Zap, the Lightning startup behind a non-custodial Bitcoin wallet, has raised $3.5 million in the April seed round with investors including Green Oaks Capital and Morgan Creek Digital, co-founded by Anthony “Pomp” Pompliano, as reported by Forbes.
Zap stands out from others by enabling users to instantly purchase Bitcoin (BTC) using a US bank account through the Lightning Network.
However, Jack Mallers, the CEO of Zap, said that Zap’s ultimate goal is to make Bitcoin more accessible and “used for all that it has to offer by the masses.”
“Our users today don’t ever know we’re using Bitcoin when they’re using dollars. It’s just kind of like we’ve melted it in the background. I think tens of millions of people will be using this stuff in the next few years, and that just takes a little bit of capital.”
Likewise, in September 2019, Mallers explained that crypto newbies could “swipe their debit card, get Bitcoin delivered to them directly onto the Lightning Network, and make inexpensive instant micropayments within seconds” as this solution could lower both the settlement time and fees associated with buying BTC.
In June, Zap joined Visa’s Fintech Fast Track Program, which enables the app to launch a Visa co-branded card.
According to Forbes, the company has several projects involving Visa, but only Zap’s credit card has been announced at this time.
“We’re contractually obligated to launch one in the next 12 months and we plan on launching one in the next few months.”
As per the report, on July 6, Maller’s app Strike was in a public beta. Though both apps are designed for sending and receiving Bitcoin payments directly to a bank account through Lightning, Strike doesn’t require a wallet, seed, channels, or liquidity to operate. Know Your Customer (KYC) protocols have also reportedly been kept to a bare minimum.
Thus, Zap is far from the only company looking to take advantage of untapped potential on the Lightning Network.