The LAUNCHub Seed Fund has just announced its second recent investment in the bitcoin sector. Further to investing earlier in the summer in the Slovenian-based Cashila, LAUNCHub has now backed the Bulgarian BitLending ClubÂ with 200 K Euro. The bitcoin sector is of primary interest for the Fund’s investment activities in the SEE region. First results being more than promising, BitLending Club is now becoming the second-largest crowd-lending platform in the Bitcoin ecosystem.
More on the story of BitLendingClub
BitLendingClub is now considered the fastest growing and the second largest crowd-lending platform in the Bitcoin ecosystem. Since the launch of their functionality in May 2014, BitLendingClub has served over 2200 loans, amounting to over 3500 BTC (or about $1.34 million at today’s exchange rate).
BitLendingClub was originally founded in Chicago, IL by two developers: Kiril Gantchev (CEO) and Yasen Yankov (CT). In parallel, the company has an office in Sofia, Bulgaria, where the entire team is currently based. BitLendingClub will soon be relocating to San Francisco, which will solidify our presence in the United States and help bind the bridge of the international Bitcoin economy.
There are several fundamental pillars that the company has been built on:
- BitLendingClub does not make money, unless the lenders make money: BitLendingClub only takes its transaction fees from the loan payments. There are no up-front closing fees, so BitLendingClub does not profit from default loans. This allows BLC to align itself with the interests of investors.
- The free market knows best: interest rates on the platform are not set by the borrower, but it is discovered by a Dutch-auction style lending. Lenders individually analyze the risk associated with a particular borrower and they compete to offer the lowest possible interest rate.
- Borrowers always get to choose: borrowers can suggest what interest rate they want and they can reject individual offers. This guarantees that they will always get the best interest rate offered by the market.
- Freedom of censorship: BitLendingClub does not censor its users! Borrowers and Lenders are free to engage each other in an openly social environment. The only time the admins step in is if there is any illegal activity being reported.
- Prevention rather than collection: BitLendingClub heavily focuses on fraud prevention, rather than collection. We have concluded that the best way to protect the investor’s money is to do everything possible to prevent defaults. If a loan defaults, then the collection is the last resort. Our efforts and cooperation with a vigilant community has resulted in a 96% loan repayment rate.
- BitLendingClub has also been partnering with a third party document-verification provider, Jumio, in order to validate borrower verification documents. In addition, the team has developed solutions for lenders to report potential fraud and alert other investors when there is some suspicious activity on the platform.
All of this has allowed BitLendingClub to register quite an impressive growth and get quickly closing in on the goal of becoming the biggest crowd-lending platform in the Bitcoin ecosystem.
More on LAUNCHub
LAUNCHub is a 9 million Euro seed investment fund supporting the most promising digital startups in the SEE region. Since 2012, LAUNCHub has invested of over 4.5 million Euro in 49 startups from 9 countries in the SEE region, including Bulgaria, Romania, Macedonia, Croatia, Greece, Slovenia, the Ukraine, Switzerland and Austria and has attracted over 4 million Euro of co-investment funding, seeing through a couple of next rounds, including two Series A and a few joint rounds with participation from angels and other seed investors.
LAUNCHub’s focus and expertise lies within the Digital Tech Sector and our investments are mainly in dev tools, edtech, healthtech, entertainment, bitcoin, cloud infrastructure and enterprise software. The fund is partnering on a strategic level with Seedcamp and Mozilla WebFWD. LAUNCHub operates under the Entrepreneurship Acceleration and Seed financial instrument of the JEREMIE initiative of the EIF and EC.