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Contxto – Mexican Bitso has been in a celebratory mood as of late. But, who wouldn’t be once you hit a big milestone?
This week, the startup announced it has over one million users registered for its cryptocurrency platform.
So what’s behind the abundance of Bitso users? A market that’s steadily catching onto cryptocurrencies and the right partner.
Bit by bit with Bitso
Entrepreneurs Pablo González, Daniel Vogel, and Ben Peters created their startup, Bitso, as a way to promote financial inclusion.
They’d realized that given the large unbanked population in Mexico, there might be a more accessible (and thus more disruptive) alternative through cryptocurrencies.
They set to work and officially launched the Bitso platform in 2014. Through it, users can complete transfers, as well as buy or sell cryptos. Up until now, it has raised over US$4 million in funding and it’s been scaling steadily.
Besides operating in Mexico, this year it expanded into Argentina, a country keen on cryptos.
However, there’s another market in which it’s growing and it plans to up its ante for.
Bitso and remittances
Interestingly, Bitso is becoming an active player in remittance flows from the United States to Mexico. What’s more, the startup says it’s experienced an increase in remittance transfers throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
The startup attributes this success to its alliance with Ripple. By working over its blockchain network, Bitso says transactions are settled at a much faster rate—a perk users are quick to get behind on.
As far as future plans go, Bitso aims to account for 20 percent of remittances coming into Mexico from the United States.
But it knows that to achieve such a goal, it will have to first lay down some groundwork.
“In Mexico, we don’t have as many people using cryptocurrencies as the population in Argentina or Venezuela do,” notes Gabriela Belden, Head of Marketing at Bitso. “We want to bring some education to Mexicans and present this technology so they may use it as they like.”
While overcoming these types of barriers can be draining for a startup’s resources, if it proves successful, Bitso can tap into a far larger pool of users.
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