BitPesa is a Kenyan startup that seeks to create a service for Bitcoin remittances in Africa and has operations in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Nigeria. Its services also allow users to trade bitcoins. The service has 4,000 registered users and is regulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority as an authorized payment institution. Current ICT CS Joe Mucheru was an investor in BitPesa but offloaded his stake following his appointment to Cabinet.
Last year, BitPesa and its payment gateway provider Lipisha Consortium sued Safaricom on what was termed as infringement of their rights to acquire and own property, fair administration as well as economic interests. BitPesa used Lipisha’s gateway thereby offering BitPesa users seeking to buy bitcoin with M-Pesa as a payment option. Safaricom suspended Lipisha’s license making it difficult for BitPesa customers. The matter is still in Court but BitPesa entered a similar arrangement with Airtel Kenya for payments.
BitPesa is now announcing that it has received new investment from investors among them BitFury. BitFury is a Blockchain infrastructure provider and transaction processing company. The amount of the investment was not stated but BitFury says it is meant to allow BitPesa scale and allow the company leverage the innovative power of the Bitcoin Blockchain for the benefit of the entire pan-African continent. BitPesa previously raised $1.7 million from Pantera Capital, Crypto Currency Partners, Stephens Investment Management, Bitcoin Opportunity Corp., Future/Perfect Ventures, and Blockchain Capital according to Silicon Angle.