The Mexican bitcoin exchange Bitso which was recently in news for the acquisition of its competitor Unisend Mexico has emerged much stronger in the Mexican bitcoin market with the closure of its seed funding round. The company has raised money from Bitcoin Opportunity Corp., an investment fund backed by well-known entrepreneur and Bitcoin investor Barry Silbert. Few undisclosed angel investors have also invested in Bitso along with Bitcoin Opportunity Corp.
The potential for bitcoin market in Mexico is huge with estimated inward remittance of over $22 billion in the year in 2013 alone. Being one of the main strengths of the North American nation, Bitso’s position to facilitate these remittances to and from Mexico is considered as a big asset by Barry Silbert.
Bitso is currently offering order-book exchange service along with merchant payment processing and Ripple gateway. Founded in 2014, the company is now in a dominant position in Mexico. BitPagos, a product of Bitso is a robust ecommerce and point of sale system which processes both bitcoin and more traditional credit and debit cards like MasterCard, Visa etc.
Even though Bitso has got a strong presence in Mexico, the company still faces uncertainty due to the existing government regulations. According to a circular issued by the Central Bank of Mexico last year, bitcoin can’t be used to purchase or sell goods as it is not considered as a legal tender. The Federal Government of Mexico is yet to release the new set of regulations governing bitcoin and other digital assets, which it had announced along with the circular.
While most of the big players are playing in other international markets due to lack of clarity about the Mexican government’s stance on bitcoin, Bitso is busy building a solid customer base which may turn out to be a deciding factor in favour of the company when other players decide to enter the market.
Considering the bitcoin friendly outlook of United States and Canada, the probability of Mexico coming up with something similar is very high. In that case, Bitso will emerge as an uncontended champion in the region.