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Paxful Reveals Data Since Inception, 2019 Growth Stats

Despite recent sluggishness, Paxful's 2019 has been a success.

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The global peer-to-peer Bitcoin marketplace, Paxful, has revealed it processed almost $1.6 billion in P2P Bitcoin trades in 2019, representing a gradual uptrend since its inception in 2015.

Prices May Be Subdued, But Paxful Is On The Rise

Announcing its annual growth metrics on the same day as revealing the company’s historical figures dating back to 2015, Paxful has declared its intention to continue pursuing a brand of openness and transparency.

The announcement comes only a week after its partnership with Binance saw it become the fiat on-ramp for the giant exchange. Paxful saw historical highs of $30 million worth of trades in November.

The company’s 2019 volumes have dwarfed those of earlier years, suggesting crypto adoption is rising, despite the recent drop off in interest and prices. In 2015, the platform reported $5.9 million in U.S. dollar trade volume. That has steadily climbed by 25% or more year-over-year. 

Growth in Volume Matches Growth in Wallet Numbers

At the end of the 2017 bull run to all-time highs, Paxful recorded more than half a billion dollars worth of trade volume. 2019 has seen a tripling of that number. A million new wallets have been opened this year, compared with only 97 thousand in 2015. The platform hosts over three million wallets.

The platform began as a way for merchants to accept Bitcoin. But, as COO and co-founder Artur Schaback explained, “The product was great and it worked with the few merchants we had but there was still the unsolved problem of an easy way of buying bitcoin… That’s how Paxful was born, we realized peer-to-peer was still in its infancy and had a lot of room for improvement.”

Paxful’s peer-to-peer platform offers over 350 ways to buy and sell Bitcoin. Complimenting the 70 fiat currencies it accepts, traders can also use methods such as gift cards, bank transfers, and online wallets.

Emerging Markets Lead 2019 Growth

The growth of emerging market users has been one of the most striking revelations for 2019. According to the company, Ghana, India, and Nigeria were the fastest-growing emerging markets on the platform. Vietnamese use of the platform has doubled since last year. Indonesian use has grown an eye-popping 400%. None of those countries allow crypto to be used for purchases, with Ghana not recognizing digital assets at all.

Peer-to-peer trading also rose in Hong Kong this year by over 130%, suggesting there was some flight to crypto as a result of civil unrest and fears of mainland Chinese encroachment. Much of the growth came in the second half of the year.

Paxful Hong Kong dollar trades
Courtesy Useful Tulips, Hong Kong dollar P2P trades on Paxful in 2019

Crypto Briefing reached out to co-founder Ray Youssef about what he believes next year will hold for crypto. The CEO told us that, “We see emerging markets as the future vessel for mainstream adoption, with Africa, Asia, and parts of Europe leading the charge. As more people crave financial freedom and see Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as the means to that end, we believe we will see continued usage as a solution for liquidity and other problems.”

Youssef struck a rebellious chord when asked about Paxful’s growth this year, arguing that, “2019 can be defined by the need for non-traditional financial services. In some markets, like India for example, the government restrictions on centralized exchanges are pushing people to P2P platforms, and the same can be said for other countries such as Thailand. As people look for a way to take control of their own capital and governments battle for that control, we’re seeing the masses migrate to a place where they cannot be restricted by inflation, corruption, or simply a lack of understanding.”

With Paxful determined to bring digital currencies into everyday life around the world, Satoshi Nakamoto’s vision of P2P electronic cash is slowly, but surely, becoming realized.

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