Israeli Blockchain Company Colu raises USD $9.6 Million

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Blockchain startup from Israel Colu has raised $9.6 million USD, from investors including Aleph, Spark Capital, Digital Currency Group and former Thomson Reuters CEO Tom Glocer.

In early 2015 the company raised $2.5 million in a seed round and the latest round lifts the amount they have raised to $12.1 million.

Colu pivoted from their focus on colored coins technology to a specific use case that was the most in-demand among its users  which is to target local currencies that help small businesses and improve local economic growth by eliminating the dependence of the business on the bank or credit card company and make a direct path between buyer and seller

Colu has created digital currencies for two Tel Aviv neighborhoods – Jaffa and Florentin. The digital currency is linked to the shekel and is according to the company the Israeli digital equivalent of cash. The company says that its platform is already in use by municipal authorities in Barbados and Brazil.

Colu CEO Amos Meiri told CoinDesk:

“There are a lot of other use cases for colored coins, in music, in the Internet of Things, but what we saw after a while was that more than 60% of the use cases were for local currencies. This is where our market is.”

“We have the wallet and we have a control panel where the manager of the local economy can issue a distributed currency, gain access to data about the economy and manage it from one place.”

Founded in 2014 and based in Tel Aviv, Colu has 24 staff will grow its workforce to 30.

About Richard Kastelein

Founder of industry publication Blockchain News, partner at ICO services collective CryptoAsset Design Group (helped raise over $200m+), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) and ICO event organiser at leading industry event  CryptoFinancing (first ICO event in Europe) - Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of half a dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1200 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat.
 
Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London, Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, San Mateo, Shanghai,Tel Aviv and Venice. His network is global and extensive.
 
He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He's written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and Virgin.com and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French.
 
A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world.
 
In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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