- Btrust, funded by Jack Dorsey, acquires a leading African Bitcoin talent firm, Qala.
- The acquisition aims to amplify African Bitcoin expertise on a global scale.
- Qala’s unique position in the African market makes it a strategic asset for Btrust.
Crypto supporters have long touted the industry’s promise of banking the unbanked. Now, Jack Dorsey-backed Btrust aims to tap into the talent pool of areas most affected by this issue with its Qala acquisition.
Btrust Acquires African Bitcoin Talent Company Qala
Established with the support of Jack Dorsey and Jay-Z, Btrust has been an advocate for decentralized Bitcoin software development. On Tuesday, September 5, Btrust acquired Qala, an organization training African Bitcoin and Lightning engineers.
Following the completion of the acquisition on September 1, 2023, Qala will transition to the Btrust Builders Programme, reflecting a shared goal of promoting Bitcoin open-source engineering, especially from the Global South.
Since its inception in 2021, Qala has been instrumental in linking African software developers to international Bitcoin companies. Its influence extends across over 42 African nations, and its programs have facilitated placements in firms such as Galoy, SphinxChat, and Bitnob.
Bernard Parah, Co-Founder and Director of Qala, provided insights on the merger, underscoring the potential to enhance the understanding and application of Bitcoin in addressing specific challenges in Africa.
Femi Longe and Stephanie Titcombe from Qala will join Btrust, contributing their expertise to the Btrust Builders Programme.
Bitcoin and Blockchain in Africa
Africa has been rapidly embracing the world of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. The continent’s unique socio-economic challenges have made it a fertile ground for adoption.
According to Chainalysis, Africa is among the fastest-growing crypto markets globally, despite being the smallest in volume. Crypto transactions in the continent peaked at $20 billion per month in mid-2021.
Countries like Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa lead the region regarding user numbers. While many Africans use cryptocurrencies for commercial payments, the inherent volatility of these digital assets makes them less ideal as a store of value.
On the Flipside
While Africa is rapidly adopting cryptocurrencies, a significant portion of its population still lacks access to the necessary technology or internet connectivity.
Despite high penetration rates in some areas, Africa is a relatively small market for crypto.
Why This Matters
The collaboration between Btrust and Qala points to the Global South’s potential in crypto, especially in Africa.
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