Analyst Report: Upgrade for access Unbanked Provides Crypto Payments Without the Headache

Unbanked makes crypto payments easy. The company’s recent progress provides a solid foundation for its future plans.

Company: Unbanked (formerly Ternio BlockCard)
Security Type: SAFE
Valuation: $115,000,000
Min Investment: $250
Platform: StartEngine
Deadline: Apr 14, 2023
Andy Gordon - March 13th, 2023

Do You Accept Bitcoin?

Note: This recommendation was co-authored by KingsCrowd Investment Research Manager Olivia Strobl.

Both Olivia and I have played in the cryptocurrency space for years. Like many crypto enthusiasts, we were first drawn to digital assets for their versatility. The blockchain — which powers cryptocurrency — has a number of use cases, from peer-to-peer transactions to international payments. Now, thanks to companies like Unbanked, cryptocurrencies are more versatile and easy to use than ever. 

With a debit card powered by Unbanked, you could walk into your local grocery store and pay for your food with cryptocurrency. That’s no small feat. One of the major things holding cryptocurrency adoption back is its clunky user experience for everybody — buyers, sellers, traders, and holders, as well as retailers accepting purchases made with cryptocurrency. 

Unbanked allows users to pair their cards with Apple, Google, or Samsung Pay to make payments. They can use their cards at thousands of retailers worldwide, including Walmart, Walgreens, and 7-11. Users from more than 200 countries can swap fiat money (government-issued paper currency) for cryptocurrency with Unbanked’s debit cards. Banks, credit card companies, retailers, and players in the cryptocurrency market can white-label Unbanked’s platform and have customized cards made for their own company. For example, the Litecoin Foundation has a Litecoin Card powered by Unbanked available in the U.K. and Europe.

In bridging cryptocurrency with traditional finance systems, Unbanked is filling a huge gap in the cryptocurrency ecosystem. The value proposition is clear and compelling. For the cryptocurrency industry, it’s not a nice-to-have. It’s a must-have. 

Critically, Unbanked is not doing this by working with a single bank, crypto coin, or crypto company, nor by offering itself up as a crypto bank or neobank. Founder and CEO Ian Kane made it very clear that the company does not fall into the neobanking category. Rather, it provides the financial technology that undergirds the infrastructure for crypto-neobanking. 

The company is a card issuance platform that white-labels its technology and provides program management. Unbanked is BYOB, aka “bring your own brand.” And the brands that Unbanked has brought in are quite impressive. In addition to the Litecoin Foundation, Unbanked also has Nexo, Paxful, StormX, and Stacks on board.

If this impressive traction sounds familiar, it’s because Unbanked’s current raise is its third (and probably final) offering in the online private markets. Formerly known as Ternio BlockCard, Unbanked raised on Republic in 2020 and 2022. The 2022 raise was rated a Top Deal by the KingsCrowd team. And we continue to be very bullish on the company’s prospects in its current raise on StartEngine.

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