals lack the proper identification, smartphones, bank accounts, or other requirements to navigate the complex and confusing crypto trading platforms. Azteco’s solution is very familiar, far more comfortable, and incredibly easy for them to understand.”
— Mike Jarmuz, General Partner at Lightning Ventures
“My contribution to Azteco comes out of a deep respect for their mission, The unbanked population is immense. We have the technology and resources to close this gap, but until now, no one has taken that important next step. Azteco is providing so much more than just access to a secure financial system; it is building an ecosystem of financial self-determination that is secure and supported by local communities. I am honored to support them.”
— Jack Dorsey
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