US cryptocurrency lending startup BlockFi has raised $18.3 million USD inside a funding round led by Valar Ventures, the business enterprise announced .

BlockFi is the first company of its kind to receive institutional funding for crypto-based loans in $, in the form of a $50 million lending facility from Galaxy Digital. The fresh capital will reportedly be used to expand the range of products on BlockFi’s existing platform inclusive of interest-earning accounts for Bitcoin (BTC) and crypto-backed USD loans. BlockFi also plans on using the investment to double its quantity of employees to 60 this year.?Earlier this year, BlockFi announced?it had over $53 million in customer crypto assets under management.

Valar, which were founded by PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, makes its first go to crypto investment utilizing this type of Series A funding round, this program saw participation from numerous other crypto-focused investors just like?Winklevoss Capital and Galaxy Digital. Valar is just one of three venture funds co-founded by Mr. Thiel, who has got previously obtained prominent Fintech companies like Transferwise and N26.

In March, BlockFi unveiled a family savings that promises just as much as 6.2% in annual returns and possesses since gathered about $250 million in assets. The two-year-old company in addition has crypto-backed loans, allowing clients to deposit a minimum of $20,000 in digital currency in return for fiat loans.

BlockFi is under some controversy recently, mostly due to the advertised monthly interest rate on its deposit accounts. The provider claims to offer 6.2% annual interest on deposits; however, a result of product’s terms and conditions, the company can adjust this at its discretion.