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Uphold: A Pioneering Force in the Crypto Industry

By Ryan Prete, Jul 11, 2023

Person holding various cryptocurrency coins including Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum in the palm of their hand, with a blurred background.

In the always-evolving world of cryptocurrency, Uphold has emerged as a trailblazing startup that has transformed the way investors manage, access, and trade digital assets. Uphold’s platform bridges the gap between traditional and decentralized finance, enabling users to effortlessly transact with a wide variety of digital currencies, commodities, metals, and traditional assets.

In this article, we’ll dive into Uphold’s offerings and examine how venture capital and private equity firms are investing in the booming fintech sector.

Uphold’s Mission: Serving Democratized Finance for an Entire Globe 

Uphold’s overarching mission is to democratize finance by enabling anyone, anywhere, to have easy access to a broad range of financial services and investment opportunities. Built on a core of proprietary technologies and e-money apps, Uphold embraces a future where people and businesses around the world have access to safe, transparent, fair, and affordable financial services.

Uphold serves over 184 countries, across 200 currencies (traditional and crypto) and commodities with frictionless foreign exchange and cross-border remittance for members around the world. Since its launch in 2015, Uphold has powered more than $4 billion in transactions.

Uphold is a multi-asset digital money platform offering financial services to a global market. Uphold’s unique ‘Anything-to-Anything’ trading experience enables customers to trade directly between asset classes with embedded payments facilitating a future where everyone has access to financial services.

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Uphold’s Premier Offerings 

Diverse Range of Supported Assets  

Uphold has amassed an impressive array of supported assets, catering to the diverse needs and preferences of its user base. Users can transact with popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Ripple (XRP), and Litecoin (LTC), as well as a wide range of stablecoins and utility tokens. Moreover, Uphold has expanded its offerings beyond digital assets to include traditional investments such as stocks, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), and even commodities like gold and silver. This diversified selection positions Uphold as a comprehensive financial platform that allows users to manage their entire portfolio in one place.

Simple Conversions and Instant Settlements

Uphold streamlines the process of converting between varying assets, allowing for an expedited and convenient user experience when it comes to swapping between crypto and fiat currencies. Whether a user wants to convert Bitcoin into traditional fiat currency or vice-versa, Uphold’s platform facilitates a transaction with minimal delays. Further, the company’s Instant Settlement feature permits users to immediately settle transactions with efficient execution.

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Security and Compliance of Utmost Importance  

Uphold places the utmost importance on regulatory and security compliance, employing industry-standard security measures such as encryption, cold storage solutions, and multi-factor authentication to safeguard the assets of its users. In addition, Uphold adheres to robust anti-money laundering and know-your-customer (KYC) procedures. In doing so, Uphold has built a reputation as a trusted and reliable financial service provider.

Pioneers of Transparency 

According to Uphold’s website: The Uphold platform is always 100% reserved. The company is subject to regular U.S. state audits. Uphold never loans out customer money. The company publishes its assets and liabilities in real-time.

How VCs and PEs are investing in Fintech  

The Fintech sector has remained a top investment vertical for venture capital and private equity firms over the past few years. Even as other sectors have seen investment activity plummet due to market volatility, fintech startups have continued to return dividends to investment firms. The sector is maintaining its rapid growth and is forecasted to be worth around $1.5 trillion by 2030, according to Boston Consulting Group.

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Since 2022, private investment firms have completed some 7,000 deals for fintech companies, investing well over $150 billion into the sector in under two years, according to PitchBook. Among the top investors in the space are startup accelerator Y Combinator with 308 investments in the sector since 2022, startup accelerator Techstars with 216 investments, venture capital firm Soma Capital with 160 investments, startup accelerator Plug and Play Tech Center with 143 investments, and venture capital firm Goodwater Capital with 119 investments.

Included in the over 7,000 fintech deals mentioned above are some 250 exits, which include buyouts and initial public offerings, two huge events for startups and their investors, including Linqto members. You can read more about what entails the IPO process here.

PitchBook places Uphold’s exit probability at 89%–a notably high number for a fintech startup. This figure breaks down to a 72% M&A probability and a 17% IPO probability.

Uphold in Conclusion: A Pioneering Force in the Crypto Industry

Since its launch in 2015, Uphold has emerged as a pioneering force in the cryptocurrency industry, empowering its users with an accessible and user-friendly platform that bridges the divide between the ever-growing world of digital assets and established traditional finance. Its diverse range of supported assets and conversion capabilities allow for users to get the most out of their crypto investments, while innovative features like the Uphold Card provide for the continued mass adoption of cryptocurrencies worldwide. With the fintech sector flourishing and private financial institutions viewing the sector as a gold standard, public offering potential and other exit opportunities are available for Uphold and similar startups. Uphold has shown the world why it is at the forefront of shaping the future of finance, and why we at Linqto are proud to support and offer the company to our members.

This material, provided by Linqto, is for informational purposes only and is not intended as investment advice or any form of professional guidance. Before making any investment decision, especially in the dynamic field of private markets, it is recommended that you seek advice from professional advisors. The information contained herein does not imply endorsement of any third parties or investment opportunities mentioned. Our market views and investment insights are subject to change and may not always reflect the most current developments. No assumption should be made regarding the profitability of any securities, sectors, or markets discussed. Past performance is not indicative of future results, and investing in private markets involves unique risks, including the potential for loss. Historical and hypothetical performance figures are provided to illustrate possible market behaviors and should not be relied upon as predictions of future performance.


How does Uphold make money?

Uphold generates revenue through various sources to sustain its operations and provide its services to users, including:
1. Transaction Fees: Uphold charges transaction fees on various types of transactions conducted on its platform. This includes fees for buying and selling cryptocurrencies, converting between different assets, and transferring funds to external wallets or bank accounts. The fees vary depending on the type of transaction and the currencies involved.
2. Currency Conversion Fees: When users convert between different fiat currencies or between fiat and cryptocurrencies, Uphold charges currency conversion fees. These fees cover the costs associated with facilitating the conversion and may include a small margin for Uphold.
3. Interest on Holdings: Uphold allows users to earn interest on certain assets held on its platform. By lending out users’ funds to borrowers or participating in lending protocols, Uphold can generate interest income. The interest rates and terms vary depending on the specific assets and lending arrangements.

Is Uphold FDIC insured?

Uphold is not FDIC insured but does offer its own insurance. Uphold offers a USD Stable Coin, which is backed in a 1:1 ratio with physical dollars in FDIC insured banks. This means that for every dollar you spend there is a real US dollar, sitting in a US bank backing your digital money.

Is Uphold publicly traded?

Uphold is a private company and is therefore not yet publicly traded.


Ryan Prete

Ryan Prete

Ryan is a financial writer for Linqto, known for his original blog content, articles, and other works. He previously worked as a financial writer at PitchBook Data, where he covered private equity, and as a reporter for Bloomberg in Washington D.C.,where he reported on tax policy. Ryan has also reported on cybersecurity policy for Inside Washington Publishers. His work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Axios, Yahoo News, and Reuters. He is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara.