USDC Is Only Circle’s Second-Biggest Business, SPAC Filing Shows

“Transaction and treasury services,” with clients including Dapper Labs, Compound Labs and FTX, is the soon-to-be-public company’s top revenue source.

AccessTimeIconJul 8, 2021 at 6:12 p.m. UTC
Updated May 9, 2023 at 3:21 a.m. UTC

Most of the conversation about Circle revolves around USD coin (USDC), the stablecoin it created in collaboration with Coinbase.

But according to an investor presentation released with Thursday's announcement that Circle would go public using a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), the company has three lines of business, all generating growing revenue. Of those, USDC is only the second-biggest contributor to the top line. 

Circle has been a mainstay of the more corporate and institutionally focused side of the cryptocurrency industry. Started by Jeremy Allaire and Sean Neville as a peer-to-peer payments company that once had a strong bitcoin orientation, it has evolved into an infrastructure company supporting much of the blockchain industry, and that infrastructure work appears to be its strongest area for revenue growth.

The Boston-based firm generates income in three ways: from transaction fees on USDC and interest earned on its reserves; transaction and treasury services (TTS); and SeedInvest, the equity crowdfunding platform it purchased in 2019.

Its transaction and treasury services are probably the least understood and least detailed part of its offerings. "Circle Accounts and API services provide companies with a comprehensive suite of payments and treasury services,” the investor presentation says.

The presentation lists Dapper Labs, Compound Labs and FTX among the TTS business’ clients. 

The slide deck does not give prior-year results, but it estimates that Circle will generate $115 million in revenue in 2021, but end the year with a $76 million loss.

Of those revenues, it expects $40 million to come from USDC, $65 million to come from TTS and $10 million from SeedInvest.

The company also projects $76 million in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) on $886 million in total revenue across the three business segments by 2023. Of that, it expects TTS to be by far the largest line of business.


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