The U.S. based equity crowdfunding platform, StartEngine, will begin accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment for investment.
The platform will pair up with Prime Trust, a Nevada-based bank, to ensure that the cryptocurrency can be safely stored until the minimum crowdfunding target has been reached.
Prime Trust will help both store the virtual currency whilst also converting it into US dollars making it the first bank to support bitcoin and protect crypto investors. According to a statement, it is the first bank to support the use of Bitcoin.
Howard Marks, the CEO of StartEngine, said he believed the use of cryptocurrency would help investors and eliminate the risk of hacking in the future.
“One of biggest hurdles for any company handling Bitcoin is the risk that the handler can be hacked, in which case the investor loses all of their money. Think of Mt Gox and the dozens of websites or ‘exchanges’ that were hacked. They had no custodian of the assets and no insurance, so when they were hacked, the Bitcoin was gone. End of story,” he said.
According to the company, the new feature will raise over $1.7 million for businesses per year.
“When we began hosting regulated ICOs on our platform in the fall of 2017, we knew there was a market demand for entrepreneurs that wanted to accept cryptocurrency directly. Those entrepreneurs can now accept Bitcoin as a form of payment, and we hope to continue to make our platform more accessible to both entrepreneurs and investors,” added Marks.
“We needed to find a qualified custodian in order to accept Bitcoin, and with Prime Trust as our partner, we are now the only regulated entity to accept Bitcoin as a form of payment for securities.”
Founded in 2014, StartEngine has helped raised money for more than 150 startups.