The team behind Coinberry has launched a Bitcoin-backed lending platform dubbed APX Lending.
Poliakov co-founded Coinberry, the first startup crypto exchange to register with the Canadian Securities Administrators. WonderFi Technologies (TSX: WNDR) acquired Coinberry for approximately $38.5 million CAD in 2022. The all-stock deal came after Coinberry reached a settlement with capital pool company Cinaport Acquisition Corp. III, following its failed TSXV takeover.
“With APX Lending, we’re determined to set a new standard, prioritizing the safety and security of our users above all else.”
—Andrei Poliakov, CEO of APX
In the lawsuit, Cinaport alleged that Coinberry breached the “standstill” provisions of a letter of intent (LOI) the two firms signed in 2021, by negotiating and pursuing a separate acquisition deal with WonderFi, according to court documents filed in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice.
APX describes itself as a direct-to-consumer Bitcoin-lending platform as well as a business-to-business (B2B) Bitcoin-backed lending software-as-a-service (SaaS) for banks that can integrate the platform and expand their lending offerings.
“Drawing from our legacy with Coinberry, we’re determined to bring a new era of integrity and reliability to global CiFi lending with APX Lending,” said Andrei Poliakov, CEO of APX.
CoinDesk defines centralized finance (CeFi) lending as private companies that deal primarily with blockchain assets like cryptocurrencies or NFTs.
APX Lending is registered with the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) in Canada and Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) in the United States.
FINTRAC is Canada’s federal financial intelligence unit and anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing supervisor. Its mandate is to facilitate the detection, prevention, and deterrence of money laundering and the financing of terrorist activities, while ensuring the protection of personal information under its control.
APX Lending’s launch comes at a time of consolidation in the crypto market as well during the market downturn and consolidation that has come to be known as crypto winter. The former includes WonderFi merging with two other regulated Canadian cryptocurrency exchanges, Coinsquare and CoinSmart, which brought over $600 million CAD in assets under custody along with more than 1.65 million users together.
The crypto winter included the collapse of numerous high-profile unregulated exchanges impacting retail investors adversely. In response, securities regulators in Canada and around the world ramped up efforts to crack down on conflicts of interest and risky behaviours by crypto firms to protect consumers.
It comes as no surprise given crypto’s current woes that APX is quick to reassure that it never reinvests or loans out its borrowers’ collateral, and is working hard to give the impression that cryptocurrency lending is safe and reliable.
“We’ve witnessed the challenges and pitfalls that can plague the crypto lending industry. With APX Lending, we’re determined to set a new standard, prioritizing the safety and security of our users above all else,” Poliakov said.
Feature image by Alesia Kozik via Pexels.