Coinbase Continues Aggressive Expansion Streak
We’ve discussed expansion plan by Coinbase before, and several more big moves have been made in the last week that help to maintain this momentum. From expanding their coin offerings to bringing new countries online, Coinbase has become one of the easiest ways to make purchases in crypto, and often serves as the “gateway drug” for many would-be investors in cryptocurrency. Although Binance and several other exchanges may have much higher volume that Coinbase, the user interface is very intuitive and it appears the most trustworthy to the inexperienced.
Introducing the Coinbase Card
One such development is the pending release of “Coinbase Card” in the UK. The card will function much like a regular Visa debit card and will enable both in-store and online payments. Mechanically, the card works by converting cryptocurrency into fiat whenever a purchase needs to be made.
This is different from enabling actual cryptocurrency purchases, but does increase the utility of cryptocurrency, which could eventually lead to it becoming possible to spend crypto directly. There will be an application for iOs and Android that integrates the Coinbase Card and allows for receipts and transaction summaries to be managed more efficiently than your regular debit card.
More Coins in More Countries
At the same time, crypto-to-crypto trading services are planned to expand to 11 new countries, including Argentina, Mexico, Peru, Colombia, Chile, India, Hong Kong, South Korea, Indonesia, the Philippines and New Zealand. By not providing fiat gateways, there are much fewer regulatory concerns to deal with. Additionally, recent statistics have shown that crypto-to-crypto trading has overtaken fiat purchase over the last few years. This makes logical sense, as not much money was being pushed into crypto during the bear market.
With 53 countries currently being serviced, Coinbase’s aggressive expansion continues. They have also expanded their token selection to be much broader than when they used to have just 4 or 5 tokens available in 2017. EOS, Maker Dao’s MKR, and Augur’s Rep were all recently announced to be added to the Coinbase Pro platform, with Stellar Lumens and Ripple both being added just mere months ago.
The Numbers In Context
As a private company, Coinbase’s revenue numbers aren’t publicly available, but it is possible to estimate revenues based on user figures and growth numbers from news stories. Right now, it is estimated that Coinbase brought in $520 million of revenue in 2018. Reuters also reported that filings in the UK show revenues of $173 million, which supports these estimates.
Based on the amount of money being pushed into the space, it seems like the expectations of a bull market are starting to spread. Related to this is the $850 million that is estimated to have been invested in the blockchain industry as a whole over the last year.
In the wake of news articles theorizing we are about to go through another big bull market, all of these moves make strong sense. They work to increase the accessibility of cryptocurrency to the masses, which further improves the price movement of the coin as demand goes up.