Japan Roundup: Public Companies Unveil New Mining Plan, Exchange, Token Fund

Japan Roundup: Public Companies Unveil New Mining Plan, Exchange, Token Fund

Three Japanese public companies have individually made announcements regarding their cryptocurrency operations. Forside has grown its mining operation with a plan to sell 7nm bitcoin mining rigs. Farsteps is planning a Singapore exchange launch. Meanwhile, Line Corp, the operator of Japan’s most popular chat app, has added crypto price quotes to its Clova AI assistant and has launched a token fund. In addition, human consultants are now available to answer questions about bitcoin for free from within the Line chat app.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Forside Expands Mining Operation

Japan Roundup: Public Companies Unveil New Mining Plan, Exchange, Token FundA Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed company in the content and real estate-related businesses, Forside Co. Ltd. (TYO:2330), announced last week developments of its mining operation.

“Forside Financial Services Co. Ltd., a consolidated subsidiary of Forside Co. Ltd., received OEM from LC Mining (GPU mining machines) developed by Lucky Cue Co. Ltd.,” the Zaikei Shimbun described, adding that the company will start selling these mining rigs under its brand name, FFSM.

Japan Roundup: Public Companies Unveil New Mining Plan, Exchange, Token Fund
Picture of mining equipment provided by Forside.

Forside Financial Services has already started a mining operation in Canada. Its parent company says that the mining rig sale is “one of the efforts aimed at realizing the growth strategy development of the virtual currency mining business” at the subsidiary.

Furthermore, Forside announced:

In the future, our subsidiary will use semiconductor chips (mining chips) utilizing state-of-the-art 7nm process technology on its own mining [operation]…[and] selling ‘Next Generation Mining Board’ equipped with the chips.

While Forside did not reveal the supplier of its 7nm mining chips, in Japan, GMO Internet recently started selling 7nm mining rigs with a plan to sell its “Next Generation Mining Board.”

Fasteps Plans Exchange Launch in Singapore

Japan Roundup: Public Companies Unveil New Mining Plan, Exchange, Token FundAnother Tokyo Stock Exchange-listed company, Fasteps Co. Ltd. (TYO:2338), recently announced that its Singaporean subsidiary plans to launch a crypto exchange in Singapore. The company mainly engages in system solution, media solution, and cost management businesses.

In June, Fasteps opened an exchange in Hong Kong called Bitone. It currently offers trading in three markets, with 11 BTC trading pairs, 10 ETH trading pairs, and 5 USDT trading pairs.

Japan Roundup: Public Companies Unveil New Mining Plan, Exchange, Token Fund

Line Launches Token Fund, Adds Prices to Clova

Japan Roundup: Public Companies Unveil New Mining Plan, Exchange, Token Fund
Line Clova AI assistant.

Line Corporation (TYO:3938), the operator of Japan’s most popular chat app, has added crypto price quotes to its Clova AI assistant for Android and iOS operating systems. Crypto prices are provided by Kraken exchange.

The company also announced last week that its subsidiary, unblock corporation, has established a corporate token venture fund in Hong Kong called “unblock ventures ltd.”

With LVC Corporation, the subsidiary that operates the group’s cryptocurrency and blockchain businesses, as its sole investor, “unblock ventures focuses on token investments and has a capital commitment of USD10 million,” Line explained, adding:

By launching this new corporate token fund, Line is aiming to boost the development and adoption of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.

Meanwhile, Tokyo-based consulting center Bitcoin no Madoguchi is offering free consultation via the Line chat app. Users can add the company as a friend inside Line and start asking questions. According to Coinchoice publication, once a question is submitted, an answer will be delivered from a person working at the Bitcoin no Madoguchi office between 30 minutes and 7 hours.

What do you think of these Japanese public companies’ crypto operations? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Forside, Farsteps, Line Corp.


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Huobi Launches Partner Exchanges in Russia, Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, Canada

Huobi Launches Partner Exchanges in Russia, Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, Canada

Chinese exchange Huobi and its partners are launching cryptocurrency exchanges in five regions: the Philippines, Russia, Taiwan, Indonesia, and Canada. Partners “share Huobi’s order integration system, wallet system, asset management and clearing systems.” The exchange in Manila has launched with trading in three markets with over 40 trading pairs.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Five Partners, Five New Exchanges

Chinese digital asset and service provider Huobi has announced that it has chosen five partners to launch cryptocurrency exchanges in five regions.

Huobi Launches Partner Exchanges in Russia, Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, CanadaHuobi is one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, with a 24-hour trading volume of $915,183,234 at the time of this writing, according to Coinmarketcap. With offices in Singapore, the U.S., Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Thailand, and Australia, Huobi claims to serve millions of users in over 130 countries.

The five partners are Yatai International Holding Group, Vnesheconombank, Chi Fu Group, Asia International Finance Holdings (AIF) and Dbank Group, according to South China Morning Post. Each partner will utilize Huobi Cloud to set up a new cryptocurrency exchange in “the Philippines, Russia, Taiwan, Indonesia and Canada, respectively,” the publication added.

Huobi clarified on Thursday:

Corporate partners also share Huobi’s order integration system, wallet system, asset management and clearing systems; in addition to Huobi Global’s world-leading depth, liquidity and market data.

The company officially launched Huobi Cloud on July 20, aimed at “enabling its partners to build secure and stable digital asset exchanges quickly.”

Launch Schedule

Huobi has provided a rough schedule for when the new exchanges will be launched by its partners. The exchange in Bali, Indonesia, will be launched on August 22. The one in Taiwan will be called Shubao Digital Asset Exchange and will be launched on August 26. The one in Moscow will be launched on September 3. The company has not provided the launch date for the exchange in Canada at press time.

The only exchange that has already been launched by one of the above partners is in the Philippines; it is called Huibi. Launched on August 12, it is headquartered in Manila and co-founded by Ya Tai International Holding Group.

Huobi Launches Partner Exchanges in Russia, Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, Canada
Huibi exchange in the Philippines.

Huibi lists three markets on its platform: USDT, BTC, and ETH. Eight trading pairs are available for the USDT market, seven for the BTC market, and 26 for the ETH market. There is no fiat support.

Huobi is also expanding its presence in the U.S. On Wednesday, August 15, the company announced that it “has entered into a strategic partnership, including a significant investment” with Openfinance Network, a US compliant security token trading platform launched earlier this summer. This follows Huobi’s recent attempt to enter the US market with the launch of Hbus exchange.

What do you think of Huobi and its partners launching exchanges in these countries? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Huibi, and Huobi.


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PR: Bibox Gains Swiss VQF License – Accelerating Global Expansion

Bibox Gains Swiss VQF License - Accelerating Global Expansion

This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product/service. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

On 16th August 2018, Bibox, a leading AI-enhanced digital asset trading platform, announced its acquisition of Chain Capital that owns Swiss VQF license. VQF itself is the largest cross-industry Self-Regulatory Organization (SRO) with the longest history that meets the standards established by the Financial Services Standards Association (FINMA). All the members of VQF also need to meet the most serious requirements in order to get a membership. Moreover, their membership means that all their operations are carried out in strict compliance with the Anti-Money Laundering Act in Switzerland. This acquisition enables Bibox to conduct digital currency business in Europe going forward.

Bibox was founded by Jeffery Lei, co-founder of OKCoin, and was officially launched in November 2017. Within a mere span of 6 months, Bibox has impressively climbed the ranks to become a Top-10 crypto exchange in the world in terms of transaction volume. Bibox has also established footprint across the world with operation centers in more than 10 countries and regions including Estonia, the United States, Switzerland, Singapore, Canada, China, Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea.

Bibox integrates AI technology into all aspects of its platform trading, carefully screening high-quality projects for users, and has received wide acclaim from both users and industry experts for its smooth trading experience and excellent customer service. As of August 2018, the number of Bibox users has exceeded 1 million. According to CoinMarketCap’s statistics, Bibox has a consistent average 24-hour trading volume of $200 million.

Bibox’s sponsor Jeffery Lei shared that the acquisition of Chain Capital in Switzerland will not only help Bibox to better develop its European business and serve more users, but also to provide more choices to its users hence greatly improving users’ convenience. At the same time, this acquisition also serves as an example to the rest of the industry to continually explore more opportunities to further develop their blockchain business as the industry grows towards maturity.

Chain Capital is headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland’s financial center, and is a digital asset fund management company. Just 2 months after its establishment in July 2017, Chain Capital received the first VQF license issued by Switzerland, which means that the company can engage in transactions of digital assets. This is of great significance to Bibox’s expansion of its global footprint and specifically European business.

“Attaining a license is an instrumental step in our global expansion. In the future, our main task at Bibox is to apply our technical knowledge accumulated in the blockchain field to other domains, and accelerate the development of blockchain technology.” Jeffery Lei exhibits great confidence in blockchain technology in terms of both its applications and development potential, and aims to invest even more funds and energy to aid the development of the blockchain industry. “I think this is the career I can invest my life in.”

Bibox’s feat of achieving its Top-10 ranking within half a year is a result of its co-founders’ years of technical knowledge and experience in the blockchain field. Technical expert Jeffery Lei, was the Marketing Operation Manager / Product Manager at Huawei, later co-founded OKCoin with Xu Mingxing, and also served as CEO of AI company Jixianyuan. Similarly, fellow Bibox co-founder Aries Wang, is the author of Crypto Economics, has gained many years of experience in the blockchain field and is based in North America.

For more information contact:
Lesley Zhang, Director of Public Relations
media_release@bibox365.com
Bibox.com

Press Contact Email Address
media_release@bibox365.com

Supporting Link
https://www.bibox.com/

This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

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Playboy Sues Wallet Developer for Failing to Integrate Crypto Across Its Platforms

Playboy Sues Wallet Developer for Failing to Integrate Crypto Across Its Platforms

Playboy is reportedly suing a Canadian cryptocurrency firm for allegedly failing to integrate a “wallet that would support a range of cryptocurrencies across the company’s online media, digital and casual gaming businesses.” Playboy.tv was supposed to be the first of the company’s platforms to feature the new crypto wallet and payment options.

Also read: Yahoo! Japan Confirms Entrance Into the Crypto Space

Playboy Sues Canadian Crypto Company

Playboy Sues Wallet Developer for Failing to Integrate Crypto Across Its PlatformsPlayboy Enterprises Inc., the parent company of the Playboy magazine empire founded by Hugh Hefner, is suing a cryptocurrency firm listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange (CSE) “on allegations of fraud and breach of contract,” the LA Times reported Monday.

In the lawsuit filed in Los Angeles, Playboy claims that Global Blockchain Technologies (CSE: BLOC) “failed to live up to an agreement to integrate blockchain technology into Playboy’s online media channels,” the publication elaborated. The Beverly Hills-based company is seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.

Global Blockchain Technologies, on the other hand, dismissed the suit as a “normal dispute” between two firms, calling the fraud allegation “frivolous.” In a statement to the news outlet, the Vancouver-based company wrote, “Global believes it has a strong defense to the action and will be vigorously defending same.”

Playboy’s Crypto Integration Plan

The two companies made an agreement in March, according to the lawsuit. At that time, Playboy announced:

The company is developing an online payment wallet that will support a number of cryptocurrencies across the company’s online media, digital and casual gaming businesses.

Playboy Sues Wallet Developer for Failing to Integrate Crypto Across Its Platforms“Playboy.tv will be the first of the company’s media platforms to feature the new digital wallet,” the company wrote, adding that it “will enable the online platform to accept vice industry token (VIT), among other leading cryptocurrency tokens, for access to the brand’s exclusive content.” The crypto wallet is expected to be “available before the end of the year,” Playboy confirmed at the time. Playboy.tv currently advertises over 80 TV shows and over 2,000 episodes.

Launched in April, VIT aims to be a payment medium for the adult, gambling, and cannabis industries. Its market cap quickly rose to a high of $7 million after launch but has been falling steadily to just above $1 million today, with each token currently worth two-thirds of a penny at the time of this writing.

Playboy Sues Wallet Developer for Failing to Integrate Crypto Across Its PlatformsGlobal Blockchain Technologies made a separate announcement in May that it was “building a cryptocurrency wallet for Playboy that can hold VIT” to be integrated into “the Playboy.tv web media portal.” The company also confirmed at the time that “the integration of VIT into Playboy.tv and the wallet is set to be launched before the end of 2018.”

However, in the lawsuit filed, the LA Times reported:

Playboy said GBT [Global Blockchain Technologies] hasn’t made good on the deal and also failed to pay the $4 million it promised as part of the agreement.

What do you think of Playboy suing Global Blockchain Technologies? Do you think Playboy will find another way to integrate crypto? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Global Blockchain Technologies, and Playboy.


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New Player to Offer Next Generation ASIC Chips This Year

New Player to Offer ASIC Chips This Year

A new competitor is advancing on plans to enter the mining hardware market by the end of the year. Canadian company Squire Mining has raised almost $20 million to finance the design, development, and testing of a new ASIC chip and bitcoin mining rig. Squire also wants to set up its own crypto mining facilities.   

Also read: Venezuela to Have Two Units of Account – Petro and Petro-Pegged Bolivar

$20 Million to Develop New ASIC Chip

Squire Mining Ltd., a Canada-based investment company focused on global resource exploration and tech projects, has closed its non-brokered private placement equity financing of $25,500,000 CAD ($19.5 million USD). The money will be invested in a planned change in business – the firm now wants to enter the crypto space.

Squire intends to use financing proceeds to fund the design, development, testing and mass production test run of the company’s “next generation” ASIC chip and bitcoin mining rig, according to a press release. A portion of the funding will be reserved for further research and development of a second generation chips and rigs, and to cover marketing, promotion and distribution expenses.

New Player to Offer Next Generation ASIC Chips This Year

The company says it hopes to complete the manufacture and assembly of a pilot production test run of its first bitcoin (BTC) mining ASIC chip and rig by the end of the fourth quarter of 2018. According to a partnership agreement with design and system engineering architecture expert Peter Kim, which was signed in March, the ASICs will be 10nm chips.

The joint venture, in which the company will hold an initial 66 2/3% interest and Kim will hold 33 1/3%, will be based in South Korea. It will be responsible for the design, development and commercialization of the highly specialized hardware. Once the ASIC chip development is completed, the enterprise will also take care with sales of bitcoin and other crypto-mining systems and work to develop its own mining facilities.

Growing Mining Industry Attracts New Competitors

Squire Mining, which is currently filing final listing documents with the Canadian Securities Exchange, notes that the development of the nextgen chips and system architecture is the central foundation for the growing crypto industry. Its entry into the mining sector, currently dominated by the Chinese giant Bitmain which controls about 80% of the market, is expected to increase competition in the space.

New Player to Offer Next Generation ASIC Chips This YearCrypto mining is a profitable business and the Beijing-based Bitmain, which also owns some of the largest mining facilities, has reported profits of more than $3 billion dollars in 2017. The mining behemoth is now trying to diversify its product line – it recently launched two new Wi-Fi routers capable of mining x11 and blake2b cryptocurrencies like dash and siacoin.

Bitmain announced the routers days after Canaan Creative, the world’s second largest manufacturer of cryptocurrency mining equipment, said it was planning to sell a TV set that doubles as a mining rig.

Other players, including companies like Samsung, are also trying to take a share of the market. This spring, the South Korean electronics giant reported increasing profits thanks to its production of bitcoin mining chips. In July, Japanese internet giant GMO launched an upgraded version of its bitcoin miner equipped with 7nm ASIC mining chips. The new rig boasts a higher hash rate and is capable of mining both bitcoin core (BTC) and bitcoin cash (BCH).

Are you expecting more companies to join the competition in the mining hardware sector? Share your thoughts on the subject in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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Jamaica Stock Exchange Plans to Offer Cryptocurrency Trading

Jamaica Stock Exchange Plans to Offer Cryptocurrency Trading

The Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) has announced it plans to allow investors the ability to trade cryptocurrencies through the regulated stock exchange. According to the JSE, the Canadian-based Blockstation will help facilitate the crypto-trading services.

Also read: Malta Tops Exchange-Based Crypto Trade, Russia Leads in OTC Volume

Jamaica Stock Exchange Plans to Facilitate Crypto-Asset Trades in 2018

Jamaica Stock Exchange Plans to Offer Cryptocurrency TradingThe Jamaica Stock Exchange is interested in offering its clientele the ability to invest in digital assets. The JSE announced on Tuesday that the organization is partnering with the company Blockstation by signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU). The MoU states the two firms will enable JSE customers the ability to trade blockchain tokens within a secure and regulatory framework. JSE says that Blockstation’s network is well suited for managing digital currency trades, and the clearing and settlement of blockchain tokens.

Satisfying Considerable Investor Interest in Digital Assets

The two organizations believe the agreement will be a milestone as it could become the first international stock exchanges that will allow cryptocurrency trades. At the moment only digital currency futures, options, and exchange-traded notes are traded in a regulated stock exchange type of environment. JSE has been working with Blockstation by completing tests and hosting a successful live workshop with brokerage members and local regulators.

“We are excited to implement this service with our clients, satisfying considerable investor interest in digital assets. We are also proud to be at the forefront of bringing innovation to capital markets,” explains Marlene Street Forrest, the Managing Director of the JSE.

We are very comfortable moving forward based on the training and support provided by Blockstation, and because their trading platform incorporates familiar compliance rules to ensure a fair marketplace.

Jamaica Stock Exchange Plans to Offer Cryptocurrency Trading

The Importance of Offering Digital Assets Through Regulated Financial Institutions

Since the JSE launched its principal stock exchange in Kingston, Jamaica the organization has seen a lot of development. To accommodate growth the JSE launched its online trading platform in 2015, which at the time was the first of its kind within the Caribbean, enabling clients to view market performance, and buy and sell securities. A broker member of the JSE from the firm Sagicor Investments, Kirk Brown, says the JSE decision to offer digital currency trading is paramount for the growth of this budding tech-driven economy.         

“It is very important for investors to be able to invest in digital assets through their traditional financial institutions,” Brown emphasizes.

It’s exciting to be at the cutting edge where digital currency demand meets safe reliable access.

What do you think about the Jamaica Stock Exchange planning to offer digital currency trading services? Let us know your thoughts on this subject in the comment section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, and Pixabay.


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PR: BITTECH Offers Two Mining Machines, Equipped with Mining Chips Using a Cutting-Edge 10 Nm Process Technology

BITTECH Offers Two Mining Machine, Equipped with Mining Chipsusing a Cutting-Edge 10 Nm Process Technology

This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product/service. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

BITTECH starts selling a new range of cryptocurrency mining hardware powered by 10 nm semiconductor chips (10 nm BT0010a and BT0010La mining chips). It is to be recalled that BITTECH introduced its first ASIC miner as early as mid-May, 2018. Bittech One based on 14 nm ASIC chip BT0014 is characterized by 28TH/s hashing power, while energy consumption makes 2200W.

A new range of mining hardware includes two models:
1. Bittech One Mini is a 10nm-based ASIC for private mining. ASIC is characterized by compact sizes, SHA-256-based 16TH/s hashing power, and 1150W power consumption. Retail price will make $880, including power supply unit. Pre-ordered mining hardware will be delivered as early as mid-September 15-25.
2. Bittech L-One is a new Scrypt-based solution for cryptocurrency mining (like LiteCoin). This is a 10nm BT0010La-based mining hardware with the hashing power of 2.3GH/s and energy consumption of 2600W. The miner is priced at $1970, including the power supply unit. Pre-ordered mining hardware will be delivered as early as mid-September 15-25.

BITTECH’s mining hardware based on advanced 10nm semiconductor chips is an “all-in-one” solution with Murata/Artesyn inbuilt power supply units, supporting hot replacement. Even a newbie can set up its unsophisticated and user-friendly software. All miners are covered by 180-days warranty.

BITTECH Limited was engaged in R&D with regard to 10 and 14nm advanced chips since early 2017. At the moment, the company has finished its R&D and offered own mining hardware to a wide range of customers. Aside from miners and chips, the company is going to establish four large data centers in Canada, Iceland, Estonia, and Russia. It has started the construction of Russia’s data center for 9000 miners with the total processing power of 21MW in April 2018. The company will lease a part of premises to its customers under colocation agreements.

More information about BITTECH:
Official website: bittech.cn.com
Twitter: twitter.com/bittechI

Press Contact Email Address
info@bittech.cn.com

Supporting Link
https://bittech.cn.com/news4

This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

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$32mil Raised by Mining Company Listed on London Stock Exchange

$32mil First Day Crypto Mining Co on London Stock Exchange

Idealistic startup Argo Blockchain PLC, a mining company, is the first cryptocurrency-related firm to sit on the prestigious London Stock Exchange. In only its initial trading day, Argo raised $32 million, earning a $61 million valuation in the process.

Also read: Bitcoiners Hope to Have a Friend in Top US Regulator Jay Clayton

Mining Company Argo Blockchain PLC Rakes In $32 Million on the LSE

At 16 pence per share, 156,250,000 shares sold, slightly over half of Argo’s capital has been booked, totaling $32 million, and that means the startup has a baseline valuation of $61 million now that it is listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE).

LSE has roots going back nearly half a millennium, and can currently boast of a market cap north of four and a half trillion dollars. Listing Argo gives crypto-related businesses a huge boost of legitimacy, and especially if all goes well. Registered shareholders such as Jupiter Asset Management, Henderson Global Investors, and Miton Capital helped secure that $32 million right out of the gate.

$32mil First Day Crypto Mining Co on London Stock Exchange

Jonathan Bixby, cofounder of Argo, explained to The Telegraph how his company intends to “take the pain and heartache out of participating in the biggest new technology breakthrough since the launch of the internet.” It hopes to capture market share through helping the crypto curious mine, also known as Mining as a Service, MaaS.  

Founded in late 2017, Argo aims to build an international data center management business for assisting in crypto mining as a service (MaaS), which would be available to anyone in the world, the company’s LSE document states. The company’s platform itself has only been around a little over two months, however subscriptions are currently sold out.

Early Days for Cryptoshpere Literacy

By May of this year, the company was without profits, and yet set its sights on being the first crypto-related firm to have a seat at the London Stock Exchange (LSE). The United Kingdom Listing Authority approved Argo, essentially a cloud mining pool idea familiar to enthusiasts. For legacy finance, and most of the known world, it’s early days for cryptocurrency literacy, and if the average person is even aware of mining, they’d probably not be familiar with mining services.

The difference here is emphasis on alternative coin mining, those other than bitcoin core (BTC) and bitcoin cash (BCH). Argo “makes it easy to mine bitcoin gold, ethereum and other altcoins from home,” according to its website. For a monthly fee, the miner proper will lend space to its mining rigs.

$32mil First Day Crypto Mining Co on London Stock Exchange

Canadian founder of Argo, Jonathan Bixby, explained to the Financial Times,  “More than 90 per cent of crypto-mining is done by elites on industrial scale because it is technically very difficult to do. It is incredibly expensive to buy, up front, the hardware you need at $5,000 a machine. We want to be the Amazon Web Services of crypto.”

Argo’s business plan calls for $25/mo for access to computing power aimed at mining zcash, ethereum classic, ethereum, and bitcoin gold — all without coin custody arrangements or the traditional mining pool notion, limiting customers to one contract from its center in Quebec. The bulk of its business model appears to come from success stories such as Iceland’s Genesis Mining. Now three years into its run, Genesis boasts two million customers, who routinely pay hundreds of dollars to as much as four thousand dollars for multi-year contracts. They have a half year waiting list.

What do you think about the LSE listing Argo? Let us know in the comments section below. 


Images via Pixabay, LSE. 


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NYSE Owner: Bitcoin Should Be in Retirement Funds, Credit Cards, Retail Stores

NYSE Owner: Bitcoin Should Be In Retirement Funds, Credit Cards, Retail Stores

Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), owner of arguably the most important stock exchange in the world, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), is introducing a new company, Bakkt. The idea is to weave bitcoin into 401(k)s, credit cards, and retail. The project is getting a lot of hype due in large measure to two very powerful backers: Microsoft and Starbucks. Is this the mainstreaming ecosystem enthusiasts have been urging?

Also read: Bitcoiners Hope to Have a Friend in Top US Regulator Jay Clayton

NYSE Wants Bitcoin in 401(k)s, Credit Cards, Retail Stores

ICE’s digital assets head, turned CEO of the new project Bakkt, Kelly Loeffler, explained in a company blog, “Formed by Intercontinental Exchange — an operator of global exchanges, clearing houses, data and listings services — Bakkt will work with companies that include BCG, Starbucks, Microsoft and others, to create an open ecosystem that supports growing needs in the ~$270 billion digital asset marketplace.”

ICE quietly owns and operates two dozen regulated markets and exchanges, from the United States and Canada to Europe. It also holds clearing houses in the Netherlands, Singapore, greater Europe, the US, and Canada as well. It has revenues well in excess of $5.5 billion. It’s also the parent company for the NYSE, an exchange with great prestige among traditional finance: the NYSE is 226 years old, and is easily the globe’s biggest exchange by market cap, some $21.3 trillion as of last summer.

NYSE Owner: Bitcoin Should Be In Retirement Funds, Credit Cards, Retail StoresMs. Loeffler told Fortune how for over a year ICE built Bakkt in secrecy. The company name is a twist on asset backed securities, Bakkt, which by design is to engender trust. And trust is everything in the legacy marketplace, but it has a decidedly different meaning in the cryptocurrency world. Trust on Wall Street usually means regulations, and lots of them.

Indeed, by late Fall this year, Bakkt hopes to have a fully federally regulated space for all things bitcoin. Fortune notes how “ICE aims to transform Bitcoin into a trusted global currency with broad usage.” That’s an interesting admission for enthusiasts wondering what Wall Street is ultimately up to with this enormous announcement and marketing/public relations campaign. Trust in the Bitcoin ecosystem is established through mathematics, voluntary adoption, by completely bypassing third party fragility, frictions, and gatekeepers for which legacy finance is famous.   

NYSE Owner: Bitcoin Should Be In Retirement Funds, Credit Cards, Retail Stores

Speculation and Coffee

“By combining regulated infrastructure with institutional and consumer applications,” Ms. Loeffler continues, “we’ll apply our track record of bringing transparency and trust to previously unregulated markets. In this way, we intend to play a key role in boosting institutional, merchant and consumer participation in digital assets.” Investment, also according to Fortune, includes Boston Consulting Group, Fortress Investment Group, Eagle Seven, and Susquehanna International Group in addition to better known brands Starbucks and Microsoft.

No doubt, ICE’s endorsement of Bitcoin lends a great deal of credence for other Wall Street investors to start exploring the cryptosphere. A futures market appears immediately in the works. Ms. Loeffler’s blog post details, “As an initial component of the Bakkt offering, Intercontinental Exchange’s U.S.-based futures exchange and clearing house plan to launch a 1-day physically delivered Bitcoin contract along with physical warehousing in November 2018, subject to CFTC review and approval. These regulated venues will establish new protocols for managing the specific security and settlement requirements of digital currencies. In addition, the clearing house plans to create a separate guarantee fund that will be funded by Bakkt.”

NYSE Owner: Bitcoin Should Be In Retirement Funds, Credit Cards, Retail StoresFortune believes the bigger move Bakkt is proposing involves everyday retail ventures. “Using Bitcoin to streamline and disrupt the world of retail payments,” the magazine stressed, “by moving consumers from swiping credit cards to scanning their Bitcoin apps. The market opportunity is gigantic: Consumers worldwide are paying lofty credit card or online-shopping fees on $25 trillion a year in annual purchases.” Both Microsoft customers and Starbucks customers are very familiar with digital, smartphone related transactions. Transitioning over to bitcoin, with institutional blessing, should be a snap, ICE is assuming.

Starbucks’ Vice President of Partnerships and Payments, Maria Smith, was quoted in the press release, noting, “As the flagship retailer, Starbucks will play a pivotal role in developing practical, trusted, and regulated applications for consumers to convert their digital assets into U.S. dollars for use at Starbucks.” That also appears to fly directly in the face of Bitcoin’s ultimate point. To nearly everyone familiar with its power, bitcoin as a currency is an end in-and-of-itself, it is the value, and was meant to leave fiat — not to be simply a keen transfer mechanism to government paper. Nevertheless, Bakkt’s CEO, Ms. Loeffler, concludes, “We’re excited about the opportunity to help unlock the transformative potential of digital assets across global markets. Bakkt is preparing for launch in upcoming weeks, and we look forward to keeping you updated.”

Is bringing Wall Street into crypto a good thing? Let us know in the comments section below. 


Images via Pixabay, ICE, NYSE. 


Be sure to check out the podcast, Blockchain 2025; latest episode here

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Coinbase Bug Prevents Canadian Users from Withdrawing Cryptocurrency Funds

An issue with Coinbase systems recently prevented users from Canada and a number of other countries from withdrawing funds, leading to frustration and concern among many customers. The issue began around Aug. 1 and has reportedly also affected Venezuelan users. This isn't an April fools' joke.@coinbase won't let me withdraw my coins cause i'm from … Continued

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Billionaire Backed Bitcoin Bank Trading on Major Stock Exchange

Billionaire Backed Bitcoin Bank Trading on Major Stock Exchange

Coming off fresh first quarter losses undeterred, giant cryptocurrency merchant bank, Galaxy Digital, began trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange August, 1, 2018. It is one of the earliest banks in the crypto space to achieve such a listing. Many eyes are watching to see what will become of the relationship between legacy financial institutions and digital assets. 

Also read: Coinbase Flexes Muscle, Creates Political Action Committee

Galaxy Digital Trades, a Bitcoin Merchant Bank, Now Trades on TSX Venture Exchange

Famed billionaire investor Mike Novogratz explained, “If I knew what I know now, knew the crypto markets were going to swoon as much, and it was going to take so long, I might have stayed private for another year or so and then gone public, but I don’t think it’s a mistake,” Galaxy Digital’s CEO told Bloomberg in Toronto.

Crypto markets have been unkind to any investor who might’ve jumped-in during late 2017. His interview otherwise ought to have been triumphant, representing one of the earliest cryptocurrency-oriented merchant banks to be listed formally on a major stock exchange. He was in Toronto for just that purpose: Galaxy Digital is now trading on a world ranked, top ten, board, the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX).

Billionaire Backed Bitcoin Bank Trading on Major Stock Exchange

Instead, to a degree, it was bittersweet. The company was smarting off a brutal first quarter earnings call, posting over $130 million in losses. Rather than charging full steem on success, it appeared from a public relations standpoint to be limping as a financial canary in a very dark mineshaft.  

“There was a surge of companies,” Mr. Novogratz continued, “that listed in Canada and they all traded really poorly. I think the regulators got a little bit more nervous and said, ‘Hey, wait a minute, let’s make sure we know what we’re seeing here.’” Regulators were used to what as known as reverse takeovers to get a listing, a maneuver Galaxy was taking advantage of in order to get a seat, but when cryptocurrency is involved that apparently was enough to warrant extra looks under the hood.

Global Ambitions

“There’s a layer of due diligence,” TSX’s managing director Brady Fletcher elaborated, “that goes into figuring out and understanding the business itself, which probably takes a little bit longer than entrepreneurs like Mike would like it to, but for us that’s how we maintain market integrity.” TSX, by market cap, is the ninth largest stock exchange in the world. Based in Ontario, Canada, it offers a range of industries, domestic and foreign, but is mostly known for being oil and gas heavy. It also offers traditional securities, exchange traded funds, income trusts, etc.

Extra scrutiny effectively tied up Galaxy and its investors, as they could only watch for months, while regulators do what regulators do ahead of a listing, and markets fell. Mr. Novogratz knows from markets as a former hedge fund guy. He also knows crypto, having also famously made hundreds of millions trading ether and bitcoin.

Billionaire Backed Bitcoin Bank Trading on Major Stock Exchange

That acumen led to becoming a full fledged merchant bank in the space by late last year. Galaxy is full service, trading digital assets, managing funds, giving financial advice, and investing in ecosystem businesses.

The CEO assured Bloomberg, “We’re going to be a global company; we want to be globally traded.” He wants listings eventually in Hong Kong, Frankfurt, London as well. For now, the New York company will trade under Galaxy Digital Holdings Ltd, ticker GLXY at the TSX Venture Exchange.

Is Galaxy’s listing on the TSX good for bitcoin adoption? Let us know in the comments section below. 


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Exchanges Round-Up: Dcex Uses XRP as Base Currency, Blocktrade Enters Beta

Exchanges Round-Up: Dcex Uses XRP as Base Currency, Blocktrade Enters Beta

In recent news regarding bitcoin exchanges, Dcex has launched a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency exchange that will use XRP as its base currency, ESMA regulated exchange, Blocktrade, has opened for beta testing, and Coinfield has announced a partnership with fee-free trading app Moongo.

Also Read:Banks Don’t Really Want to Use ‘Blockchain’ for FX Settlement After All 

Dcex to Launch P2P Exchange Using XRP as Base Currency

Exchanges Round-Up: Dcex Uses XRP as Base Currency, Blocktrade Enters BetaDcex, “a cryptocurrency marketplace for retail and institutional investors” powered by Alphapoint, has announced that registration is open for its digital currency exchange.

The P2P marketplace will use XRP as its exclusive base currency, and will allow clients to trade BCH, BTC, LTC, ETH, BTG, ETC, OMG, EOS, DASH, TRX, XMR, VEN, IOTA, ZEC, TUSD, NEO, and ADA.

The company states that it chose XRP as its base currency in order to facilitate “very rapid transaction volume” between traders, claiming that its network is “designed to facilitate up to one million transactions per second.”

ESMA Regulated Bitcoin Exchange Enters Beta Testing

Blocktrade.com, a cryptocurrency exchange claiming to be the first regulated by the Exchanges Round-Up: Dcex Uses XRP as Base Currency, Blocktrade Enters BetaEuropean Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), has opened for beta testing. The exchange is currently open for registration and anticipates a full launch in September.

Blocktrade will support BCH, BTC, ETH, LTC, and XRP pairings, with Forbes reporting that “Crypto Traded Indices, Security Tokens, and Tokenised Assets will be gradually added later in 2018.”

Luka Gubo, the chief executive officer of Blocktrade, has predicted that the company’s regulated status may open the door for further development of permissive legislation governing the cryptocurrency sector, stating: “This is an ideal way for regulators across Europe to recognize cryptocurrencies as a new asset class and put in a regulatory framework.”

Coinfield Exchange Announces Partnership with Fee-Free Trading App Moongo

Exchanges Round-Up: Dcex Uses XRP as Base Currency, Blocktrade Enters BetaCanadian cryptocurrency exchange Coinfield has announced that it will target the global trading market through a partnership with commission-free trading app, Moongo.

Moongo allows users to convert cryptocurrencies to EUR or USD, which can then be withdrawn onto the company’s cards. The company’s plan to make their services “available to every country in the world except the US and the nations on the US/UN sanction list.” The app currently supports “Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Dash, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin Gold,” and “Select ERC20 coins & non-ERC20 [tokens].”

The chief executive of Coinfield, Babak Bob Ras, stated: “Our vision is to bring the cryptocurrency to people’s lives in the most convenient and simple way, and make it available to well-qualified traders in most countries worldwide.”

Do you think the bitcoin markets are in need of more regulated exchanges? Join the discussion in the comments section below!


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Bitcoin Mining News: Brookstone to Build Wind Farm in Morocco, Québec Increases Rates

Bitcoin Mining News: Brookstone to Build Wind Farm in Morocco, Québec Increases Rates

In recent mining news, Brookstone Partners has announced its intention to build a 900-megawatt wind farm in Dakhla, Morocco, Hydro-Québec has been given permission to charge cryptocurrency miners increased rates, and DMG has begun installing its 85-megawatt substation in Canada.

Also Read: Crowd Psychology Driving BTC Prices, Finance Experts Say

Brookstone Partners Plans 900 MW Wind Farm in Morocco to Power Mining

Bitcoin Mining News: Brookstone to Build Wind Farm in Morocco, Québec Increases RatesBrookstone Partners, a New York-based private equity firm, has announced plans to construct 900 megawatt (MW) wind farm near Dakhla – a disputed territory presently administered by Morocco.

Brookstone founded ‘Soluna’ – the site that will house the proposed wind farm – after acquiring rights to the land from Altus AG. The company hopes to raise $100 million USD via initial coin offering to finance the construction of its first 36 MW worth of turbines. The cost of completing the entire project is estimated to run as high as $3 billion.

The managing director of Brookstone, Michael Toporek, stated: “We have exclusive rights to the area for a wind farm, but the issue was there’s no real place to put” the electricity. “These days, what you can do with stranded power is set up a computing center, develop this as an off-grid project,” he added.

Brookstone will use the power it generates to power cryptocurrency mining and data centers.

Hydro-Québec Granted Permission to Charge Increased Rates to Crypto Miners

Mining Round-Up: Brookstone to Build 900 MW Wind Farm in Morocco, Québec Increases Rates for MinersThe fourth largest hydropower producer in the world, Hydro-Québec, has been granted permission to increase the rates charged to cryptocurrency miners by the Régie de l’énergie – the economic regulator of Québec’s energy sector. Hydro-Québec will now be permitted to charge 15 Canadian cents (approximately 11.5 U.S. cents) to cryptocurrency miners – double the rate that is available to Quebec’s residential clients.

According to local media, the new rate “would be applied in the event that a promoter connects to Hydro-Québec’s network while a temporary blockade is in effect on the new technology,” with the official decision stating: “The Régie considers that the rates and conditions […] will ensure the security of electricity supply in the particular context of massive, sudden, unexpected and simultaneous demands for the use of blockchain technology, including mining cryptocurrencies.”

Agreements made between Hydro-Québec and operational cryptocurrency miners before June 6th will not be subject to the new price.

DMG Begins Installing 85-Megawatt Power Substation in Canada

Mining Round-Up: Brookstone to Build 900 MW Wind Farm in Morocco, Québec Increases Rates for MinersCanada-based DMG Blockchain Solutions Inc. has announced the commencement of construction of its “85-megawatt transformer and electrical substation.” The power generated by the substation will be used to fuel the company’s “flagship cryptocurrency mining facility.”

DMG anticipates that the substation will be “connected to the utility power grid and commissioned for full operation in 2018, at which time, it will have 60 megawatts available for energizing mining rigs.”

DMG’s chief operating officer, Sheldon Bennett, stated: “Building and managing a cryptomining operation at an industrial scale requires a world-class supply chain as well as direct access to local government and electricity providers. Our management team at DMG is unique in that we have the experience, the relationships, and the capital backing to do this successfully.”

What is your response to Hydro-Québec being granted permission to increase the rates charged to cryptocurrency mining companies? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, https://twitter.com/dmgblockchain


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