Coinbase partners with stablecoin exchange Yellow Card in African expansion

In a significant move to expand its reach in emerging economies, Coinbase, the San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange, has announced a partnership with Yellow Card, an African stablecoin exchange. The collaboration aims to extend access to Coinbase’s products across 20 African countries, potentially reaching over half of the continent’s population.

Starting in February, the partnership will enable users to purchase USDC, a popular stablecoin pegged to the US dollar, through the Coinbase Wallet app. Additionally, the app will facilitate fee-free transfers of USDC via email and popular messaging platforms, including WhatsApp, iMessage, and Telegram. Yellow Card users will also have the option to buy USDC on Base, a Coinbase-incubated Ethereum layer 2 platform that offers cost-effective transactions.

Coinbase highlighted the significance of this partnership for high-inflation, remittance-dependent countries in Africa. The company stated in an official blog post, “This partnership with its emphasis on USDC will increase economic freedom in places that have lacked it, and help stand up a modern financial system where one hasn’t existed”.

Yellow Card, a portfolio company of Coinbase, has previously raised significant funding. In August 2020, it announced a $1.5 million seed round, which included contributions from Polychain Capital, Andreessen Horowitz, and the Celo Ecosystem Fund. This was followed by a $15 million Series A round and a $40 million Series B round in September 2022, led by Polychain.

Companies Coinbase has partnered with in the past

Coinbase, a leading cryptocurrency exchange, has a history of forming strategic partnerships to expand its services and reach.
In 2014, Coinbase partnered Overstock, Dell, Expedia, Dish Network, and Time Inc to enable them to accept bitcoin payments. The company also added bitcoin payment processing capabilities to traditional payment companies like Braintree and PayPal during the same year.

In August 2021, asset management giant BlackRock partnered with Coinbase to allow its institutional clients to trade bitcoin, access custody, prime brokerage, and reporting via Coinbase Prime.

Coinbase acquired ORDAM, a premier institutional digital asset manager and SEC-registered investment adviser. ORDAM transitioned to become Coinbase Asset Management (CBAM), operating as an independent business and wholly-owned subsidiary of Coinbase.


The partnership with Yellow Card aligns with Coinbase’s “Go Broad, Go Deep” strategy, which emphasizes compliant international expansion. This announcement follows the company’s recent plans to acquire a MiFID-licensed entity to broaden its derivatives offering in the European Union. Currently, Coinbase only offers spot trading in the EU, and the acquisition of such a license would enable the company to offer crypto-based derivatives in Europe. In December, Coinbase also expanded its international offerings by introducing spot trading for non-U.S. institutions.

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