Barclays International bank along with the technology investment firm Bold Capital Partners has raised $5.5 million in a funding round for the fintech firm Crowdz. Crowdz is a blockchain based global invoice exchange, which aims to purportedly make invoice processing more efficient by digitizing the traditional manual process.
Crowdz claims that its blockchain-based invoice would not only help in digitization and putting the data on the blockchain, but the platform would also automate the process of finding the financiers and sending them invoices.
Payson E. Johnston, CEO of Crowdz believes that the process of automating invoices would have a great significance for small and midsize enterprises (SMEs). He went on to add,
“Today, small and midsize businesses often have to wait for a financially crushing 90 to 120 days or more to get paid. It’s no wonder that more than half of them suffer cash-flow problems during any given year. However, with the Crowdz Invoice Exchange, these often struggling companies can get paid within a few days or less-at rates usually far less than available elsewhere in the market.”
Crowdz also received help in raising the $5.5 million fund from TFX Capital Partners, Techstars Ventures, and First Derivatives, apart from Barclays and BOLD. In the next phase, the capital raised in the funding round would go towards product development, marketing, sales, and hiring for Crowdz.
Barclays has been shifting its focus towards the blockchain sector, as earlier in April this year the international bank joined a trial run for using blockchain technology to streamline the real-estate transactions. The trial run was conducted by Instant Property Network based on Corda blockchain platform which has been developed by the blockchain-focused software consortium R3.
Barclays has also shown interest in cryptocurrencies and were planning to offer Over The Counter (OTC) trading desk as well as looking into other forms of crypto-based services. There has been a significant surge of traditional banks as well as firms like AT&T who has entered the crypto space in one way or other. The involvement of traditional players has given a great boost to the cryptocurrency market as well.