Overview of Ledn
Based in Canada, Ledn is a cryptocurrency platform offering unique financial services and products for digital assets holders. It looks to provide more traditional financial services while catering to the crypto market. Aside from the typical trading features, Ledn gives users the chance to access savings accounts and loans backed by Bitcoin.
Ledn was founded in 2018 by Adam Reeds and Mauricio di Bartolomeo. The two coined the idea and looked for potential investors. As a result, the company rose to prominence after an impressive first round of seed investment, amassing $3.9 million all in one go. It was backed by some serious organizations and lenders, including Coinbase Ventures - the investment arm of Coinbase.
Since then, the company has gone from strength to strength and managed to raise $70 million in a Series B funding round. Over the years, it has put all the investments to great use, using the money to perfect all of its services and offerings.
What are the main services offered by Ledn?
Why would you choose to use Ledn? As mentioned previously, the company does offer some fairly unique financial services to the crypto market. Here’s what you can choose from:
Bitcoin & USDC Savings Accounts
One key service is a savings account that allows you to earn high rates of return. No minimum balance is required for you to open a savings account with Ledn, and you receive monthly compound interest to help your savings grow at a steady pace.
You’re able to open your accounts using both Bitcoin or USDC. It’s also possible to request withdrawals from your accounts at any given time.
Something that is lost amongst the fineprint is that US clients can no longer earn interest on any NEWLY deposited funds in their Ledn savings accounts. It’s very important to know this as it will greatly influence your decision to open an account or not. This wasn’t always the case, but it recently came into action effective April 4, 2022.
Bitcoin-Backed Dollar Loans
Ledn also offers Bitcoin-backed loans that let you access dollars without selling your Bitcoin assets. These loans are usually funded within 24 hours of approval and there are no penalties or monthly payments to worry about. You simply repay the loan as you can. Ledn says that one of the reasons to consider a loan is that exchanging Bitcoin for dollars creates a taxable event where you could end up owing money to your country's tax authority. But, if you opt for a loan, you don’t create a taxable event and any interest from the loan is tax deductible anyway.
The idea behind the loans is simple: your Bitcoin is treated as collateral. You deposit Bitcoin and get a 50% loan-to-value in dollars. For example, if Bitcoin is worth $20,000, deposit 1 BTC and your loan is worth $10,000. What’s happening is Lendn is basically holding your Bitcoin until you repay the loan. If you don’t manage to pay it, they keep your BTC.
There is a trading platform offered by Ledn as well. However, it differs from traditional cryptocurrency trading platforms. Here, you are only able to trade between USDC and BTC. There are no fees to do this, and it’s seen as a way of balancing your assets by adjusting how much of each coin you own.
B2X is a service released by Ledn to help users get more out of their Bitcoin. It gives you the opportunity to earn more Bitcoin through a Ledn Bitcoin-Backed Loan and a Bitcoin purchase. All you have to do is use their calculator to figure out the loan amount to double your Bitcoin holdings - hence the name “B2X”. Ledn matches your deposit, so you end up with twice the amount of Bitcoin as before.
How does Ledn make money?
Because of the services provided, Ledn has a variety of ways to make revenue. Most of the money is made through interest on its loans, along with extra fees to use some of the services.
Like all lenders, charging interest on loans ensures they make a profit on every loan they hand out - provided it is paid in full. Of course, if loans are not repaid, they make money by holding the client’s Bitcoin. The interest rates for dollar loans and B2X loans are the exact same.
Alongside this, Ledn makes money by charging withdrawal fees on its savings accounts.
What are the fees on Ledn?
As this is not a traditional cryptocurrency trading platform and there’s no exchange, you have hardly any fees to consider when using Ledn. We touched upon above how most of their money is made through lending. The loans generate a lot of interest and income for the company, but some extra fees here and there help add to this.
- Savings account fees - no deposit fees for either Bitcoin or USDC savings accounts. There is also no withdrawal fee for the BTC account, but there is a 35 USDC withdrawal fee to process each withdrawal request on the USDC savings account.
- Trading fees - there are currently no trading fees at all on the Ledn platform.
- B2X & loan fees - there is a 2% administration fee when applying for a loan with Ledn.
Is Ledn safe to use?
Naturally, when using any platform that offers financial services, you want to ensure that it is safe and secure. There are countless reports of crypto hackings happening, causing individuals to lose their life savings. So, is Ledn safe, and what security features does it boast?
Thankfully, Ledn does have many security implementations that help users control their assets and data. All data that’s stored or used in the Ledn ecosystem is encrypted to ensure it remains protected and hard to seize. The website itself features HTTPS protection and all passwords on the site are AES-256 encrypted too.
Furthermore, your data never gets stored on personal devices or local servers. It is only used to verify identity and facilitate transactions. Every Ledn user has the opportunity to delete their account details by getting in touch with customer support.
Two-factor authentication is also used to bolster the security measures. This means there are two barriers a hacker must bypass to gain access to your account. It’s proven that 2FA is essential for preventing fraud and unauthorized account access.
All of the internal processes are monitored and regulated by extremely strict security policies as well. This is done to ensure that everyone within the company is behaving themselves and not putting client’s data at risk.
As of right now, Ledn has never experienced any hacking attacks or losses of client’s money. It is a safe platform to use, but you need to remember that your money is an investment. So, it will be subjected to the typical risks of any investment - there’s no guarantee you won’t lose money, but your funds should be safe.
Is Ledn regulated?
Ledn is a Canadian company and is registered with FINTRAC as a Money Service Business. As such, it is regulated under Federal Laws in Canada.
Additionally, Ledn is registered with FINCEN as a Money Service Business in the United States.
Moreover, the company is one of the first digital asset lending company to complete a Proof-of-Reserves attestation by Armanino LLP. This is a top-25 public accounting firm and they constantly provide reports to check that Ledn has proof of reserves. In essence, this proves that they have enough assets in their reserves to hand to customers if withdrawals are requested.
Does Ledn have deposit insurance?
Ledn is not insured and none of your assets or deposits will be protected by insurance on the platform. In fact, the company specifically states that any digital assets held by Ledn are not protected by the Canadian Investor Protection Fund or the Canadian Deposit Insurance Corporation. They go on to add that no other investor protection insurance scheme will cover the assets.
Despite the lack of insurance, Ledn is still rated as a safe platform because of the previously mentioned security features. The Proof-of-Reserves is also critical in helping clients feel safe and secure.
In what countries is Ledn available?
Ledn - and the full suite of Ledn services - is available to people in most countries.
However, there are some exceptions. The company is looking to expand its array of countries and locations, but as of right now the following places cannot access the BTC or USDC savings accounts:
- Afghanistan Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, China [PRC], Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cuba, Eswatini/Swaziland, Ghana, Haiti, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mongolia, Morocco, Myanmar [Burma], Nepal, Nicaragua, North Korea, Pakistan, Palestinian Territories, Republic of the Congo, Réunion, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sri Lanka, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Uzbekistan, Western Sahara, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
- US States: Connecticut, Hawaii, Louisiana, New Jersey, New York, Texas (BTC only, USDC is available), Washington, and Washington D.C.
Unfortunately, there’s no information on the website about which countries you can access loans or trading from. But, Ledn does state that international loans are available, and that trading is accessible outside of Canada and the US. The only way to know for sure if you can use Ledn is by contacting customer support.
How do I open a Ledn account?
It’s possible to open a Ledn account in a matter of minutes. To start, visit the website and click on the Join Now button in the top right of your screen. This will take you to a general account registration page complete with basic information to fill in.
At this stage, all you need is:
- Your legal first & last names
- Email address associated with the account
- Mobile number
An email will be sent letting you verify your email address, simply click the link to do this. Then, an SMS code is messaged to you, which you will need to put in the text box.
Now, your account is technically created, but you still need to verify your identity before you can use the platform. There’s a section on Personal ID Verification that requires the following information:
- Date of birth
- Full street address
- The source of your BTC/USDC
- The intended use of any proceeds
- Whether or not you are related to or closely associated to a domestic/foreign politically exposed person or head of an international organization
From here, you have to submit documents to verify what you have just claimed. This will include your ID of choice, along with anything that provides proof of address. Ledn may sometimes ask for financial statements to prove your source or income as well. No credit checks are carried out, however.
Once your proof has been submitted, Ledn will cross-reference it and verify your details. If they’re happy, your account will be fully set up and ready to use.
Withdraw from Ledn
Withdraw to your bank account
At this time Ledn doesn’t support fiat currencies on their platforms. Deposits and withdrawals on Ledn can only be made by Bitcoin and/or USDC.
Withdraw crypto from Ledn
You can withdraw crypto from Ledn anytime you want through Ledn’s wallet dashboard. Ledn doesn’t charge fees to withdraw Bitcoin, however there is a 35 USDC fee to withdraw USDC. Blockchain transactions cannot be reversed once made. As such when entering your withdrawal wallet address, on Ledn, ensure that you are sending your funds to the correct destination.
What sort of customer support does Ledn offer?
There is a help center on the Ledn website that offers instant customer support for all account holders. You can browse through different topics or search for any keywords relating to your query. In a lot of instances, this will be enough for you to find the answers to common questions and concerns.
You can also click on the Contact Us button at the bottom of every page, which will open a chatbox for you to submit a request. After filling in the form, you will be contacted via email with any solutions. Alternatively, you can contact Ledn directly via the support email provided on the website.
There is no text support from Ledn, so be wary of any SMS messages from people claiming to be Ledn and asking for your details.