Nigerians Pile Up in Bitcoin, Crypto: KuCoin Report

  • KuCoin conducted a report with several surveys which shows that 35% of the adult population between the ages of 18 and 60 in Nigeria are invested in bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies.
  • The investor class is largely made up of a young population driven by Nigeria’s median age of 18.4, which results in 52% of investors being under 30 years old.
  • Nigeria welcomes many long-term investors to the space as its currency, the naira, has seen a depreciation of 209% over a six-year period. 37% of space investors have been invested for more than 3 years.

KuCoin, a leading cryptocurrency exchange, recently released a report titled “Into The Cryptoverse” where they discussed the penetration of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies among populations in different countries. The most notable of these is Nigeria; 35%, or 33.4 million, of its adults between the ages of 18 and 60 have owned or traded bitcoin or some form of cryptocurrency in the past 6 months.

Users with internet access

This staggering figure of 35% of adults becomes even more baffling when you consider that in January 2023, only 51% of the entire population of Nigeria had internet access, according to the report. Of this 51% of the population, 86% of Nigerian internet users are aware of cryptocurrency as an investment vehicle. The report also states that according to Google Trends, Nigeria hosted the highest number of Bitcoin searches in early 2021.

A survey of the 35% penetrated shows that 70% of these users intend to increase their holdings in a short period of time. Another 6% of the currently uninvested population were surveyed and said they are interested in investing in the next six months.

Young Investor Interest Grows as Naira Falls

In six years, the Nigerian currency, the naira, has depreciated by 209%, according to the report. Bitcoin’s adoption rate is much greater in populations that need Bitcoin, rather than just a need. The failing Naira has led to earlier adoption than most as 37% of those currently involved in bitcoin have invested or traded in the asset for over 3 years, with a further 27% having just started in the past 6 months .

The need to withdraw from the existing structure is driven by Nigeria’s young population, with its median age standing at 18.4, according to Statista quoted in the report. This drives the statistic in which 52% of Nigerians have invested in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies under 30 years.

Gender parity among Nigerian investors

An interesting stat that KuCoin discovered in a survey of those currently invested in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies showed a gender parity of 50%. Nigeria seems to prove that when economic needs, the youth of a population and innovation come together, gender plays no role in the adoption of an emergent monetary system.

Long-term outlook for investors in Nigeria

The preference for limited time appears to be shaped by the entrepreneurial spirit in Nigeria, with 62% of investors believing this emerging system is the future of finance and 50% of investors saying they are in it for the long haul. 40% of investors are looking to use their earnings to start a business, 36% are looking for another source of income and 26% are looking to rely on their investment as their primary income.

Portfolio diversification

Portfolio diversification, or lack of diversification in some cases, is a fascinating statistic among Nigerian investors. On average, these investors allocate 60% to cryptocurrencies, 20% to cash or bank deposits and 7% to foreign currencies with additional financial instruments filling the gap, meaning that over 52% of investors allocate more than half of their portfolio to cryptocurrencies, according to the report.

Just over a fifth of these investors (22%) store more than 90% of their assets in bitcoin or other cryptocurrency. This minority group tends to be slightly older and less familiar with other financial products that focus on money transfers and transactions, rather than trading.


As of February 2023, 65% of these investors are using peer-to-peer trading to deposit fiat for cryptocurrencies after the Central Bank of Nigeria banned banks from allowing crypto transactions in February 2021, according to another investigation by KuCoin cited in the report.

Other data from KuCoin shows a 1,386.7% increase in monthly transactions in African countries from January 2021 to January 2023. During the same period, active users also increased by 2,467.2%.

Countries like Nigeria are showing the need for a new monetary system that enables cross-border payments with minimal fees and global access in its most trusted form. Nigeria’s central authorities failed to care for its citizens and its young population took it upon itself to impose the necessary changes. While bitcoin certainly serves as a store of value for many people in more developed places around the world, bitcoin’s humanitarian and altruistic use cases are what really make it inevitable.