According to a report from TechCrunch, bitcoin payment processing firm, BitPay is raising $30 million, which would be the largest round of funding in the industry. Not commenting to TechCrunch, BitPay is reportedly counting Richard Branson, Jerry Yang, and Index Ventures as its investors in the round, while valuating the firm at $160 million.
Atlanta based BitPay has been one of the most successful and fastest growing bitcoin firms, as their solution to enable companies to receive bitcoins was being used by over 26,000 merchants as of March of this year. Online firms using their services include WordPress, Zynga, and TigerDirect. The firms also launched this year a new service to easily allow US firms to pay a portion of an employees salary in bitcoins.
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Following their previous round of funding, BitPay had been involved with growing its business beyond its Atlanta headquarters as they opened a San Francisco and New York office. With the alleged new investment, BitPay could use the funds to move aggressively to market their bitcoin payment solutions to online businesses. Competing against Coinbase, and smaller firms like GoCoin and CoinKite, the merchant payment processing space has become more crowded over the last year, leading to a ‘land grab’ to capture market share in the growing industry. As a result, while BitPay may not have needed additional funding, the cash allows them to intensify their client onboarding and increase of headcount.