PHILIPPINE DIGITAL Asset Exchange (PDAX) raised $12.5 million (P630 million) from a funding round, which will be used to expand its services and operations.
“A substantial portion of this funding will go to Bonds.PH to expand our capabilities there, to invest in the platform and make sure that it can continue to grow and service the bond market,” Philippine Digital Asset Exchange (PDAX) Founder and Chief Executive Officer Nichel O. Gaba said at a briefing on Tuesday.
Bonds.PH was launched in July 2020, which allowed the government to sell retail Treasury bonds through a blockchain-enabled platform. It was launched by UnionBank of the Philippines, Inc. in partnership with PDAX.
The funding round was led by a UK-based venture capital firm, joined by Hong Kong-based BC Group. Other existing investors have also increased their investments in PDAX, including Beenext Ventures, CMT Digital, Ripple Labs, and Aboitiz-led UBX.
“Digital asset adoption and regulation continues at a rapid pace across Asia. As a licensed operator, PDAX is unique in the market and will continue to grow its leadership position and market share in the Philippines as end-users continue to migrate to trusted, regulated players,” a representative from BC Group said.
Mr. Gaba said part of the proceeds will also be used for their team expansion and to support their working capital.
Moving forward, PDAX eyes to offer more investment options and features on their platforms. The firm is also looking to bring their services to overseas Filipino workers as well.
PDAX currently has about 500,000 users, Mr. Gaba said. “Most of those users are in the cryptocurrency exchange, just because of how much cryptocurrency trading has gone mainstream over the past couple of years,” he said.
Mr. Gaba said their platform complies with the requirement of regulatory bodies such as the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and the Anti-Money Laundering Council, adding exchanges are now better equipped to flag suspicious activities.
“[This] means that we have to onboard our clients in the same way that banks take on new clients. We have to perform Know Your Customer procedures up to the same standard. And we also have to employ new tools for transaction monitoring,” Mr. Gaba said. — L.W.T. Noble