The former blockchain project lead at Rand Merchant Bank, Farzam Ehsani, has disclosed the details of his new cryptocurrency venture called VALR.
VALR has partnered with Bittrex, an international cryptocurrency exchange, to launch a digital asset trading platform in South Africa. In addition to being its platform partner, Bittrex has also invested in the company.
Former FNB CEO and venture capitalist Michael Jordaan is another investor. Jordaan is invested in several other fintech and telecommunications companies, including Rain and Bank Zero.
While VALR is not launching today, it is opening registrations for a limited access launch.
“VALR already has trading functionality but this will be enabled for our customers slowly and prudently to ensure our platform scales smoothly and lives up to expectations,” Ehsani said.
“As customers sign up, they will be placed on a waiting list and will have the opportunity to get earlier access to the limited-access launch by participating in our referral program, which will ultimately reward them with discounts and the ability to earn up to R1,500 per referral.”
VALR will begin by offering a buy/sell feature, allowing clients to trade between Bitcoin, Ethereum, and over 50 other cryptocurrencies.
The platform will use machine learning and artificial intelligence to streamline its identity verification process, which the company said will allow new customers to be fully verified within minutes.
VALR said that, in the near future, it plans to launch rand-to-crypto trading and more advanced trading options between different cryptocurrencies.
Through its partnership with Bittrex, VALR said that it has access to all cryptocurrencies and digital tokens available on the Bittrex and Bittrex International platforms. This will allow VALR to offer clients one of the largest selections of digital assets.
“Our partnership gives our customers direct access to international liquidity, globally competitive prices, and leading security practices. We look forward to advancing the crypto industry in South Africa and beyond,” Ehsani said.
Bittrex CEO Bill Shihara said they are committed to advancing blockchain technology around the world.
“Our partnership with VALR gives us the opportunity to help drive adoption of this technology in new markets,” said Shihara.
“We will continue to explore partnerships like this one that not only support the blockchain industry, but also incubate innovative projects using this emerging technology, as we further expand our global footprint.”