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South African Crypto Startup Luno Acquired By World’s Largest Blockchain Investor

Luno partners with Genesis to help customers earn interest on their crypto  holdings -

Good news for founders and investors in leading South African cryptocurrency exchange, Luno. Digital Currency Group (DCG), a global enterprise that builds, buys, and invests in blockchain companies, has announced that it has acquired the company, 7 years after it was started.

Good news for founders and investors in leading South African cryptocurrency exchange, Luno. Digital Currency Group (DCG), a global enterprise that builds, buys, and invests in blockchain companies, has announced that it has acquired the company, 7 years after it was started.

Luno targets further expansion after acquisition by Digital Currency Group  - Ventures Africa

Here Is What You Need To Know

  • Nothing is however changing in the leadership team of the company as Luno’s team will remain intact and Swanepoel will lead acquisition efforts in his role as CEO. DCG enables its subsidiaries to operate as independent companies, providing leadership, partnership, and investment capital to help scale the businesses.
  • The New York-based DCG, through the acquisition, will also be making a significant financial commitment to help Luno expand globally, both in geographies where Luno currently operates and beyond. 
  • The financial details of the deal were not disclosed.
  • Throughout its seven years in existence, Luno has been backed by global tech giants such as the Naspers Group, Balderton Capital amongst others.

Why DCG Placed Its Bet On Luno Through The Acquisition

Luno Launches Ethereum Rand Trading on Luno Exchange in SA - Financial  Technology

A lot of factors are into play, including that Luno seems to have achieved a lot within the period it has been in existence. It also seems that DCG, a previous investor in Luno in its seed round in 2014, has been immensely impressed by the company’s performance.  

Based in London and with regional hubs in Singapore and Cape Town, Luno has grown significantly in recent years, with nearly 400 employees and more than five million global customers spanning over 40 countries, all factors obviously attractive to any investor.

“We are proud to have supported Luno as an early investor, and we recognize a shared commitment to building mission-driven companies that can help transform traditional financial services and improve economic freedom for people all over the world,” said DCG Founder and CEO Barry Silbert. “Luno is a high growth, global business and there is a massive opportunity to expand organically and through acquisitions.”

“We have been extremely impressed with Marcus and the Luno team since we made our initial investment,” added Silbert. “Marcus understands our culture and appreciates how well Luno fits into the DCG family. He is a focused, high integrity leader and exactly the kind of person we want running one of our companies at this critical moment when the crypto industry is at an inflection point.”

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is GFA-Contributors-1024x576.jpg

DCG is an investment firm that has backed more than 160 blockchain companies around the world. In addition to its venture portfolio, DCG is the parent company of several wholly-owned subsidiaries, including Grayscale Investments (the world’s largest digital currency asset manager), Genesis (a leading digital asset prime brokerage), CoinDesk (the preeminent media and events company in the industry), and the recently-launched Foundry, which provides institutional expertise, capital, and market intelligence to bitcoin miners and manufacturers.

Read also: LabEight* Ventures Launches “LabEight* Africa”

A Look At What Luno Does

Luno: Malaysia's First Regulated Cryptocurrency Exchange

Founded in 2013 by co-founder and CEO Marcus Swanepoel and Chief Technology Officer, Timothy Stranex, Luno has become a digital asset powerhouse in many emerging and frontier markets, providing digital asset education, knowledge, and investment tools for individuals in Africa, Asia, and Europe. Luno has also helped broaden the global crypto investment community and the company has seen record growth of its customer base in 2020. The company is a leading exchange in several countries that have the highest percentage of cryptocurrency ownership, including South Africa (third-highest percentage of its citizens owning digital currencies), Nigeria (fifth-highest), Indonesia (sixth-highest), and Malaysia (tenth-highest).1

Luno maintains regional offices in Kuala Lumpur, Lagos, Jakarta, and Johannesburg, and will continue to focus on the existing geographies where it operates across Europe, Africa, and Asia. The Luno team has also developed an aggressive road map for future growth and will ultimately compete with financial services firms globally. Luno is actively hiring for positions all over the world.

Read full article here


In this episode of GFA-Attract, we discuss with Kennedy Mubita, Nairobi based Venture Capital Lead for Africa & Middle east at SC Ventures, the venture capital arm of Standard Chartered Bank. SC Ventures is a $100 million fund focused on FinTech investments.

GetFundedAfrica’s mission is to uplift people and economies in Africa through entrepreneurship; helping companies find funding, grow, create jobs and solve society’s greatest challenges

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