Elliptic, a blockchain forensics firm just announced that the company has raised more than $23 million in its series B funding round, led by the prominent Tokyo-based SBI holdings. The company aims to use the gathered capital to fund its expansion into Asia and has recently opened its office in Singapore, while another one is expected to open in Japan this week.
Tomoyuki Nii, an executive officer for overseas investment at SBI holdings will join the Elliptic’s board of directors. He in a statement said that the Japanese company has invested more than $10 million into the company. Other companies such as AlbionVC, SignalFire, Octopus Ventures and Santander Innoventures many of whom were already investors.
The CEO of Elliptic James Smith, in a statement weighed in on as to why the company chose Singapore and Tokyo as its operational offices in Asia. He said that the places along with a thriving crypto community also have a stable regulatory framework, that will allow the company to work with relative freedom. Smith told:
The Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Japanese Financial Services Agency are very well-versed in crypto. Japan has its own licensing scheme for exchanges; I think all that is really key to the growth of crypto because once you set the ground rules, then businesses can engage and innovate.
Elliptic utilizes artificial intelligence and machine learning to trace any questionable transactions made on blockchains. The CEO said that the technology by Elliptic will be utilized across all SBI backed blockchain businesses along with other financial and banking partners. Smith said:
There’s going to be a strong market push together, where we will be working hard with SBI to capture the Japanese market and then the Asian market more broadly,
Elliptic founded in 2013, has already raised more than $12 million in five seed and Series A rounds. The last series A round that closed in December of 2017, was led by SignalFire and the company raised more than $5 million. The company has already rolled out a plan to develop a monitoring service for Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency as well as the Central bank Digital Currencies. Smith in a statement about Libra told:
I think that could be a huge leap forward for the adoption of digital currencies more broadly and we’ll ensure that that’s supported on our platform.
SBI Holdings, previously known as Softbank Investments is also the largest investors in the Ripple blockchain system that operates XRP token. Softbank plans to build an entire ecosystem in Japan around XRP token that will have its own group of hardcore fans and payment systems. Elliptic’s prowess in blockchain forensics will make it a key player in the proposed ecosystem. Smith while talking about XRP said:
There are huge amounts of data in that blockchain; it’s probably the biggest blockchain by data, so much information is recorded on it. It’s also used in slightly different ways to some of the other cryptocurrencies, as in there are more financial institutions like SBI who are using it as part of their business operations,