South African crypto exchange VALR has announced the launch of its operations in Zambia this week. The exchange will allow Zambians to buy and sell Bitcoin (BTC) and USD Coin (USDC), as well as 60+ other cryptocurrencies directly using the Zambian Kwacha.
“As the largest crypto exchange headquartered in Africa, VALR is excited to now be serving the people of Zambia…we’ve built a world-class product with a focus on robust security, high performance and regulatory compliance, and we look forward to welcoming the Zambian retail and institutional market to VALR,” said VALR CEO Farzam Ehsani.
VALR launched in 2019 and claims to have over 250,000 retail customers and 500 institutional clients, most of whom are located in South Africa. The startup also claims to have a cumulative trading volume of over R167bn ($10 billion) since its launch.
In March this year, VALR raised a $50 million Series B round at a $240 million valuation. At the time, VALR stated that proceeds of the raise would be used primarily to expand across Africa and into other emerging markets such as India, and to bring more products and services to its growing base of global customers.
One of the leading investors in VALR’s round was the now-defunct crypto exchange FTX, through its Alameda Research subsidiary. Commenting on Twitter on whether FTX’s issues will in anyway affect VALR’s operations, Ehsani stated that the company has no exposure to FTX or FTT.
“If you own Apple shares, and then you die, it doesn’t affect Apple. Same story [goes] for VALR [‘s relationship with FTX],” Ehsani stated.