Digital currency exchange Kraken has confirmed an investment from Money Partners Group (MPG), one of Japan’s major foreign exchange brokerages, in a Series B round of financing. The pending investment was first leaked to the press about two weeks ago. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The news of the MPG investment in Kraken follows a February 2016 annoucement that SBI Investment, a Japanese venture capital group, had made a multi-million dollar investment to lead a Series B round of financing.
Tokyo-based MPG is listed on the 1st Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange and holds a current market cap of over ¥29 billion, or over $260 million USD. MPG offers services in FX, securities trading and CFD to its network of over 270,000 client accounts. Today, MPG announced the furthering of a business alliance with Kraken to offer bitcoin trading, bitcoin settlement service, and blockchain-based derivative trading to its clients. In addition, MPG’s investment is intended to enhance Kraken’s global presence.
Money Partners Group President and Representative Director Taizen Okuyama stated:
“Cryptocurrency and blockchain technology will bring about a future in which digital and digitized assets are commonplace. Money Partners Group is dedicated to staying on the cutting edge of finance, and bringing new, exciting opportunities to our clients. The movements behind Bitcoin and Ethereum have grown too large to ignore. Kraken is an industry veteran with demonstrated leadership, a professional management team, a strong compliance program and world-class technology. They are the ideal partner for diving into this new ecosystem. We’re excited about what advantages this partnership with Kraken will bring to Money Partners Group and our global clients.”
Kraken CEO Jesse Powell also commented on the MPG investment:
“This investment from Money Partners Group is more validation that our long-game approach to the digital asset exchange business has been the right strategy. Established players in financial services want a partner that knows what they’re doing and delivers — that’s why they choose Kraken. We are pleased to have such a visionary and experienced partner in our business. Our new relationship with Money Partners Group is a huge win for Bitcoin and Ethereum awareness and adoption around the world. The results we will achieve together will show other financial institutions why they should embrace digital assets and blockchain technologies.”
The investment comes as Kraken apparently is experiencing significant growth. Since January, when the cryptocurrency exchange operator announced the acquisition of Coinsetter and Cavirtex, two of the oldest and most prominent exchanges in North America, Kraken has experienced a 4x rise in new client accounts, compared to what was seen in Q4 2015.
Already a major bitcoin/euro exchange globally, Kraken has grown at a breakneck pace since the exchange acquisitions, seeing 10x increase in XBT/USD, 30x increase in XBT/CAD, 15x increase in XBT/JPY and 5x increase in XBT/GBP. As Ethereum prices have skyrocketed, ETH trading has increased by 5x across all supported currencies in the first few months of 2016.