Kuala Lumpur-headquartered Belfrics Group, which operates a cryptocurrency exchange platform in India, has said it will invest $15 Mn to resume and expand its business operations in the country. Belfrics Group halted its operations related to cryptocurrency in 2018 after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), in its circular, had asked banks to distance themselves from crypto exchange platforms. However, the Supreme Court in early 2020 had set aside the circular.
The startup, apart from the crypto exchange platform, will also resume its operation of its blockchain platform called Belrium. The startup will utilise $10 Mn for its crypto exchange platform in India, whereas the remaining $5 Mn for Belrium.
Belrium is a blockchain solution that enables real-time know your customer (KYC) and identity verification across nodes around the world. The startup had signed an MoU with the Andhra Pradesh government, which helped the state government run its day-to-day affairs in a smooth and systematic manner.
Headquartered in Kuala Lumpur, the startup has launched ‘BelYo’, a blockchain platform to track Covid-19 cases, vaccination details, among others in India. Founded in 2014 by Praveen Kumar and Maya, Belfrics has expanded to overseas markets such as Malaysia, Singapore, Bahrain, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania and India.
Last month, US-based Life Clips, which is the parent company of Cognitive Apps Software Solutions, acquired Belfrics Group. The acquisition includes Belfrics operations in Malaysia, Singapore, India, Kenya, Tanzania, Nigeria, and Bahrain. As part of the deal, Belfrics CEO and founder, Praveen Kumar, will continue to remain the CEO of Belfrics, while Robert Grinberg will serve as CEO of Life Clips.
Though the central government is yet to discuss the bill regulating the crypto currency in the parliament, lately we have seen a significant rise in the number of crypto transactions. The Indian cryptocurrency market grew from $923 Mn in April 2020 to a staggering $6.6 Bn in May 2021 as per Chainalysis, a blockchain data platform. Earlier this month, a US-headquartered digital currency exchange CrossTower announced the launch of its crypto trading platform in India.
Last month, CoinDCX became the first Indian cryptocurrency to enter the unicorn club after it raised $90 Mn in Series C funding round, led by Facebook cofounder Eduardo Saverin’s B Capital Group as well as Coinbase Ventures, Polychain Capital, Block.one, Jump Capital among others, alongside and returning other unnamed investors at a valuation of $1.1 Bn. According to several reports, India is likely to see the rise of other crypto currency unicorns such as CoinSwitch Kuber which is likely to close a fresh round of funding