Mercado Bitcoin operator acquires Portuguese crypto exchange

Brazilian 2TM Group, operator of the largest cryptocurrency exchange in Latin America, Mercado Bitcoin, is moving to expand its global presence through a strategic acquisition in Portugal.

On Wednesday, the company officially announced the acquisition of a controlling stake in CriptoLoja, a Lisbon-based crypto exchange licensed by the Portuguese Central Bank.

Subject to the approval of Banco de Portugal, the new deal aims to help 2TM begin its expansion into Europe through its over-the-counter exchange services. The company also plans to offer Mercado Bitcoin services to individual and institutional investors in Portugal.

“We will reach the European market using the obvious synergies with our presence in Latin America, where we share the same language, a recognized brand and cross-selling opportunities for customers. There are many Brazilians who live in Portugal and want to invest from 2TM,” said Roberto Dagnoni, CEO of 2TM. through our platform.

Dagnoni said the new acquisition was made possible after several major funding rounds in 2021, with 2TM raising more than $250 million from investors such as Japanese financial giant SoftBank, raising its valuation to more than $2 billion by November.

“Crypto is a global business. Portugal is a strategic market for us because it requires a specific licensing, becoming an important hub for cryptocurrencies in Europe and opening a gateway to the larger European market.”

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According to the announcement, CriptoLoja founders Luis Gomez and Pedro Borges will remain co-chairs of the business while helping 2TM’s expansion into Europe. Cryptocurrency is still an emerging topic in the country. Borges stated that all virtual assets such as Bitcoin and Ether are generating a revolution and a huge demand.”

Portugal has been hailed as a crypto-friendly jurisdiction as its authorities have pushed for the creation of technology free zones to develop fintech and innovation in the country. Last year, Portugal’s central bank licensed three cryptocurrency exchanges: CriptoLoja, Luso Digital Assets, and Mind The Coin.