Delhi: The world is looking at bitcoin as a new alternative to the financial system.
In this first-of-its-kind, global bitcoin exchange Chain has raised about $3.2 million ($4 million) from New York-based technology firm Ripple Technologies and the Singapore-based e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.
The company is the first to accept bitcoin as payment and the first in India to be listed on a major exchange.
The move by Chain to list on a global platform, which is the fastest and most efficient way to move funds to the blockchain, is seen as a major milestone in India’s quest to build an alternative to financial institutions.
The Indian regulator said it has approved the company’s application for listing on a foreign exchange market under the Foreign Exchange (Fee and Margin) Act.
Chain is also seeking permission from the Indian government to move to a new trading floor in New Delhi.
The exchange has also secured approval from the Reserve Bank of India to establish its headquarters in India.
Ripple Technologies chief executive officer David Tepper said he was impressed with the company and its team.
He said: “We’ve built this company and we want to do everything we can to help Indian companies scale and scale faster.”
He said it would be “disruptive for incumbents to enter the space because it will be disruptive for bitcoin.
We think this is a real opportunity for the global bitcoin ecosystem.”
The company said it plans to begin trading in the Indian market on April 18.
Chain has about 200 employees and will focus on selling bitcoin to Indian customers and helping them with remittances, the company said.
India has seen rapid growth in the bitcoin market, where transactions are moving at about 25 times faster than the global average.
India accounts for around 25 percent of the global market for bitcoin, with bitcoin trading volumes of $1.1 trillion in February, according to CoinDesk.