Founder: Pavel Matveev and Dmitry Lazarichev
Description: The leading payments plaform that empowers everyone to experience the benefits of a digital economy
Wirex was founded in 2014, after identifying the need for a simple answer to the often-confusing world of cryptocurrencies. Previously, Bitcoin was not easily accessible to the mass market because of its complexity, and was often considered unsafe and negatively associated with crypto-gambling.
To make cryptocurrency accessible to everyone, Wirex developed a mobile payments platform allowing customers to buy, store, exchange and spend digital and traditional currencies from a centralised, intuitive app. Working with global payments giant Visa, Wirex were the first company in the world to offer a crypto-enabled debit card, which allows users to spend these currencies in day-to-day life, at over 61 million locations globally.
Wirex were additionally the first company in the world to develop a cryptocurrency rewards programme, Cryptoback, giving customers that use their contactless card up to 1.5% back in Bitcoin, which is automatically topped up to their Wirex account.
Wirex has recently been recognised as Mastercard’s first crypto-native principal member, making them the first crypto company to be a principal member of both Visa and Mastercard. Wirex further reached nearly 3.5 million customers across 130 countries in 2020 and achieved profitability as a company.
The app undertook its first crowdfunding campaign in September, raising over £3.7 million. This coming month, Wirex is releasing the much-anticipated brand new Mastercard, for which over 65,000 people have joined the waitlist. In 2021, Wirex plan to expand to the USA, having recently partnered with Zero Hash.