Circle Expands USDC Access in Brazil Through Strategic Partnerships with BTG Pactual and Nubank

Circle, the issuer of the USD Coin (USDC) stablecoin, has officially launched operations in Brazil, a move that underscores its commitment to broadening access to digital dollars in one of the world’s most dynamic fintech markets. This expansion is facilitated through strategic partnerships with BTG Pactual, Latin America’s largest investment bank, and Nubank, the leading digital banking platform in Brazil. This development aims to integrate USDC into Brazil’s financial ecosystem, providing users with low-cost, 24/7 access to USD-backed digital currency.

BTG Pactual, renowned for its innovative approach in the financial sector, is set to become the primary distribution partner for USDC in Brazil. The investment bank will leverage its extensive retail and institutional client base to introduce USDC, thereby facilitating near-instant and cost-effective transactions. This partnership is crucial as it provides USDC with local banking rail capabilities, enabling businesses to mint and redeem digital dollars efficiently.

André Portilho, Head of Digital Assets at BTG Pactual, emphasized the significance of this collaboration: “Since 2017, BTG Pactual has been at the forefront of financial market innovations, actively participating in the crypto space. Our commitment to innovation led us to create Mynt, our own crypto trading platform. We are proud to be the first bank to issue a security token and a USD stablecoin in the world and also the first bitcoin fund by a financial institution in Brazil.”

Circle’s relationship with Nubank, which was initiated last year, has already borne fruit. Nubank Cripto customers in Brazil are actively transacting with USDC, showcasing the growing demand for stablecoins in the region. Nubank serves over 100 million customers across Brazil, Mexico, and Colombia, making it a significant partner in Circle’s expansion strategy.

Thomaz Fortes, General Manager of Nubank Cripto, highlighted the importance of this partnership: “Our partnership with Circle marks a significant milestone for Nubank and the access to digital dollars in Brazil. In our 100 million active user base, we see a large demand for customers to seek digital dollars as a way to protect against inflation, build their savings, and in the future, spend and use it for other useful applications.”

Brazil’s fintech landscape has been rapidly evolving, driven by forward-looking policies such as the introduction of Pix in 2020, an instant payment platform that now boasts over 160 million users. The adoption of Pix has familiarized Brazilian consumers with digital wallets and efficient financial rails, creating a fertile ground for stablecoins like USDC. Stablecoins currently dominate about 90% of crypto transactions in Brazil, indicating a strong market inclination towards these digital assets.

Jeremy Allaire, Co-Founder and CEO of Circle, commented on the timing of this launch: “We are committed to making a positive impact in the Brazilian market and partnering with key stakeholders to empower businesses to participate in the global economy with greater ease and efficiency. There are many powerful opportunities on the horizon when Brazil’s fintech-forward ecosystem converges with the world’s most accessible dollar platform.”

Circle’s expansion into Brazil is part of a broader strategy to support the global demand for digital financial products. In addition to its ventures in Latin America, Circle has been expanding its global footprint, obtaining the Digital Asset Service Provider (DASP) registration from France’s AMF and collaborating with Japan’s SBI to circulate USDC in Asia.

The entry of USDC into Brazil’s market is expected to have significant implications for the financial ecosystem. By offering a stable, USD-backed digital currency, Circle aims to provide businesses and consumers with a reliable and transparent means of transaction. This move aligns with the broader trend of integrating blockchain technology into the financial infrastructure, which is seen as a pivotal step towards the future of digital finance.