Crypto Briefs is your daily, bite-sized digest of cryptocurrency and blockchain-related news – investigating the stories flying under the radar of today’s crypto news.
92% of surveyed women said that they would be more likely to invest if Bitcoin had a longer track record, and 93% (compared with 84% of surveyed men) thought they’d be more interested in Bitcoin if they knew more about it, an online survey of 1,100 U.S. investors this past spring, commissioned by Grayscale Investments. Others said they’d consider it more carefully if a financial advisor recommended it (84%), if it were offered by a familiar firm (80%), or if a friend had invested in it (76%).
Highlight: “About 21 million investors in the U.S. would have an interest in investing in bitcoin,” @GrayscaleInvest Managing Director @Sonnenshein says. “In fact, 43% of those interested investors are female…" pic.twitter.com/1S0SwcI4IN
— Yahoo Finance (@YahooFinance) December 10, 2019
- BitPay, a major provider of blockchain payment services, today announced the rollout of stablecoin payments for merchants and consumers. The company said it supports payment acceptance and settlement in USD Coin (USDC), the Gemini Dollar (GUSD) and Paxos Standard Token (PAX).
- A South Korean company says it will spearhead the world’s first blockchain-powered clinical medical trials. Per D Daily, tech company Biok says it has struck a deal with “a major South Korean general hospital” and other medical providers. Biok says it will supply a platform whereby clinical drug trials are conducted in conjunction with a range of organizations attempting to fight cancer. Biok says it has entered into a five-year contract with its medical firm partners, with work set to begin on the project next year.
- Spanish hotel chain Meliá Hotels says it will use blockchain technology to help it reduce its carbon footprint. According to Mallorca Diario, Meliá will be the first hotel group to attempt to use blockchain in this manner, and is working with blockchain startups on a new solution that will ensure transparency in carbon credit issuances.
- Japanese energy provider Kansai Electric Power has struck a deal with Australian blockchain energy firm Power Ledger ahead of the launch of the former’s blockchain-powered P2P energy-trading platform, reports Fisco, via Gentosha. Power Ledger last month sealed a deal with local authorities in South Australia, where it will also trial blockchain-powered energy management technology, with a focus on rural areas.
- DappRadar, a Lithuania-based dapp (decentralized application) analysis platform, has begun tracking dapps on the WAX blockchain. WAX is a delegated Proof of Stake blockchain, created using the EOS.IO SDK. Its operators say it was designed to combine the benefits of decentralized infrastructure with the usability of traditional web services, per DappRadar. WAX supports non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Integration with other NFT standards such as dGoods on EOS, and ERC721 on the Ethereum blockchain, is also in the pipelines.
- SIAE, an Italian company specializing in collective copyright management, says it has struck a partnership deal with Algorand, a decentralized digital currency developer and crypto exchange operator. The companies say they will work on a copyright management platform that will make use of Algorand’s recently launched blockchain platform. Algorand says that SIAE wanted to make use of the Algorand platform due to its decentralized nature and high-performance capabilities.
- The Venezuelan government will likely continue to push for the country’s public to make further use of the state-issued Petro cryptocurrency next year. Per the head of the state’s cryptocurrency department Sunacrip, via Ultimas Noticias, “2020 will be the year of transformation and technological innovation for the Petro.” The Sunacrip chief also hinted that Caracas will seek to popularize its state-issued multi-cryptocurrency wallet in 2020.
- Japanese exchange BITpoint has resumed deposit services following a hack earlier this year that forced the platform to suspend most of its services. Per Nikkei, the exchange, which is owned by rewards and loyalty program operator RemixPoint, is hoping to resume a full range of normal services following a malware-based attack on users’ hot wallets in summer.
- The pro-blockchain and -crypto governor of the semi-autonomous province of Jeju Island, South Korea, has stated he is still pushing to create a regulation-free zone on the island. Per Sisa Magazine, the governor Won Hee-ryong, made his intentions clear at a recent blockchain summit. The region’s latest blockchain plans include a blockchain-powered battery waste management project for electric vehicles and a property management initiative.
- BTSE, a Dubai-based cryptocurrency exchange, is looking to raise USD 50 million in a token offering on Liquid Network. Liquid is a sidechain on the Bitcoin blockchain that was developed by Blockstream, with the rollout planned for March 2020. Per an official exchange announcement, BTSE hopes to sell 50 million tokens at USD 1 each, with tiered discounts. The company is hoping to use the funds to boost platform revenue, development and liquidity. The company is also looking to expand into lending, OTC (over-the-counter) trading and mining. The minimum investment limit is USD 150,000. The total supply of tokens is 200 million, and the company plans to use 30% of revenue to buy back and burn tokens, beginning three months after the launch, eventually buying back and burning 100 million tokens.
- The board of directors of Ledger Holdings, the parent company of LedgerX, the first federally regulated exchange and clearinghouse to list and clear fully collateralized, physically settled Bitcoin swaps and options, has announced that it has placed co-founders and executives Paul and Juthica Chou on administrative leave. Wall Street veteran Larry E. Thompson has been appointed as interim CEO and Lead Director of Ledger Holdings.
- The American regulatory Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has approved a Bitcoin futures fund application from the New York Digital Investment Group LLC (NYDIG), per filing registration statements in October and November. The fund will invest only in cash-settled Bitcoin futures contracts traded on exchanges registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), and will be managed by the USD 15 billion asset manager Stone Ridge Trust VI. The SEC Commissioner Hester Peirce has tweeted about the development, while Dalia Blass, Director of the SEC’s Division of Investment Management, also appeared to make mention of it in a speech, saying, "We are at the point that a registered closed-end interval fund with a Bitcoin futures strategy is preparing to launch."
- IDEG Investment Ltd, a digital asset management company, launched Asia Bitcoin Trust I and Atlas Mining Trust I on November 27, with the company saying that these two trusts, with a combined size of USD 200 million, had been designed as a comfortable way for "old money" to invest in digital assets. IDEG explained that Asia Bitcoin Trust I offers accredited and institutional investors compliant, secure and professionally wrapped Bitcoin exposure supported by selected service providers, while Atlas Mining Trust I allows traditional investors to participate and share profits generated by Bitcoin mining.
- Venture capitalist Tim Draper, known for his early investments in companies such as Tesla, Hotmail, Skype and Coinbase, as well as his early support of Bitcoin, has invested in Goren Holm Ventures, expanding their partnership, says the Los Angeles blockchain accelerator and incubator, now called Draper Goren Holm. "I am excited about doubling-down on Los Angeles and blockchain with the premiere blockchain conference and accelerator team in LA," said Draper.