Luno, one of the pioneering crypto exchanges in Africa, has found that cryptocurrency trading in South Africa is largely dominated by young people, who under 29 account for 40% of transactions. The exchange, which claims to have attracted nearly a million new South African customers in 2020, also shows that “around 65% of Luno users are male and around 35% are female”. These numbers compare favorably with the industry average of 70% men to 30% women.
Growing demand in retail
Luno saw not only a 300% year-over-year growth rate, but also a 167% increase in active users over the same period, while “the number of app installs increased by 119%”. In a report, Marcus Swanepoel, CEO and co-founder of Luno, is quoted as saying that the increase in transaction volume is due to the increasing retail demand for cryptos. Swanepoel stated:
While much of the attention has been focused on institutional adoption, retail adoption has arguably increased at an even faster pace. We believe we can continue this exponential growth into 2021 to meet our goal of one billion customers by 2030.
Between January 2019 and 2020, Luno, which was acquired by Digital Currency Group in September 2020, said it “had $ 8.3 billion in transactions worldwide”. In addition, Luno said it “processed nearly $ 3 billion in South Africa last year and was above that figure by the end of March”.
South Africans curious about cryptos
In the same report, the general director of the exchange, Marius Reitz, is quoted: “South Africans are definitely curious about crypto.” To support this assessment, Reitz referred to Google Bitcoin search trend data. According to these data, South Africa ranks fourth in the world and second behind Nigeria on the African continent.
In addition to the Google Trends data, Luno also references the Global Web Index data, which shows that “an estimated 15% of South Africans have invested in Bitcoin”. With this number, which is the second highest in the world, South Africa is ahead of countries like the US and Japan.
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