Circle Crypto Investment App Goes Live with Tool Targeting Newbies

Individuals can invest as little as USD 1 in seven cryptocurrencies

by Deyana Laguna
23 May • 2 min
In News

Circle, а digital currency payment startup backed by Goldman Sachs, launched on Tuesday the full version of its crypto investment app, with a feature targeted at first-time coin buyers.

Called “Buy the Market,the tool is part of the Circle Invest product line and is designed to let retail investors buy Bitcoin (BTH), Bitcoin Cash (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Ethereum Classic (ETC), Litecoin (LTC), Zcash (ZEC) and Monero (XMR), with new currencies expected to be added in future.

Customers can invest as little as USD 1 and not more than USD 10,000 per week, placing the potential investments just below the typical threshold that could trigger mandatory reporting in accordance with the US Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti Money Laundering (AML) regulations. Circle will not charge any fixed fees, but build in a 1% spread between the buy and sell prices, which is how it will generate revenue, CEO Jeremy Allaire told Bloomberg in an interview on Monday.

“If youre a newbie and you feel like youve missed out or youre interested now in investing in this category, this is a tried-and-true model thats worked in retail investing, Allaire stated.

Most cryptocurrency startups have geared their platforms toward institutional investors or more experienced traders amid increasing scrutiny in the sector and an ongoing debate as to whether some digital assets should be regulated as securities. According to Allaire, none of the coins offered by Circle falls into this category. He added that the company has been engaged with the US  Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) about its business.

Circle first announced its crypto investment app in November and later released it in 46 US states as part of an “early access availability” phase. Last week, the company announced it had closed a funding round led by Chinese crypto mining giant Bitmain Technologies for USD 110 million, raising its valuation to about USD 3 billion from a reported USD 480 million in 2016. The company, which has seven million users, is partnering with Bitmain to create fiat-based digital tokens, the first of which will be backed by US dollars and issued in the summer.

In his recent interview for Bloomberg, Allaire flagged Circle’s ambitions to apply for a federal banking license, as well as other business expansion options, such as custodial services and lending.