Twitter Invests in Bitcoin Payments Processor OpenNode

The bitcoin payment processor OpenNode just announced the close of a $20 million Series A funding round led by Twitter, UK-based Kingsway, venture investor Tim Draper, and Avon Ventures. The company now valued at $220 million focuses on building Bitcoin and Lightning Network payments infrastructure.

The Adoption Of Bitcoin Payments

OpenNode was funded in 2018 and focuses on creating the infrastructure to support Bitcoin as “the new base layer for global payments” while building on the Lightning Network to enable low-cost transactions.

“In the Lightning Network’s growing ecosystem, hundreds of thousands of transactions can process per second at almost no cost. Payments benefit from the instant and final settlement, zero fraud, zero chargebacks, and the security of Bitcoin’s base chain.”

OpenNode focuses on Bitcoin alone, seeing other cryptocurrencies as a noise to ignore: “The multitude of digital projects and tokens, while novel, is largely a distraction from the important work of transforming the world’s base settlement layer.”

The funding round aims to expand OpenNode’s services and grow its team while also focusing on increasing the use of Bitcoin as a payment form. The company stated that in a few months they will be announcing new product features –like a payment wallet and an account-linked debit card–, partnerships, and clients “that will drive significant adoption of Bitcoin payments.”

Josh Held, head of strategy at OpenNode, stated in a press release that the demand for bitcoin payment solutions is showing exponential growth, and the firm is invested in creating the proper infrastructure for the world’s largest businesses to adopt Bitcoin as a method of payment.

“This Series A funding is the next step in helping the company to realize our mission of making bitcoin payments simple and accessible for everyone, everywhere”

Although the current transaction volume of OpenNode has not been specified, Held told The Block that the team hopes to reach the 25,000+ BTC mark soon, which translates to around $1 billion at the digital coin’s current value.

Bitcoin trading at $44,398 in the daily chart | Source: BTCUSD on TradingView.com

Bitcoin supporter and investor Tim Draper commented that OpenNode is beneficial for retailers because it allows them “to accept bitcoin without having to pay the banks or the credit card companies the 2% to 4%,” doing it with “only a fraction of the energy cost required for an on-chain bitcoin transaction.”

Likewise, lead investor and Founder of Kingsway Capital Manuel Stotz thinks that the Lightning Network complementing Bitcoin “is going to be the most important technology for financial inclusion” because it promises to push the digital coin into becoming “a global, censorship-resistant, and permissionless payment network.”

Related Reading | Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey Says Bitcoin Will Be A Big Part Of The Social Media Giant’s Future

Twitter Jumps In

Twitter is a new addition to the payment firm’s cap table. The social media company has been long interested in playing a relevant role in the crypto ecosystem. Group Product Manager Ester Crawford said in the press release:

“Digital currencies encourage more people globally to participate in the economy, and with less friction. OpenNode is creating easier pathways for anyone, anywhere to access the digital economy through their seamless integration of bitcoin payments.”

The former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is a strong supporter of Bitcoin and while he remained in the position, Dorsey claimed that bitcoin would become a “big part” of the platform by helping it expand. At the moment, he believed it was “hugely important to Twitter and to Twitter shareholders that we continue to look at the [crypto] space and invest aggressively in it.”

The company has moved forward to affiliate with cryptocurrencies integrating NFTs, growing its crypto team, and moving further into Web3. CFO of Twitter Ned Segal has also talked about implementing Bitcoin as a tool to “facilitate commerce” in the platform.

Related Reading | How Bitcoin Will Help Twitter Improve Commerce On Its Platform, CFO Says

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