A16z plans to invest in its first startup in India, the world’s second-largest internet market, where more than two dozen unicorns were created this year. According to sources, the company is nearing a decision on whether or not to invest in Indian crypto trading startup CoinSwitch Kuber. The potential investment puts the Bangalore-based firm at $1.9 billion, according to two sources. Coinbase is also investing in the next round, according to one of the sources.
When CoinSwitch Kuber raised $25 million from Tiger Global, it was valued at over $500 million. It will be CoinSwitch Kuber’s third round of funding this year if the agreement with A16z is finalized. CoinSwitch Kuber was reportedly in talks to obtain its Series C funding at a valuation of up to $2 billion, according to sources. The Indian company has been in contact with Andreessen Horowitz and Coinbase in recent weeks. The primary investor was not mentioned in the report.
The terms of the agreement may change, or the talks may fail to yield a resolution. A request for comment was not returned by the startup. Tiger Global and Sequoia Capital India, as well as Coinbase and A16z, did not reply to requests for comment.
Despite local authorities’ hostility to crypto assets, CoinSwitch Kuber’s user base has more than doubled in recent months, prompting investment talks. According to a newspaper ad published over the weekend, the startup’s eponymous app had more than 10 million users in India last month, up from about 4 million in April.
As millions of millennials in India begin their financial journey, a number of crypto enterprises in the country have seen tremendous growth in recent years while maintaining a low CAC. Policymakers in India have been debating the viability of digital currencies in the South Asian economy for several years. Despite preparations to establish a pilot run for India’s first digital currency as early as December, the Reserve Bank of India has expressed doubts about private virtual currencies.