Stock trading app Robinhood announced on May 10th that the company had raised $363 million in Series D funding. Digital Sky Technologies (DST), technology solution provider, led the series, along with Iconiq, Capital G, Sequoia Capital, Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers (KPCB), New Enterprise Associates (NEA) and Thrive Capital. Robinhood is now worth $5.6 billion – it previously raised $110 million in Series C funding in April 2017.
We raised $363 million in a new round of funding led by DST Global, at a $5.6 billion valuation. Excited to welcome new investors Iconiq Capital, Capital G, Sequoia Capital, and KPCB to Robinhood. https://t.co/6GtASHfknq
— Robinhood (@RobinhoodApp) May 10, 2018
However, things weren’t always this positive for the new startup. Co-founder and Co-CEO Vlad Tenev told Business Insider that the company had been rejected by 75 venture capitalists initially. “There were a lot of people who didn’t believe in it, and we had to bang down a ton of doors. We were really relentless,” said Tenev.
After allowing commission-free trading for stocks for some time, Robinhood announced that it was launching Bitcoin and Ethereum trading in January 2018. So far, only people living in California, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire and five other U.S. states can use the new feature. “Cryptocurrencies have become the first foray into investing and financial services to a large number of people. Now it’s become more and more clear [that bitcoin is an] investing asset,” Tenev said in a conversation with CNBC.
The money raised from the latest funding will be used to expand and improve the products of the company, including the web platform, options trading and the Robinhood Crypto. It already uses creative social media visuals to interact with the audience and plans to hire more team members.
Litecoin’s founder Charlie Lee is also a fan of the new app – he has requested Robinhood to add LTC trading as well. “[T]here’s a huge wait list to get access to crypto trading and they don’t support LTC trading yet. Help me convince them to add LTC next!” tweeted Lee. When asked how to convince them, Lee said that LTC supporters should show the cryptocurrency’s level of demand by sending them emails and tweets.