India has experienced a massive increase in cryptocurrency trade after the outbreak of COVID-19, despite the fact that officials in Asia’s third biggest economy have long expressed their reservations about digital currencies. Entrepreneurs in the crypto sector told a famous Indian news station that the nation has the potential to become a crypto powerhouse since it has one of the world’s fastest internet marketplaces, with 750 million users and hundreds of millions more waiting to sign up for the first time.
According to a survey issued in October by blockchain analytics platform Chainalysis, India ranked second only to Vietnam in a list of nations experiencing the highest rise in bitcoin usage last year. While the government does not keep track of how many individuals trade cryptocurrency, industry analysts believe the country already has more than 20 million crypto investors. According to the creators of two of India’s largest crypto exchanges, the rise is being driven by younger investors, largely under the age of 35, and many of them are coming from smaller cities and villages.
According to Sumit Gupta, CEO and co-founder of exchange CoinDCX, many Indian millennials have begun to invest in cryptocurrency during their crypto-investing journey whereas their parents preferred to invest in gold 20 years ago, these young people are more interested in having bitcoin as part of their portfolio. Gupta told the news channel that because traditionally, Indians chose to save their money in gold or savings accounts. Purchasing gold is both an investment and a cultural practice in India, which, according to the World Gold Council, is one of the major markets for the precious metal.
Last year, Mumbai-based CoinDCX became India’s first crypto unicorn, with a value of $1.1 billion after gathering funds from investors including Coinbase Ventures and B Capital Group. According to the business, 70% of its 10 million members are between the ages of 18 and 34. Data from competing company WazirX indicates a similar story. WazirX has over 10 million users and has predicted that 2021 will be a “phenomenal year” for cryptocurrency trading in India. Binance, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, purchased the firm in 2019.
According to a recent corporate report, over 65 percent of its users are under the age of 35, and it has experienced a 700% growth in the number of participants from smaller cities like Guwahati, Karnal, and Bareilly, consequently showing the increased interest from rural and semi-urban regions. College students are frequently the most involved players.Bitcoin reached a record high of $68,990 in November, but it has since plummeted to roughly $43,000. In addition to bitcoin, meme currencies like dogecoin and shiba inu are popular with Indians, according to the WazirX research.
Apart from investors from smaller areas, both firms experienced a rise in the number of female users on their platforms of more than 1000 percent, albeit on a limited scale.According to Gupta, the engagement of Indian women in cryptocurrency has seen a big upside in the last 18 months and is pretty high, quite robust, compared to stock markets.
According to the company’s data, 15 percent of their total consumers are women, which is consistent with the global trend.