Philippine Digital Payments Unicorn To Expand Crypto Services
Voyager Innovations, owner of Philippine’s largest digital payments app, said it reached unicorn status on Tuesday after a $210 million funding round. The firm said it will apply the new capital towards expanding its crypto services.
Voyager, which operates popular payments app PayMaya, said the latest funding round was led by SIG Venture Capital, and included established names such as First Pacific Co, KKR, Tencent, and PLDT Inc- Philippine’s largest telecom operator.
The new capital boosted Voyager’s valuation to $1.4 billion, granting it unicorn status.
Voyager to expand crypto services
The firm recently integrated crypto services into PayMaya, which allows users to buy, sell, and earn crypto through the app. Today’s capital raise will be used to expand these offerings. PayMaya recently secured a Virtual Asset Services Provider license from the Philippine Central Bank.
The firm will also use the new funds to launch digital bank services on PayMaya, such as savings and credit.
Voyager said that a bulk of the Philippine population was “underserved” with regards to internet and digital finance. It intends to capitalize on this in expanding its market reach. As of end-March, PayMaya has over 47 million users.
Philippine digital adoption on the rise
The southeast Asian nation’s digital economy has boomed over the past two years, thanks largely in to ventures from Voyager and its rival Mynt. The country’s digital economy grew 94% from 2020 to 2021 and is expected to grow to $40 billion by 2025, according to a study by Google, Temasek, and Bain & Co.
This growth in internet commerce is likely to boost crypto adoption in the country. Philippines currently has no regulations restricting the trade of digital currencies, although the central bank has repeatedly warned users over the high levels of volatility in the space.
According to data from triple A, about 4% of Filipinos currently own cryptocurrency. The number could be set to grow as more mainstream payment firms enter the space.
Similar to most other southeast Asian countries, crypto is not considered legal tender in Philippines.
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