Boston-based bitcoin company Circle Internet Financial said Wednesday that it has raised $17 million in Series B funding. Investors included Breyer Capital, Accel Partners, General Catalyst Partners, Oak Investment Partners, Pantera Capital and Fenway Summer.
BOSTON, MASS. – March 26, 2014 – Circle Internet Financial, a digital currency company, today announced that it has closed $17 million in Series B financing, bringing its total raise to date to $26 million. Breyer Capital, Accel Partners and General Catalyst Partners were joined by new investor Oak Investment Partners to lead the round. Other Series B investors included Pantera Capital; the Bitcoin Opportunity Fund of Barry Silbert, founder and chief executive officer of SecondMarket, Inc. and founder of the Bitcoin Investment Trust; Leonard H. Schrank, former chief executive officer of SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication); and, Circle board member M. Michele Burns. Fenway Summer, a leading consumer finance advisory and venture firm led by Circle board member Raj Date, was also an investor in the Series B financing.
Circle today also announced the debut of its initial consumer product in a limited release, which has been made available to select users ahead of the company’s general availability launch later this year.
“We are thrilled to have such a strong showing of support and vote of confidence from world-class investors and strategic individuals as we move into the commercial phase of Circle,” said Jeremy Allaire, Circle founder, chairman and chief executive officer. “With accelerating consumer and business interest in digital currency all around the world, it’s critical that we have the capital and leadership team to execute on our vision for consumer finance and global payments built on Bitcoin.”
“Circle has continued to make tremendous progress in helping to shape and define the digital currency industry, and I am excited to be continuing to invest in and partner with Jeremy and the Circle team,” said Jim Breyer, founder and chief executive officer of Breyer Capital. “The global transformation in payments made possible by Bitcoin and digital currency is one of the most significant investment opportunities in the past 30 years.”
Circle is one of the first companies built from the ground up to provide financial products for consumers that harness the power of Bitcoin to enable faster transactions, lower costs, greater privacy safeguards and increased protection against fraud and identity theft while enabling more frictionless global economic activity and cross-border transactions. The company’s forthcoming products, which entered limited availability release today, promise to allow consumers and businesses to use digital currency easily, reducing much of the friction and risk that is currently associated with Bitcoin.
Circle has sought to engage governments, regulators and the commercial banking industry as partners in fulfilling the promise of global digital currency. The company is focused on building services that mainstream consumers and businesses can rely upon that are audited and examined by governments in order to ensure businesses are held to stringent requirements around consumer protection and criminals and bad actors are thwarted from abusing digital currency platforms.
Circle launched in October 2013 with a $9 million Series A round from Breyer Capital, Accel Partners and General Catalyst Partners. Allaire has founded two previous startups that both saw successful IPOs. His company Brightcove (NASDAQ: BCOV), where Allaire serves as Chairman, went public in 2012 and his previous company, Allaire Corp., went public in 1999 and later merged with Macromedia.
Circle Internet Financial is a privately held digital currency company based in Boston and with international operations headquartered in Dublin, Ireland. The company was founded in 2013 by Internet pioneer Jeremy Allaire and co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Sean Neville. Circle is backed by venture capital leaders Breyer Capital, Accel Partners, General Catalyst Partners and Oak Investment Partners. For more information, please visit www.circle.com.