Science & Technology

Coinbase acquires cryptocurrency wallet startup BRD for an undisclosed price

Coinbase Inc. has acquired cryptocurrency wallet startup Breadwinner AG, better known as BRD, for an undisclosed price.

Founded in 2015, the company’s cryptocurrency wallet, previously known as Breadwallet and Bread, is a mobile-first wallet with more than 10 million customers and $20 billion in assets under protection. Along with the wallet, the company also supports cryptocurrency purchases, a commercial register, credit rating information, management tools, news and merchant services.

The BRD app is available for iOS and Android in more than 170 countries and includes features such as iCloud key backup, customizable widgets, direct blockchain access and support in 14 languages. The codebase for the app is open source and app users also receive BRD rewards based on usage, a form of tradable cryptocurrency.

BRD the cryptocurrency surged sixfold, from 16 to 96 cents each, during trading today, Coindesk reported.

In a letter to users, co-founders Adam Traidman and Aaron Voisine said that at this time, nothing will change with the BRD wallet and that funds continue to remain safe and secure. They did add that BRD wallet users will have an optional migration path to self-custody with Coinbase Wallet in the future, which will also include an unspecified “special gift.”

On Twittter, Coinbase said it’s doubling down on its investment in self-custody and Web3 “in pursuit of increasing economic freedom in the world.”

Before its acquisition, BRD had raised $54.8 million in venture capital funding, according to Crunchbase. Investors included Xpring, SBI Crypto, East Ventures, Das Capital and OKWave.

The acquisition was announced a day after the Senate Banking Committee sent letters to Coinbase and other companies to inquire about consumer protections and stablecoins.

The letter from Sen. Sherrod Brown was sent to Coinbase, Gemini Trust Co. LLC, Circle Inc., Paxos Trust Co., TrustToken Inc., Center Inc. and Binance US.

“I have significant concerns with the non-standardized terms applicable to redemption of particular stablecoins, how those terms differ from traditional assets, and how those terms may not be consistent across digital asset trading platforms,” Brown wrote in the letter. “Because the term stablecoin is used broadly, users may not appreciate the complexity and distinct features and terms of each stablecoin.”

The companies contacted have been given until Dec. 3 to respond. The senator also asking that the questions be answered in “clear, straightforward terms.”

Image: BRD

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