Crypto lending firm Celsius Network has expanded its $400-million Series B funding round from October to $750 million as a result of oversubscription in the firm’s capital raise.
The company is now valued at $3.5 billion following the raise, and CEO Alex Mashinsky told Cointelegraph he expects that figure to “double or triple” next year, which would see it valued between $7 billion and $10.5 billion.
The firm previously closed the round on Oct. 12 amid a period of intense scrutiny placed on crypto lending firms from local regulators. Mashinsky emphasized at the time that “it’s not $400 million. It’s the credibility that comes with the people who wrote those checks.”
In an announcement shared with Cointelegraph on Wednesday, Celsius outlined that new funds will go toward expanding into new markets and product offerings, along with building its recently announced centralized finance-to-decentralized finance (DeFi) bridging project “CelsiusX.”
Celsius will also allocate funds to improving the “utility of its platform” and its commitment to sustainable Bitcoin (BTC) mining.
Speaking on the $750-million funding round with Cointelegraph, Mashinsky said that the fact that the round was oversubscribed shows a “very good indication” of the strength of the Celsius brand, which he said was userfocused.
“If you think of what we do, which is pay yield to the community, you know, we paid over $1 billion to our community, and we basically get that yield from exchanges and institutions. And most of our competitors [...] they charge the customers fees and give all that money to their shareholders,” he said.
Mashinsky attributed his bullish estimate of Celsius’ value in 2022 to the firm’s ability to provide services in almost every sector of crypto, highlighting the growth potential of the business:
“I think that by itself, it is worth several times what we invested. So between that and the growth of our core business, the yield business, the lending business or the mining business, the DeFi business, all these things are obviously huge.”
The Celsius CEO also pointed to the $115-million acquisition of crypto custody platform GK8 at the start of this month and revealed the firm has plans to enter the nonfungible token sector in the near future, although it won’t be launching a marketplace, as he feels there are already too many similar platforms out there.
“We think we can help brands expand the category into other use cases or other ways of unlocking value,” he said.
Questioned on the firm’s $20-million crowdfunding round from August 2020, in which more than 1,000 investors from the Celsius community backed the firm, Mashinsky said the firm was valued at around $150 million at the time, and while investors are currently unable to sell their holdings, it has turned out to be a handsome investment for them:
“Basically, those 1,000 people made on average, what is it, 25 times of their money or something like that? Obviously, it’s not liquid, they can’t sell it tomorrow. But we think that they are super happy.”