Fasset, a platform that enables cryptocurrency trading, raised $22 million in a Series A funding round that it will use to develop new products and expand its digital asset-driven remittance services in Asia.
The new investment in the London company, which offers zero per cent trading fees, was led by New York-based Liberty City Ventures and Pakistan's Fatima Gobi Ventures. Soma Capital and MyAsiaVC also participated in the round, it said in a statement on Friday.
The funding comes a day after the financial technology company said it had received authorisation to expand its operations in the EU, which will allow it to connect the remittance corridors of the global diaspora to their home markets.
Fasset is focused on promoting "financial inclusion and democratising access to opportunity by enabling a new wave of digital asset owners in our target emerging markets", said Mohammad Raafi Hossain, co-founder and chief executive of Fasset.
"Asset ownership is the strongest way to power healthy livelihoods and economies. Digital asset-driven remittance corridors can unleash a new wave of socioeconomic prosperity through unique product offerings that we’re diligently building,” said Mr Hossain, a former adviser to the UAE Prime Minister’s Office.
Digital assets – including cryptocurrencies and, more recently, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) – have grown in popularity thanks to the rise of several exchanges, leading to increased competition to attract more users to a financial technology that is becoming more mainstream.
The global cryptocurrency market was valued at about $1.78 trillion in 2021, and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 58.4 per cent from 2022 to 2027 to hit $32.4tn, according to a study from Research and Markets.
The sector has a market capitalisation of almost $1.9tn as of 10am UAE time on Friday, data from CoinMarketCap showed. Bitcoin, the original and largest cryptocurrency, was trading at $40,164.60, down almost 3 per cent in the past 24 hours, it said.
"Digital assets are increasingly crossing over to the mainstream, and have massive potential to disrupt legacy businesses and markets, especially in the emerging markets," said Emil Woods, managing partner at Liberty City Ventures.
Fasset is in advanced discussions with regulatory authorities and soon plans to launch its services in Indonesia and Pakistan, the company said.
In Indonesia, the company is expected to be granted approval to operate as a full-service cryptocurrency exchange in May. It will soon offer digital asset services in Pakistan.
Aside from product and market expansion, Fasset plans to grow its workforce and aims to double its headcount by the end of this year.
Its product roadmap includes the launch of the Fasset Artist Lab, an NFT marketplace for artists and athletes based in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.
Founded in 2019, Fasset has operations in the UAE and Bahrain. Prior to the Series A investment, the company raised $4.7m over two rounds, the latest of which was a seed funding from Dubai-based Ceras Ventures in May 2021.