UTAH, United States-Medici Ventures, Overstock.com’s blockchain subsidiary, has exercised its option to purchase additional ownership interest in Bitt.com, the Caribbean’s blockchain-based digital payment provider. It will increase its ownership stake in Bitt’s total Class A and B common shares by 8.6 per cent in exchange for US$3 million in additional funding.

Bitt is a Barbados-based financial technology company founded in 2015 that uses blockchain and distributed ledger technology to build a secure, streamlined, peer-to-peer payment ecosystem in the surrounding region. Medici Ventures first invested US$4 million in Bitt in early 2016, shortly after Bitt’s launch of a digitized Barbadian dollar on the bitcoin blockchain.

“Bitt has created a blockchain-based payments ecosystem that is useful for every day transactions,” said Medici Ventures President Jonathan Johnson. “It has positioned itself as a clear leader in applying blockchain technology to solve real-world problems. Under the leadership of CEO Rawdon Adams, Bitt has taken a good idea and grown it into a viable product able to make the financial lives of Caribbean residents easier. We’re pleased to take a larger stake in this forward-thinking company, as it aligns with Medici Ventures’ goals of re-democratizing capital,” Johnson said.

This increased investment follows Bitt’s recent announcement of a signed memorandum of understanding with Montserrat to launch a digital payments platform for the Caribbean nation and its launch of a digital wallet in Barbados.

“This reaffirmation of the company’s promise by Medici Ventures is a tremendous reflection on the dedication, motivation and execution skills of my colleagues,” said Bitt CEO Rawdon Adams.

“Bitt is in a unique position to provide the solutions to boost both financial inclusion and overall economic performance through its blockchain-based software. That’s already being recognized by regional governments overseeing economies characterized by large informal sectors, persistently high rates of poverty and expensive traditional financial services. I thank Medici Ventures for their support of our mission.”

Medici Ventures will receive 22,012,070 Class A shares and 22,012,070 Class B shares for its investment. Johnson and Dr. Ali El Husseini, President of Medici Ventures’ investment company DeSoto Inc., are members of Bitt’s board of directors.