Coinbase

An American publicly traded company that operates a cryptocurrency exchange platform

Categories

Technology  

#873

Rank

$20.16B

MarketCap US

US United States

Country

Summary

Coinbase Global, Inc. provides financial infrastructure and technology for the cryptoeconomy in the United States and internationally. The company offers the primary financial account in the cryptoeconomy for retailers; a marketplace with a pool of liquidity for transacting in crypto assets for institutions; and technology and services that enable ecosystem partners to build crypto-based applications and securely accept crypto assets as payment. Coinbase Global, Inc. was founded in 2012 and is based in Wilmington, Delaware.


History

Coinbase is a leading cryptocurrency exchange and wallet platform that has played a pivotal role in the development and popularization of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Its history is closely tied to the rise of cryptocurrencies and the broader blockchain industry. Here's a detailed history of Coinbase up to my knowledge cutoff date in September 2021:

1. Founding and Early Years (2012-2013):

  • Coinbase was founded in June 2012 by Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam, two software engineers from San Francisco, California.
  • The company's initial mission was to make it easier for people to buy, sell, and store Bitcoin. It aimed to provide a user-friendly and secure platform for cryptocurrency transactions.
  • In October 2012, Coinbase received a $600,000 investment from prominent venture capital firms, including Union Square Ventures and Y Combinator.

2. Growth and Expansion (2013-2017):

  • Coinbase quickly gained traction in the cryptocurrency space, attracting millions of users.
  • In 2014, the company expanded its services to include support for Ethereum, a significant step beyond Bitcoin.
  • Over the years, Coinbase raised substantial funding rounds, securing investments from notable venture capital firms and institutional investors.
  • By 2017, Coinbase had grown into one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the United States, with millions of registered users and billions of dollars in trading volume.

3. Regulatory Challenges and Scaling (2017-2019):

  • The exponential growth of Coinbase brought increased regulatory scrutiny. The company worked closely with regulators to comply with anti-money laundering (AML) and know your customer (KYC) regulations.
  • In 2017, Coinbase faced legal challenges when the IRS sought transaction data for tax enforcement purposes, leading to a legal battle that eventually resulted in a compromise.
  • Coinbase continued to scale its operations and expand its services, introducing features like Coinbase Pro (formerly GDAX) for more advanced traders.

4. Cryptocurrency Boom and User Base Surge (2017-2018):

  • In late 2017 and early 2018, the cryptocurrency market experienced a massive bull run, with Bitcoin reaching all-time highs of nearly $20,000. Coinbase's user base exploded during this period.
  • The influx of new users led to scalability challenges, with occasional outages and delays in customer support response times.

5. Diversification and New Services (2018-2021):

  • Coinbase expanded its offerings to include a range of cryptocurrency assets beyond Bitcoin and Ethereum. It listed various altcoins and tokens for trading.
  • The company also introduced Coinbase Custody, a service designed for institutional investors to securely store digital assets.
  • In 2018, Coinbase announced its intention to explore the addition of new cryptocurrencies, further diversifying its asset selection.
  • Coinbase also ventured into the staking space, allowing users to earn rewards by holding certain cryptocurrencies.
  • The company announced plans to go public through a direct listing on the Nasdaq stock exchange in 2021.

6. Coinbase Goes Public (2021):

  • On April 14, 2021, Coinbase Global, Inc. (COIN) went public through a direct listing on the Nasdaq, marking a significant milestone for the cryptocurrency industry.
  • The listing was seen as a validation of the maturation and mainstream acceptance of cryptocurrencies.

Mission

Coinbase's mission is to create an open financial system for the world. They aim to achieve this by providing a secure and user-friendly platform that enables individuals and institutions to easily buy, sell, and use various cryptocurrencies. Coinbase envisions a future where anyone, regardless of their location or financial background, can participate in the global economy through cryptocurrencies, making financial services more inclusive and accessible to all. They are committed to building trust in the cryptocurrency space and promoting the adoption of digital currencies as a means of financial empowerment and freedom.


Vision

Coinbase's vision is to make cryptocurrency and blockchain technology accessible to everyone, ultimately leading to a more equitable and open financial system. They aspire to empower individuals and businesses worldwide to seamlessly participate in the digital economy, fostering innovation, and financial inclusion. Coinbase envisions a future where cryptocurrencies are as widely accepted and used as traditional fiat currencies, providing greater financial freedom and opportunities for people around the globe.


Key Team

Ms. Alesia Jeanne Haas (Chief Financial Officer)

Mr. Paul Grewal (Chief Legal Officer & Corp. Sec.)

Jennifer N. Jones (Chief Accounting Officer)

Mr. Anil K. Gupta (VP of Investor Relations)

Mr. L.J. Brock (Chief People Officer)

Mr. Faryar Shirzad (Chief Policy Officer)

Mr. Prakash Hariramani (Sr. Director of Product)


Recognition and Awards
Coinbase has won several awards, including Best Consumer Application of the Year at the 2020 Imagination Awards, Best Digital Currency Exchange at the 2019 American Blockchain Awards, and Top Cryptocurrency Exchange at the 2018 Crypto Investor Awards.

Products and Services

Coinbase offers a range of products and services that cater to both beginners and experienced cryptocurrency users:

Coinbase Exchange: This is their primary platform for buying, selling, and trading a variety of cryptocurrencies, making it easy for users to enter the crypto market.

Coinbase Wallet: A secure digital wallet for storing, managing, and safeguarding cryptocurrencies. It provides users with control over their private keys and assets.

Coinbase Pro: Designed for more advanced traders, it offers advanced trading features, lower fees, and a more in-depth trading experience compared to the basic Coinbase platform.

Coinbase Card: A Visa debit card that allows users to spend their cryptocurrency holdings for everyday purchases, bridging the gap between crypto and traditional finance.

Coinbase Earn: An educational platform that rewards users with cryptocurrency for learning about different digital assets. It helps newcomers understand the crypto space.

Coinbase Custody: Geared towards institutional investors, it offers a secure and compliant storage solution for large amounts of cryptocurrency assets.

Coinbase Commerce: A service that enables businesses to accept cryptocurrency payments for goods and services, expanding payment options for online and offline merchants.

Coinbase Ventures: A venture capital arm that invests in promising blockchain and cryptocurrency startups, supporting innovation in the space.

Coinbase Prime: A platform designed for institutional clients, providing advanced trading and custody services with a focus on security and compliance.


References
Coinbase
Leadership team

Mr. Brian Armstrong (Co-Founder, Chairman & CEO)

Ms. Emilie M. Choi (Pres & COO)

Mr. Frederick Ernest Ehrsam III (Co-Founder & Director)

Industries

Technology

Products/ Services
Bitcoin, Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, FinTech, Trading Platform
Number of Employees
1,000 - 20,000
Headquarters
San Francisco, California, United States
Established
2012
Company Type
Public Limited Company
Company Registration
SEC CIK number: 0001679788
Revenue
Above - 1B
Traded as
COIN
Social Media

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Thu Apr 25 2024
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