Copenhagen-based Januar, an infrastructure provider for cryptocurrency businesses, announced on Thursday that it has raised €6 million in its seed funding round to become the compliant crypto gateway for European businesses. .
The company claims this is the largest seed tour recorded in Denmark.
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Investors in this round
The round was led by venture capital firm Element Ventures. Angular Ventures, Outward VC, and early Founders pre-seed backers also participated in the round.
Kevin Chong, co-head of Outward VC, says, “Building a financial infrastructure fit for the crypto economy is a once-in-a-generation opportunity. Januar’s mission to bring trust and transparency to innovative digital assets and Web3 businesses resonated strongly with us and we are excited to support this mission.
The round also includes high-profile angel investors, including Nicolas Julia, co-founder and CEO of Sorare; Charlie Songhurst, former Chief Strategy Officer at Microsoft; Pierre-Antoine Pierre, CEO and founder of IBanFirst; Jørgen Horwitz, former director of Finansrådet; and Einar Braathen of CoinFund.
Use of capital
Januar says the funds will help the company become the leading one-stop crypto portal for European businesses, serving the growing crypto and digital asset industry with a market capitalization of $2,000,000. The company’s mission is to support a more open and collaborative financial system based on decentralized technology by offering fiat-to-crypto rails as a service.
According to Januar, digital assets and decentralized transaction systems are faster, better and cheaper, and this is changing the way value moves between people and businesses globally. Europe, at present, is a repressed and underserved market. In the US market, crypto banks such as Silvergate and Anchorage are forging ahead.
Simon Ousager, CEO and Co-Founder of Januar, said: “We are proud to enable innovative fintech entrepreneurs to manage and grow their digital asset business by providing the financial infrastructure they need to build the financial system of tomorrow.
“Compliant crypto portal for European businesses”
Companies operating in the digital asset space have struggled to secure one of the most fundamental assets for business operations: a bank account. Januar is not a bank but solves this problem by offering local IBAN business accounts to crypto businesses in Europe. It does this through its payment service provider license with the Danish FSA, including crypto-specific risk, compliance, and anti-money laundering policies.
Founded in 2021 by Andreas Keinicke Gustavsen, Mikael Buch Smedegaard and Simon Ousager, Januar aims to bridge the gap between the traditional centralized financial system and the new decentralized financial system.
Simon Ousager says, “Traditional banks are not ready for what is happening in the crypto markets right now. For many years they focused on “technology” while excluding the real category of innovative digital assets – their “Blockchain not Bitcoin” strategy did not align with the market. And while the value and use of assets, like Bitcoin and Ethereum, have multiplied many times over, the dismissive approach of most banks has left them with little information about crypto-specific compliance measures and a inability to properly serve and support the industry. With Januar, we are here to bridge that gap now by providing financial services to crypto businesses and crypto services to financial institutions.
“We are building a financial infrastructure that will help crypto businesses gain the stable foundation they need to innovate and serve their customers with peace of mind,” adds Ousager.
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