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If you want to do more with your Bitcoin than simply “hodl,” why not “ledn” it?
Ledn is a few prominent crypto lending platforms that offer services like Bitcoin-backed loans and interest-bearing accounts. Whether you want to passively “stack sats” or use your Bitcoin as collateral, a Ledn account may help you achieve your goals.
However, please remember that entrusting your crypto to any third party comes with risks. Before depositing your crypto on a site like Ledn, you should ensure it meets high safety standards.
on Ledn’s website
Quick Summary: Ledn is a Toronto-based company offering an array of products in the digital asset space. Their flagship products include savings and borrowing accounts (Bitcoin-backed Dollar Loans).
What Is Ledn?
Ledn is a crypto lending and borrowing platform based in Toronto. Current CEO Adam Reeds and CSO Mauricio di Bartolomeo launched Ledn in 2018, and they frequently point out that Ledn wasn’t a part of the Initial Coin Offering craze.
Ledn offers two primary services to its customers: crypto interest accounts and Bitcoin-backed loans. Account-holders can earn passive income on BTC and USDC or use Bitcoin to take out a loan.
Since Ledn is in Toronto, it follows Canadian federal guidelines. However, that doesn’t mean foreign customers can’t open a Ledn account. There are a few countries and states that Ledn can’t operate in, but most people in North America can use this platform.
How Does Ledn Work?
Similar to a traditional bank, Ledn re-invests or loans out any crypto you deposit into a savings account. Whatever interest Ledn gets from its investments is partially passed on to depositors each month.
As for Ledn’s borrowing platform, clients must deposit 50 percent loan-to-value of Bitcoin for the amount they’d like to receive in fiat or USDC. Ledn’s partner BitGo will custody your Bitcoin as you make interest payments on your loan.
Please remember Bitcoin’s price could dip below your agreed rate as you’re paying off this loan. If this happens, Ledn could sell part of your Bitcoin if you don’t adjust your collateral.
You should feel comfortable with the volatility risk of Bitcoin-backed loans before depositing into Ledn.
Before you try to sign in to Ledn, you must determine whether you’re legally allowed to open an account. Although Ledn is available internationally, some countries and states don’t work with Ledn.
Ledn’s list of accepted territories is constantly changing, but here are a few US states where Ledn still doesn’t operate:
- New York
- Washington State
Once you’ve established that Ledn is available in your state, you should grab a government-issued ID and a proof of address document. You’ll need to upload both of these to verify your identity on Ledn.
Also, be sure you’ve worked out a tricky password ahead of time and write it down in a secure place.
Opening an Account
As mentioned above, Ledn strictly adheres to Canada’s federal guidelines. This includes collecting standard know-your-customer and anti-money-laundering data from customers.
If you feel comfortable submitting this info, setting up a Ledn account is pretty straightforward.
First, visit Ledn’s official website at ledn.io/en.
On the top right of the homepage, you should see a “Join Now” tab. Once you click this button, you’ll see a screen that asks for your name, a telephone number, and a password. After hitting the “Register” button, you should get an SMS on your phone to verify your identity.
After submitting your two-factor authentication code, Ledn requires customers to enter more KYC info such as a birthday, home address, and a government-issued ID (e.g., a passport). You’ll also have to submit a selfie to verify your identities match.
These requirements are standard on highly-regulated crypto lending platforms and centralized crypto exchanges.
Ledn’s funding options aren’t as robust as other lending platforms like Nexo or BlockFi. Unlike those platforms, you can’t buy crypto directly on Ledn. You also can’t wire fiat into your Ledn account through a bank.
Instead, you have to deposit Bitcoin or USDC into Ledn’s savings account from an external wallet. To do this, click on your preferred crypto in Ledn’s savings account. When you hit the “Deposit” button, you’ll see a QR code and an address linked to this Ledn account. You can use this code to send your chosen crypto into Ledn.
As an example, if you had some USDC on Crypto.com, you can open USDC in your Crypto.com app and select “Withdraw.” After entering how much USDC you want to send, you can paste or scan the QR code associated with your Ledn USDC wallet.
Please double-check that these two addresses match and that you’re OK with the transaction fee. If everything looks OK, confirm the transaction. Unless Ethereum’s network is congested, you should see USDC appear in Ledn in a few minutes.
Cryptocurrencies Available on Ledn
If you love altcoins, Ledn isn’t the best choice for you.
Indeed, Ledn only supports two cryptos in its interest-bearing accounts: Bitcoin and USDC. Also, if you want to take out a loan on Ledn, you have to use Bitcoin as collateral.
Also, there’s no way to buy cryptocurrencies on Ledn’s platform. Today, you can only swap between BTC and USDC on Ledn’s “Trade” feature.
|Fees||$0 maintenance fees, $0 deposit fees and 35 USDC fee per each withdrawal|
|Interest Rate on Deposits (APY)||Up to 6.25% (BTC) and 9.25% (USDC)|
|Withdrawal Limits||USDC: 1,000,000 7 day period and BTC: 100 7 day period|
|Loan Interest Rate||8.90% (annual)|
|Loan Term||12 months|
|Security||AES-256 encryption and 2FA|
|FDIC Insurance||Not available|
|Availability||Worldwide (Not available in the following States New York, Wyoming, Hawaii, Washington and Connecticut)|
|Apps||Mobile (iOS / Android)|
|Support||Email ([email protected])|
Some people familiar with other crypto lending platforms complain that Ledn’s features are too limited.
True, Ledn isn’t as feature-rich as other crypto lending sites. However, the company has begun adding to its offerings in recent years.
Besides its hallmark savings accounts and Bitcoin-backed loans, Ledn is experimenting with token swaps, 2X Bitcoin loans, and mortgage financing.
Although Ledn isn’t a “one-stop-shop” for crypto, these new features show the company is keen to expand its operations.
Bitcoin & USDC Savings Accounts
Most people open a Ledn account to generate passive income in a crypto savings account.
Once you’ve signed up for Ledn, you can deposit Bitcoin or USDC into a savings account wallet. After your chosen crypto appears on Ledn, it will automatically earn interest.
Ledn offers a flat interest rate for USDC and a tiered rate for Bitcoin. So, although there’s no minimum deposit to start earning interest, you will get less Bitcoin if you deposit over 0.5 BTC.
The APYs on Ledn are always changing, so please check the website’s latest offerings before making a deposit. However, Ledn’s current rates are as follows:
|Eligible Digital Asset||Balance Amount||Annual Percentage Yield (APY)|
|BTC (Tier 1)||0 – 0.5||6.25%|
|BTC (Tier 2)||> 0.5||2.25%|
Ledn primarily lends this crypto to another digital asset lending platform called Genesis. Ledn also partners with crypto custodian BitGo to secure users’ funds.
There are no lockup periods on Ledn, so you can take your crypto out whenever you want to. Ledn also says the only fees you’ll pay are network fees when you make a withdrawal.
Bitcoin-Backed U.S. Dollar Loans
Customers who feel comfortable using Bitcoin as collateral can take out a loan on Ledn. All Bitcoin-backed loans have a loan-to-value ratio of 50 percent and an annual percentage rate of 11.5 percent. The yearly interest on Bitcoin-backed loans is 9.5 percent.
Customers can choose to receive their loan in either USD or USDC. If you want fiat, you’ll have to provide your bank account information. Those who opt for USDC will see the stablecoins appear in their Ledn wallet 24 hours after the company approves the loan.
Whether you choose USDC or USD, the minimum loan you can take out of Ledn is $500.
When you deposit Bitcoin for a Ledn loan, it will go into the crypto custodian BitGo’s cold storage. You’ll only get this Bitcoin back in your savings account after you’ve repaid it at the agreed-upon interest rate.
Since Bitcoin is a volatile asset, your collateral can go below the loan-to-value ratio. Ledn says it will let clients know about the price risk before touching your Bitcoin. However, if you fail to add more to your collateral, Ledn could sell some of your BTC.
Ledn’s “Trade” tab is no substitute for a centralized crypto exchange, but it can be helpful if you want to exchange Bitcoin for USDC. If this new feature is available in your state, you can switch between these two popular coins on Ledn’s website.
Ledn claims to use “multiple” price feeds to determine the price of Bitcoin. Customers have 15 seconds to review Ledn’s quoted USDC-to-BTC rate before confirming the swap.
After you submit a trade, you should get a confirmation email from Ledn. It usually takes a few minutes for USDC or BTC to appear in your Ledn savings account.
Remember that Ledn’s Trade feature doesn’t offer limit orders. You must feel comfortable with the market rate Ledn provides.
Ledn B2X Loans
The B2X loan is Ledn’s most unique (and risky) offering.
The purpose behind this loan is to “2X” your Bitcoin exposure over time. After you deposit Bitcoin into the B2X program, Ledn will take out a loan to buy double your provided Bitcoin. To get this Bitcoin back in your account, you’ll have to repay the loan with interest over 12 months.
If you believe Bitcoin’s price will appreciate over time, this feature may be beneficial. However, there’s a significant risk your Bitcoin collateral will go below the loan-to-value rate. Just like with a standard Bitcoin-backed loan, Ledn reserves the right to sell your Bitcoin if you don’t have enough BTC in your account.
Also, please remember you’ll have to pay a 9.5 annual interest rate and an administration fee of 2 percent. While you can pay this loan over 12 months, it may be more cost-effective to dollar-cost average (DCA) into Bitcoin. If you DCA into Bitcoin throughout the year, there’s no need to fear a collateral risk.
Still, if you’re convinced Bitcoin’s price is severely undervalued, and you can’t immediately double your BTC exposure, you may feel a B2X loan is for you. Just be aware this is a high-risk loan.
Want to buy a home with Bitcoin? Ledn may be able to help.
Ledn’s Bitcoin Mortgage feature is a Bitcoin-backed loan for new or existing homeowners. Ledn will take both your BTC and real estate as collateral for this service.
People who take a Bitcoin Mortgage have to make pre-arranged monthly payments over a two-year term. Ledn hasn’t released specific interest rates on this service yet, but it claims they will be less than its Bitcoin-backed loans.
Since Ledn’s Bitcoin Mortgage is so new, it’s unavailable in many territories. Currently, only Canadian residents can inquire about this service. However, some US states may begin allowing Ledn’s Bitcoin Mortgage, so be sure to keep tabs on Ledn’s social media.
For specific info on whether you qualify for a Ledn Mortgage, you should contact Ledn’s customer support.
Ledn Pricing & Fees
There’s no fee to open or hold an account with Ledn. The only time you’ll pay a fee on Ledn is when you withdraw your crypto.
According to Ledn, you’ll pay 35 USDC whenever you want to take this token out of your savings account. This fee covers the standard gas fees on the Ethereum blockchain.
Ledn users also have to pay a small amount of Bitcoin every time they withdraw BTC. Your Bitcoin withdrawal fee will vary depending on network congestion and hash power. Please double-check the Bitcoin miner fee before confirming a withdrawal from Ledn.
|Eligible Digital Asset||Withdrawal Limit||Withdraw Fees|
|BTC||100 BTC per 7-day period||Miner fees only|
|USDC||1,000,000 USDC per 7-day period||35 USDC|
Ledn Security & Insurance
Ledn assures customers it uses top-of-the-line technology to secure users’ crypto and personal information. Company leaders say they use AES-256 encryption to protect clients’ KYC data. Ledn also requires clients to use 2FA whenever they log in.
As for crypto security, Ledn entrusts all digital assets to crypto custodian BitGo. Headquartered in Palo Alto, BitGo is one of the world’s largest crypto custodians and has multiple accreditations like SOC2 compliance.
All of the digital tokens in BitGo’s holdings are kept in cold storage and are backed by $100 million in insurance. Since BitGo started operations in 2011, it has successfully handled $325 billion in transactions with over 500 clients—many of whom are crypto exchanges.
For transparency, Ledn releases Proof-of-Reserves audits every six months to prove it’s making good on its claims. The company Armanino takes care of Ledn’s yearly audits.
Just keep in mind that Ledn doesn’t offer insurance on any coins deposited in a savings account or loan. Although Ledn abides by Canada’s laws, it doesn’t provide CDIC coverage on crypto assets.
Ledn Customer Support
There are two primary ways to reach out to Ledn. First, you can submit a ticket via Ledn’s Zendesk tab on the bottom right of the main page. After you click Ledn’s “Support” button, you can write a message to the Ledn team and add a max of five files.
Customers can also send Ledn an email using the address [email protected].
Judging by the latest Trustpilot reviews, Ledn has a positive reputation for customer service. Generally, you should hear from Ledn in a few business days.
If you haven’t heard back from Ledn within three business days, you can send the team a message on social media. Ledn now has accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Before you reach out to Ledn, you can check out its Support Hub and read through the FAQs. Ledn also posts many common questions throughout its website.
- High interest returns on Bitcoin and USDC
- Audited for reserves via Armanino, LLP
- Works with trusted crypto custodian BitGo
- Beginner-friendly interface
- Possibly the first lending platform to offer Bitcoin-backed mortgages
- No supported altcoins or stablecoins besides USDC
- Not available in every US state
- You can only use Bitcoin to back loans
- Interest rates for Bitcoin-backed loans are relatively high
Ledn is far from the only company that offers crypto-backed loans and interest accounts. Although crypto lending may seem like a “niche” business, it’s already incredibly competitive.
Customers should always consider the products and services on competing platforms before deciding where to park their funds.
Ledn vs. BlockFi
Headquartered in New York, BlockFi is one of America’s most popular crypto lending platforms.
Customers who deposit crypto on BlockFi will earn interest paid out monthly in one of its twelve supported tokens. BlockFi also offers crypto-backed loans for which you can use Bitcoin, Ethereum, PAXG, or Litecoin as collateral. However, the minimum amount for a BlockFi loan is $10,000.
While BlockFi’s Bitcoin interest rates aren’t as high as Ledn’s, it offers more altcoins and stablecoins. Also, BlockFi allows users to swap or buy tokens on its platform and take advantage of its crypto rewards credit card. As for security, the exchange Gemini takes care of all BlockFi’s cold storage.
Check out our full BlockFi review to learn more.
Ledn vs. Celsius
Celsius is another hot crypto lending platform with some of the industry’s highest interest rates. Initially released as a mobile app, Celsius offers many of the same services on BlockFi—except with even more tokens.
Indeed, compared with BlockFi and Ledn, Celsius supports the most comprehensive array of cryptos. This platform also boasts weekly interest payouts of above 10 percent APY on a few stablecoins and altcoins.
However, Celsius’s best interest rates are paid in CEL tokens rather than your chosen cryptocurrency. Celsius has a native token called “CEL” that customers can use to earn higher rewards or favorable loan rates.
Celsius also allows customers to take out loans of as little as $100 in stablecoins or $1,000 in fiat. If clients feel comfortable using altcoins, Celsius accepts dozens of these tokens as collateral.
Read our full Celsius review to learn more.
Who Is Ledn For?
Bad news first: Ledn has the lowest range of supported stablecoins and altcoins. Also, this company doesn’t have as many features as BlockFi, Celsius, or Nexo. So, if you want to earn rewards on altcoins, buy tokens, or apply for a crypto rewards credit card, you probably won’t enjoy Ledn.
Another negative associated with Ledn is that it’s not available in every US state. Today, Canadian investors are most likely to get the most use out of Ledn.
On the positive side, Ledn offers attractive interest rates on USDC and Bitcoin. Many users also enjoy Ledn’s easy-to-use interface, responsive customer service, and security standards.
So, if users are OK with only using Bitcoin and USDC, Ledn’s savings accounts may be an attractive place to place some funds. Also, if you’re OK with the extra risk, Ledn has many Bitcoin-backed loans you can take advantage of.
If you’re still not sure about Ledn, please take a peek at the answers to these commonly asked questions.
Is Ledn Safe?
Ledn has a solid reputation for security standards and transparency. To date, there haven’t been reports of a major hack on any of Ledn’s platforms. Also, Ledn is a partner with the highly awarded crypto custodian BitGo. Not only does BitGo have a track record for keeping digital assets safe, but it carries $100 million in insurance.
Plus, the company Armanino regularly screens Ledn’s crypto reserves. Anyone can verify Ledn’s current holdings by checking out one of these Armanino Proof-of-Reserves filings.
While both of these features raise Ledn’s security standards, that doesn’t mean it’s “risk-free.” Unlike platforms like Nexo, Ledn doesn’t advertise an insurance fund for compromised crypto. Customers should also remember Ledn doesn’t offer CDIC or FDIC insurance on digital assets.
However, since Ledn follows Ontario’s laws, Canadian clients may feel more comfortable working with this company.
Overall, Ledn is comparatively safe in the crypto lending space. Just keep in mind that crypto lending is inherently risky. When you deposit funds in Ledn, you’re betting Ledn’s investments with Genesis will pan out. You’re also betting that BitGo will secure your funds against cyberattacks.
As long as you feel comfortable with the risks associated with crypto lending, Ledn has a good track record for security.
Is Ledn Regulated?
In Ledn’s Terms & Services, the company claims to follow Ontario’s laws regarding limited partnerships. The company also applied to the Ontario Securities Commission to be considered a formal Canadian investment dealer. At this time, however, Ledn isn’t technically registered with the OSC.
Although Ledn offers its services to all Canadian residents, it’s still unregistered in many foreign countries and several US states. Also, Ledn doesn’t offer CDIC protection on any funds deposited on its platform.
On the positive side, Armanino performs Proof-of-Reserves audits on Ledn every six months.
Is Ledn Insured?
Ledn’s partner custodian BitGo carries $100 million in insurance for any compromised crypto. However, that’s the extent of your protection on Ledn.
No federal government backs cryptocurrencies. Therefore, Ledn can’t provide CDIC or FDIC guarantees on Bitcoin or USDC.
Are My Holdings Safe with Ledn?
Ledn has a positive record for security, but there’s always a higher degree of risk when dealing with cryptocurrencies. Since Ledn isn’t CDIC-insured, you can lose the digital assets you deposit on this platform. Ledn also reserves the right to freeze your account if it deems fit.
On the positive side, Ledn’s custodian BitGo has a sterling reputation and $100 million in insurance. Also, customers can review Ledn’s Proof-of-Reserves audits every six months to verify what’s in Ledn’s treasury.
Overall, Ledn seems to be as safe (and risky) as other big crypto lending platforms like BlockFi and Celsius.
How Does Ledn Make Money?
The primary way Ledn makes money is by lending your Bitcoin or USDC to Genesis. Like Ledn, Genesis offers loans with digital assets, but it focuses on corporate clients. Each month, a slice of this interest gets paid into every Ledn savings account.
Besides Ledn’s partnership with Genesis, the company could lend crypto to other entities or re-invest money into building its brand. Ledn also collects interest and administration fees from anyone who opens a Bitcoin-backed loan, B2X loan, or Bitcoin Mortgage.
In A Nutshell
- Interest on Stablecoins: Up to 9.25%
- Interest on Bitcoin: Up to 6.25%
- Promotion: None
Ledn has been around for a few years, yet it doesn’t seem to get as much coverage as BlockFi, Celsius, or Nexo. Arguably, people don’t talk too much about Ledn because it has the smallest array of features.
Although Bitcoin and USDC are top-tier cryptos, they won’t satisfy customers who want to grow their altcoin portfolio. Ledn also doesn’t offer a built-in exchange or crypto rewards credit card, both of which are common on other platforms.
However, Ledn’s simplicity may be a positive feature for some crypto investors. Anyone solely interested in generating decent passive income on BTC or USDC won’t have issues navigating Ledn’s platform. Ledn also has a strong reputation for security thanks to its partnership with BitGo.
Ledn may be smaller than other crypto lending platforms, but that’s probably not a dealbreaker for “Bitcoin maxis” or USDC holders. Please review your crypto investment goals and see if they align with Ledn’s current offerings.
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Eric Esposito is a freelance writer, editor, and cryptocurrency enthusiast. Although it took him a few years to grasp the Bitcoin revolution, Eric has become a crypto convert and long-term “hodler.” Besides crypto investing, Eric is interested in helping others understand how to safely stack sats with passive income opportunities.