Wirex Reaches Crowdfunding Goal in Just 90 Minutes
Who needs venture capital firms anyway? Apparently not Wirex as the U.K.-based payments company easily smashed its fundraising goal using the platform Crowdcube. This morning, the startup surpassed its initial ask of £1 million ($1.28 million) in less than an hour and a half. The campaign was opened to the general public following a priority access period for those who pre-registered. Currently, the company has moved to overfunding and is closing in on £2.5 million ($3.21 million) raised.
According to the campaign site, Wirex has more than 3.1 million total registered users across 130 countries, including 220,000 active monthly users. Impressively, the platform has processed more than £3 billion ($3.85 billion) in transactions since launch. Yet, perhaps their biggest claim to fame is their Wirex Travelcard, which launched in select markets last year and has since expanded. In addition to allowing users to convert and spend money in multiple fiat and cryptocurrencies, the Travelcard also rewards customers with up to 1.5% CryptoBack on transactions. While Wirex is based in London, it also has two stateside offices located in Dallas and Atlanta in addition to other global offices in Singapore, Kyiv, Tokyo, and Toronto.
Commenting on the impact of the fundraising campaign and its early success, Wirex co-founder and CEO Pavel Matveev stated, “It’s a great milestone in achieving our original plan to raise £1 million so quickly, but it’s unsurprising given that we have already developed a pioneering platform allowing users to seamlessly buy, hold, exchange and spend multiple traditional and cryptocurrencies.” He continued, explaining, “We have decided to extend the raise further to give everyone the opportunity to invest and play a part in Wirex’s extraordinary journey, sharing our vision to take the company to the next-level and bring cryptocurrency to the mainstream.”
Of course, the campaign was also a win for the Crowdcube platform, with that company’s co-founder Luke Lang, remarking, “It’s very exciting to see Wirex achieve their crowdfunding target in such a short space of time, showing the demand that investors have for a product such as Wirex. I look forward to seeing how much they raise, as demand can often grow once a campaign is overfunding.”
Wirex is among a few other FinTech who have recent turned to equity crowdfunding. For example, Celsius Network recently raised more than $20 million via the BnktotheFuture platform. The company was originally only seeking $15 million — later upping that to $17 million (which they still exceeded).
While Wirex’s crowdfunding campaign was less ambitious than some others, the fact that it filled so quickly shows that there is not only an interest in the company and the FinTech sector but also shows that there is a viable alternative fundraising route for startups. Even as VC firms continue to pour money into the space, the success that Wirex and Celsius have seen with crowdfunding could inspire others to try this path. Surely there are pros and cons to each approach but having more options is rarely a bad thing. Therefore, we shouldn’t be surprised if more FinTech equity crowdfunding campaigns emerge going forward.