Coinbase Ventures Backed Startup to Build Pan-African Crypto Exchange With $23 Million Capital Raise
The African startup, Mara, recently said it has raised about $23 million in funding from organizations ranging from Coinbase Ventures to individual angel investors like Amit Bhatia and Hamad Alhoimaizi. Mara has also partnered with the Central African Republic (CAR) and will act as an adviser to the country’s president.
Enhancing Africa’s Competitiveness
An Africa-focused crypto startup, Mara, has raised $23 million in funding for building a so-called pan-African cryptocurrency exchange, a report has said. Participating in the startup’s capital raise were Coinbase Ventures, Alameda Research, Distributed Global, TQ Ventures, DIGITAL, Nexo, Huobi Ventures, Day One Ventures, and Infinite Capital.
According to a report by Venture Beat, the funding round also attracted angel investors like Amit Bhatia and Hamad Alhoimaizi. In addition, about 100 crypto investors are said to have participated in the round.
In his comments following Mara’s successful fundraise, the startup’s CEO Chi Nnandi is quoted in the report suggesting that the upcoming platform would enhance Africa’s competitiveness. He explained:
A decentralized alternative (which will include but not be limited to finance, art, ownership, infrastructure, and business as a whole) will give Sub-Saharan Africans an alternative to these tired systems. Through this digital financial system — through this freedom — the region will find itself in a much stronger competitive position before other parts of the world.
Mara to Advise CAR’s President
As per the Venture Beat report, Mara will initially launch in Kenya, Nigeria, and surrounding regions. Meanwhile, the report revealed that Mara has entered into a partnership with the Central African Republic (CAR). As part of this partnership arrangement, Mara will become an official crypto partner of the country. Mara will also act as the CAR president’s adviser on such issues as crypto strategy and planning.
As previously reported by Bitcoin.com News, the CAR became the first African country to adopt bitcoin as its reference currency after its legislative body voted in favor of a crypto bill in late April.
Nevertheless, many organizations, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), have questioned the CAR’s decision to adopt bitcoin. Others have pointed to the country’s lagging telecommunications infrastructure as evidence the African nation may not be ready to adopt the crypto.