Tuesday 7 April 2020 9:00 am

Wirex achieves profitability by maintaining 3 million registered customers in 130 countries

City A.M's Crypto Insider

As the sun shines down on the deserted great City of London and the presses stay silent during this unprecedented lockdown with the NHS diligently fighting COVID-19, the crypto markets remain open demonstrating that the digital economy will play a vital role going forward.  It strikes me that if we had had a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) issued by the Bank of England, then the distribution of urgent financial relief could have been done at the stroke of a button without having to involve the high street banks. Something to get in place to safeguard future issues? 

Turning to the crypto market since last week’s edition at the time of writing, BTC was trading up at US$7,121.89  / GB£5,803.50; Ethereum (ETH) is at US$156.35 / GB£127.64; Ripple (XRP) is at US$0.1891 / GB£0.1540; Binance (BNB) is at US$14.44 / GB£11.78 and Cardano (ADA) is at US$0.03415 / GB£0.02782.  Overall Market Cap is at US$200.1bn / GB£162.76bn (data source: www.CryptoCompare.com)

This weekend news was broken to me by Tim Copeland from Decrypt Media that eleven crypto companies are subject to class action suits in the US. 

Is this purely an ambulance chasing exercise or will this lead to a purge and remove more bad actors? I don’t know enough detail to comment but I certainly would love to hear from you especially if you are working at those exchanges.

Could this be a seismic event that will change the crypto industry for good? And if it is, can crypto survive?

My personal feeling is that any bad actor removal has to be a good thing.  Shaking the tree throughout 2018 & 2019 was vital. I think that the winners will be the steady methodical projects such as Cardano Foundation being built by Input Output (IOHK) as they simply don’t react to investor demand.

Bitcoin (BTC) will be just fine too. Why? Because guess what? No one to sue, no one to send to jail and it can’t be shut down unless every country in the world makes it illegal to own or trade – not gonna happen!

News close to home is that a friend of Crypto AM, Wirex announced today that it has maintained 3 million registered customers in over 130 countries for its alternative banking services and has reached profitability. 

Founded in 2014, Wirex is a leading mobile payments platform that allows customers to buy, store, exchange or spend digital and traditional currencies. It was the first company in Europe to offer its clients debit cards linked to cryptocurrency accounts, enabling blockchain and digital currency to finally enter the mainstream and become usable in everyday transactions.

Pavel Matveev, CEO of Wirex, told Crypto AM that the company has truly democratised access to cryptocurrencies by removing key barriers to usage and helping to bring the world ever closer to mass adoption. “We are extremely happy that over 3 million customers have recognised the benefits of managing currencies – both crypto and fiat – on one, centralised mobile app,” he explained. “We are now seeing broad and widespread use of our Wirex card which gives our customers the ability to spend their crypto currencies wherever Visa is accepted.” 

I caught up with Yuval Reisman, co-founder of YRD Capital, the first FoF in the world to focus on quantitative trading in Digital Assets. They have been successful in generating substantial returns for investors since their inception in 2017 and successfully generated positive returns during March 2020.  I asked him about Cambrial Capital – a crypto-focused fund of funds, which has closed its operations due to the present crisis last week.  

“Whilst we cannot comment on Cambrial Capital, we want to stress that the digital asset still provides an incredible opportunity to gain impressive returns. Some of the service providers are top tier, like Fidelity, CME or ICE, and with this increase in quality the risks decrease. In addition, as we experienced last month, the asset class remains extremely volatile, which creates a huge opportunity for solid results generated from quantitative trading. We remain positive on the opportunity to keep generating solid returns while maintaining a clear risk managed approach.

Investor fears are understandable given that many simply don’t comprehend the digital assets trading environment. Education is therefore key and the reason why we work so closely with our investors to keep them informed. They know us well and trust our due diligence. Also we take a very conservative approach to investment as we are major investors in the fund and have full alignment of interest.”

Finally, I’d like to remind you about my local community effort for Canary Wharf / Isle of Dogs teaming up with BABB (Bank Account Based Blockchain) headquartered at Level 39, One Canada Square (see the Spotlight article today) It would be great if would like to donate to the campaign here.

Article written by James Bowater, City A.M’s Crypto Insider