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August 11, 2017

Coinbase gains unicorn status after cashing in on bitcoin boom

Coinbase is positioned in the middle of the bitcoin action, and there is no sign of an end to the explosive growth.

By Tom Ball

Coinbase, the cryptocurrency exchange, has raked in a massive $100 million from a Series D funding round, raising its value to unicorn status of over $1.5 billion.

The Series D round has lifted the total funding accrued by Coinbase to a hefty $217 million, with the likes of IVP, Greylock Partners and Spark Capital adding significantly to the overall amount.

Bitcoin has broken a number of its own records recently, surpassing the price of gold for an ounce to a unit, passing the $1000, $2000 and $3000 marks.

This cryptocurrency success has not been the sole driver of the strong Coinbase performance, with other digital currencies such as Ethereum also gaining significant traction, contributing to its new unicorn status.

Since 2015 Coinbase has tripled its value, and this growth can be attributed to an explosive spike in trading volume, approximately 10 times more trading that in 2016. A massive increase in customers has also been noted.

While growth and progress of Bitcoin has been immense, the journey has not been without turbulence and confusion for many involved. Recently a fork occurred for Bitcoin when the blockchain upon which it is carried split, this caused a new currency, Bitcoin Cash to come into existence.

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Following this incident, Coinbase withheld Bitcoin Cash, the product split on the grounds of security, causing an outcry among Bitcoin owners eager to access the new duplicate currency that belonged to them. Coinbase subsequently decided to allow the currency to be withdrawn, but it has not yet decided whether it was support trade of Bitcoin Cash in future.

Another hard fork is set for Bitcoin later this year following a widely agreed code alteration; however the Bitcoin reference client, Bitcoin Core has rejected the proposal.

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