Twitter co-founder and Bitcoin advocate Jack Dorsey’s nonprofit organization, ₿trust, is expanding its programs in Africa with the acquisition of Qala, an organization dedicated to training Bitcoin and Lightning Network engineers. The acquisition, completed on September 1, will allow ₿trust to further its mission of developing and educating Bitcoin open-source engineers from the Global South.
Founded in 2021, Qala has been instrumental in sourcing, training, and connecting African software developers with global Bitcoin companies, enabling them to acquire the necessary skills for the global Bitcoin ecosystem. As a result of the acquisition, Qala will rebrand as the ₿trust Builders Programme.
Qala has already built one of the largest online communities of Bitcoin developers in Africa, spanning across 42 countries, including Nigeria, Kenya, and Uganda. The program’s alumni have successfully secured positions at prominent Bitcoin-native platforms such as Galoy, Sphinx Chat, and Bitnob, in addition to receiving open-source grants from ₿trust and Superlunar.
Under the terms of the acquisition, Qala CEO Femi Longe and program manager Stephanie Titcombe will join ₿trust as program leads at ₿trust Builders. This collaboration will enhance ₿trust’s ability to drive open-source development in the Global South.
“We’re incredibly proud to welcome Femi and his excellent team to ₿trust,” said ₿trust board member Ojoma Ochai. He further emphasized Qala’s rapid progress in advancing open-source development in the Global South.
₿trust was established by Jack Dorsey in February 2021 with an initial endowment of 500 BTC, equivalent to $23.7 million at the time. The nonprofit initially focused on supporting teams in Africa and India and received additional funding from rapper Jay-Z, who shares an appreciation for cryptocurrencies. Currently, the organization is led by a board of directors that includes Abubakar Nur Khalil, Carla Kirk-Cohen, Obi Nwosu, and Ojoma Ochai.
Through the acquisition of Qala, ₿trust is poised to have an even greater impact on the development of Bitcoin engineers in Africa. By leveraging Qala’s existing network and expertise, ₿trust aims to empower the African tech community and contribute to the growth and adoption of Bitcoin in the region.
This move aligns with ₿trust’s overarching goal of fostering global financial inclusivity through Bitcoin. By focusing on the Global South, ₿trust recognizes the potential for cryptocurrencies to provide individuals and communities with increased economic opportunities and financial autonomy.
As ₿trust continues to expand its programs and initiatives in Africa, the organization remains dedicated to supporting the development of Bitcoin open-source engineers and fostering collaboration within the global Bitcoin ecosystem. By acquiring Qala, ₿trust is further solidifying its commitment to driving innovation, education, and adoption of cryptocurrencies in Africa.