Crypto digital banking firm Juno has raised $18 million in a Series A funding round to expand products and operations, and launch its first tokenized loyalty program.
This round was led by ParaFi Capital’s Growth Fund, and included well-known crypto industry figures such as Coinbase Chief Product Officer Surojit Chatterjee, Messari's Ryan Selkis, Polygon's Sandeep Nailwal and Jaynti Kanani, and a16z's Sriram Krishnan. Seed rounder backers included former Coinbase Chief Technology Officer Balaji Srinivasan and FTX's Venu Palaparthi.
Juno is a digital banking platform that encourages users to spend crypto in their everyday transactions. Its flagship product is the Juno card, where users can transact with Circle’s stablecoin USDC.
As part of the fundraising, Juno is introducing a loyalty token, Juno coin (JCOIN), which will only be distributed to verified account holders. The loyalty program will be similar to traditional credit card rewards points. Juno members can earn JCOIN for taking their paychecks in crypto, or spending crypto with their Juno debit card.
“We think these banks are not crypto friendly,” Varun Deshpande, the CEO and co-founder of Juno told CoinDesk. The aim of the loyalty program, he said, is to incentivize those already predisposed to using crypto to fundamentally replace their traditional banking stack.
“Earning and using crypto are critical financial primitives for creating and growing a circular crypto economy,” added Deshpande. “Our tokenized loyalty program is meant to further accelerate the growth of this crypto economy.”
CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by Block.one; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk offers all employees above a certain salary threshold, including journalists, stock options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.