Robinhood Markets is set to acquire U.K. crypto company Ziglu for an undisclosed figure.
The U.S. trading platform’s eventual plans to integrate Ziglu marks the expansion of its operations into Europe, as well as its second attempt at entering the U.K. market, following a botched attempt in July 2020.
The California company remarked how the London-based firm’s “impressive team of deeply experienced financial services and crypto experts [will help] accelerate our global expansion efforts”.
While Robinhood has yet to state how much it paid for the company, last November Ziglu raised £7 million ($9 million), putting its valuation at £85 million ($110 million).
Retail investors in cryptocurrencies make up its customer base, which Ziglu said grew fourfold during the crypto boom last year. Entrepreneur Mark Hipperson, who also helped establish U.K. digital lender Starling Bank, founded Ziglu in 2014.
In addition to renewing its efforts in the U.K., the purchase also indicates a further willingness to invest in its cryptocurrency offerings. Just over two months ago, the trading platform had intimated that its pandemic-driven crypto trading boom was cooling, as Robinhood shares have dipped up to 30% this year.
However, earlier this month, it rolled out its long-anticipated crypto wallet to two million waitlisted users, albeit with some notable limitations.
Robinhood wins FCA approval
Fortunately for Robinhood, it managed to purchase one of the few crypto groups to have received regulatory approval from the U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
The FCA has only approved 33 of over 100 crypto companies that have applied for registration since the beginning of last year. As the registration regime has been beset by delays, the regulator has temporarily suspended new applications while it sorts through the backlog.
With so few crypto firms allowed to legally operate in the U.K., those who have managed to get approval are finding themselves to be increasingly appealing prospects.
In addition to Ziglu, Trustology was purchased by Austrian exchange Bitpanda in Feb, while Binance announced a partnership with exchange Eqonex in March.
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