Ravipriya Bandara, a 30-year-old marketing strategist and corporate trainer from Sri Lanka, had his work hours reduced amid nationwide lockdowns during the first wave of COVID-19. 

With more time on his hands, Bandara started looking for investment opportunities and came across a conversation on Facebook about bitcoin. Bandara was soon introduced to an online community of crypto enthusiasts from various parts of the island.

“I didn’t know crypto was that popular in Sri Lanka. But when I joined the Telegram groups and all the communities, I realized that there had been a good amount of people who had been interested in crypto since 2015 or even earlier,” Bandara said. 

A steady stream of newcomers like Bandara are joining the island’s veteran bitcoin investors. While many new investors are attracted by the promise of quick gains in an ongoing crypto bull market, others are shaken by the coronavirus pandemic’s economic devastation and are…

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