A $50 million seed funding round was conducted by Maps.me, the leading offline mapping application, to incorporate decentralized finance tools into its platform.
Sam Bankman-Fried of Alameda Research headed the fundraising round for “Maps.me 2.0” and included participation from crypto project heavyweights CMS Holdings and Genesis Capital as well. In addition to exchange functionality and a multicurrency crypto-asset wallet providing annual yields of up to 8 percent, Maps.me 2.0 will be a wide-ranging application, with travel guides, hotel bookings and mapping services.
Maps.me 2.0 co-founder Alex Grebnev told Cointelegraph that consumers would be able to “generate yield on their savings by directly lending it out securely to borrowers.” “We also plan to give our users the ability to trade a wide range of assets that are not limited by geographical boundaries or transaction size.”
Maps.me claims to be DeFi’s first “mainstream app,” with the application having a customer base of over 140 million following eight years of operation. In 2020, approximately 60 million users were involved. Bankman-Fried declared: “By embedding and democratizing access to yield-earning finance to millions of users via an everyday app, Maps.me has the potential to really propel DeFi mainstream adoption and bring a groundbreaking technology to the masses.”
The announcement states that the platform intends, through its DeFi integrations, to “break down financial silos decided by ethnicity or net worth.” Grebnev explained further: “The industry is waiting for a catalyst for the mass adoption of DeFi tools and we’re excited to make this a reality by leveraging our active userbase as a means to bootstrap a retail community for a new innovative DeFi platform on Maps.me.”
“Our long-term vision is to create an embedded platform that combines a broad range of financial services that provide an easier way to invest, pay, and travel. We see the ability to bundle things like foreign exchange, investing, credit card, and peer-to-peer payment services — with low fees, no hidden costs, and strong loyalty incentives,” according to cointelegraph.com, he added.