The next wave of web, that is hoped to be “the Google of Cryptocurrency”, yes, we are talking about the biggest U.S. Bitcoin exchange- COINBASE. Brian Armstrong together with Fred Ehrsam co-founded Coinbase in July 2011 as a Bitcoin marketplace that would enable people to purchase the cryptocurrency.

Here is a glance of 15 things that you might not know about Brian Armstrong and Coinbase:

1.The origin of Coinbase

It was around the Christmas of 2010 when Brian came in contact with Bitcoin. He realized the lack of Bitcoin exchange marketplaces and saw it as a chance. By 2012, Brian and Fred registered Coinbase for the Y Combinator Start-up Incubator Program (the one famous for having invested in popular start-ups like Dropbox, Weebly, Reddit, Airbnb). However, the complete launch of the company happened in October 2012 when it began its Bitcoin buying and selling services through bank transfers.

2.The prominent investors of Coinbase

The size of Coinbase has rocketed over a short period of time. This was possible because of the notable investors and venture capitalists that invested in Coinbase over the years. In 2013, Brian and Coinbase were able to firm a $5 million Series A investment from Union Square Ventures (USV). By December, Ribbit Capital and Andreessen Horowitz associated with USV imbued a total of $ 25 million in Coinbase. Several banks in partnership with the New York Stock Exchange and Draper FISHER Jurvetson invested a whooping amount of $75 million in the company making it the first Bitcoin exchange to be a recipient of direct investment from a major financial institution in January 2015.

3.The Litecoin creator’s brief role in Coinbase

Upon its creation, the third person to be appointed to work on Coinbase platform was Charlie Lee, the creator of Litecoin. Charlie left his job at Google to work with Brian as a Director of Engineering in his company. He worked till June 2017.

4.Regulations and securities of cryptocurrency by Coinbase

Coinbase follows protocols that are similar to those used in banking industry and all its operations are supervised to eliminate potential losses. It also propounds future services that include crypto securities trading, margin and over-the-counter trading. The company has acquired securities dealer Keystone Capital Corp., Venovate Marketplace, Inc., and Digital Wealth LLC so as to become a fully- synchronized broker-dealer.


Coinbase has done 1st of its kind deed in crypto-ecosystem to establish a new cryptocurrency charity fund- THE GIVECRYPTO. It is a philanthropic venture to financially authorize people with direct cryptocurrency distributions. This nonprofit venture’s goal is to give 100% of its cryptocurrency contributions to impoverished people, a selfless goal that simultaneously drives cryptocurrency’s real-world utility and has already raised $ 1 million from prominent cryptocurrency community under the guidance of Brian Armstrong and partner Rose Broome.

6.Growth of Coinbase in a short period

  • In 2016, 4.7 million people had accounts with Coinbase.
  • In 2017, the number rose to 13.3 million and this was possible because of Brian’s passion.
  • Charlie Lee, the creator of Litecoin, one of the cryptocurrency giants, was said to be the third person that was hired to work for Coinbase platform when it was formed. Charlie started working with Brian at Coinbase when he left his job at Google. He worked as the Director of Engineering while at the company until he left in June, 2017.
  • In 2017 there was a time when Coinbase was the most downloaded app on iPhone in America and it generated $1 billion revnue for Coinbase.



7.The Unicorn Status 

In a cryptocurrency world, to attain the UNICORN status, a company should be valued at $1 billion or more. Coinbase attained a valuation of $1.6 billion in august 2017, making it the first startup to attain the prestigious status. Coinbase also became the most downloaded app on iphone in the US in 2017.


8.Coinbase v/s John Doe summons

During the period 2013-2015, Coinbase had to fight back against the Internal Revenue Services (IRS) and its wide-ranging summons. IRS demanded a “John Doe Summons” providing a detailed personal information for more than 1 million customers. Coinbase won a victory but only had to provide information about accounts that conducted Bitcoin transactions, either through exchanging Bitcoins for dollars or through sending and receiving coins from another bitcoin user, worth $20,000 and above. But through it all Coinbase customer base has continued to outpour and the company has resumed to charge fees that are high, at least by traditional brokerage standards.

9.New members in Coinbase family

Coinbase has recently declared a new product in their escort, Coinbase Custody, which is a platform aimed at supporting institutions. They are planning to reinforce all the major digital assets, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, ERC20 Tokens and more. Possibly hundreds of cryptocurrencies will be accessible for sale if they plan to offer all ERC20 Tokens. Coinbase has launched more cryptocurrencies for the U.K. pound sterling (GBP). British customers will now be in a position to trade altcoins Ethereum(ETH), Ethereum Classic(ETC), Litecoin(LTC) and Bitcoin Cash(BCH) for GBP, In addition to the existing Bitcoin(BTC).

10..Coinbase owns the private keys to your accounts

Coinbase always controls your stash and monitors it. It monitors your purchases and if anything goes wrong from your side, then the company may freeze your account and may close it. You might get your money back in your bank account but Coinbase does not obey the general rule of decentralization.  In a way, whenever you buy a Bitcoin, the company holds the private keys to your account and you are given the public keys.

11.Advantages of using Coinbase

a.Coinbase is accessible in 30 countries so you can reciprocate Bitcoins in 159 various fiat currencies.

b.Coinbase is extra secured with its partners like New York Securities and backed by major banks.

c.They are financed as well as licensed making them one of the best brokers for cryptocurrencies in the world.

d.They are also engulfed with credit cards that makes the transactions faster.

e.They have a spectacular set of algorithms that makes them safe from hackers as well as potential loss of cryptocurrency.

12.Disadvantages of Coinbase

a.If they feel that you are involved in any illegal activity, they can even freeze and close your accounts.

b.If you use fiat money, it can take up to a week for your Bitcoins to process.

c.When you are trading large sums on a daily basis, you are going to be considered to be at high risk and they may closely monitor your account or even close it.


Despite of all the interims that Coinbase has faced, it has continued to grow and Brian is a wad of optimism. The company’s best interest is to advocate for less restrictions. Brian has faith in making Bitcoin completely legal and even actual currency control for some countries in the coming future. He also believes that Bitcoin will transcend the dollar as a reserve currency in coming 10-15 years.