Ledger, a provider of smartcard security solutions for Bitcoin wallets, has secured $1.5 million in seed funding. The investors included XAnge Capital 2, Hi-Pay and Alain Tingaud Innovations.
Ledger raises 1.3M€ (1.5M$) in seed capital funds to speed up development of its smartcard security solutions for Bitcoin wallets and digital identities.
The 1.3M€ (1.5M$) round was led by XAnge Capital 2 (second generation of innovation venture capital by XAnge), along with Pascal Gauthier (ex COO of Criteo), Hi-Pay (Hi-Media Group), Fred Potter (DG Netatmo), Thibaut Faurès Fustel de Coulanges (VP Rentabiliweb Group), as well as Alain Tingaud Innovations.
Ledger, recently described by Gavin Andresen (Chief Scientist, Bitcoin Foundation) in Fortune Magazine as “an example of an innovation that’s happening that could make it much easier and safer to use bitcoins”, is a young French startup that, in just a few weeks, has succeeded in becoming a reference on the international markets in terms of the security and usage of Bitcoin wallets.
Experts are unanimous on the fact that the Bitcoin protocol is intrinsically really reliable, but the personal security of each Bitcoin wallet must be borne by the final user. By locking the private keys, which are in fact the digital identities data of the owner, and protecting the user’s transactions from any intrusion, Ledger has thus lifted a barrier to the adoption of Bitcoin by the general public. Going forward, Ledger’s goal is the protection of digital identities for all applications based on the Blockchain technology, of which Bitcoin is just a first iteration.
“Having succeeded in closing this round, barely two months after the public launch of our solutions, is the indicator not only of the growing interest in the Bitcoin ecosystem but also of the very strong differentiating technology that Ledger brings to the market », notes Eric Larchevêque, CEO and co-founder of Ledger. “Our technical team, led by Nicolas Bacca, brings together several decades of expertise in the area of security, smartcards, cryptography, and embedded hardware.”
” XAnge is passionate about digital identity as offered by Ledger,” notes Cyril Bertrand Senior Partnerof XAnge, “and the combination of an ultra high security wallet with the trust brought by the Blockchain. This investment is also part of the Fin-Tech expertise of the XAnge team, following its investment in CurrencyCloud, KKB, Fidor, and Lydia.” Armed with this fresh capital, 2015 will see the deployment of Ledger’s offering accelerate considerably, with the opening of a subsidiary in the United States, the implementation of an international distribution network, consolidation of the brand, and broadening of the product range.
XAnge Private Equity is a regulated private equity vehicle with €350 million under management. Active in France, Germany and Western Europe, XAnge is a multi-corporate fund with both industrial and financial LPs. The XAnge venture team primarily invests in fast-growing companies of the digital, mobile, Saas software and fintech areas.
Founded in January 2015, Ledger has 15 employees, offices and a showroom in « Silicon Sentier », Paris, a production facility in Vierzon, and more recently an office in San Francisco. After the launch of the Ledger Wallet Nano in December 2014, and sales in more than 50 countries, Ledger has developed its range of security products and solutions, in particular with the addition of the compatibilities of Near Field Communication (NFC) and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), as well as a first version dedicated to the Trusted Execution Environment (TEE).