Payment Builder Kado Closes First Capital Raise To Expand Access to Stablecoins

The stablecoin payment infrastructure provider’s seed round will go toward onboarding new users to Terra’s UST stablecoin and expanding cross-chain


Blockworks Exclusive Art by Axel Rangel


key takeaways

  • With a new $5.4 million fundraise, Kado aims to make access to algorithmic stablecoin UST much easier, says Vince Dowdle, co-founder and chief operating officer
  • The company plans to expand into other ecosystems beyond Terra with a focus on cross-chain services

Kado, a stablecoin payment infrastructure provider, closed its first capital raise for $5.4 million on Tuesday, the company’s co-founders exclusively told Blockworks.

There needs to be greater stablecoin access, simplicity and ability to use them, Emery Andrew, co-founder and CEO of Kado, said to Blockworks. 

The seed round was led by venture fund Hashed with participation from Race Capital, Circle Ventures, Collab+Currency, Republic Capital, PrimeBlock Ventures, 0xVentures, T&G Ventures, Skyvision Capital, Lunatic Capital, Contango Digital, TPS Capital and a few angel investors, including Blockworks’ Co-founder Jason Yanowitz.

The funding will help Kado grow from the Terra ecosystem into other stablecoins, multichain worlds and markets, Andrew said. There is no public valuation at this time.

The company formed during a Terra community hackathon in May 2021 with the goal of supporting stablecoin ecosystems like Terra’s UST by creating products that make it easier for users to spend and use their stablecoins. It plans to provide support for Circle’s USDC in the near future as well, Andrew said.

“Ultimately, in our first six months, we launched Kado Pay, the ability to spend your stablecoins on Amazon, not natively on it, but through our application,” Andrew said. “You can come to our site and spend stablecoin directly, and very soon you’ll be able to spend USDC as well.”

Stablecoin demand has jumped over the past 12 months, Terra’s market capitalization has increased 1,563% from $830.88 million on the year-ago date to $13.82 billion as of Monday. Meanwhile, the market cap for USDC, another popular stablecoin, rose 487% from $8.93 billion to $52.47 billion in the past year.

“The biggest problem in the Terra ecosystem is getting access to UST, you have to jump through all these hoops…there’s so much friction involved,” Vince Dowdle, co-founder and chief operating officer, said to Blockworks. Last month, the company launched Kado Ramp, an application where users can swap between dollars and stablecoins within minutes.

“People who don’t understand the complexities of crypto can just connect their bank account, onboard directly into these protocols natively with dollars,” Dowdle said. 

In the company’s first week, it processed over $1 million in UST purchases and has been increasing about $100,000 a day since, Andrew said. To date, it has users from over 60 countries and anticipates its purchases to increase further through new payment methods and protocol partnerships, Dowdle said.

Going forward, the company plans to expand into other ecosystems beyond Terra with a focus on cross-chain services like Solana to USDC and Avalanche to USDC, Andrew said. 

“Ultimately, we want to make sure the experience for the merchant is a simple one,” Andrew said.

Don’t miss the next big story – join our free daily newsletter.


Upcoming Events

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research

ao cover.jpg


Arweave recently launched the testnet for AO computer, a new messaging protocol that will sit atop a PoS network and aims to become a scalable global compute platform through parallel processing and modularity.


The “fastest-growing ETF in history” has seen net inflows on every trading day since its Jan. 11 launch


Relm and Chainproof will provide insurance quotes to distributed validators


DLC.Link uses a Taproot-based Bitcoin multisig to let institutions mint dlcBTC, starting on Arbitrum


Pre-seed Bitcoin startup deals rose 360% in 2023, a TVP report shows


Circle’s new smart contract to allow holders of BlackRock USD Institutional Digital Liquidity Fund to redeem shares for its stablecoin


Uniswap says it was not surprised to receive a Wells notice given the SEC’s “abusive” use of power as of late