In the simplest terms, the Celsius Network is a cryptocurrency lending, borrowing, and investment platform that is created for people just starting in the world of cryptocurrency. It is highly accessible to beginners, very user-friendly, and can provide some incredible benefits to not only borrowers but lenders as well.
Overall, Celsius is a great option for those who want to get into cryptocurrency but have been put off by complex fee schedules and coin lockdown periods. For beginners who want to buy cryptocurrencies and start trading or those who simply want to “HODL” (“Hold On for Dear Life”) and earn passive income, Celsius is an amazingly user-friendly option.
They offer rewards of up to 15% APY that are paid to lenders weekly, alongside fee-free and instant cryptocurrency payments in the app. The app is super-easy to use and intuitive to navigate, and the main website is accessible to over 100 nations around the globe.
What Is The Celsius Token?
Celsius tokens, or CEL, are the native tokens for the Celsius Network. When lending, the interest earned from the loan will be paid in the same currency that was borrowed. This is one reason that lenders and borrowers should both pay close attention to the potential future value of the coins since that can change the dynamics of fulfilling the terms of the loan.
Celsius account holders are also rewarded with CEL, and while US residents cannot yet buy these tokens directly, they are still accrued as interest on the account holder’s portfolio. This interest is determined by a loyalty program that divides earners into 4 tiers.
Each Friday, earnings are calculated after factoring in the particular cryptocurrencies in the holder’s portfolio, their loyalty tier, and the interest earned by the Celsius Network. There are other perks included in the loyalty program tiers as well, they are broken down into the following 4 levels:
- Bronze Tier: Users in the Bronze Tier hold 5% or less of their portfolio as CEL tokens. These users earn standard interest rates and are offered standard interest rates on loans.
- Silver Tier: Users with between 5% and 10% of their portfolio consisting of CEL tokens are part of the Silver Tier, which provides a 10% bonus on earnings from interest, and a 10% discount on loan interest rates.
- Gold Tier: When a user holds a portfolio of between 10% and 15% CEL tokens they are upgraded to the Gold Tier of the loyalty program, which gets them a 20% bonus on interest earnings, and a 10% discount on their loan rates.
- Platinum Tier: If a user holds a portfolio that is composed of 15% CEL tokens or more, they are awarded the Platinum Tier loyalty benefits. These users are given a 35% bonus on their interest earnings and are given a 30% discount on interest rates for approved loans.
As an additional bonus, all users that send CEL tokens with the app feature “CelPay” automatically earn 2% cashback. The app allows users to send any supported cryptocurrency using the app, though cashback bonuses are only available when sending CEL tokens.
Just as with interest or loyalty program earnings, the CelPay cashback feature is calculated weekly. The proceeds are added directly to the user’s portfolio and can be easily tracked and researched right from the dashboard.
How Does Celsius Work?
The Celsius Network makes all of its profits through the fees and interest earnings on its lending programs. This lets Celsius keep most of its features and transactions incredibly low-cost or even free.
Celsius lets users buy many cryptocurrencies with fiat, as well as facilitating a lending and borrowing platform whose framework incorporates earning interest dividends. It allows for the issuance of undercollateralized loans against existing crypto assets, due to a large degree of centralization.
Since they deal exclusively with crypto and have such a unique business model, they can offer crypto trading activities that present a lower risk, which also makes them more appealing for beginners. All Celsius deposits are insured for up to $100 million, and there are no limits to withdrawal amounts, so you can cash out all or part of your portfolio the instant you want it.
In contrast to other crypto lending platforms, Celsius also imposes no fees or periods of crypto lockup. This means that if you deposit something today, you can cash it out today, or at any point in the future without additional fees or waiting periods. While deposits are invested, Celsius also grants weekly interest payments in the coins lent out, as well as network-specific coin, CEL.
How To Use Celsius?
The Celsius app is incredibly easy to use, and navigation comes as intuitively as if you’ve been using it for years. The dashboard will give you all your crypto portfolio details at a glance, while a single tap here or there allows you to drill down into much finer detail.
You can find detailed rundowns of your interest earnings, not only week by week, but you can scale out and look at your portfolio’s performance overall time. This lets you keep a close eye on your deposits, withdrawals, as well as your lending, borrowing, and earning statistics.
There are no minimum account balances required for Celsius users, and there are no hidden fees that users should expect. There are fees and costs associated with lending and borrowing, but these are limited to those programs and are not “baked-in” to any other operational features.
Depending on your location you may be subject to various funding limits, however. If you are wiring funds to your account with the Wyre feature, you can only fund a maximum of $5,000 per week. When funding with ACH bank transfers users can fund a maximum of $20,000 per month.
When using Coinify to fund accounts for users in the European Union, there are separate limits. For those funding with bank transfers like ACH or SEPA the limit is substantially higher, allowing a maximum of 50,000 EUR per day, and 1,000 EUR per day maximum when funding from a bank card or credit card.
What Makes Celsius Special?
Celsius is incredibly beginner-friendly and easy to use. The onboarding process is relatively easy, although with Celsius being accessible to more than 100 countries it may take a short delay to finish approval. Celsius does comply with the US SEC’s requirements for knowing your customer legislation, so if you are in the US, you will need to prove not only your identity but also your social security number.
After you have been verified and onboarded, you will have access to the Celsius app. From here you will be able to navigate the features of the platform without much assistance. For those who are still a little hesitant to try anything, or who may be visual learners, countless tutorial videos will walk the user through each feature and how it is used.
Since it is specifically designed for beginners and others new to the cryptocurrency space, Celsius has no minimum account balance requirements, and there are no hidden fees.
Another benefit that Celsius holds over similar crypto lending platforms is the extensive list of cryptos that they support. Not only can lenders and borrowers lend and borrow in primary cryptos like Bitcoin and Ethereum, but they support a wide range of stablecoins, tethercoins, and altcoins. The current list lineup includes:
- Binance USD
- Bitcoin Cash
- Bitcoin SV
- Gemini Dollar
- Paxos Standard
- Stellar Lumens
- Basic Attention Token
- Celsius Token
Pros And Cons Of Celsius
Celsius doesn’t have a ton of complex features like some other cryptocurrency lending platforms, but the features and usability it does have are premium.
Simple Yet Detailed Dashboard
The dashboard you see when you log in after onboarding will show you anything you want to see regarding your crypto portfolio. You will be able to see your total earnings, as well as breakdowns of your weekly earnings. This can be seen for the entire duration of time that the app has been installed.
Being able to see your full deposit and withdrawal activity along with current balances is essential to having a working overview of your investments. The breakdown of your earnings and lending proceeds helps you keep an eye on the coins that you’ve lent out and the interest you’re making. It will also show what loyalty tier you’re currently on, and what your rewards and earnings from that will be.
Multiple Options For Funding
There are several options that users can use to fund their Celsius account. Coins can be bought outright with fiat, and users can use wire service Wyre, along with ACH and SEPA transfers to fund their accounts with relatively large initial balances. Users can also use credit or debit cards, subject to KYC restrictions. All funding methods will have their respective funding limits per day, week, or month.
Celsius calculates and pays interest weekly. Each Friday the interest and earnings that your portfolio is due will be calculated and added to your balance by Monday. This means that as long as you deposit by Thursday, you will see earnings from those funds by that following Monday.
While Celsius is great, it does have a few drawbacks to keep in mind.
Sparse Education Resources
Celsius was not initially designed to be a busy trading platform, it was designed to make building a portfolio of crypto easy and straightforward while allowing users to earn interest and take out loans against supported crypto assets. While they are noticeably light on educational materials relating to the analysis of either fundamentals or technicals, at this stage in their growth it is understandable and forgivable.
However, it is still a prime tool for beginners to learn about the ins and outs of crypto savings and portfolio-building. Celsius maintains a substantial glossary of all the crypto terms, jargon, and even slang that are used commonly by those in the crypto space. The app also has a handful of other resources that will be handy for crypto beginners.
At its core, Celsius is designed as an easily accessible tool for learning more about, and eventually diving into, crypto savings and passive crypto investment. This is perhaps one of the things most useful for beginners since they can get their feet wet without massive account minimums and staggeringly high transaction or trading fees.
Celsius has recently hit a growth spurt, and so they are still in the midst of pivoting and adapting to that. As a result, inquiries routed to customer support will generally have a bit longer waitlead time before getting answered or addressed when submitted through conventional channels.
However, Celsius does excel in customer service where other crypto firms have sorely failed, on the digital front. They have blistering fast response times for customers seeking input from Twitter and Reddit. This sets them apart from many other similar organizations that simply wait too long to make a meaningful digital presence.
This reason alone makes them more beginner-friendly and accessible to all users. Until they can compensate for the short-staffing, it’s recommended to reach out via their social channels if you require customer support and are waiting for a response through the app.
Team, Investors, and Partners
The Celsius Network team is a private, for-profit company that consists of 251-500 total employees. The centralized finance (CeFi) company was founded back in 2017 by Alex Mashinsky (current CEO), Nuke Goldstein (current Chief Technology Officer), Rod Bolger, and S. Daniel Leon (current president and Chief Operating Officer).
As for how Celsius Network is funded, there are seven investors – four of which are considered lead investors – in the company. Caisee de Depot et Placement du Quebec and Westcap are the two newest additions to the list of investors and are classed as lead investors – the other two lead investors being gumi Cryptos Capital (gCC) and Tether. The remaining investors include tokentus investment AG, Alpha Sigma Capital, and Kyle Wang (the only individual investor).
Celsius Network has partnered with several other companies for a variety of reasons. For example, Celsius Network partnered with Chainanalysis – a blockchain analysis company – for the completion of Celsius Network’s asset auditing. By having a third-party authority conduct the analysis, Celsius Network continued to build “greater trust and transparency for our members and the industry at large” according to CEO and founder Alex Mashinsky. Other long-term partnerships like those with Bitcoin.com and Chainlink aim to enhance Celsius Network’s current products and offers by expanding the number of cryptocurrencies the company can trade and further improving transparency as the company pushes towards more decentralized finance ideologies.
There are a ton of reasons to join the Celsius Network, and only a few minor reasons not to. Everyone from cryptocurrency beginners to experienced traders can find robust value as well, alongside passive weekly earnings on all deposited and loaned cryptocurrencies.
Even for the newest crypto enthusiasts, many of the services and rewards that they offer are free, and can also be found on larger platforms that charge higher fees. While Celsius is booming and currently still adapting to a major growth surge, they are trying to get their customer service and onboarding verification processes sped up, but they are doing an amazing job in the meantime.
John S. Logan has been working with cryptocurrency for nearly as long as it has been available on the market. With a professional background in the finance industry, he believes that blockchain technology, cryptocurrency, and decentralized finance play an important role in the future of the world.