One of the leading security-focused suppliers of hardware crypto wallet Ledger sold more than a million hardware wallets in 2017. The French company earned a profit of $29 Million. After raising $75 Million in January, Ledger is now planning for expansion.
Rumors are there that Google, Samsung, and Siemens have checked their financial statements. Pascal Gauthier the president of Ledger wanted to solve the inherent flaw of Bitcoin.
Pascal Gauthier CEO of Ledger Image Source: Forbes
The Inherent Flaw in Bitcoin
Blockchain as a technology is pretty amazing but Bitcoin which is a cryptocurrency built on the Blockchain has a flaw that when the cryptocurrency is stored in an exchange there is a chance that the exchange might get hacked.
We often hear how exchanges get hacked and a huge amount of crypto gets stolen. Bithumb a South-Korean exchange got hacked where attackers siphoned off $31 Million worth of crypto. However, later the exchange managed to recover $14 Million in the form of crypto.
Recently Bancor, a decentralized exchange got hacked where attackers allegedly siphoned off $23.5 Million worth of crypto. The company reported in a Twitter feed that 24,984 ETH (approx $12 million), $1 million worth of NPXS and $10 million worth of BNT were stolen.
Such incidents beg for an expected question from every investor, how can I keep my cryptocurrencies safely?
Ledger Hardware Wallets: A Solution to the Flaw
Ledger came up with the solution, the idea was to put the private keys into a physical device that would safeguard the private keys and physically disconnect from the internet. The private keys are stored on a separate device which is normally referred to as Cold Storage.
Ledger is not the only enterprise in this business, there are a ton of wallets available like Trezor and Secalot. What makes Ledger unique is the security and ease-of-use it provides with products like Ledger Nano S.
Ledger Nano S Image Source: Forbes
Gauthier says Ledger sold over a million devices last year across 165 countries, generating sales in excess of €45 million ($52.9 million) and leading the company into profit, with EBITDA of €25 million ($29.4 million).
In January Draper Esprit led on Ledger’s $75 million Series B funding round giving the company a valuation reported to be $300 million.
The road ahead
The company now wants to provide a similar solution on a larger scale. Their target consumers are the financial institution and other large-scale consumers.
Ledger Vault is a multi-user software product with Nano S-style hardware keys, this will enable the users with multiple access to a single crypto wallet. The access would definitely differ as the ecosystem would require. For example, two physical keys may be required to execute a transaction or any other feature like a time delay function on certain transactions.
Gauthier says Ledger Vault is already off to a flying start with “literally clients queueing outside our office to buy it.”
The second product is still a work-in-progress.
In May Ledger announced a partnership with Japanese financial giant Nomura and Global Advisors to launch a spin-off business called Komainu, which will build an ambitious full-custodianship offering—where the biggest financial institutions can deposit their crypto assets in a Ledger-designed vault system controlled by Nomura.
The company is in the process of lining up a “second phase” to its Series B funding round, which closed in January.
“But only if we feel there is a strong business interest to build something with us, an interest that goes beyond just the money,” says Gauthier.
The president won’t name the connections right now, they are talking to “a lot of people,” but a source with knowledge of the round told that Siemens, Samsung and Google’s venture arm GV have all shown interest and that there’s talk of Ledger’s valuation nearing $1 billion.
Image Source for the featured image: Forbes
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