Digital Currency Group backs South Korean crypto exchange operator
Digital Currency Group, the venture capital firm behind some of the biggest companies in blockchain, has become the second-largest shareholder of Streami, a leading cryptocurrency exchange operator in South Korea.
Barry Silbert, founder and CEO of Digital Currency Group, explained his rationale for backing Streami:
“We expanded our investment in Streami because of their fantastic team and the incredible potential of the digital asset market in South Korea. Streami provides the critical foundation for this market to scale rapidly, and our investment will fuel its position as the most trusted digital asset platform in Korea.”
The investment includes a regional partnership between Streami and Digital Currency Group subsidiary Genesis centered around fixed-term savings products. Streami’s crypto-backed savings product, GOFi, already has over $600 million in user deposits.
The terms of the agreement weren’t disclosed by either company, although it was confirmed that Digital Currency Group has become a major stakeholder. Digital Currency Group was among Streami’s earliest investors, having participated in the company’s pre-series A investment round in 2016.
Established in 2015, Streami has become one of the most prominent cryptocurrency infrastructure companies in South Korea. The company operates GOPAX, a local cryptocurrency exchange that currently ranks 66th in terms of trade volumes, according to Coingecko. GOPAX 24-hour trade volumes were valued at $146 million as of Wednesda.
Perhaps most notably, GOPAX was the first cryptocurrency exchange to acquire the ISO/IEC 27001 certification and the K-ISMS certification, both in 2017, to become a registered Virtual Asset Services Provider in South Korea.
Although South Korea is regarded as one of the most active cryptocurrency markets in Asia, it also has some of the most stringent regulations. Nevertheless, the country is home to a vibrant cryptocurrency scene, as evidenced by regulators’ recent decision to greenlight a digital asset-focused fund for the first time.
As for Digital Currency Group, the venture capital firm recently announced that it is authorized to purchase up to $750 million worth of shares of Grayscale Bitcoin Trust, or GBTC, which is operated by its wholly-owned investment manager Grayscale. The company had announced plans to up its purchases of GBTC shares back in March.