Crypto Hardware Wallet Startup Ledger Receives $2.9 Million Investment From Samsung

Francisco Memoria

Ledger, a popular cryptocurrency hardware wallet manufacturer, has recently received a 2.6 million euro ($2.9 million) investment from South Korean tech giant Samsung, in a move that gave the firm a valuation of roughly $290 million.

According to French business magazine Capital, a Ledger spokesperson confirmed Samsung backed the firm, but didn’t go into details. The move came shortly after Ledger promoted Pascal Gauthier to CEO, and after a $7 million Series A funding round in 2017, and a $75 million Series B last year.

Ledger’s former CEO, Éric Larchevêque, seemingly confirmed the investment initially, by saying on social media in one tweet – translated from French – that ~we’ll “always need hardware wallets,” but that in the crypto revolution “the smartphone will actually play a central role.”

In a statement, the cryptocurrency hardware wallet manufacturer confirmed Samsung’s investment. The statement reads:

We are excited to confirm Samsung Ventures’ investment in Ledger. We believe Samsung Ventures will add value to further enhance our position as a leading provider of best-in-class security solutions as we continue to deliver innovative hardware wallet technology to meet the demands of both today’s and tomorrow’s mobile consumer market.

It’s worth pointing out that last year Ledger received a Startup of the Year award from Ernst & Young (EY) for the Ile-de-France region, in a competition that saw it move up to compete with other startups throughout the world. The company’s success has been significant with over one million Ledger wallets sold as of October of last year.

Samsung itself seemingly added a cryptocurrency wallet to its latest flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S10. Months before it was released leaks showed it had a built-in cryptocurrency wallet. After its release, videos show it has ‘blockchain tutorials’ included in it.

Rumors now suggest Samsung is looking to launch its own blockchain, based on the Ethereum network. The goal, some claim, could be for the tech giant to launch its own token.  Interestingly, Enjin Coin (ENJ) saw its price surge when the Galaxy S10 launched, as it’s believed Samsung adopted Enjin’s wallet for its flagship smartphone.

Opera Launches Blockchain, Cryptocurrency-Ready Browser for iOS

Opera Ltd., the company behind the Opera browser, has recently launched a new blockchain and cryptocurrency-ready browser for iOS, following the company’s addition of a built-in cryptocurrency wallet to its Android and PC browsers.

According to a press release shared with CryptoGlobe, the company’s Opera Touch browser for iOS features “crypto wallet integration and Web 3 support,” meaning users can interact with blockchain-based applications through it, as if they were using an extension like MetaMask. The company hinted at the move in March of this year.

The company touts it now offers browsers supporting blockchain-based applications and with a built-in cryptocurrency wallet in various operating systems, including Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS, allowing users to “seamlessly interact with the next generation of Web 3 applications.”

Currently, the browser only supports ERC-20 tokens, stablecoins, and non-fungible tokens, although the company has revealed earlier this year it’s looking to add support for TRON and multiple other blockchains within a  year.

Charles Hamel, Opera’s head of crypto, stated:

We believe that all modern browsers should integrate a crypto wallet. This will enable new business models to emerge on the web. Opera is the first browser to make using crypto on the Web seamless and easy. Following a strong demand from the crypto-community, we are now making this experience available on iOS.

In the press release the company added it believes the “web of today will be the interface to the decentralized web of tomorrow,” with cryptocurrencies being at its forefront. Along with the iOS release, the company announced it partnered with a decentralized-application (dApp) called Marble.Cards, which allows users to turn unique web pages into collectible cards on the blockchain, each being a non-fungible token.

The Opera touch browser itself has a user interface built to let users use large phone screens with ease, as it shifts the navigation towards the bottom of the screen and adds features that make it easy to share pages across devices.

Opera’s main Android browser is also its cryptocurrency-ready browser for the operating system, and it has made it easier for users to buy cryptocurrencies directly from their mobile phones.