2 min video looking at the competition digital asset exchanges face
According to the website cryptowisser.com there are over 600 crypto exchanges currently so surely the sector is ripe for take-over activity. Presumably now with $50 m in cash the 1st NASDAQ listed crypto exchange Hong Kong Based EQUOS exchange will be looking for potential acquisitions?
In essence, as in most industries, only a handful of players dominate this space.
It is somewhat ironic that cryptos such as Bitcoin and Ethereum were initially championed as a means to make payments globally, without the need to use third parties such as banks. Unfortunately, nefarious actors quickly sized the opportunity to move money digitally -quickly and cheaply — and potentially most importantly, anonymously, by-passing many of the existing KYC/AML checks that banks and regulators had established to reduce the economic impact of the shadow economy — terrorist funding, money laundering etc. The likes of the notorious Silk Road website, which offered illegal drugs, guns and pornography, quickly adopted the use of cryptos as a form of payment. The US FBI unearthed the Silk Road website and shut it down in October 2013, seizing its stash of Bitcoin and, for a while, making the US government the largest holder of Bitcoins. Operators such as Plus Token, which was alleged to be a Ponzi scheme and moved $100 billion of cryptocurrencies, used crypto currencies as their chosen ransom payment. Indeed other organisations that have resorted to blackmailing and carried out cyber-attacks (such as the DDoS demanding Bitcoin as a payment). …
2 min video, a brief look at the banking sector and the possible role of Defi
Banks for a number of years struggled to keep their expensive bricks and mortar branch network open and to a large extent ignored the rapidly growing FinTech revivals.
In the U.S., figures from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation suggest that 4,500 branches have shut their doors for good since 2010 — approximately 6% of the total. There have been even more closures in the U.K. According to the British Banking Association there was a 22% fall in the number of high street bank branches.
In the UK the B of E has actively encouraged more new banks or as they are sometime called challenger banks. …
2 min video assessing the impact of CBDC as China launched its own
BNY Mellon commented: “Fifteen hundred years after inventing the banknote, China is now attempting to take money truly into the digital age. However, the rest of the world is still not sure whether it would like to follow suit”.
The gradual roll out of China’s Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) continues as JD.Com, the on-line shopping portal in China, has confirmed that it will be accepting China’s new digital yuan as payment (but only for some of the goods it sells on its platform). This ought to come as no surprise that JD.Com has been selected as potentially Tencent’s WeChat Pay and Alibaba’s Alipay are the two biggest threats the Chinese government faces for its own CBDC to be adopted. Alibaba and Tencent have been fined by the Chinese government for anti-monopolistic behaviour in reference to acquisitions each firm carried out a few years ago. …
Welcome to the first edition of Digital Bytes for 202.
This week we have the following articles:
2020 Predictions how did we do?
China rolls out its own digital currency while the world watches on
Guest article from Matthias Kuert from CMS in Zurich -Switzerland enacts new laws accommodating blockchain ventures in record time
A list of some of the peopl …
2 min video about some of the movers and shakers in 2020
2. Andre Cronje — the father of DeFi, love him or hate him Cronje has let the genie out of the bottle and the real battle between Traditional Finance and De Centralised Finance has now begun
3. Brad Garlinghouse — CEO of Ripple using Blockchain technology to disrupt SWIFT which has been the messaging and communication platform of choice for banks globally since 1973. The price of XRP the token that is needed on the Ripple network has went from 19 cents to over 69 cents in 2020 as adoption grew but crashed back to 20cents due to the recent SEC enforcement…
Here is a list of the various predictions we made in January 2020 and the results one year on.
1. With global debt at over $255 trillion, individuals, companies, and governments are massively leveraged as economies slow. Repayments become a challenge since governments cannot cut interest rates very much to stimulate economic growth. Look out for more bonds to be issued using Blockchain Technology.
Correct: We did indeed see Blockchain-powered platforms being used to issue bonds e.g. in Thailand.
2. Decline of the US$ and rise of Digital Currencies — geopolitical tensions mean an increased number of countries prefer to not use the US$ as a reserve currency. 2001 US$ accounted for 71% of banks reserves by in 2018 these had fallen to 62%. They accounted for Euro 20% Yen 5.2% Sterling 4.4%Renminbi of central bank reserves. The previous governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, predicted Digital Currency as a de-facto reserve describing it as a “synthetic hegemonic currency.” …
2 min video looking at how the Chinese have been cracking down on some of its FinTech superstars
Alibaba just in 2019 registered more than 1,500 Blockchain patents than any other company globally, Tencent filed over 700, and they too are also based in China.
The likes of JD.Com, Meintua, Tencent, and Alibaba are very much under the scrutiny of the Chinese government have seen their share prices fall by up to 25% from their recent highs which is understandable when giving statements from the Communist Party’s People’s Daily such as “if monopoly is tolerated, and companies are allowed to expand in a disorderly and barbarian manner, the industry won’t develop in a healthy, and sustainable way.” …
2 min video discussing funds that invest in Crypto assets.
There are more funds than quoted equities in the world. Are we to see more funds that invest in Digital Assets that actual digital assets? I suspect so.
Only a few years ago there was a relatively choice of funds for investors looking for a crypto fund and those that were available tended to afford little investor protection and services such as the fund manager being able to secure Professional indemnity insurance or even having the assets held securely by a third party custodian were hard to come by. …
As 2020 draws to a close our thoughts naturally start to focus on the year ahead and everything it may hold, so here are a few topics to ponder over for 2021:
1. ESG (Environmental Social Corporate Governance) — Blockchain is likely to play a greater role in storing and the sharing of data as to how organisations need and, indeed, are becoming more mindful, putting ESG at the core of their business strategy. As an example, Topl has built a Blockchain-powered platform which assists organisations to show the link between ESG and financial performance.
2. Nudge Economics — as climate change receives increasing focus there is the potential for Digital Assets to play a greater role in rewarding citizens and organisations for changing their behaviour in an effort to reduce global carbon emissions. With the success of both Plastic Bank and SC Johnson (which paid people to collect plastic) we are likely to see more initiatives like these in 2021. …