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Retailers Around The World That Accept Crypto, From Pizza to Travel
News by Cointelegraph: Jinia Shawdagor Earlier on, when Bitcoin (BTC) arrived on the scene, most cryptocurrency enthusiasts held on to their coins, as there were only so many places they could be spent. Nowadays, the list of marketplaces and retailers accepting Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is significantly larger, providing crypto enthusiasts with more options for making real-world purchases. After all, with recognizable organizations like Microsoft and Wikipedia now accepting Bitcoin as payment, conversations about Bitcoin and the power of cryptocurrencies are becoming more prominent. Currently, several fast-food restaurants and coffee shops have started accepting Bitcoin as payment. This will likely provide traction for mass adoption as cryptocurrency payments become increasingly commonplace in day-to-day purchases. Granted, there are some jurisdictions that do not consider Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency as legal tender. Despite this set back, even big tech companies like Facebook are coming up with payment systems that mimic cryptocurrencies. Here are some of the leading retailers, merchants and companies that will let you book flights and hotels, buy coffee or pizza, or even go to space with crypto.
Pay for a burger in Germany with crypto
The German branch of fast-food restaurant chain Burger King now claims to accept Bitcoin as payment for its online orders and deliveries, but this is not the first time Burger King has warmed up to Bitcoin as a form of payment. The company, headquartered in Florida in the United States, had its Russian branch announce in 2017 that it would start accepting Bitcoin payments, but it ultimately did not take off. The global fast-food retailer reports an annual revenue of about $20 billion and serves about 11 million customers around the world. If all its outlets move to accept Bitcoin as payment, cryptocurrency adoption would inevitably spread.
Spend crypto at Starbucks and other places
For crypto payments to gain traction, merchants need to implement systems that enable swift and easy cryptocurrency spending. Starbucks is one of the companies taking advantage of this concept through Flexa, a U.S.-based payment startup that is helping the cafe giant, as well as dozens of other companies, accept cryptocurrency payments. The company developed an app called Spedn that enables crypto holders to make purchases with merchants like Starbucks. The company’s CEO believes that by making cryptocurrencies spendable in the mainstream, commerce will realize the full benefit of blockchain technology all over the world. Crypto enthusiasts in Silicon Valley’s Palo Alto might already be familiar with Coupa Cafe for other reasons apart from its coffee and food. Through its partnership with a Facebook software developer, Coupa Cafe has been accepting Bitcoin as payment since 2013. Reports show that the cafe received a steady stream of Bitcoin revenue as soon as they started implementing crypto payments — a clear sign of how eager its customers were to pay in Bitcoin. Coupa Cafe is among the few physical businesses in Palo Alto that accept Bitcoin at the moment. The cafe owners believe that their collaboration with the Facebook software engineer will create more traction in terms of Bitcoin adoption.
Buy food with crypto
With over 50,000 takeaway restaurants listed on its United Kingdom-based site, OrderTakeaways is one of the surest ways to get a pizza paid for with crypto delivered to your doorstep. The company has been accepting Bitcoin payments for online takeout orders since 2018. And other similar services include the Korean platform Shuttledelivery as well as German-based service Lieferando and its subsidiaries in several other countries. Apart from online orders, crypto can also be spent at a regular Subway restaurants. As early as 2013, several Subway branches started accepting Bitcoin as payment. Now, for a fraction of a Bitcoin, a Subway sandwich can be purchased at select restaurants.
Pay with Bitcoin to tour space
Besides buying food and inexpensive, day-to-day items with crypto, a trip to space can now be bought with Bitcoin. That’s right. Richard Branson’s space tourism company, Virgin Galactic, started accepting Bitcoin as payment as far back as 2013. Although Branson’s predicted date for the first commercial flight has been pushed back several times, the company achieved its first suborbital space flight last year. Perhaps soon, people will be able to tour the moon on crypto’s dime.
Buy jewelry with Bitcoin
A brick-and-mortar American jewelry company called Reeds Jewelers accepts Bitcoin for both its physical and online stores. What’s more, if a purchase is worth more than $25,000, the company provides free armored delivery for safety. Other jewelry companies accepting Bitcoin include Blue Nile Jewelry, Stephen Silver Fine Jewelry and Coaex Jewelry, to name a few. A big advantage of purchasing large ticket items — like a diamond — with crypto is that it makes moving around large amounts of money cheap and effortless. Reports show that more Silicon Valley investors are buying jewelry with Bitcoin. Last year, Stephen Silver Fine Jewelry reported a 20% growth in crypto transactions, leading to a boost in the company’s sales. The company has been accepting Bitcoin since 2014.
Send and redeem gift cards with Bitcoin
Gyft, a digital platform that allows users to buy, send and redeem gift cards, was one of the first merchants enabling cryptocurrency adoption to gain traction in the real world. The mobile gift card app allows Bitcoin to be used to purchase gift cards from several retailers, some of which include Burger King, Subway, Amazon and Starbucks. The company has also partnered with popular crypto exchange Coinbase to enable users to buy gift cards from their Coinbase wallets.
Travel and pay in Bitcoin
If a traveler only has Bitcoin at their disposal, the following merchants will gladly offer services in exchange for it. TravelbyBit, a flight and hotel booking service, accepts cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Binance Coin and Litecoin (LTC) as payment. With a network of over 300 crypto-friendly merchants, the platform is one of the biggest supporters of crypto adoption. TravelbyBit can also alert you to upcoming blockchain events in order to interact with other crypto enthusiasts from around the globe. Other platforms to book flights with crypto include Destinia, CheapBizClass, CheapAir, AirBaltic, Bitcoin.Travel and ABitSky, among others.
Use crypto to book a five-star hotel in Zurich
If ever one finds themselves traveling to Zurich Switzerland, either BTC or Ether (ETH) can be used to pay for a stay in a five-star hotel in Zurich. In May 2019, five-star hotel and spa Dodler Grand announced that it will start accepting Bitcoin and Ether as payment. The hotel has partnered with a fintech firm Inacta as well as Bity (a Swiss-based crypto exchange) to facilitate the payment and conversion of crypto to fiat money. The hotel boasts an amazing view of the Swiss landscape among other enticing amenities that come with a five-star hotel.
Pay for electronics and more with crypto
For all the gadget lovers, there are a bunch of platforms that allow electronic purchases with cryptocurrency. Newegg, for instance, is an electronic retail giant that uses BitPay to process payments made with digital currencies. Even though one cannot get refunds for Bitcoin purchases, Newegg has a good reputation for quality items. Plus, the company boasts its being among the first merchants to support cryptocurrency adoption. Other platforms for gadget junkies include Eyeboot (a platform that sells crypto mining rigs in exchange for crypto), Microsoft, FastTech and Alza (a U.K.-based online store that sells phones and beauty products).
An ever-expanding list
It seems clear that more retailers are warming up to the idea of accepting cryptocurrencies. There is still a long way to go before full adoption can be achieved, but many companies have nevertheless benefited from being early adopters. Despite the volatile price movements of cryptocurrencies, all evidence points to a future cashless society that uses digital currencies, and crypto is leading the way.
What Might Happen if Bitcoin Loses Its Dominance? – Crypto Disrupt
For the entire history of cryptocurrency, bitcoin has been the dominant coin almost entirely because it was the first fully functional cryptocurrency to go live and showcased the power of the blockchain. According to CoinMarketCap, Bitcoin has mostly had a 90% dominance over the market from 2013 to 2017. This means that for four years, 90% of the money within the cryptocurrency market was in the form of bitcoin. It also means that bitcoin had the highest market capitalization. However, from March 10th 2017 to June 19th, 2017 its dominance fell to a mere 37%. In the space of just 101 days, bitcoin lost 53% of its dominance. Since then, it has never seen dominance beyond 65%. Bitcoin’s massive fall from grace was the first time that the market got a sense for its vulnerability, and if it wasn’t for such a drop in dominance, we might not have the same thriving and diverse market that we have today. This is because, on June 12th, 2017, Ethereum reached its highest market dominance of 33%. Bitcoin’s loss of dominance allowed for Ethereum’s network to grow and flourish, providing us with hundreds of ERC20 tokens. At the moment, Bitcoin’s dominance is at 42%. This is still a massive number. In fact, it is absurdly massive. For comparison, there is nothing in the stock market that comes close to such dominance. While Bitcoin is a powerful force in the industry, it is perhaps not powerful enough to stay dominant forever. What would happen if it lost its dominance altogether? What if another coin held dominance? Bitcoin could lose its relevance Bitcoin will always be remembered as the first cryptocurrency and the coin that brought us blockchain technology, but this alone is not enough to keep it relevant. Right now, bitcoin is used as a gateway into the world of cryptocurrency for investors. People mainly buy into it so that they can exchange it for other cryptocurrencies through services like Binance. This is partially because bitcoin is the most used trading pair, meaning that you need it to make trades with other more obscure coins. If bitcoin lost its dominance, it is likely that it would stop being used as the leading trading pair on exchanges. No longer a viable store of value People who use bitcoin as a means of storing their wealth might think twice if it was to lose its dominance. At the moment, the most appealing aspect of using bitcoin for this function is that it is worth more than other cryptocurrencies. Without its dominance, people may start looking into other coins as a store of value. It is possible that they would come to the conclusion that a stablecoin is better suited for the job. Stablecoins are cryptocurrencies which are pegged to the price of something external (usually to legal tender or possibly gold). The most (in)famous example of this is Tether, which is pegged at $1.00, but investors are wary of using it as a store of value because of its shady handlings. New stablecoins like Dai are being developed that aim to take over from Tether. The perk of storing your money in a stablecoin is that you can be confident that it will not fluctuate drastically like every other cryptocurrency. Bitcoin’s price could drop significantly Not only does bitcoin have market dominance, but it is also the most expensive coin on the market. Technically, bitcoin could remain the most expensive cryptocurrency even with a minority dominance, but this is unlikely. Bitcoin’s price is arguably tied to people’s trust that it will stay dominant. Without its dominance, it loses its proof of relevancy, and therefore its price. We would have a new dominant coin Naturally, if bitcoin lost its dominance, we would have a new dominant cryptocurrency. A reasonable guess would be that Ethereum would become the new dominant coin since it has the second largest market cap right now. If Ethereum gained market dominance, it is possible that all ERC20 tokens could rise significantly in price too as they rely on Ethereum’s blockchain. This would change the landscape of the market substantially. Ethereum dominance could mean that more Ethereum tokens enter the top ten on CoinMarketCap (currently only one token is there). How likely is it that Bitcoin will lose its dominance? Bitcoin has only once come close to losing its dominance, which was on June 12th, 2017, when Ethereum’s dominance rose. Since then it has kept a comfortable distance from all other coins. The reason people think bitcoin will lose its dominance is that other coins, like Ethereum, are more functional. You can use this tool to see how close Ethereum is to overtaking Bitcoin in terms of dominance. With that said, Bitcoin may never lose its dominance. While it does seem likely that one day another coin will be more valued, there is no reason to say that will ever happen. This was merely a discussion regarding what might happen should such a situation arise. What are your thoughts? Source: https://cryptodisrupt.com/what-might-happen-if-bitcoin-loses-its-dominance
In case you missed it: Major Crypto and Blockchain News from the week ending 12/14/2018
Developments in Financial Services
A cryptocurrency exchange-traded product (ETP) that trades on Switzerland’s Six Exchange saw record trading volumes on Thursday and Friday last week, suggesting that institutional investors may be buying the dip in cryptocurrencies. Four major cryptocurrencies underlie the HODL ETP, including Bitcoin (BTC), Ripple (XRP), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). While HODL ETP’s one-month average daily trading is 20,000 shares, on Thursday, December 6th, and Friday, December 7th, 53,233 shares and 62.986 shares were traded, respectively.
A report published last week by global anti-money laundering policymaker, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), indicates that cryptocurrency exchanges in the United Kingdom pose a, “low risk,” for money laundering and terrorist financing activities. The report, however, does highlight that such activities on UK cryptocurrency exchanges are an, “emerging risk,” although there is not yet enough evidence to suggest that these activities are occurring through cryptocurrency exchanges. In its report, the FATF urged UK regulators to, “Continue to develop an understanding of emerging risks (such as virtual currencies) and intelligence gaps, and take appropriate action.”
Andreas Utermann, CEO and CIO of Allianz Global Investors, called on global financial regulators to ban cryptocurrencies while speaking at a panel discussion in London. According to a report by Reuters, Utermann said, “You should outlaw it,” while participating in a panel alongside Andrew Bailey, the head of Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority. Bailey responded by saying that Utermann’s comments were, “quite strong,” before adding that cryptocurrencies have, “no intrinsic value.”
Basis, a major US-based stablecoin project, is shutting down its operations and returning most of its funds to investors, according to a report by crypto news outlet The Block. The report by The Block cited, “multiple people with direct knowledge of the situation,” in claiming that the algorithmic stablecoin project, which generated UDS$133mm of funding through private investments in April, will return funds to investors. According to the Co-Founder and CEO of competing stablecoin project Nevin Freeman, Basis’ shutdown is due to regulatory concerns around one of its token types. Freeman explained, highlighting that algorithmic stablecoins implement a “secondary token”, known as a “bond token”, to help maintain the primary token’s peg. In many cases, regulators like the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) consider these secondary tokens to be securities.
Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by daily trading volume, announced that it has added Circle’s US dollar-pegged stablecoin, USD Coin (USDC), to its combined Stablecoin Market. Circle, a company backed by Goldman Sachs, first released its stablecoin in September of this year. Binance’s combined Stablecoin Market features other notable stablecoins, like Tether (USDT), that trade against cryptocurrencies as interchangeable base pairs.
Coinone, a South Korea-based cryptocurrency exchange, has officially launched Cross, a cross-border payments application that leverages Ripple’s xCurrent product to increase efficiencies. The application, released by Coinone’s payments subsidiary, Coinone Transfer, targets unbanked or underbanked South Koreans by enabling the transfer of funds to Thailand or the Philippines at a low cost.
Gemini, a cryptocurrency exchange heralded by the Winklevoss twins, released an official company blog post this weekend announcing that the firm will support Bitcoin Cash (BCH) custody and trading. The exchange will support only the Bitcoin Cash ABC network at this time, adding that they, “are continuing to evaluate Bitcoin SV over the coming weeks or months, and we may or may not choose to support withdrawals and/or trading of Bitcoin SV in the future.” Additionally, the company detailed that its listing of BCH is pending regulatory approval by the New York State Department of Financial Services.
Gemini, the cryptocurrency trading platform founded by the Winklevoss twins, announced the launch of a mobile crypto trading application in an official blog post today. Accompanying the launch of the crypto trading app is a new investment vehicle, dubbed, “The Cryptoverse,” that is comprised of a basket of cryptocurrencies weighted by market capitalization. While speaking to Bloomberg today, Cameron Winklevoss said that, “A lot of our decisions have perhaps given off a perception that we’re more institutional-based. The reality of the situation is that we have a diverse customer base. And the retail story is just beginning.” The Winklevoss twins went on to detail of a goal to expand reach to Asian markets by 2019’s end.
Good Money, a US neo-banking platform, has closed its Series A investment round that generated USD$30mm led by cryptocurrency-focused merchant bank Galaxy Digital and the founder of EOS (EOS) Block.one. Good Money aims to provide a variety of banking service and certain financial instruments to US account holders while exploring innovative changes to traditional banking practices. “Modern banking is a primary driver of so many issues we as a society face – from economic inequality, institutional racism, environmental destruction to political corruption,” said Good Money founder Gunnar Lovelace. Specifically, Good Money eliminates ATM fees while offering each bank user equity in the company.
Kraken, a notable cryptocurrency exchange, is seeking to raise funding with a USD$4bn valuation for the company and a USD$100,000 investment minimum, according to CoinDesk. In an email to investors, Kraken CEO Jesse Powell wrote, “There is presently a limited time opportunity available to a very small select number of clients to purchase shares.” The email goes on to detail that the exchange will close its offer on December 16th.
OKEx, the second-largest cryptocurrency exchange by daily trading volume, will begin listing Bitcoin Cash ABC under the original Bitcoin Cash ticker (BCH), as per an official announcement Tuesday. Additionally, OKEx will change the Bitcoin Cash SV ticker from BCHSV to BSV. The announcement by OKEx comes after other notable cryptocurrency exchanges have made the same switch, including Coinbase and Gemini.
PayPal, an online payments portal, has launched its own internal private blockchain platform that will allow staff to trade and exchange tokens while generating ideas and participating in programs to foster innovation, as per a report by news outlet Cheddar. The private blockchain network, which was built by 25 PayPal employees in just 6 months, will allow employees to earn more for enrolling in learning and development programs. The PayPal tokens are not tradeable, or worth anything for that matter, outside PayPal’s blockchain.
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), a big four consulting firm, is partnering with Bitfury Group, a large blockchain software and mining firm, to develop a blockchain accelerator specific to Russian businesses. As per an official press release by PwC, the partnership will leverage Exonum, Bitfury’s open source framework to build blockchain applications, for educational courses and seminars. The partnership aims to meet the, “current needs,” of PwC’s enterprise clients in Russia.
Revolut, a digital banking alternative with an in-application cryptocurrency exchange, announced that it has been awarded a European banking license. Seeking to become the, “Amazon of banking,” the license will allow Revolut to offer traditional banking services alongside its current cryptocurrency offerings to European customers. Nikolay Storonsky, Founder and CEO of Revolut, said in regards to the newly acquired license that, “With the banking license now secured, commission-free stock trading progressing well, and five new international markets at final stages of launch, we are living up to our reputation as the ‘Amazon of Banking’. Our vision is simple: one ap with tens of millions of users, where you can manage every aspect of your financial life with the best value and technology.”
Shinhan Bank, the second-largest commercial bank in South Korea, is launching a new project to implement blockchain technology in its internal processes with a goal of eliminating human error. According to a report by news outlet The Korea Times, Shinhan also recently completed a training program for its staff to increase their knowledge of blockchain technology across various applications. After Shinhan implemented blockchain technology for interest rate swap transactions on November 30th, South Korea’s second-largest bank is now aiming to apply the technology in its record-keeping process to enhance overall efficiencies.
SolarisBank, Germany’s second-largest and Europe’s ninth-largest stock exchange, is partnering with Stuttgart Exchange Group, a German fintech company, to jointly develop a cryptocurrency exchange. As per a report by Cointelegraph Germany, the joint cryptocurrency exchange venture, “is scheduled to launch in the first half of 2019.” This news comes after SolarisBank announced plans to launch a zero-fee cryptocurrency trading application this past May.
The Canadian city of Calgary is becoming the first city in Canada to launch a digital version of its local currency, according to a report by the Global News. Dubbed as the Calgary Digital Dollar, the digital currency will be exclusive to Calgary and operate alongside the country’s Canadian Dollar. Calgary-based businesses will now be required by law to accept at least 10% of a payment in digital currency, although they are allowed to accept up to 100%.
The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) is launching a pilot of its Global Payment Initiative (GPI) to combat growing blockchain and fintech solutions, according to an official announcement last week. Currently, the SWIFT Network is used by global financial institutions to conduct global financial payments and cross-border transfers of fiat currency. Although the project is still in its early stages, the GPI pilot hopes to, “build the foundation of a new integrated and interactive service that will significantly improve efficiencies in the payments process and which will ultimately be made available to all 10,000 banks across the SWIFT network.”
The United Arab Emirates’(UAE) central bank is partnering with the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) to develop a cryptocurrency to facilitate cross border transactions between the two countries, according to a report by news outlet GulfNews. In a meeting pertaining to global banking standards and regulation in the Arab region, Mubarak Rashed Al Mansouri, the governor of the UAE’s central bank, said, “This is probably the first time ever that witnesses the cooperation of monetary authorities from different countries on this topic and we hope that this achievement will foster similar collaboration in our region.” The prospective digital currency will be used by both central banks and financial institutions in the countries.
TokenSoft, a security token offering (STO) startup, has acquired a 20% stake in regulated broker-dealer Marpine Securities LLC in order to launch its own regulated broker-dealer. After acquiring the 20% stake, TokenSoft will launch its new regulated broker-dealer entity, called TokenSoft Global Markets, that will be registered through the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). The new regulated broker-dealer entity will allow TokenSoft to advise token issuers through every step of the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) process. Additionally, TokenSoft will now be able to legally operate in services related to insurance and management.
Tom Lee, co-founder of Fundstrat Global Advisors and a notable cryptocurrency pundit, believes that the current fair value of Bitcoin (BTC) is between USD$13,800 and USD$14,800, according to a note published on Thursday. Lee arrived at this valuation by taking into account the number of active wallet addresses, usage per account, and other supply and demand metrics. Additionally, Lee forecasted that the fair value of BTC will reach USD$150,000/coin once BTC wallets account for 7% of Visa’s 4.5bn account holders.
UAE Exchange, an exchange based in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), is partnering with Ripple to launch a blockchain-based cross-border remittances platform by 1Q2019, as per a Reuters report on Thursday. The report details further that Finablr, a payments and foreign exchange company that owns UAE Exchange, observes a high level of remittance inflows from expatriate workers in the Middle East region. “We expect to go live with Rippel by Q1, 2019 with two other Asian banks,” said Finablr CEO Promoth Manghat, adding, “This is for remittances to start with, from across the globe into Asia.”
De Nederlandsche Bank, the Netherlands’ central bank, will soon require domestic cryptocurrency providers to obtain a license from the regulator to operate, as per a report by Dutch news outlet DeTelegraaf. The Netherlands' central bank is taking these measures in the hope that it will, “prevent such cryptocurrencies from being used to launder money obtained through crime or to fund terrorism.” In order to receive a license, cryptocurrency firms must maintain Know-Your-Customer procedures and report any suspicious activity to the Dutch central bank.
Eddie Hughes, a conservative member of the United Kingdom’s Parliament, suggested that Bitcoin (BTC) should be accepted as legal tender for tax and utility payments, according to news outlet Express.co.uk. The article discusses that Hughes, who is a self-described, “crypto enthusiast with amateur knowledge,” recently met with the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, which accepts cryptocurrency donations. This news comes after the US state of Ohio announced that it would begin accepting BTC as legal tender for tax payments.
Following a case in Canadian courts that resulted in a ruling ordering mistakenly sent crypto funds to be returned to their owner, a blog post from the University of Oxford Faculty of Law is noting that there could be repercussions with the case potentially setting a precedent for lost or stolen cryptocurrency claims. The Canadian court case’s ruling will require defendant Brian Wall to return USD$370,482 worth of Ethereum (ETH) tokens to the plaintiff, Copytrack. The blog post from the University of Oxford Faculty of Law reads, ‘This precedent may have major repercussions for the enforcement of claims regarding lost or stolen cryptocurrencies,” adding that the ruling allows the plaintiff to recover tokens, “in whatsoever hands those Ether Tokens may currently be held.”
Japan’s government is considering plans to ease cryptocurrency taxes in an effort to revitalize the domestic cryptocurrency and blockchain industry. This week, Japanese Congressman Takeshi Fujimaki proposed four significant changes to taxation requirements pertaining to digital assets, which include: a reduction on the cryptocurrency gains tax from 55% to 20%; elimination of taxes on crypto-to-crypto payments; elimination of taxes on miniscule cryptocurrency payments; and an adjustment that would allow cryptocurrency investors to carry forward losses across quarters and years, effectively until cryptocurrencies are ‘cashed’ out.
Jay Clayton, Chairman for the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (US SEC), said during a speech that Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs), “can be effective,” for fundraising, but that, “securities laws must be followed.” Clayton went on in his speech to comment on the US SEC’s work regarding distributed ledger technology (DLT), digital assets, and ICOs, saying that it is an, “area where the Commission and staff have spent a significant amount of time,” and, “that this trend will continue in 2019.”
Jay Clayton, the Chairman of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), expressed his optimism for distributed ledger technology’s potential impact on traditional financial markets in a testimony before the US Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs yesterday. According to a transcript published on the SEC’s website, Clayton said, “I am optimistic that developments in distributed ledger technology can help facilitate capital formation, providing promising investment opportunities for both institutional and Main Street Investors.” Additionally, Clayton highlighted that the SEC is, “Focusing a significant amount of attention and resources on digital assets and initial coin offerings (ICOs).”
Maxim Akimov, the Deputy Prime Minister of Russia, announced that no significant changes will be made to the draft of a bill concerning cryptocurrency regulation in the country, as per news outlet Finmarket. The bill was already approved by Russia’s parliament, the State Duma, in May 2018, although the bill has generated substantial discussion since. Since approval of the bill, all cryptocurrency and token-related terminology have been removed and replaced with the term “digital rights”. At the beginning of December, Pavel Krasheninnikov, Chairman of Russia’s State Duma, said that the bill needed to be, “significantly,” changed.
Pan Gongsheng, a deputy governor of the People’s Bank of China, highlighted that Security Token Offerings (STOs) in China are illegal while speaking at a summit in Beijing. As per a report by news outlet the South China Morning Post, Gongsheng told the summit that, “illegal financing activities through STOs and ICOs were still rampant in the mainland despite a nationwide clean-up of the cryptocurrency market last year.” In citing reasoning for the continued ban on STOs, Gongsheng explained that, “Virtual money has become an accomplice to all kinds of illegal and criminal activities.”
Pantera Capital, a blockchain and cryptocurrency-focused investment firm and hedge fund, is warning investors that as much as a quarter of their ICO project could potentially be violating US securities laws, according to a Bloomberg report. In a newsletter to clients, Pantera Capital warned, “While we believe the vast majority of the projects in our portfolio should not be affected, approximately 25% of our fund’s capital is invested in other projects with liquid tokens that sold to US investors without using Regulation D or Regulation S”
Russia has no intention of implementing Venezuela’s state-backed digital currency, the Petro, into commercial operations, according to a report by news outlet RIA Novosti. While speaking to reporters this week, Russian Deputy Finance Minister Sergey Storchak said, “Representatives from our tax service and central bank... got acquainted with the cryptocurrency Venezuela is introducing,” adding, “But no more than that. As for payments, they’re not happening yet.”
South Korea’s representative body, the National Assembly, held its first official meeting with seven of the country’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges on Monday. The purpose of the meeting was to debate cryptocurrency regulation between stakeholders of South Korea’s cryptocurrency industry. Cryptocurrency exchanges Bithumb, CobitCoin, Coinone, Upbit, Gopax, Coinplug, and Hanbitco were among the attendees of the debate, which reportedly focused on Anti-Money Laundering (AML) customer protections and Know Your Customer (KYC) procedures.
The United Kingdom’s Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an intergovernmental financial security body, is calling on the country’s government to increase monitoring of cryptocurrency markets. According to an official report last week, the UK must overhaul its Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and combat terrorist financing (CFT) efforts in order to prevent illicit activities with cryptocurrencies. “Virtual currency exchange providers are not yet covered by AML/CFT requirements,” the report details, adding, “this is an emerging risk and there is not yet evidence to suggest that broad scale ML/TF is occurring in the UK through this relatively small sector.”
The United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) is interested in learning more about the Ethereum (ETH) network, its technology, and the markets build around it. On Tuesday, the CFTC published a Request for Input (RFI) that requests the public’s feedback on different questions concerning Ethereum. The RFI explains that its goal is to inform the CFTC about Ethereum and similar emerging technology, saying, “The input from this request will advance the CFTC’s mission of ensuring the integrity of the derivatives market as well as monitoring and reducing the systematic risk by enhancing legal certainty in the markets. The RFI seeks to understand the similarities and distinctions between certain virtual currencies, including here ether and bitcoin, as well as ether-specific opportunities, challenges, and risks.”
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (US SEC) is ordering that cryptocurrency asset manager CoinAlpha Advisors LLC pay a USD$50,000 fine, alleging that the firm conducted an unregistered securities sale. After forming in October 2017, CoinAlpha raised more than USD$600,000 from investors to invest in digital assets. In an official release, the US SEC said that CoinAlpha did not file a Notice of Exempt Offering of Securities, meaning that the firm breached securities laws by soliciting securities investors. Additionally, the firm allegedly did not adhere to proper know-your-customer procedures to verify that investors were accredited.
Venezuela is reportedly beginning to convert its citizens’ monthly pension payments into Petros, Venezuela’s controversial state and oil-backed cryptocurrency, according to a report by local economics blog the Caracas Chronicles. The conversion of Venezuelan pensioners’ payments into Petros came after the country already sent pensioners their monthly payment in the form of a check for Venezuelan Bolivars -- normally, upon receiving their check, pensioners would deposit their funds into a bank account where they could then withdraw fiat from local branches. The Venezuelan government, however, converted pensioners’ fiat payments into the Petro upon their deposit into a bank. In the first few weeks of the Petro’s existence, its value has risen from 9,000 to more than 15,000.
Warren Davidson, an Ohio Congressman and notable advocate of blockchain and digital assets, is floating blockchain technology as a solution to fund US President Donald Trump’s prospective US-Mexico border wall. While interviewing with NPR, Congressman Davidson suggested, “the American people, or whomever should choose to donate,” could pay for the border wall, adding, “you could do it with sort of like a crowdfunding site or you could do a blockchain and you could have WallCoins.”
“The long-term value of Bitcoin (BTC) is more likely to be USD$100 than USD$100,000,” says Kenneth Rogoff, a former Chief Economist for the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the current Harvard University Professor of Economics and Public Policy. While writing an article for major UK news outlet The Guardian, Rogoff highlighted that, because BTC’s use is limited to transactions, it makes the digital asset more vulnerable to a bubble-like collapse. Rogoff also cited that BTC’s energy-intensive verification processes is, “vastly less efficient,” than systems that leverage, “a trusted central authority like a central bank.”
A new report by PeckShield, a blockchain security company that monitors various cryptocurrency ecosystems, details that decentralized applications (DApps) on the EOS (EOS) blockchain have lost as much as USD$1mm in hacks since July 2018. The report details further that DApps on the EOS network have sustained 27 breaches since July, which are responsible for the up to 400,000 EOS that have been compromised from hacks. Guo Yonggang, a blockchain security expert cited in a report on the matter by crypto media firm Blockchain Truth, believes that the hacks can be attributed to security problems with the DApps themselves, rather than with the EOS network.
A new study published by the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance on Wednesday finds that the number of unique ID-verified cryptocurrency users nearly doubled in in the first 3 quarters of 2018. The study details that total ID-verified users increased to 35mm in the first three quarters of 2018 from 18mm at the end of 2017, representing an increase of 94%. As per an analysis of the study by Bloomberg, the growth of crypto’s userbase despite the market decline, “could signal that an eventual recovery could be coming.”
Amid the continued cryptocurrency sell-off, only two cryptocurrency mining machines remain profitable, according to real-time data from ASICMinerValue.com. ASICMInerValue.com, which calculates the profitability of Application-Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC) miners, indicates that only indicates that only the Ebank Ebit E11++ and ASICminer 8 Nano 44Th mining models are profitable for mining cryptocurrencies based on the SHA-256 hash function -- notable cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) use this has function.
Bitmain, a large Chinese cryptocurrency mining firm, announced that it is closing its development center in Israel, citing current cryptocurrency market conditions. In closing Bitmaintech Israel, the crypto mining giant was forced to fire all 23 employees. Among the employees let go is Gadi Glikberg, head of Bitmain’s Israeli branch and Vice President of International Sales, who said on the recent market turmoil, “The crypto market has undergone a shake-up in the past few months, which has forced Bitmain to examine its various activities around the globe and to refocus its business in accordance with the current situation.”
Busan, a major South Korean city, will be the beneficiary of the South Korean government’s plan to spend 4bn Korean won (USD$3.5mm) to establish a blockchain-enabled virtual power plant (VPP). As per a report by South Korean news outlet Yonhap News Agency, the project will be angled as a national competition in 2019, hosted by South Korea’s largest electric utility, Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO). The VPP will integrate the idle capacities of multiple energy resources through a cloud-based distributed ledger in order to optimize power generation and decrease costs.
Church’s Chicken, a large international fast food franchise, is partnering with Dash Venezuela to accept cryptocurrencies in its Venezuelan locations. According to an official press release, 13 Church’s Chicken establishments will begin accepting Dash (DASH) as payment following, “extensive and rigorous days of training,” staff to understand cryptocurrencies. With the addition of Church’s Chicken, more than 2,200 establishments in Venezuela accept DASH as payment.
Crypto.com, a Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency payments platform, announced the appointment of former PayPal executive Tyson Hackwood to serve as the firm’s Vice President and Head of Global Merchant Acquisition in an official press release today. Crypto.com aims to increase cryptocurrency adoption by both merchants and consumers through their point-of-sale (PoS) transaction terminals. Crypto.com CEO Kris Marszalek believes that Hackwood will be integral in furthering this goal, saying, “As we develop the Crypto.com Chain to fulfill the current industry need to pay and be paid in crypto, Tyson will play an important role in expanding the number and quality of merchants that are part of our network.”
Hyperledger, a notable blockchain consortium, is continuing its robust expansion after announcing the addition of 16 new members at the Hyperledger Global Forum in Basel, Switzerland. Among the notables to join the consortium are, Alibaba Cloud, Citigroup’s Citi Ventures arm, and Deutsche Telekom. The latest addition of 16 members brings the total membership of Hyperledger to more than 260 different companies. In a public statement, Hyperledger Executive Director Brian Behlendorf said that, “The growing Hyperledger community reflects the increasing importance of open source efforts to build enterprise blockchain technologies across industries and markets. The latest members showcase the widening interest in and impact of DLT and Hyperledger."
Jeremy Henrickson, the former Chief Product Officer at Coinbase, has departed the US-based cryptocurrency exchange after serving since July 2016. “Jeremy’s contributions to Coinbase over the past two years were invaluable,” said a Coinbase spokesperson, adding that, “he helped to build our scrappy startup team into a high-functioning product and engineering organization -- overseeing a 5x+ growth of the team.” Henrickson’s departure comes after long-term Coinbase executives Adam White and Hunter Merghart left the US-based cryptocurrency exchange in recent months.
LinkedIn’s, “2018 U.S. Emerging Jobs,” report released on Thursday ranks the role of blockchain developer as the fastest growing job in the United States. The report by LinkedIn indicates that blockchain developer jobs have increased 33-fold in the past 12 months alone. San Francisco, New York City, and Atlanta are among the cities with the highest demand for blockchain developer jobs.
Orbs, a unique hybrid blockchain platform, raised more than USD$15mm in cryptocurrencies to fund its development of a public blockchain, according to a company blog post. South Korean application provider Kakao lead the fundraising efforts with a representative telling CoinDesk that the company, “always seeks to invest and support innovative startups, and Orbs is a good example.” In total, Orbs raised 139,000 Ether (ETH) and 892 Bitcoin (BTC), amounting to roughly USD$15.4mm. Orbs aims to build a public blockchain with this funding that is, “universal,” and, “scalable,” for decentralized applications (DApps) with the, “liquidity of a base layer.”
Samsung has reportedly filed patent applications for three different blockchain-related trademark requests that all pertain directly to smartphones, according to news outlet Galaxy Club. Specifically, the patents named “Blockchain KeyStore”, “Blockchain Key Box”, and “Blockchain Core” all pertain to cryptocurrency custody capabilities on smartphones. This news comes amid the release of HTC’s Exodus 1 and Sirin Labs’ FINNEY, both of which are being marketed as blockchain smartphones with cryptocurrency custody capabilities.
My attempt at an ELI5 for cryptocurrency to help my friends.
This is a long one so fair warning and no there is no tl;dr. I've only been at this for about 6 months and worked up this paper the other day for my friends who are interested but know very little about this. Hopefully whoever reads this can make in corrections as I am far from an expert. Blockchain Cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, Ether are all blockchains. Blockchains are basically a spreadsheet (LEDGER) that is duplicated multiple times across a network and updated regularly simultaneously. There is no centralized version of this ledger. It is hosted simultaneously by thousands/millions of computers. These ledgers will update on their own, Bitcoin as an example automatically checks itself every 10 minutes. Each of these 10-minute increment of transactions (in bitcoins case transactions would be sending or receiving bitcoins from one person to another for goods or services) are called BLOCKS. For these blocks to be confirmed, accepted, and updated to the ledger nodes are required. Nodes (Mining/Forging) A node is a computer running the blockchain software on the network. The blockchain software will automatically download the entire ledger of all transactions since its inception. At regular intervals, the software will take the transactions of a block (data on the ledger) and convert them into a mathematical puzzle to be solved by randomly chosen nodes (MINING). Mining requires powerful processors (typically GPUs) and substantial quantities of energy to receive mined tokens profitably. When a specific number of nodes solve the puzzle with the same answer they are basically confirming that the data on the block is accurate as multiple independent nodes found the same answer. When confirmed, the block gets added to the previous blocks making a chain of blocks aka a blockchain. As an incentive to run your computer as a node you are rewarded with TOKENS. If a single person or group of people wanted to manipulate the ledger, the amount of machinery and electricity used to achieve the majority of miners thus allowing you to manipulate the ledger is so exponentially expensive that it serves no reasonable purpose. This is an example of a Proof of Work Blockchain System (computer solves puzzle and rewarded with tokens) Tokens Tokens are part of the core of the blockchain. They are an incentive to validate transactions and create blocks. They gain intrinsic value based on the blockchain they are associated with. Some blockchains grant token holder’s different abilities. With Bitcoin, tokens are needed to pay for transaction fees. Others allow voting rights on how certain blockchain functions are managed. There is a limited amount of Bitcoin that will ever be released to nodes (21 million expected to be all be released by 2033) which also keep inflation from being a problem. Blockchains can create their platform with whatever number of tokens they would like and release them or create means to mine them as they see fit. Essentially, as with any other fiat money (currency that a government has declared to be legal tender NOT backed by a physical commodity), as adoption and trust increases the value of the token will increase. If most people accept Bitcoin for services and stores accept Bitcoin for goods than it is as good as the next currency. Wallets Whether you mine for tokens, are paid in tokens for goods or services or purchase tokens from a person or currency exchange you need a place to store them securely and a way to send and receive them. Cryptocurrency Wallets don’t store currency, they hold your public and private keys that interface with the blockchain so you can access your balance, send money and manage your funds. The public key allows others to send money to the public key only. A wallet that is "offline" (see Hardware or Paper below) cannot access funds or send money unless it is accessed with another form of wallet, either desktop, online, or mobile. 1) Desktop Wallet - Installed on your computer and are only accessible from that SINGLE computer. Very secure but if someone hacks your computer you are exposed. 2) Online Wallet - Run remotely (cloud based) and are far more convenient to access but make them more vulnerable as they are controlled by a third party and are also vulnerable to hacking attacks. Exchange wallets are online wallets but you are not in control of the private key. View it as a wallet that is lended to you so you can trade. The wallet is technically not yours. 3) Mobile - Ran on an app and are useful as they can be used anywhere including retail stores 4) Hardware - Private keys are stored on a tangible device like a USB drive. They can make transactions online but they are stored offline. Compatible with web interfaces and support many but not all currencies. To use, plug into a computer, enter a pin, send currency and confirm. Safest form of storage. 5) Paper - Basically a physical printout of your private and public keys. It is not stored online anywhere and the only way transactions can happen is if you transfer money with the help of an Online wallet. Example of a Public Key = 1A684DbsHQKPVCWgaUsYdF4uQGwTiA9BFT Example of a Private Key = E9873D79C6D87DC0FB6A5778633389F4453213303DA61F20BD67FC233AA33262 Most wallets provide a Recovery Mnemonic Passcode that is a series of words (typically 12 to 24 words) in a specific order. If you lose your login information for your wallet you can supply the mnemonic passcode and retrieve your lost login information. If you lose your login information and your mnemonic passcode your wallet will be inaccessible and your tokens are lost to you. The above basically describes a first generation Blockchain Cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin. It is used basically as currency with no centralized entity regulating the release of additional currency and keeping the ledger of where the money is going secure and extremely safe from manipulation. Second Generation Blockchain The second generation blockchains sprung out of this environment with something more valuable. Utilizing the blockchain system to allow applications to be ran on top of a decentralized secure system. Instead of just recording transactions, contracts could be transmitted the same way. More complex transactions (SMART CONTRACTS) allow for things such as: - Funds to be spent only when a required percentage of people agree - Manage agreements between users (such as insurance) - Provide utility to other contracts - Store information about an application such as domain registration information or membership records This basically can allow applications to be ran on top of the blockchain system. This can cut out the middleman for many real-world applications (mortgages, banking, communications, security confirmations etc.) Proof of Work/Proof of Stake As I mentioned earlier, Proof of Work (PoW) requires nodes to solve a mathematical puzzle which is rewarded with tokens. Proof of Stake (PoS) is different, the tokens with proof of stake systems are pre-mined meaning they are all created when the blockchain system is created. Blocks are not verified by the typical method. The block validator uses the blockchain software to stake their tokens and are chosen based on specific factors depending on how many tokens the person holds and for how long. Depending on how many tokens they hold will restrict the quantity of blocks they can validate. If they own more they can validate more often but all validators will be chosen randomly keeping the rewards fairly distributed (unlike PoW which typically reward the first completed.) The blockchain still requires a mathematical puzzle to be solved but it is much easier than PoW requiring far less time and energy. If the blockchain has premined all of their tokens then new tokens cannot be mined for rewards in PoS. The reward for staking your tokens to be a validator is a portion of the transaction fee that is charged as part of normal transactions on the blockchain. That is why PoS miners are called forgers. If manipulation is attempted than their stake can be taken from their wallet adding more motivation to prevent data manipulation. Fork Some cryptocurrencies may need to update or upgrade the coding of their blockchain software. When this happens usually a fork occurs. This basically means the cryptocurrency splits into two separate cryptocurrencies. Because the nature of blockchain technology, they are decentralized and autonomous so the older version cannot be deleted or removed. If people choose to continue using the old version they can. For mining/forging purposes the nodes will need to choose which they will mine/forge and download the blockchain software on their computer to proceed. When the fork occurs, anyone holding tokens in the original currency will be given the same number of tokens in the forked currency. (When Bitcoin forked to Bitcoin Cash, anyone holding x amount of Bitcoin would receive a new wallet for Bitcoin Cash also containing x amount of Bitcoin Cash.) This is called a Hard Fork and all previous transactions are made invalid. There are also Soft Forks, in this case it is backwards compatible and all previous transactions are valid. This can result in two currencies but in most cases, it doesn’t as it is usually accepted by most miners/forgers because it is backwards compatible. Exchanges Online currency exchanges allow you to buy, sell or exchange fiat money (USD, EUR, etc) with digital currencies or in most cases digital currencies for other digital currencies. There are a large variety of different exchanges that are operated in multiple countries but there are around a dozen that the majority of cryptocurrency trading volume are present on. Not all cryptocurrencies will be listed on all exchanges, some have specific prerequisites to be listed on their exchange and there may be fees associated as well. Once your account is set up you will have a list of all available cryptocurrencies to trade. Each currency will have an associated online wallet with the public key address allowing you to send that specific currency to that wallet. (Many exchanges are having delayed or canceled identity verification, currency transfers and lack sufficient customer support due to the influx of new traders) Examples of top exchanges: 1) Coinbase (trades fiat) 2) GDAX (trades fiat) 3) Gemini (trades fiat) 4) Changelly (trades fiat) 5) Bittrex 6) Binance 7) HitBTC 8) EtherDelta 9) Bitfinex 10) Kraken 11) Bithumb 12) Bitstamp 13) Poloniex 14) OKEx Sending/Receiving Tokens All wallets have the ability to send digital currency to other wallets. The function is relatively easy, make sure the currency you are sending is going to the appropriate wallet for that currency. Ethereum tokens cannot be sent to a Bitcoin wallet for example. (The tokens aren’t actually moving location; the list of transactions/ownership is what is stored in the wallet). Triple check the wallet private key you are sending the tokens to. If you type the wrong address the tokens will be lost in nearly all incidents. Some mobile wallets allow you to scan a QR code that will automatically enter the public key rather than copying/pasting or typing out the public key. Taxes As of January 1, 2018 it appears that taxing on digital currency has changed. Every trade between any digital currencies (Bitcoin to Ether, Ether to Litecoin etc) will be a taxable transaction. If you hold the currency for longer than one year than you will pay capital gain tax when it is traded or sold (15%-20%) and if you sell or trade in less than a year you will have to add the profit to your taxable income to adjust your tax bracket. Altcoins Altcoins are basically any coin that is not Bitcoin. Most cryptocurrencies do not have a native blockchain (their own independent dedicated blockchain). Bitcoin, Ether, Ripple, Waves, NXT, Cardano all have their own native blockchain. Many other cryptocurrencies run on other cryptocurrency’s blockchains. Litecoin runs on Bitcoins blockchain, hundreds run on the Ethereum blockchain. These currencies act as smart contracts running on the adopted blockchain. DApps (Decentralized Applications) For a blockchain application to be considered a DApp it must be 1) Open source, code available to all 2) Decentralized, uses blockchain cryptographic tech 3) Incentive, must have tokens to fuel itself 4) Algorithm/Protocol, generates tokens and has a built-in consensus mechanism (mining/forging.) There are 3 types of DApps, each basically piggybacks off the platform of the previous Type 1 – Have their own blockchain (like bitcoin) Type 2 – Use the blockchain of Type 1 DApps Type 3 – Use the protocol of Type 2 DApps ICO (Initial Coin Offering) Much like an IPO (Initial Public Offering) that offers stock in a private company to the public, an ICO raises money for new Cryptocurrency ventures. Typically, a minimum investment is required in the form of a cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin or Ether and the investor is given tokens of the cryptocurrency at a reduced cost. Due to the fact that ICO’s are so new, government agencies have not begun regulating these ventures making them extremely risky as anyone with a competent coder can create and market a cryptocurrency that can be used to swindle investors who aren’t cautious. The US government no longer allows its citizens to participate in ICO’s and if you are using a computer with an IP address located in the United States, ICO’s websites will not allow you to invest. Research 1) Whitepapers – Each cryptocurrency will have their own dedicated websites and most will have a whitepaper that has a description of what their cryptocurrency is designed to do. 2) Roadmaps – Also on each cryptocurrency’s website, they tend to have a roadmap or timeline as to when they are planning to complete certain milestones be it added features to the blockchain or wallet or any other important events. 3) Coinmarketcap.com – List of every available cryptocurrency, the exchanges they trade on, market cap, trade volume, available tokens, newly created tokens etc. 4) Reddit.com (cryptocurrency subreddit) – Subreddits focused on cryptocurrency as well as specific subreddits focused on individual cryptocurrencies. Be cautious as many people on these sites are uninformed and/or are trying to manipulate the market by fooling others to buy or sell based on fraudulent information. 5) Bitcointalk.org – Forums specific to individual cryptocurrencies. There is a lot of self-marketing (bounties) on this site. Take what they say with a grain of salt 6) TwitteFacebook (Social Media) – Many times news from team members or the cryptocurrency’s social media page will break news before it is listed on any of the above-mentioned outlets. Find out who is working for the cryptocurrency you are interested in and start following the team’s social media. Don’t forget to look at their linkedin accounts if available, previous employment and behavioral history to confirm they are competent. 7) Github - Code from projects can be uploaded here and reviewed for issues and revisions. Common Terms/Slang Shilling – covert advertising, personally endorsing a token so as to manipulate the price to either recoup a loss or increase gains on a token the individual owns. FUD – Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt; another method to manipulate the price of a token the person owns by making others second guess their investment decision on a specific token. FOMO – Fear Of Missing Out; buying a token (usually after the price has already increased) hoping they haven’t missed the majority of a price increase. Shitcoin – A cryptocurrency that has become worthless overtime or a scam operation. To the Moon – Massive increase in a token’s price. I'm sure there are probably revisions to be done on this as I am still getting my head around all of the concepts. Any help to this would be appreciated.
ABOUT FINATCH Finatch is a private Blockchain Technology Company which aim's at revolutrionizing the Blockchain Technology industry. Looking at the lack of stable, fast and reliable decentralized crypto exchanges which causes inconviniences to crypto traders in the space. We have come up with the solution to the problems faced by decentralized exchanges. There are basically two different types of exchanges: Centralized and Decentralized exchanges. We will focus on the Deentralized exchange system. We have a strong belief that Decentralized based crypto exchanges will be bigger than Centralized based crypto exchanges in the nearest future, because Blockchain is all about Decentralization. They will play an evermore role in the world of finance, and we call this FINATCH EXCHANGE. FINATCH EXCHANGE Finatch Exchange is a Decntralized crypto exchange, which is run and powered by the Finatch Smart Contract Blockchain. Problems Poor technical architecture in Decentralized exchanges There are a good number of exchanges set up by professionals who have little or no experience in finance or in operating an exchange. They often take the easiest route to get the system up and running. While this may work well in the beginning, as traffic grows, the system will not be able to handle the increased load. Exchange systems need to be engineered from the ground up with security, efficiency, speed, and scalability in mind. This often slows down the initial development, but is critical for long-term success. Our team has decades of combined experience building and maintaining world class financial systems that shape the economy. We understand how these systems are built from the ground up. Slow Smart Contract confirmation time Deployment of Smart contract on the blockchain takes time and causes inconveniences becauses of the poorly built blockchain, this results in a bad user experience in decentralized crypto exchanges. Our team has designed a new and capable type of Blockchain that speeds up confirmation time for smart contratcts, making the platform user friendly and smooth. Insecured Platform There are hundreds of exchanges that went down due to being hacked. Finatch is built to top notch quality, audited, and penetration tested. We have experience building financial systems to the highest security standards and strive to ensure security first. Poor market liquidity Professional traders and normal users are significantly affected by this. Having a shallow orderbook means high slippage when trading, which is very expensive for traders. Finatch’s team have been in both the finance and crypto industry for many years. The team has worked on and operated a number of exchanges, and have accumulated a large network of partners in this space. These partners will be key in bootstrapping the exchange. Poor customer service Traders are a different breed when it comes to users. Understanding the trader mentality is vital for running a successful exchange. Money is literally on-the-line. Many exchange service trades as if they were running a social media site. A 3-second delay in seeing your friends’ status update would hardly be noticed, but on an exchange, the same would be unacceptable, resulting in a torrent of user complaints. In additional to the technology stack, Finatch is built with service in mind. Finatch shares and supports responsibilities across the entire staff and company. When a trader has a problem, they get an answer directly from someone who knows the system and not someone reading from a script. Limited access to decentralized services There are few existing decentralized exchanges with close to good user interface and lacks quick and reasonable smart contract transaction fees, causing slow platorm functioning. Our team has designed a new and capable type of Blockchain that speeds up confirmation time for smart contratcts, making the platform user friendly and smooth. Poor internationalization and language support Blockchains have no borders. Most exchanges focus only on one language or one country. Our international multi-lingual team has extensive working experience in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa and we are able to smoothly support the global market. Lack of transparency All trading activities should be decentralized and open to the general public to insure trust and transparency in trades. Centralized crypto exchanges lack this quality. Finatch runs on a Decentralized crypto platform where all trading activities are transparent. Finatch is a Crypto Decentralized crypto exchange that has the feel and look of Centralized Crypto exchange but with more convinience And extra Blockchain Security Layer. An Exchange where you own your private keys. Finatch exchange is a huge decentralized trading exchange platform equipped with various sub-platform, trading tools and secure decentralized wallet. Finatch exchange consists of various sub platforms to choose from, this changes the trading experience namely: 1. Binary Platform: Fin vault platform, FinBox platform 2. Finatch trading tools: Finatch exchange have the best trading tools ready for traders on all our trading platform, taking trading experience to the next level. You can choose from our multiple trading tools the one that suits your trading skills. 3.Andriod and iOs Mobile Trading Application. MATCHING ENGINE With our Unique Smart Contract Blockchain Our matching engine is capable of sustaining 1,500,000 orders / second, making Finatch one of the fastest exchanges in the market today. You can be certain, on our exchange, that your orders will never be stuck due to the matching engine being overwhelmed. FEATURE ROLLOUT We will roll out the platform in roughly the following order: Decentralized (on-chain) exchange Spot trading Margin trading Futures Anonymous instant exchange and more... COINS Finatch will support trading pairs in the following coins: BTC ETH LTC BCH FIN (Finatch Coin) More coins will be added over time. We generally will only add coins that have strong credibility, user base, and liquidity. If you have a coin that you wish to be listed on Finatch later. DEVICE COVRAGE We will provide cross-platform trading clients for: Web-based decentralized trading client Android native client iOS native client (pending App Store review) Mobile HTML5 client (including WeChat H5 client) PC (Windows) native client REST API MULTILINGUAL SUPPORT We will support English, Chinese, Japanese and Korean on all of our user interfaces. (The very initial release will be in English only.) More languages will be added over time. FINATCH COIN We will build our own Blockchain based Crypto coin, called the Finatch Coin. The Finatch Coin Total Supply is capped at 952.5M, but a strict pre mine of 200M FIN will be mined during the genesis Block. FIN Coin will run on the Finatch Blockchain. Percentage (%) Amount (FIN) Participant 25% 50,000,000 Airdrop&Bounty Programs 25% 50,000,000 Project Development 40% 80,000,000 Founding Team 10% 20,000,000 Angel Investors No ICO or Pre-ICO will take place. 50% of pre-mined Coins will be distributed to the general Public Via Airdrop stages and Bounty Programs. FIN VALUE AND REPURCHASING PLAN You can use FIN to pay for any fees on our platform, inculding but not limited to: Exchange fees Withdraw fees Listing fees Any other fee When you use FIN to pay for fees, you will receive a significant discount: 1st year 2nd year 3rd year 4th year 5th year Discount Rate 60% 30% 12.5% 6.75%5 no discount REPURCHASING PLAN Every quater, we will use 15% of our profits to buy back the pre-mined FIN coin and Burn them, until we buy up 50% of the pre-mined FIN coin during genesis block (100M) back. All buy back transactions will be annouced on the blockchain. FUNDS USAGE 35% of the funds will be used to build the Finatch platform and perform upgrades to the system, which inculdes team recruiting, training, and the development budget. 50% will be used for Finatch branding and marketing, including continuous promotion and education of Finatch and Blockchain innovations in industry mediums. A sufficient budget for various advertisment activities, to help Finatch become popular among investors, and to attract active users to the platform. 15% will be kept in reserve to cope with any emergency or unexpected situation that might come up. FINATCH BLOCKCHAIN Finatch Blockchain is a powerful unique blockchain built to solve the problems of long confirmation times and high transaction fees on smart contract Blockchains. We also solve the scalablity problem with block size, by increasing the block size limit to 1GB. Finatch Blockchain can handle more than 100,000,000 tranactions per second, with as little to as low as $0.001 tranaction fee, making our blockchain the most convinent and reliable blockchain in exixtence. Our Blockchain runs on Scrypt PoW/PoS and Fault Tolorence Algorithms, making it one the most secure blockchains. You can deploy smart contracts, decentralized applications and create your own (FRC Tokens) on our blockchain. BUILD DECENTRALIZED APPLICATIONS Combining a modified Bitcoin Core infrastructure with an intercompatible version of the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), Finatch Blockchain merges the reliability of Bitcoin’s unfailing blockchain with the endless possibilities provided by smart contracts. Designed with stability, modularity and interoperability in mind, Finatch Blockchain is the foremost toolkit for building trusted decentralized applications, suited for real-world, business oriented use cases. Its hybrid nature, in combination with a PoS/PoW consensus protocol, allows Finatch Blockchain applications to be compatible with major blockchain ecosystems, while providing native support for mobile devices and IoT appliances. DEPLOY DECENTRALIZED SMART CONTRACTS Finatch makes it easier than ever for established sectors and legacy institutions to interface with blockchain technology. Create your own tokens, automate supply chain management and engage in self-executing agreements in a standardized environment, verified and tested for stability. SMART CONTRACT LIFE CYCLE MANAGMENT Finatch, in cooperation with its academic partners, develops tools and methods to standardize the workflow for business smart contract development. This includes the formally verifiable translation of human-readable agreements to machine smart contracts, and the error-resilient specification of their elements, terms and conditions. SETTING INDUSTRY STANDARDS Cooperating with a series of partners and third parties, Finatch aims to establish a smart contract hub, offering secure and thoroughly tested contract templates, tailor fitted for a multitude of industries and use cases, such as supply chain management, telecommunications, IoT, social networking, Crypto exchanges and many more. ABOUT FIN COIN FIN Coin is a decentralised Cryptocurrency based on Finatch. It is the local based Cryptocurrency of Finatch Blockchain. FIN Coins are cryptographic software tokens used to engage with distributed applications (DApps) and smart contracts on the Finatch Platform. FIN Coins will serve as the staking currency of the Finatch blockchain and fuel computational operations performed by the Finatch network. SPECIFICATION Total Pre-Mined Supply: 200,000,000 Block Target: 3-15 seconds Stake Return: ~5 FIN Coin Algorithm: Scrypt PoW/PoS and FT The FINATCH Foundation: Governance Structure The development and maintenance of the FINATCH Blockchain, as well as all services provided by FINATCH, are directed and supervised by the FINATCH Foundation - a non-profit organization, representing FINATCH’s stake and token holders as elaborated below. In order to avoid the inefficient conduct, open source and blockchain projects often suffer from, and to ensure a coherent and standardized implementation of the FINATCH blockchain, the FINATCH Foundation was established under the guidance and support of FINATCH Inc. The Foundation will oversee the development of the FINATCH Blockchain, advocate governance transparency, and promote the safety and harmony of the open source ecosystem. The design of the Foundation’s governance structure mainly considers sustainability, management effectiveness, and fund-raising security in the open source community. The Foundation consists of various committees, such as Executive Judgment, Code Review, Finance & HR, as well as Marketing & PR. The different committees work in cooperation to manage FINATCH’s daily operations and special occasions with detailed operational procedures and rules. Learn more here: https://finatch.org/governance-structure Decentralized Governance Protocol The Decentralized Governance Protocol (DGP) is designed so that individual blockchain parameters can be modified through a specially designed smart contract on the blockchain. Most importantly, this technology allows these blockchain parameters to be changed without any disruption to the ecosystem. After a setting change, no new software must be downloaded by users, and no intervention is needed from stakers, miners and node operators. The way the DGP works is relatively straightforward. First, a governing party for the DGP makes a proposal to change a parameter. Afterward, all the governing parties for the DGP can vote on the proposal, and if it receives enough approval votes, then the parameter change proposal becomes active. The proposal data is then placed in a standardized format and a particular storage space so that the blockchain software can easily access it without needing to execute the DGP contract directly. Learn more here: https://finatch.org/decentralized-governance-protocol The FINATCH Foundation will list the total assets that it holds including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Legal Tender, and FIN COINS. The Foundation will also seek complementary services to aid our efforts in transparency and professionalism with a professional auditing firm, legal team and a professional digital asset management solution. We hope this will help promote the healthy development of the FINATCH Project and serve as a model for other projects. The content will be made public to the community on the FINATCH.org Website EXCHANGE LIST Binance Huobi Kucoin Bibox Qryptos Satoexchange BIGone Bitrue Bilaxy Bit-Z Linkcoin SECURE WALLET Ledgerwallet Trezor
“Bitcoin enables certain uses that are very unique. I think it offers possibilities that no other currency allows. For example the ability to spend a coin that only occurs when two separate parties agree to spend the coin; with a third party that couldn’t run away with the coin itself.” – Pieter Wui (66 points, 14 comments)
General info and list of exchanges for Karatgold Coin (KBC)
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THE KARATGOLD COIN (KBC) is a blockchain-based cryptocurrency specifically designed to be used as a generally accepted electronic payment means for all who consider gold as a traditional, true, secure and value-stable medium. READ OUR AUDITWHITEPAPER KARATGOLD KARATGOLD Karatgold Coin (KBC) ICO rating Karatgold Coin (KBC) ICO rating KARATGOLD IS LISTED ON KARATGOLD IS LISTED ON Already has a WORKING PRODUCT 120 Countries 500,000 Customers 120 MLN EUR Total Investment The desire of gold is not for gold It is for the means of freedom and benefit Ralph Waldo Emerson AS SEEN ON... AS SEEN ON... DEVELOPMENT PLAN DEVELOPMENT PLAN August 2018 With our in-house wallet, you can use the gold-covered payment system as easily as the other benefits, such as the transfer of real gold without banks or other intermediaries. September 2018 Preparations for our own crypto exchange are in full swing. With our in-house Exchange, you can take advantage of all the benefits you expect from an advanced crypto exchange, adding the important factor of exceptional geographic and cultural closeness. Here you and your wishes are understood very well. October 2018 Use the benefits of KBC and other KaratCoin banking services whenever you want, wherever you want: With our own app, this is easily possible. This app is available for iOS and Android. Through 2018 Listing of Coin on further major exchanges. Number of acceptance partners increase to 20. Market capitalization: USD 80 million Until 2020 2% market penetration. Market capitalization: USD 500 million THE PROBLEM THE PROBLEM In former times, gold was a direct payments means, particularly in the form of gold coins. However, Gold has continuously been replaced by bank notes, which nowadays are not, or only to a marginal percentage, backed by state-owned gold. Therefore, the value of the bank notes issued by the different countries rely on the trust that the respective country is able to pay its bills. Only this is less sure than in former times. Especially in less developed countries, the trustworthiness of legal tender moves towards zero. THE SOLUTION THE SOLUTION The Coin perfectly meets worldwide needs because it is based on gold. Each coin represents a certain weight of gold and can at all times be exchanged into physical gold in the form of CashGold. Furthermore, it can be exchanged for all fiat currencies and cryptocurrencies worldwide. Exchangeable Borderless Value-Stable Based on Gold The Coin is cryptonized gold that can be transferred borderlessly, cost efficiently, securely and in real-time. Its value is predictable because the value of gold has a long tradition and everybody has an idea about its stability. Therefore, the Coin has the ability to become generally accepted worldwide. DETAILS ABOUT KARATBARS DETAILS ABOUT KARATBARS The international distribution partner Currently, more than 500,000 customers from more than 120 countries have already bought smallest gold bars from Karatbars GmbH, Stuttgart, Germany. The total investment of these customers amounts to nearly EUR 120 million. It is therefore obvious that with this customer basis, the Coin will achieve a high market capitalization: it will write a success story. It is designed to be used as a generally accepted electronic payment For all who consider gold as a traditional, true, secure and value-stable medium Each coin represents a certain weight of gold Can at all times be exchanged into physical gold in the form of CashGold Can be exchanged for all fiat currencies and cryptocurrencies worldwide BANK INDEPENDENCE COST EFFICIENT PREDICTABLE VALUE CRISIS-PROOF VISION To become a general accepted payment means by consumers as well as merchants and servicers MISSION To provide a payment system that is safe, private, and easy to use for the purchase of goods and services EXECUTION More than 500,000 customers from more than 120 countries. Investment amounts to nearly EUR 120 million EXCHANGES WE ARE CONTACTING EXCHANGES WE ARE CONTACTING BUY OUR PRODUCTS BUY OUR PRODUCTS Bronze Card Silber Card Gold Card VIP Card DETAILS ABOUT THE COIN DETAILS ABOUT THE COIN The «Coin» is based on the Ethereum blockchain protocol Therefore, it is safe, cost-efficient and fast. Furthermore, it allows to use smart contracts within its protocol. Token name Karatgold Coin Ticker Symbol KBC Currency Symbol Current Price 1 KBC for USD 1.32$See Audit Maximum KBC produced 12 Billion (technical limit) Maximum KBC for sale 7.2 billion Fundraising Goal $ 72 million Minimum Purchase 1,000 Coins Payment methods Bitcoin, ETH and Karatpay payments ICO WHITEPAPER WHITEPAPER AUDIT VALUATION SMART CONTRACT SMART CONTRACT VIEW ON GITHUB SMART CONTRACT AUDIT THE ADVANTAGES OF THE KARATGOLD COIN THE ADVANTAGES OF THE KARATGOLD COIN
Borderless: Exchangeable into CashGold at any time Fast: Facilitation of real-time payments anywhere and anytime Free and borderless transferable Immediate large number of points of acceptance Low fees payable by merchants for the use of the Coin and the Ecosystem
WHY A GROWING DEMAND FOR COIN? WHY A GROWING DEMAND FOR COIN? The value of the Coin is expected to strongly increase. The market capitalization of the Coin will reflect the billion Euro business that will rely on gold and the gold price based on the CashGold. The global acceptance and recognition of gold as a safe and secure harbor will make the Coin and the CashGold one of the leading payment means worldwide. Therefore, holders of Coin will not only enjoy protection against inflation and vague governments and economies, but also have the opportunity to participate in the value increase which will be achieved in the future. Such value increase can be realized by everybody through the sale of the Coin, or through the purchase of goods and services. The Coins will be available on major cryptocurrency exchange platforms such as Poloniex, Bithumb, Bitfinex, Bittrex, etc. The coins will be permitted to float and be traded p2p. The price of the Coin will be determined by market forces and cryptocurrency exchange mechanisms, as well as by the global gold prices. The value of the Coin will reflect the degree of penetration of the worldwide payment systems and, to a substantial extent, the price development of pure gold. The more Coin will be used – thus driving customer adoption – the greater the demand for the Coin will be. The popularity of the Coin and the Ecosystems will most probably grow very fast. Buy Tokens now SAFE. SECURE. CASHGOLD. SAFE. SECURE. CASHGOLD. Gold, in the form of gold coins and gold bullions, has served as international payment means as well as solid investments for more than 4,000 years. Although legal currencies presently are not backed by gold, gold reserves still serve many central banks in the world as a currency reserve. Private and institutional investors invest in gold. In times of economic crises, gold is deemed to be a stable investment with the potential to a value increase in comparison to other investments. The intrinsic value of gold is caused by its relative rarity as well as by the high cost of mining. This may also be the reason why investments in gold, unlike e.g. investments in interest-bearing securities, do not have default risk. However, gold coins are not used for payment anymore, and it is not feasible or practical to hold and pay with gold in the traditional form. The new alternative is the CashGold. It is reliable, globally available, secure, practical in use, and compatible with other payment means. The idea behind CashGold is to implement small gold bars on a specific paper which partially looks like a bank note. However, instead of mentioning a specific currency amount, the weight of the implemented gold bar is displayed. ABOUT THE VISIONAIR ABOUT THE VISIONAIR Harald Seiz was born in 1963 in Calw near Stuttgart, Germany and has been successfully working as a financial consultant since 1982. In 2011 he founded the Karatbars International GmbH in Stuttgart, of which he is the managing director. Since then he has consistently and successfully internationalized the business. In 2016, he was awarded the Senatorial Degree by the Federal. Association for Economic Development and Foreign Trade (BWA). He is also the author of the successful book 'The Future of Money', published in 2017 and available everywhere. In his book he outlines the history of money and the methods of payment; describes what factors are dependent on trust in money and hard cash; how these factors influence the economic and monetary policy frameworks, where the risks of the past and present payment methods and systems lie. He also introduces a few (for some of us possibly exotic) methods of payment and tries to answer the question of what would happen in the case of an IT blackout or cyber-attack – and how we would be able to get by and pay for the essentials – for example, in the form of gold and crypto currencies. The book's jacket text: Never before in times of peace has the subject of money evoked the uncertainty it does today. Although, we live in affluence here in Germany, many people begin to ask themselves whether the value of our money is dwindling away. Cash seems permanently under attack as the media bombards us with theories on the 'End of Cash'. Concerns about the future of money are not without basis: in many countries, massive restrictions on the use of cash have now become a reality, with India at the forefront. Overnight, 86 percent of their rupee reserves were removed from circulation and declared worthless - is cash in the euro zone next? What is the future of money - a means of exchange, anonymous payment or an opportunity to hoard wealth? How will we pay in the future? What forms will digitization open up to us? And what forms could be forced on us by the state or circumstances, such as a crisis or catastrophe? Are you prepared if ATMs or online banking no longer function? Publisher: FinanzBuch Verlag (2017) ISBN-10: 3959720823 ISBN-13: 978-3959720823 THE MANAGEMENT TEAM THE MANAGEMENT TEAM Thomas Valet
Head of Marketing & Sales European Financial Consultant
Chief Operating Officer German Economic Council
THE ADVISORY TEAM THE ADVISORY TEAM MyICOAgency
Leading TOKEN SALE Consulting Agency founded by professionals with backgrounds in blockchain, investing, PR, and marketing. myicoagency.de
CPI Technologies GmbH
CPI Technologies GmbH is a leading software company for high scalable finance software solutions and blockchain infrastructure. cpitech.io
Head of Support & Communications at Karatbars International GmbH
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