Chinese mining pool ViaBTC has announced it will launch an international exchange by the end of 2017 after it raised 20 mln yuan.

A local news resource in China cnLedger reports preliminary details of a series A deal led by major mining hardware producer Bitmain, which should see the exchange go live in the second half of the year.

Like Bitmain, ViaBTC has been a staunch Bitcoin Unlimited proponent, officially since October, when its decision to support the scaling solution cost by 50 percent of its hashing power.

More recently, in March the pool publicly appealed to Bitcoin users championing Segregated Witness (SegWit) to “not block” Bitcoin Unlimited’s progress to implementation.

“ViaBTC is the world’s first public pool that switched to Bitcoin Unlimited and we’ve since been playing an important role in block scaling, helping other pools to update to BU,” it continued in a blog post issued last week.

“We believe BU is so far the most optimal and applicable block scaling solution.”

ViaBTC is one of the less powerful pools currently in operation, having mined 4.6 percent of blocks over the past seven days according to data produced by Coin Dance.