The crypto lending industry is becoming more and more competitive. Big defi projects like Compound and Aave have accumulated billions onto their platforms, but those are harder to figure out for crypto newbies. That leaves BlockFi, Celsius, and Nexo, which are all cefi platforms. These are simple and easy to use, and require only basic knowledge of cryptocurrency. BlockFi’s interest rates and portfolio of supported assets is just not good enough to be able to compete effectively with others, so that leaves us with Nexo and Celsius to battle it out.
For a while now I’ve been putting my idle crypto into Nexo. With Nexo you can earn interest on your crypto, which is of course the same thing as what Celsius does. The main difference between the two being, which currencies they support and how exactly they reward you. I decided to try Celisus because I had some crypto from Coinbase Earn and faucets that I couldn’t deposit anywhere else.
In this article I am going to compare Nexo vs Celsius, so let’s get started!
Signing up for both platforms is quick and easy. Suprisingly though Nexo at first does not require KYC! Only if you want to earn interest in NEXO tokens, do you have to go through KYC verification. Celsius does require KYC, which is of course natural when it comes to platforms like this.
When I installed the Celsius app, it at first told me that Celsius wasn’t supported in my region, because of this I didn’t bother to go through KYC for a while. Only after I kept getting emails from them, that told me to get verified and start earning, did I verify myself. After that I was able to use the app without any issues, so just be aware of that if you’re going to try Celsius! Hopefully they will fix that issue in the future.
Both Nexo and Celsius advertise with high interest rates, but if you look a bit deeper you’ll find out it isn’t that easy to get those rates.
For example Nexo advertises 6% rates for regular crypto on their website, but in actuality you will receive 5% at first. To get the 6% you will need to have 10% of your crypto portfolio in their own NEXO tokens.
Fortunately Nexo now allows you to earn interest in NEXO tokens, by doing this you will earn an additional 2%. So for example if you deposit your crypto and choose this option your interest rate is 7%, and once your portfolio consists of 10% in NEXO tokens, this rate will reach 8%.
If in the future you go back to earning interest in the crypto that you deposited, your rate will drop back to the 6% that they advertise.
Celsius takes this a step further, they say on their homepage: “Simply transfer your currency to Celsius and earn up to 21.49%.”
That sounds great, but is a little deceptive.
Let’s take a look at their current rewards page, to learn more about this.
Here we can see some of the advertised 21.49% interest rates, but still there’s a catch.
Like Nexo, Celsius gives you the option to earn interest in their own token, the CEL token. If you decide to go for this option you will earn at a higher interest rate as well, which is dependant on the currency. The CEL token also earns interest at a rate of 5.12%
Nexo on the other hand does not let you earn interest on your NEXO tokens, instead they pay dividends. They pay 30% of their profits out in dividends, so if the company performs well in the future the value of token combined with the dividend, should be a nice payday for holders, but this is not guaranteed of course.
I deposited some Zcash on Celsius, opting to earn in CEL, expecting to earn 4.59% as it says on this page.
I didn’t receive this, instead I earned at the regular 3.51% rate.
So I was wondering what happened.
Well to get that higher rate, besides choosing to earn in CEL, you also need to have a loyalty level. I wasn’t able to find anything about this on their website, and only found out about it after digging through the app.
Again, like Nexo you need to have a certain % of their own token in your portfolio to earn the higher interest rates. While I don’t have a problem with this, Celsius should definitely have advertised this better on their website.
As you can see you need quite a lot of CEL to get some of the higher bonuses, but you do have the potential to earn at a much higher % than anywhere else, if you accumulate enough CEL tokens! As far as I know there isn’t another trustworthy platform that offers rates this high!
Ease of Use
Both Nexo and Celsius have apps that are intuitive and nicely deisgned. With Nexo you could also use their website as well, which Celsius doesn’t allow you to do. Although it isn’t strictly necessary, I do like that I can use the Nexo’s website as well. Sometimes it’s just a lot easier to do things from your laptop than your phone.
Both platforms notify you when a deposit has arrived or when you have earned interest. Nexo pays out interest daily, while Celsius pays it on a weekly basis.
What I really like about Celsius is that they have no minimums to get started! No matter how small the amount of crypto you have, you can send it to them and it will start earning interest right away!
Nexo does have minimums, and even though the amounts are very low, it would be nice if they could remove them, so that people can more easily try out the platform.
As you probably already saw above, NEXO doesn’t support that many currencies yet, but all the important ones are there. NEXO is in the process of adding new currencies, but so far nothing has been announced yet.
Celsius on the other hand, supports almost all of the currencies that NEXO has, plus a lot more, and with more on the way!
You can check the full list of supported assets here, and below is a screenshot from the app with the upcoming assets (for some reason this is only shown in the app).
I’m very happy to see these companies go head to head with each other. Their competition can only benefit us as users, and I’m hoping to see more companies join this industry! Nexo has already increased its interest rates once, and Celsius answered with high interest rates based on their CEL token. Nexo introduced dividends, and Celsius created a lucrative referral program. Who knows what they’ll come up with next!
Both NEXO and Celsius are great platforms in my opinion. Which one is right for you will depend on which assets you have and which token you believe in the most.
If you just want to earn interest in the crypto that you have, then Nexo is the one right for you, because of their interest rates. But if you’re willing to earn or buy some CEL first, you could greatly increase your interest rate with them!
For me personally, I will continue to use both.
NEXO is the more established company. They are licensed and regulated, have great security and insurance. Their assets are kept for the most part in cold storage, and they have a lot of backing from their partners and investors. They’re planning to get banking licenses for both the US and Europe, so I’m expecting to see the value of the NEXO token and dividend go up in the future. Right now dividends are paid out annually, but in the last Nexo AMA, they announced that they want change this to a monthly dividend.
I will deposit all my crypto that Nexo doesn’t support into Celsius and keep earning CEL for the time being. I think Celsius shows a lot of promise as well and I look forward to see how they develop in the future!
What’s great about Celsius is that if you sign up with a referral link, you and the person sharing the link will both receive $20 worth of Bitcoin after 30 days, when you have deposited $200 or more in crypto on the platform. Nexo meanwhile doesn’t have a referral program, so I think someone is trying to steal some customers away! If after reading this article you decide to try out Celsius, please consider using my link if you want, my code is: 1558831768.
You can click here to learn more about Nexo.
Thank you for reading and I hope this article has been informative!
If you haven’t signed up to Coinbase yet, now might be a good time to do so. Through their Coinbase Earn program you can earn different cryptocurrencies for free! You can then withdraw them from the site and deposit them on Nexo and Celsius! For some of the currencies you might have to wait a little bit before you can claim them, but if you click the links, you should be able to skip the line and start claiming straightaway.
You can earn right now: