Abra, a peer-to-peer (P2P) remittance app that leverages bitcoin for money transfers, has raised $12 million in Series A financing.
The round is its second, bringing total investment to $14 million. Notable investors include Arbor Ventures, RRE Ventures and First Round Capital. Abra says the round was “highly oversubscribed”.
As with other bitcoin-powered remittance services, some form of physical branch is usually needed on either side of the transaction. The sender can load funds either by using a debit card, or through an ‘Abra Teller’, similar to a money transfer agent. Users can apply to function as local tellers. The recipient withdraws cash from the app via a teller as well.
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Bitcoin’s blockchain is used behind the scenes, and is not mentioned as part of the transfer process on the website. “It’s not about Bitcoin for the sake of Bitcoin – it’s about how the technology can solve problems for consumers worldwide, even if they don’t know what the Blockchain is,” said RRE Ventures managing partner and Abra co-founder Jim Robinson.
On its website, Abra says that transfer fees are instant, secure and private, and that it does not charge fees.
The startup was recognized as Best Overall Company at Launch Festival in March.