TECHCRUNCH: About six months after it initially crossed the pond, Coinbase is finally landing in the United Kingdom. Coinbase is the bitcoin wallet and platform backed with more than $100 million from DFJ, NYSE and Andreessen Horowitz and that has attracted north of 2.7 million consumer accounts. (more…)
DEALSTREETASIA: The recent entry of several fintech-focused accelerators into the Singapore startup ecosystem is laying the foundations for a sophisticated fintech ecosystem in the city-state. This development has played a significant part in the Russian venture capital firm Life.SREDA’s shifting its HQ from Moscow to Singapore. With the recent move by Life.SREDA VC to migrate to Singapore, along with its proposed $100 million second fund, DEALSTREETASIA caught up with its managing partner Vladislav Solodkiy, who is also the Chairman of the Board of LifePay Global, which provides mPos services across CIS and Asia Pacific markets.Edited Excerpts (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: Remittances – sending cash overseas – has always been bitcoin‘s killer app. Now the guys at Robocoin have made it more killer. Their new product, called Romit, is basically a way to send cash through a Robocoin ATM to another ATM or merchant account at fees far lower than other remittance providers. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: “First they ignore you…” For the first few years, there was no response from Wall Street. The Wall Street Journal didn’t mention bitcoin until a blog post in June 2011. As the bitcoin community waited, advocates and enthusiasts speculated as to why America’s financial strongholds weren’t talking about the digital currency. Did banks not take bitcoin seriously enough to acknowledge it or feel threatened by its potential? Were they passing it off as a trend or trying to censor it from mainstream adoption? Surely they weren’t oblivious to the new technology that was coming to eat their lunch. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: On October 31, 2008, Satoshi Nakamoto proposed “a system for electronic transactions without relying on trust.” Yet, it can be fairly argued that trust, or a lack thereof, has been at the heart of the troubles in the bitcoin ecosystem since that day. While the technology has been and continues to be robust, the failure of a few individuals to meet their fiduciary or legal obligations has maligned bitcoin’s image and damaged its relationships with consumers. (more…)
E27.CO: Philippine startup Satoshi Citadel Industries (SCI) has acquired BuyBitcoin.ph, the first Philippine Bitcoin exchange in the country. Founded by Sam Kaddoura, Lasse Birk Olesen, James Florentino and Dan Walton in January 2014, BuyBitcoin.ph is a peso to Bitcoin ‘over-the-counter’ exchange which allows Filipinos direct access to buying and selling of the cryptocurrency. (more…)
WIRED: Through bitcoin and other digital currencies, so many activists, entrepreneurs, and opportunists are chasing the dream. They envision a world where we can trade money as easily as we trade data, where anyone can send and receive currency from any machine on earth, where our financial system is controlled not by big banks or big government but by the people. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: Digital currencies have come and gone, and despite the astonishing rise of bitcoin’s popularity over the past 18 months, the majority of the population has yet to board the bitcoin bandwagon. One of the things that has plagued digital currencies in the past has been the perception that they are a solution in search of a problem. Does anyone really need digital currencies like bitcoin? Who are they intended for, and what purpose do they really serve?
The Wall Street Journal: Swiss banking giant UBS is to open a technology lab in London to explore how blockchain technology can be used in financial services. The lab, set to open this month and occupy a dozen desks at Canary Wharf-based fintech accelerator space Level39 – a hub in London for financial technology startups– will bring together technology experts from the bank and the wider fintech community, UBS said. (more…)
THE NEXT WEB: Since 2008, bitcoin adoption has been influenced by a diverse range of factors that have made it one of the most volatile currencies in the world. Yet, despite such volatility, more than 100,000 bitcoin transactions are taking place per day and the volume continues to grow due to the ‘permissionless innovation’ provided by bitcoin’s underlying technology, the blockchain. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: Rakuten, Japan’s largest online retail firm, has announced that it will soon accept bitcoin across its global marketplaces. The company is putting its investment in Bitnet — a startup that raised $14.5 million last October — to work with this development. Bitnet, which was founded by ex-Visa execs and is rivaled by Coinbase and Bitpay, will initially be integrated into Rakuten’s U.S. marketplace to allow customers to pay in BTC.
TECHCRUNCH: Wiper, a chat application designed to provide users with control over their sent and received messages, recently rolled out support for bitcoin transactions between its users. The tool is simple, allowing individuals to send cryptocurrency to others inside the app’s main chat interface. But CEO Manlio Carrelli told TechCrunch that Wiper was “removed from the iOS App Store in China due to violating that app store’s policies,” and that “Apple [had] explained to [the company] by phone that this violation was related to Wiper enabling bitcoin payments.” (more…)
ВВС: Bitcoin might conjour up visions of dark doings on the Silk Road website and wildly fluctuating value for some – but could it provide a safe haven for the money sent home to loved ones by Africa’s diaspora? Over 30 million Africans live in the diaspora. They sent almost $40bn (£26.5bn) home in 2014, a figure that is likely to grow significantly in the coming years.
WIRED: When you buy art, you typically get something physical in return: A print, a painting, a sculpture. And that piece of art, depending upon who created it and what happens after you bought it, can become very valuable down the line. Or not. But here’s an interesting idea: What would happen if you were to invest in the artist instead of the art? That’s a question Sarah Meyohas, a young photographer from Yale’s MFA program, hopes to answer with her latest project. Meyohas, working with Brooklyn’s Where gallery, created BitchCoin, a new cryptocurrency. Like bitcoin, BitchCoin is virtual and “mine-able,” but has just one purpose: to buy Meyohas’ art.