Thailand’s cryptocurrency startup Zipmex has announced it had raised $41 million from the country’s fifth-largest lender, Bank of Ayudhya. Zipmex now plans to expand product offerings and its user base. The investment brings the Zipmex’s total funds raised to $52 million.
Japan’s Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group holds a 76.9% stake in Bank of Ayudhya (BAY). BAY’s venture arm, Krungsri Finnovate, has invested in other startups like ride-hailing app Grab. BAY joins Thai media companies, Plan B Media Pcl and Master Ad Pcl, and foreign venture capital funds in the investment round.
The deal will give BAY greater exposure to blockchain and the digital asset ecosystem, Krungsri Finnovate managing director Sam Tansakul said.
“If we don’t stay close, technology will be further away from the bank,” he told Reuters.
In the short term, new financing will help Zipmex double cryptocurrency users to one million in the next six months, chief executive Marcus Lim said.
Over half of its business is in Thailand and about a fifth in Indonesia, Lim said. It also has users in Singapore and Australia, where it plans further expansion with cryptocurrency.
Zipmex plans to build up its cryptocurrency technology and compliance teams to offer new products in lending, payments and securities.