Circle has announced that it plans to become a public company. The cryptocurrency company will merge with Concord Acquisition Corp, a SPAC. Circle is better known as one of the founding members of the Centre consortium with Coinbase. Along with other crypto partners, they have issued USD Coin (USDC), a popular stablecoin.

A SPAC is a publicly traded blank-check company. Merging with a SPAC has become a popular way to become a publicly listed company for tech companies.

According to Circle, the deal should value the company at $4.5 billion. Investors involved in the merger have committed $415 million in PIPE financing. The company also recently raised $440 million in capital. In other words, Circle will have plenty of capital on its hands if the merger goes through.

Created in 2013, the company originally wanted to create a mainstream bitcoin payment platform. But the company later pivoted to create a social payments app. Circle became a sort of Venmo clone with some blockchain technology under the hood. At some point, Circle even removed the ability to send and receive bitcoins.

“We never thought of ourselves as a bitcoin startup. The media certainly classified us that way because we were involved with the technology. From the day we founded the company three years ago we’ve focused on trying to build a new consumer finance company. And one that makes money work the way the internet works,” Circle co-founder and CEO Jeremy Allaire told
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