Source: ARK Disrupt Issue 134: July 23, 2018. By @yassineARK

Earlier this month, browser company Opera filed for a $115 million initial public offering (IPO), highlighted by Bitmain – the dominant bitcoin mining machine manufacturer – agreeing to purchase $50 million of shares. In tandem, Opera announced the launch of a cryptocurrency wallet native to its mobile browser.

The strategic relevance of this move is tied to Opera’s market dominance in Africa. As one of the world’s largest browser providers, Opera services 100 million users in Africa, capturing half of the continent’s market share. Based on these recent announcements, ARK believes that Opera has enormous potential to become the gateway for cryptocurrency cross border payments in Africa, and perhaps elsewhere.

While Safaricom’s MPesa has enabled peer-to-peer (P2P) remittances and mobile payments locally in various countries in Africa, cross border payments remain wildly inefficient and subject to fraud.

Validated by Bitmain’s direct investment, Opera’s decision to move into the crypto-wallet space paves the way for a revamped payments infrastructure and a standardized exchange across markets in Africa.

View original article and other research here.

ARK’s statements are not an endorsement of any company or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold any security. For a list of all purchases and sales made by ARK for client accounts during the past year that could be considered by the SEC as recommendations, click here. It should not be assumed that recommendations made in the future will be profitable or will equal the performance of the securities in this list. For full disclosures, click here.

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Fred Pye

Frederick T. Pye


Frederick T. Pye is the Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and Director of 3iQ Corp. He is also the Chairman and Director of 3iQ Digital Holdings Inc. Mr. Pye is recognized for creating and promoting creative and unique investment products for the investment industry.

Mr. Pye has managed private client portfolios with Landry Investment Management and various other investment dealers. Prior to this Mr. Pye was Founder, President & Chief Executive Officer of Argentum Management and Research Corporation, a company dedicated to managing and distributing quantitative investment portfolios including the first long-short mutual fund in Canada.

He was also Senior Vice-President and National Sales Manager of Fidelity Investments Canada and an integral part of the team that saw assets rise from $80 million to over $7.5 billion in assets under management during his tenure. He also held various positions with Guardian Trust Company, which listed the first Gold, Silver and Platinum Certificates on the Montreal Exchange.

Mr. Pye obtained a Masters in Business Administration from Concordia University.