Luno launches Luno Expeditions to accelerate the development of the new financial ecosystem

Luno Expeditions will scale up investments to 200-300 per year, making it one of the most prolific early-stage fintech investors globally.

Luno launches Luno Expeditions to accelerate the development of the new financial ecosystem

Luno, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Digital Currency Group (“DCG”), has announced the launch of Luno Expeditions. The initiative will support the best fintech and crypto/web3 founders on their journeys to build the next generation of financial services.

Luno is the foremost global cryptocurrency company on a mission to upgrade the world to a better financial system. Headquartered in London with regional hubs in Lagos, Cape Town and Johannesburg, Luno now has a team of over 600.

With over nine million customers (wallets) spanning more than 40 countries, Luno’s products and services make it safe and easy to buy, store and learn about cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Luno was acquired by DCG, the world’s largest blockchain investor in September 2020.

Leaning on DCG’s seven-year track record in early stage crypto investing, Luno Expeditions will now spearhead DCG’s early stage investing (seed and pre-seed).  The team will scale up investments (targeting 200-300 per year) and expand the focus beyond crypto into the broader fintech space, globally.

This means Luno Expeditions will back early-stage fintech and crypto entrepreneurs to accelerate the development of a new global financial ecosystem.

Luno Expeditions will be led by Jocelyn Cheng, who takes on the role of CEO. Jocelyn has invested in global startup founders over the last 6 years as Managing Director at the impact investment VC, Global Innovation Fund. She also held investing roles at CPP Investments, Bain Capital and Goldman Sachs. She holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Speaking about her new role Cheng said: “I am thrilled to join Luno Expeditions as Chief Executive. These are incredibly exciting times in cryptocurrency and the broader fintech ecosystem. We’ve got ambitious plans to build a leading fund designed around the needs of early stage founders. It will be a privilege to work with ambitious entrepreneurs from all over the world, all intent on solving problems and building the next generation of financial service companies.”

Marcus Swanepoel, Luno co-founder and CEO commented: “We know how hard it is to build a company, especially in the fintech space, and with our deep experience building, scaling and operating fintech businesses in some of the hardest markets in the world, we’re looking to support a new generation of entrepreneurs from all over the world do the same.”

Barry Silbert, founder and CEO of DCG, and Marcus Swanepoel, co-founder and CEO of Luno, are both closely involved in the initiative and will be part of the Investment Committee.

Other members of the Luno Expeditions team include Mira Christanto as Director of Investments, Aditi Khimasia as Head of Legal, Katharine Suy as Chief Marketing Officer, and Margaux Dutertre as Investment Analyst.

Whilst in stealth mode over the past few months, Luno Expeditions has already invested in over 20 leading crypto and fintech companies globally, including a crypto compliance solution in Israel, an NFT marketplace in the United States, a bank dedicated to women in Pakistan and a ground-breaking remittance solution in Tanzania.

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