In New Zealand, we don’t think twice about the access we have to banking services, the relative ease with which we can send and receive payments and the plethora of financial return products available to us.
In countries which have suffered the ravages of hyperinflation, exchange controls or where large portions of the population remain unbanked, the financial playing field is far more unequal for ordinary people. How having access to credit cards, wealth management products, high interest earning accounts are reserved for those who have money.
In 2018, siblings Janine and Alan Grainger took on this global problem of helping the unbanked people around the world by launching Easy Crypto. Bootstrapping the business from scratch, it’s now New Zealand’s largest crypto platform with over $1.1 billion in topline sales and is operational in four countries.
Today Nuance Connected Capital announces it is leading a $17m Series A investment round in Easy Crypto.
“We believe crypto is a force for good, bringing financial inclusion and economic freedom to the 1.7 billion unbanked population globally. Easy Crypto’s mission to democratise crypto for the masses sits squarely within this goal” explains Adrien Gheur, Nuance Co-Founder.
“We are excited to back this high-potential founding team and to play an important role in Easy Crypto’s next stage of global growth” he said.
Ngaio Merrick, Nuance Co-Founder, adds “At Nuance, we search for exceptional businesses run by exceptional founders. We have been incredibly impressed by Janine and Alan and what they have achieved in a short space of time without raising money.
They have the right mix of ambition, deep sector knowledge and determination, balanced with strong self-awareness and humility. This is a unique combination of traits which we believe makes them poised for global success.”
EasyCrypto CEO & Co-Founder, Janine Grainger, says “We couldn’t have picked a better investment partner than Nuance. They have been exceptionally helpful from the get-go, with not only bringing in international networks and market access but helping with mentoring, company building and recruitment. They truly hustle like co-founders.”
Nuance has used its extensive international networks to bring a strong complement of international and Kiwi co-investors into the round, including GDP Venture, one of Indonesia’s most prominent Venture Capital firms with strong banking connections.
“Millions of Indonesians own cryptocurrency now. EasyCrypto simplifies the cryptocurrency buying and selling process. We are excited to partner with Nuance and EasyCrypto to help open the Indonesian market for them.” said On Lee, CTO of GDP Venture.
Other notable partners include US funds, Seven Peaks Ventures and Hutt Capital, an active blockchain investor and Kiwi investors Pathfinder KiwiSaver and Icehouse Ventures.