As one of the biggest groundbreaking inventions of recent years, Bitcoin has changed the investment landscape dramatically since its debut in 2009. In 2021, Bitcoin reached an all-time high of $69,000, prompting new investors to enter the market. However, this was short-lived as the market entered its bearish phase in 2022, and the price took a hit. As Bitcoin’s next halving event, scheduled for April 2024 nears, experts reckon the next bull run might be the biggest one yet. While that may be true, future-minded investors need a solution to cushion them from the devastating losses that always occur during the bearish season. That’s what the team at Unchained, the #1 Bitcoin loan provider in the USA, offers.
CEO Joe Kelly and Chief Science Officer Dhruv Bansal began conceptualizing Unchained in 2015 after selling their last company, Infochimps. At the time, Bitcoin was much smaller, with fewer investors and users. However, as early adopters, the duo knew Bitcoin had the potential to flip the entire financial landscape and transform other industries. They started thinking about a business plan and embarked on a journey to build a financial company built on Bitcoin.
“For an asset that grows like Bitcoin, making sure you don’t lose it over the decades is the most important and valuable thing you can do,” Bansal observes. Unchained’s main objective is to help investors avoid the most common pitfalls that cause people to lose their bitcoinas the market conditions change. As the leading Bitcoin financial company, Unchained is committed to individual Bitcoin ownership and financial sovereignty, unlike other custodial services and exchanges. They support this mission in several ways, including helping Bitcoin holders buy and sell their Bitcoins without go-betweens and keeping investments safe in the long run by ensuring they don’t lose them to theft, loss or hacks.
Unchained also helps holders use their Bitcoin as collateral and borrow in US dollars against it should they need liquidity during times when the price is lower than average. “We are the only Bitcoin lender protecting loan collateral with collaborative custody,” Kelly explains. The process begins with sending the holder’s Bitcoin to a dedicated multi-signature address for confirmation. Upon confirmation, the funds are released to the borrower’s bank account. Meanwhile, the holder retains one of the three keys used to generate the multisig address for the loan. This solves the holder’s immediate needs while ensuring they will still reap the potential gains of their Bitcoin investment in the long run, as no single person can authorize any transactions against the collateral.
“Unchained is committed to a vision of Bitcoin ubiquity and a financial system built on the right values and principles,” Bansal explains. This commitment is a major differentiator that explains why Unchained not only survived the crypto contagion, which wiped out nearly all crypto lenders (Celcius, Voyager, Vauld, Bable, BlockFi) but also proceeded to raise a $60M Series B. The team plans to channel part of the Series B investment toward strengthening the bridges between USD and BTC, such as Unchained’s credit and trading products, through new dollar-focused products such as checking accounts, credit cards, etc.
“We believe that offering traditional dollar-denominated products will further benefit our clients by allowing them to manage their traditional assets with the same high product and service standards we deliver for their Bitcoin,” the team shares. By offering traditional USD banking options to complement its BTC product suite, Unchained is disrupting and improving existing USD banking—all without putting anything on a blockchain.