The Philippine Digital Asset Exchange (PDAX), the country’s leading cryptocurrency exchange licensed by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), has raised $12.5 million (₱ 630 million) in funding, it announced on Tuesday.
The funding round was led by a UK-based venture capital firm, joined by Hong Kong SFC-licensed digital asset operator, BC Group. Most of PDAX’s existing investors increased their investment in PDAX, including venture capital firms Beenext Ventures, CMT Digital, global cryptocurrency leaders such as Ripple Labs, and prominent family offices in the Philippines. Among PDAX’s local investors is UBX, the ventures arm of leading Filipino digital bank, UnionBank.
After getting its license in 2018, PDAX began operations 2019 to provide Filipinos with a platform where they can trade the world’s leading digital assets like Bitcoin safely, directly with PHP, and at globally competitive rates. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, the company has seen 25x growth in its user count and an 80x rise in its monthly volumes, proof of the country’s rising cryptocurrency adoption.
In the latter part of 2020, the Philippines’ homegrown tech startup also launched the PDAX mobile app to allow users to more conveniently trade cryptocurrency. It has also since expanded into tokenized securities, by collaborating with the Bureau of the Treasury and Unionbank in launching Bonds.PH, the world’s first blockchain-enabled app that allows retail investors to invest in retail treasury bonds right from their mobile devices.
Nichel Gaba, founder and CEO of PDAX, explained that the latest investment round would fuel the company’s short- and long-term growth plans, as PDAX continues to expand, improve, and roll out more products and features to help digitize the financial services landscape in the country.
“We are in a golden age of cryptocurrency adoption and technology-driven transformation in the Philippines,” Gaba explained. “We are already making remittances into the country much cheaper by helping remittance companies utilize cryptocurrencies, and providing them with a deep and liquid market to convert crypto into Philippine pesos.”
“Today, we need inclusive financial services more than ever. However, the age-old problems remain — the lack of easy, secure, and affordable ways to transact and invest. We want to change that, and we believe that — thanks to greater adoption of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology — we can.”
In a press release, PDAX said it plans to continue developing its cryptocurrency exchange into a world-class platform. PDAX also intends to add more features and support more digital assets towards the end of the year. The company is also excited to grow the Bonds.PH app, together with its partners, by introducing more investment options and features, particularly for OFWs who want to invest in the country. As blockchain technology and cryptocurrency adoption rapidly expand all over the world, PDAX is at the forefront of making sure that the Philippines remains firmly ahead.