Blockchain Raises $30 Million in Biggest-Ever Funding Round for a Bitcoin Company

The world's largest Bitcoin wallet service just sealed a record venture capital deal. Backers include none other than billionaire Richard Branson.

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By Kim Lachance Shandrow • Oct 7, 2014

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Blockchain just went from bootstrapped to big-time. The popular Britain-based global Bitcoin wallet and block explorer service announced today that it has locked in $30.5 million in Series A funding.

The record round, which marks the company's first-ever outside investment, was led by heavy-hitter Silicon Valley venture capital vehicles Wicklow Capital and Lightspeed Venture Partners. Other participants in the round, which The Wall Street Journal hailed as "the biggest single funding round yet for a digital-currency firm," include Mosaic Ventures, Prudence Holdings, Amit Jhawar of Braintree and billionaire Richard Branson.

Related: Blockchain.info CEO: This Is Why You Shouldn't Fear Bitcoin

Launched in 2011, Blockchain -- now 2.3 million consumer wallets and $26 billion in transaction volume strong -- said it plans to use the massive growth capital infusion to beef up its product and engineering teams, to add "innovative new features" to its products and to expand to new international markets.

"Blockchain is honored and excited to announce this historic round," Blockchain CEO Nic Cary told Entrepreneur.com. "It represents the single largest capital commitment in a bitcoin company to date. As a bootstrapped company, we were able to accomplish a lot with a little. Now we're more ambitious than ever."

Related: Accepting Bitcoin Payments Increasingly Looks Like Smart Business

As part of the groundbreaking capital injection, Lightspeed partner Jeremy Liew will join Blockchain's board of directors. "Bitcoin is a long game and the wallet is the crucial strategic high ground in the Bitcoin ecosystem," Liew said in Blockchain's announcement. "We wanted to back the biggest player in the most important segment of the Bitcoin value chain, and that is Blockchain."

Meanwhile, the price of a single Bitcoin, as of 12 p.m. ET today was trading slightly lower at $327, according to CoinDesk. It plummeted last weekend to $286, its most dismal value this year. Last year, it rose to a high of about $1,150.

Related: Bitcoin in 10 Years: 4 Predictions From SecondMarket's Barry Silbert

Kim Lachance Shandrow

Former West Coast Editor

Kim Lachance Shandrow is the former West Coast editor at Entrepreneur.com. Previously, she was a commerce columnist at Los Angeles CityBeat, a news producer at MSNBC and KNBC in Los Angeles and a frequent contributor to the Los Angeles Times. She has also written for Government Technology magazine, LA Yoga magazine, the Lowell Sun newspaper, HealthCentral.com, PsychCentral.com and the former U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. C. Everett Coop. Follow her on Twitter at @Lashandrow. You can also follow her on Facebook here

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