BitKan, a China-based cryptocurrency data service provider, announced today that it has secured $10 million in Series B funding, led by new investor Zhongyunhui Capital, with additional support from another new investor IDG Capital and existing investor Bitmain. This follows a $2.4 million Series A funding in 2016 and a $300,000 angel round in 2015.
BitKan has been one of China’s best-known Bitcoin and cryptocurrency data sites and OTC trading providers for the past four years until September 2017, when the Chinese government issued a stringent warning about the ICO market. At that point, most China-based companies related to ICOs and trading chose to halt their businesses in China in favor of shifting their operations overseas — BitKan was one of these companies. It terminated its OTC services but kept its data, news and wallet services. Currently, BitKan is still headquartered in Shenzhen, China, but also operates globally in Hong Kong and Singapore, where they have set up offices with plans to add a Tokyo branch.
When asked about how BitKan sees China’s increasingly tightening regulation of the blockchain industry, Leon Liu, the chairman of BitKan, said:
Chinese government is actively exploring the best approach to regulate Fintech industry and blockchain industry is no exception. I believe Chinese government will finally have a sound and thoughtful law on this industry once they have enough understanding and intelligence of blockchain.
BitKan’s New Blockchain Project
“The capital injection will finance the development, promotion and operation of K Site, a blockchain project incubated by BitKan, and other products and services of BitKan itself, such as its E-wallet and data analysis,” Yu Fang, BitKan’s CEO, told Bitcoin Magazine.
“K Site will be a media dapp [decentralized application] which will be a new feature embedded in BitKan’s app.” said Fang. “K Site will host a variety of groups based on people’s interests and produce quality content including micro-blogs, full articles, videos and Q&A sessions. To maintain a high content-quality standard, users will be charged a small fee to join the groups. Free content can only attract page views, but putting up a paywall can improve content quality considerably. K Site aims to build a neutral, trustworthy crypto community where useful, reliable, in-depth news and discussions can be shared.”
Choosing Tradition Equity Investment over ICOs
Unlike many other blockchain projects, K Site will not launch an ICO but will use BitKan’s own user base as the springboard for its K Site, even though the site actually has its own token called KAN. Liu explained:
“BitKan has long been cautious of ICOs whose purpose is to help a certain project to raise funds and to build the community in the first place. For BitKan, it already has a large cryptocurrency user base which can be easily channeled to K Site. Therefore, for K Site, a traditional investment mode will meet the demands of this blockchain project.”
Expanding Overseas Business
The startup embarked on an international road as early as 2015. The new capital injection will enable the company to speed up its international expansion by extending BitKan’s already broad user base, according to Yu.
To date, BitKan has more than 1 million registered users globally, 40 percent of whom are from outside of China. Both the BitKan website and app are available in English, Chinese, Japanese and Russian.