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Bitcoin is booming, and so is this start-up that’s processed $14 million in six months

Friday, 22 November 2013 | By Rose Powell

BTC.sx, a Sydney-based bitcoin derivative trading platform has this week announced they’ve brokered over $14 million in trades since launching in May.


Co-founder and chief operations officer George Samman told StartupSmart the markets they’re seeing the most demand from are the United States, China and Australia.


Samman says despite the rapid rise in bitcoin’s value this week to over $US900 per coin, they don’t think it’s a bubble.


“I’d be remiss if I didn’t say the price rise has been dramatic, but I don’t think it’s a bubble,” Samman says. “This value surge is backed by a bunch of positive things that have happened that are legitimising bitcoin more, such as closing down the drug dealing site Silk Road and conversations about regulation.”


Based on where their 2000 active users are based, Samman says he expects bitcoin will continue to thrive as people in vulnerable economies seek to save their money.


“With our users, what the government is up to with the economy matters. In Europe, we’ve got more users in Greece and Spain than England or Switzerland. We believe the reason why is they have a real fear that their countries might go bankrupt or leave the euro, making their dollars worthless,” Samman says.


Samman and co-founder Joe Lee both have backgrounds in finance and banking. They launched the platform with $150,000 of their own savings and plan to expand into futures and derivatives on the platform in the next few months.


He adds they’re keen to see bitcoin become regulated.


“I’m hoping it does become more regulated, because that would mean legitimacy. We would love that because it would stop being a mysterious digital currency and make it real to more people,” Samman says.