by Joseph Young
Hardware wallet manufacturer Ledger raised a $7 million funding round led by French venture capital firm MAIF Avenir, bringing the company’s total investment to date to $8.5 million. With the new investment, the team behind the popular hardware wallets seek to expand globally and precipitate mainstream adoption of security solutions for cryptocurrency and financial applications.
Since its launch, the French Bitcoin startup has focused on the development of a robust infrastructure which cryptocurrency users can rely on to store their funds securely and efficiently. Using its low-footprint crypto-embedded operating system as the base technology, Ledger introduced various commercial products including its series of hardware wallets, server appliance, and embedded solutions.
Ledger’s two flagship hardware wallets are Ledger Nano S and Ledger Blue. More than 50,000 units of these two wallets have been sold across 130 countries, and it is continuing to attract the interest and demand of the global consumer market.
One major factor behind the success of Ledger as a hardware wallet manufacturer is the firm’s commitment to security and user experience prioritization. Over the past few years, Ledger’s Nano and Blue wallets have evolved significantly, in terms of features, user experience, hardware and overall quality.
However, according to Ledger CEO Eric Larchevêque, the company intends to target various industries outside the cryptocurrency market. By launching security solutions for both the consumer and enterprise markets, Ledger aims to target large-scale companies and organizations with its enterprise-grade security solutions.
Along with Trezor, Ledger already established its identity as the leading hardware wallet manufacturer in the global bitcoin market. The company is eager to target larger companies including marketplaces, hedge funds, and financial institutions to bring the security measures of bitcoin and Ledger into the infrastructures of conventional markets.
“Ledger has seen a tremendous growth in the last months, and we are on track to increase tenfold our revenues this year. Our primary objective is to reinforce our position as a global market leader on hardware wallet products, while we accelerate the development of enterprise cryptocurrency solutions through the signature of soon to be announced strategic partnership agreements. We are also actively pursuing Research and Development on hardware Oracle technology with key industrial customers for the smart grid, supply chain, and insurance blockchain use cases.”
In December 2016, BTCManager reported that Bitcoin would likely spur the supply and demand of non-backdoorable hardware and software across various industries and markets. At the time it was noted that analysts believed Bitcoin companies will lead the cybersecurity and defense markets in the foreseeable future using their expertise in working with sophisticated technologies and security systems in cryptocurrencies including bitcoin and ether.
Ledger is one of the first companies to expand its expertise and products outside the realm of cryptocurrency to the industries of finance and technology.
Investors who were involved in the company's $7 million funding round expressed their enthusiasm and optimism toward the plan of providing data protection and information immutability to enterprises that are desperately in need of robust infrastructures.
Cryptocurrency and blockchain investment firm Digital Currency Group founder and CEO Barry Silbert stated:
“In a world that desperately needs data protection, Ledger has been the first to use secure chip technology to protect data and application in a way the user can adopt. Cryptocurrencies and blockchain applications are the ideal training ground for Ledger to expand to many other aspects of cybersecurity.”
Ledger’s plan of offering enterprise-grade solutions will not affect their development and manufacturing of hardware wallets. Regardless of their future plans, the Ledger development team intends to continue evolving and improving its software and hardware for the general consumer market.
In fact, Ledger remains as one of the few companies to actively solve real-life problems which hardware wallet users experience on a daily basis. For instance, when various experts including Bitcoin developer Andrew DeSantis discovered the distribution of Trojan horse-based products disguised as hardware wallets at conferences and blockchain events, Ledger introduced a cryptographic seal which users can utilize to ensure the legitimacy of their devices.