OMERS Ventures leads $5m Series A to OpenBazaar

OMERS venture capital arm has led the $5m Series A funding round in to OpenBazaar, a blockchain-based P2P marketplace.

Other contributions to the round came from Bitmain. These new backers join existing investors Andreessen Horowitz, Union Square Ventures, BlueYard Capital, Digital Currency Group, and angel investor William Mougayar.

The company, which is developed and stewarded by OB1, is a secure online marketplace which has commission free trading for both buyers and sellers. Through the API a seller can set up listings for products they wish to sell, with a buyer able to make purchases in over 60 different cryptocurrencies.

Multisignature escrow is a service offered by the company that helps to prevent bitcoin fraud. This works by the buyer and seller choosing a third party, and the buyer will send the digital tokens to the escrow account, and can only be released when the destination for them is agreed and confirmed.

Since launching the 2.0 version update in late 2017, more than 40,000 global nodes joined the network. At beginning of the year, OpenBazaar enabled purchases with Bitcoin Cash and Zcash.

OpenBazaar hopes to use the funds to further the rapid growth it has experienced. OB1 will continue to lead OpenBazaar development and during the year, it hopes to release web and mobile versions of the application. Also planned, are new ways for trading, such as making requests or buying and selling cyrptocurrencies.

OMERS Ventures managing partner Jim Orlando said, ?OB1 allows individuals, living anywhere, to buy and sell as part of a truly global marketplace. We are excited about the potential represented by OpenBazaar decentralized peer-to-peer protocol, and are thrilled about the various implementation paths that Brian [Hoffman] and the rest of his team are pursuing.p>

Prior to this investment, the company bagged a $3m equity round led by Berlin-based VC BlueYard Capital, in 2016. Andreessen Horowitz and Union Square Ventures were also involved in the company, with the aim to support the development of the technology and its 2.0 version update.

Copyright ? 2018 FinTech Global

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