Nexo Set To Boost Token Value With $100 Million Repurchase Efforts

Crypto-focused lending platform Nexo is looking to boost its token value. In a tweet, Nexo said it would be launching a second set of its hugely popular buyback programs starting November 15.

Nexo’s Second Repurchase Efforts

According to a blog post, the new buyback program will be worth $100 million – a far cry from its first repurchase effort worth $12 million earlier in the year.

The buyback initiative is expected to last up to six months and will see the blockchain-based lending platform use the repurchased NEXO tokens in key strategic investments through token mergers and for dividend payouts for customers who receive their yields in NEXO.

Nexo says that its Board of Directors reached the decision, and the body of executives will likely review the success of this new effort after the six months window. This will allow them to measure the success or otherwise of the buyback program and may likely extend the repurchasing period.

For now, Nexo will be repurchasing the Ethereum-based NEXO tokens on the open market and at different prices.

Revenues generated from trading pairs pegged to the NEXO token, loans taken out on the ERC-20 token, and trades done on its exchange will be reinvested into the repurchase efforts.

The repurchased tokens will be locked in an Investor Protection Reserve (IPR), and it will be for a vesting period of a year. After this, the locked tokens will be used to run the protocol’s daily activities surrounding interest payouts, investments, and token mergers.

The Nexo blockchain has remained a popular destination for crypto-collateralized loans, with over 1 million users interfacing with the platform. This follows a growing interest in low-fee and high-yield protocols in the crypto market. Nexo has BlockFi as a rival, with both lending platforms vying for a large share of the crypto market.

Buyback 2.0 Expected to Boost NEXO

Nexo’s first repurchase efforts, worth $12 million at the time, paid substantial dividends. This saw the NEXO token surge to an all-time high (ATH) of $4.07 on May 12, reflecting a 2,430% surge year-to-date (YTD). In retrospect, NEXO has kept in tandem with the broader crypto market, given that it is tied to the price action of Bitcoin.

With such remarkable success, Nexo’s Board of Directors has deemed it fit to reintroduce another buyback program to keep its token top-of-mind among investors. According to the press release, the $100 million effort is geared towards improving the liquidity of the NEXO token and boosting its long-term value.

Alongside this, the crypto lending protocol also noted that its renewed efforts would help in enabling more institutional access into the crypto landscape.

This is following recent investments in Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulated broker-dealer Texture Capital, decentralized solutions company Qredo, and decentralized finance (DeFi) provider Yield.

Meanwhile, the broader crypto market downtrend has had its toll on the ERC-20 token. The virtual currency is trading at $3.336, down 5.15% in the past 24 hours. Currently pegged at 74th on the global crypto rankings, NEXO has over $1.8 billion in market cap.

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Author: Jimmy Aki

Bitcoin’s the Way to Go As Inflation Records Its Highest Jump in 13 Years

The USD is getting a boost from high inflation concerns, with traders now looking forward to the Fed Chair’s testimony this week. Blackrock CEO is also concerned about inflation which he says “is going to be more systematically,” noting asset owners are the biggest beneficiaries of monetary policy.”

The US dollar continues to be perched above 90 since early last month, now aiming for 93 after data showed that US inflation for June is coming in hotter than expected. Just like the greenback, US Treasury yields also responded to the inflation data with a sharp rise.

US consumer prices rose by the most in 13 years last month as the economic recovery continues its momentum.

The rate of inflation in the 12 months ended in June jumped to 5.4% from 5%.

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However, this is to be expected as up until recently, there was a tight lockdown in the country, and still, not everything is open or operating at a standard rate. The rapid recovery of the economy is having an unwanted side-effect, higher inflation.

Transitory or Not?

In June, the cost of living jumped by the most significant amount, 0.9%, more than expected, since 2008 as inflation spread more broadly through the US economy, raising questions whether this spike in prices will subside as quickly as the central bank is predicting.

While the cost of used cars accounted for over one-third of this increase, prices for food, energy, clothing, hotels, and plane tickets also rose sharply, which also fell sharply in the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic last year.

Another measure of inflation that omits volatile food and energy also surged 0.9% in June, with the 12-month rate increasing to 4.5% to stand at a 29-year high.

While the component not associated with the used car market being twice as large, used car prices should also “probably be seen as some sort of bellwether in this case, instead of something to be ignored,” wrote analyst Mati Greenspan in his daily newsletter Quantum Economics.

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Blackrock CEO Larry Fink is also concerned about inflation. “It is my view that inflation is going to be more systematical. I believe it is a fundamental, foundational change in how we navigate economic policy,” he said in an interview with CNBC.

He further noted that with interest rates low, savers are getting slammed while “asset owners are the biggest beneficiaries of monetary policy.”

Market Reaction

Traders are now looking forward to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s testimony before Congress on Wednesday and Thursday for any signals on potential tapering. Fed officials first made a surprise shift in tone last month about the possibility of US stimulus withdrawal that boosted the dollar in recent weeks.

Powell, however, has repeatedly been stating that high inflation will be transitory as supply chains normalize and adapt.

The stock market waved off these latest figures, with the S&P 500 seeing a slight drop after roaring to new all-time highs on Monday. Greenspan said,

“The stocks really are in a euphoric mode right now, and investors will accept any reason to continue buying the rally.”

Cryptocurrencies meanwhile remain on the back foot since late May when they first started selling-off with the total crypto market cap now at $1.34 trillion.

This week, the crypto market is experiencing losses across the board, with Bitcoin doing its thing and trading above $32,500, recovering some from its fall to $31,565 in the last 24 hours and Ether at just above $1,900 after falling to $1,860.

While down in the past two months, in the past year, when commodity prices rose between 20% to 107%, Bitcoin rallied 250%.

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Author: AnTy

China’s BSN Developer Raises $30 Million Series A Round to Boost Global Market Presence

China’s BSN Developer Raises $30 Million Series A Round to Boost Global Market Presence

Announced on Wednesday, China’s Blockchain Service Network (BSN) developer, Red Date, has raised $30 million in a Series A funding round led by Hong Kong crypto-focused firm, Kenetic. The funding aims to enhance development on the network, increase its team members and boost market adoption across the globe, a statement read.

The closed round funding also saw notable financiers join in, including the Prosperity7, the venture arm of the second largest firm in the world, Saudi Aramco, Swiss financial giant, Pictet Group, and one of the largest banks in Thailand, Bangkok Bank.

The Blockchain Service Network launched mid-last year with an aim to bolster the development of decentralized applications on public and private blockchains. Over the past year, BSN has seen notable blockchains partnerships, including Huobi China, which will provide DLT service solutions, Chainlink decentralized oracles, and Cosmos network.

The project was initiated under the cabinet-level economic policy committee, National Development and Reform Commission, and is being developed under the State Information Center of China.

The project aims at introducing innovative blockchain systems to developing countries in order to close the gap in financial inclusion. Speaking on the recent additional funding, Jehan Chu, managing partner at Kenetic, said Red Date would “use blockchain to help drive financial and technology inclusion for the next 50 years” to these countries. Chu added in a statement to Coindesk,

“There is a rebalancing of global technology infrastructure happening that gives greater access to underdeveloped and underrepresented countries.”

The new funding will also expand the team members working on BSN in order to fasten the launch of its cloud computing resources, which will greatly reduce the costs and barriers of building decentralized applications (DApps). Yifan He, CEO of Red Date, said,

“The Internet’s Golden Age was only made possible when the cost of building websites was reduced to near-zero.”

In a shared statement to BEG, Red Date also added the funding would be used to increase BSN’s presence in the global market and the domestic market as well.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Mythical Games Raises $75 Million Funding To Boost NFT-Based Gaming

Mythical Games Raises $75 Million Funding To Boost NFT-Based Gaming

The non-fungible token (NFT) market is no raging as much as it used to at the start of the year as demand from retail investors dropped sharply in Q2 2021. Despite the downturn, investments in NFT are still well alive as venture firms believe the NFT market will return to its glory days in the near future.

Mythical Games, the creator of the popular NFT blockchain game, Blankos Block party, raised $75 million in Series B funding led by growth equity fund WestCap Group. The funding aims to expand the firm’s blockchain gaming experiences and boost the development of the Blankos Block Party game.

The Series B funding round saw existing, and new investors participate in the round. New investors in the firm include 01 Advisors and influencer and serial investor Gary Vaynerchuk’s VaynerFund. The Series B funding brings the total funds raised by Mythical Games to $120 million to date.

The main attraction to Mythical Games is the Blankos Block Party, a blockchain-based NFT collectibles game that allows players to create their games and own their virtual worlds. The game is built around user-generated content and focuses on integrating the latest social media trends. Blankos also includes the Mythical Marketplace, where users can buy and sell avatar figures and in-game assets collected within the game or created by top artists and game developers in partnership with the firm.

Notwithstanding, the platform also includes the Mythical Economic Engine, which connects the gaming platform to other gaming engines and helps new game creators build regulatory-friendly NFT collectibles. Mythical Games CEO John Linden tells TechCrunch,

“With any new market like [NFTs], it goes through all these different cycles.”

“We think this will actually change gaming for the long haul. The more we talk to game studios, we’re finding more and more potential use cases.”

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Author: Lujan Odera

Ethereum’s Layer-2 Solution, Polygon (MATIC) Welcomes Aave and Zapper to Boost DeFi Activity

Ethereum’s Layer-2 Solution, Polygon (MATIC) Welcomes Aave and Zapper to Boost DeFi Activity

As the decentralized finance ecosystem, popular as DeFi, continues to grow at a winged pace, Ethereum gas costs are surging to the roof, forcing investors to look for new faster, and cheaper blockchains. Polygon, an Ethereum layer two solutions, is emerging as the preferred solution as two major DeFi platforms – Aave and Zapper – joined the platform on Wednesday.

Decentralized lending firm, Aave AAVE 0.52% Aave / USD AAVEUSD $ 376.95
$1.960.52%
Volume 343.06 m Change $1.96 Open $376.95 Circulating 12.46 m Market Cap 4.7 b
2 h Ethereum’s Layer-2 Solution, Polygon (MATIC) Welcomes Aave and Zapper to Boost DeFi Activity 2 d Ethereum Wallet, Dharma, Integrates with DeFi Blue-Chips for Direct Access to Bank 6 d SushiSwap Launches A ‘Game-Changer;’ BentoBox’s 1st DApp Is Kashi Lending & Margin Trading
, will integrate scalable sidechains with Polygon, formerly Matic Network, to address the rising congestion and high gas fees experienced on Ethereum. The team plans to integrate a soon-to-be-released smart contract allowing users to seamlessly port assets across blockchains.

“High transaction fees are a feature of a successful public blockchain, as they define actors ready to pay the market price to use and secure decentralized services.”

Stani Kulechov Aave Founder

The DeFi field has in the past favored those with thousands of dollars to invest while effectively locking out the small spenders. In a blog post on the Aave Medium page, Kulechov states the recent integration with Polygon will bring “inclusivity in the DeFi space,” allowing investors with only hundreds of dollars to participate as well.

“That being said, DeFi was always intended to create a sustainable and more inclusive alternative to traditional finance,” he added. “If DeFi is great but only limited to portfolios of five figures and up, DeFi will be falling short of its mission to finance for everyone.”

At launch, Aave will introduce seven assets available for lending and borrowing on the platform.

Zapper, portfolio management, and batched transaction network is also joining the Polygon network, a statement confirmed on Wednesday. Polygon will be the first in line with Ethereum scalability solutions with plans to integrate Optimism, Binance Smart Chain, and Arbitrum on the way.

With Polygon’s integration, Zapper will enable Ethereum-to-Polygon transfers allowing cross-chain “zap” transfers — its term for multi-transaction, single-click deposits, and withdrawals.

The new partnership will also enhance sending funds from Aave to Polygon, DeFi Dad of Zapper stated in a tweet.

Earlier in February, Matic Network rebranded to Polygon to enable Ethereum ETH 2.97% Ethereum / USD ETHUSD $ 1,972.51
$58.582.97%
Volume 30.55 b Change $58.58 Open $1,972.51 Circulating 115.29 m Market Cap 227.42 b
2 h Ethereum’s Layer-2 Solution, Polygon (MATIC) Welcomes Aave and Zapper to Boost DeFi Activity 7 h Enjin (ENJ) Raises $18.9M to Build Out Efinity Parachain, Bringing NFT’s to Polkadot (DOT) 11 h Bitcoin Closes its Best Quarter in 8 Years, With 103% Gains
to compete with its rivals such as Polkadot. DOT 4.05% Polkadot / USD DOTUSD $ 37.69
$1.534.05%
Volume 2.81 b Change $1.53 Open $37.69 Circulating 925.06 m Market Cap 34.86 b
2 h Ethereum’s Layer-2 Solution, Polygon (MATIC) Welcomes Aave and Zapper to Boost DeFi Activity 7 h Enjin (ENJ) Raises $18.9M to Build Out Efinity Parachain, Bringing NFT’s to Polkadot (DOT) 11 h Bitcoin Closes its Best Quarter in 8 Years, With 103% Gains
The sidechain scalability solution enables significant throughput increase while reducing the fees incurred on Ethereum transactions.

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Author: Lujan Odera

International FX Exchange & Ripple Partner, Mercury to Boost Remittances in South Africa Using ODL

International FX Exchange & Ripple Partner, Mercury to Boost Remittances in South Africa Using ODL

Mercury’s international payments firm to utilize RippleNet On-Demand Liquidity (ODL) platform to ease remittance payments between the United Kingdom and South Africa.

On Tuesday, Ripple confirmed Mercury, which has been using the RippleNet ODL platform and its associated XRP digital asset since 2019, to reduce transaction times and fees to a minimum in South Africa. Mercury was added to the first cohort of South Africa’s Intergovernmental Fintech Working Group (IGFW), the inaugural fintech regulatory sandbox in the African state.

Mercury-RippleNet ODL was one of the six chosen projects for an inaugural 50 companies that applied to enter the sandbox. Of the six, Mercury is only one of two companies leveraging blockchain to enhance global remittances and payments in South Africa.

Consisting of top financial regulators such as South Africa’s National Treasury, the South African Reserve Bank, and Financial Sector Conduct Authority, IGFW has previously called for strict regulations to be put in place to curb unregulated crypto transactions.

In April 2020, IGFW stated domestic crypto transactions are accepted in the country but under strict adherence to the FATF “Travel Rule” recommendations. This gave rise to the regulatory sandbox –later in the year – the IGFW stating at the time,

“Payments using crypto assets will, in the interim period, be subjected to a regulatory sandbox approach.”

As a member of the sandbox, Mercury aims at enhancing the future of blockchain-based payments/ transfers to “cut the time and cost of sending money into and out of South Africa using RippleNet-ODL service.”

South African tax regulator, South Africa Revenue Authority (SARS), recently announced plans to audit crypto investors amidst the country’s rising demand for crypto.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Wrapped IOTA Launches on Binance Smart Chain (BSC) to Boost DeFi liquidity

Wrapped IOTA Launches on Binance Smart Chain (BSC) to Boost DeFi liquidity

  • IOTA launches on Binance Smart Chain, or BSC, introducing decentralized finance (DeFi) capabilities for its holders.

In a blog post shared on Monday, IOTA Foundation announced the launch of “wrapped IOTA” on Binance’s decentralized platform, Binance Smart Chain (BSC). The introduction of IOTA on BSC will enable holders of MIOTA, IOTA’s native token, to participate in DeFi applications built on Binance Smart Chain. With the release of this feature, IOTA now lives on two blockchains for the first time.

“Now, with wrapped IOTA on Binance Smart Chain, IOTA holders can use the IOTA Token to participate in DeFi applications on the Binance network.”

This integration follows previous attempts by IOTA developers to build bridges across different blockchains to improve cross-chain interactions. The integration aims at growing liquidity across multiple chains providing IOTA as one of the asset classes you can borrow, lend, stake, and earn on BSC-based DeFi apps.

Users can use the IOTA-Binance bridge to swap their IOTA tokens to wrapped IOTA on Binance to start enjoying DeFi on BSC. The portal also allows reverse transactions from wrapped IOTA to IOTA at a 1:1 exchange ratio at all times. Once the wrapped IOTA has been deposited to your BSC wallet, users can trade, swap, and interact with services similar to any BEP20 token.

IOTA Foundation expects this integration to be the first of multiple chains – possibly Ethereum ETH 1.69% Ethereum / USD ETHUSD $ 1,846.31
$31.201.69%
Volume 22.52 b Change $31.20 Open $1,846.31 Circulating 115.27 m Market Cap 212.82 b
3 h Wrapped IOTA Launches on Binance Smart Chain (BSC) to Boost DeFi liquidity 5 h Cosmos (ATOM) Enhances Interoperability with Inter-Blockchain Communication (IBC) Protocol Rollout 7 h CME Is Launching Cash-Settled Micro Bitcoin Futures, One-tenth the Size of One BTC
and Solana SOL 2.49% Solana / USD SOLUSD $ 19.22
$0.482.49%
Volume 263.92 m Change $0.48 Open $19.22 Circulating 268.2 m Market Cap 5.16 b
3 h Wrapped IOTA Launches on Binance Smart Chain (BSC) to Boost DeFi liquidity 5 d Stablecoin Giant Tether Sets New Record as USDT Market Cap Hits $40 Billion 1 w Solana (SOL) is ‘Uniquely Positioned’ to Snatch Market Share from Ethereum & ETH Killers, says VC
– to increase the cross-chain liquidity.

“We see this integration with Binance Smart Chain as the first step in growing liquidity across multiple chains, while also preparing for the ability for other assets to live on the IOTA network,” a spokesperson from IOTA Foundation said.

IOTA token is up 4.2% in the past 24 hours, trading at $1.55 following the news and Bitcoin’s surge past $59,000 on news that PayPal is adding crypto payments in its 29 million merchant checkouts.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Nasdaq listed Canaan Creative Sees A Boost in Demand for Bitcoin Miners As Crypto Prices Rise

Nasdaq listed Canaan Creative Sees A Boost in Demand for Bitcoin Miners As Crypto Prices Rise

Bitcoin Mining firms are struggling to meet the increased demand for mining machines despite the rising prices of cryptocurrencies.

According to Canaan Creative, a Nasdaq listed firm, crypto mining orders have been rising despite Bitcoin’s hitting new highs in the recent past. Over the weekend, Bitcoin’s price surged to a new level, trading at $60,000. The king coin has been bullish over the last year, with its value increasing by about 110 percent since January this year.

Buoyed by the rising price, Bitcoin mining equipment manufacturers have witnessed their businesses hitting the peak with some grappling to meet the soaring demand.

As one of the largest mining equipment manufacturers, Canaan Creative claims that its orders have been increasing since 2020. The firm stated that North America and Central Asia are the largest sources of the current surge in demand.

According to Global Times, the firm’s presale mining hardware to the North American region were about 120,000 units which is a 17% surge from mid-Feb.

In the wake of the global shortage of mining chips, Canaan entered into agreements with various fabrication plants in advance, giving the company leeway to manufacture mining hardware as per the market demand.

To take advantage of the soaring Bitcoin prices, the firm intends to kick-off its own mining business later in the year rather than just providing mining machines.

The firm stated that Bitcoin’s price is likely to be bullish following the recent plans by the US government to inject about $1.9 trillion into the economy following the sluggish growth and collapse due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Author: Joseph Kibe

UC Berkeley & Parity Technologies Partner to Boost Polkadot Blockchain Education Efforts

UC Berkeley & Parity Technologies Partner to Boost Polkadot Blockchain Education Efforts

  • California-based, University of Berkeley partners with a blockchain development firm, Parity Technologies, to create a blockchain curriculum for students and boost education efforts on the blockchain.

Announced this Thursday, the partnership between UC Berkeley and Parity Technologies will kick-off for the remaining part of the 2020-2021 academic year. The partnership aims to enhance blockchain adoption to students and faculty at the university through collaboration to create a solid curriculum and projects and strengthen overall blockchain education across learning institutions.

However, this is not the first time UC Berkeley is headlining a blockchain partnership, previously having hosted a Ripple Inc. blockchain event. In January 2019, UC Berkeley launched its blockchain development accelerator program, Berkeley Blockchain Xcelerator, to support curriculum development and support new blockchain startups.

Parity joins forces with the Berkeley Blockchain Xcelerator to create a blockchain curriculum and provide educational panels for students. Speaking at the launch of the Xcelerator program, Gloria Zhao, president of Blockchain at Berkeley, said,

“Blockchain at Berkeley strives to foster the entrepreneurial spirit in our students, so we are excited to help lead this initiative and assist the next generation of blockchain innovators.”

The partnership will also see Polkadot’s co-founder, Gavin Wood, give lectures on blockchain at the university later this month. Parity Technologies founded Polkadot, the sixth largest crypto in market cap, which is also being promoted by the Xcelerator program.

Parity Technologies, on its part, aims to use its substrate blockchain-building framework to educate and learn from the students and teachers on blockchain development. Additionally, Parity will advise and mentor early blockchain startups teaching students how to develop and launch startups on blockchains.

Jocelyn Weber, an executive at the Berkeley Blockchain Xcelerator, believes a partnership with Parity is key in enhancing educative efforts and curriculum development for students interested in blockchains. Weber said,

“We strive to expose our students to the tools and skills they will need to enter this space and immediately start making significant contributions.”

“[…] which is why improving their knowledge with tools such as Substrate and networks like Polkadot will be an important part of our curriculum development.”

UC Berkeley has built its brand as a blockchain supporter for the past few years, and the partnership with Parity is yet another step to achieve wide blockchain adoption. Back in October 2018, the university hosted the first crypto-powered music festival allowing event-goers to acquire products, services, and experiences within the event’s network using crypto.

Notwithstanding, Blockchain at Berkeley is also a member of the Universal Protocol Alliance, an organization aiming at accelerating the adoption of cryptocurrencies and Blockchain-backed systems.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Human Rights Foundation Provides Grants to Bitcoiners to Boost Education and Software Development

Human Rights Foundation Provides Grants to Bitcoiners to Boost Education and Software Development

  • Human Rights Foundation (HRF) releases its latest Bitcoin development grants.
  • The $70,000 grant was dispersed to four teams focusing on education and software development.

The Human Right Foundation (HRF), a New York-based nonprofit organization, gave its latest round of Bitcoin development grants on Tuesday. The organization focuses on boosting the adoption and development of Bitcoin solutions globally, the latest grant focusing on software development and education efforts in the space.

According to a report, the HRF grant was released to four teams. Muun wallet, a lightning network-based wallet, and Jesse Posner, a Bitcoin core developer, received $25,000 to build software solutions on Bitcoin.

Jesse Posner, a former Coinbase employee, is developing the Discrete Log Contracts (DLCs), threshold signatures, and adapter signatures. The solution aims to reduce the data backlog on the Bitcoin blockchain by computing most data off-chain. Apart from offering scalability, Posner stated the DCL would also improve the contracts’ security on the blockchain.

Muun wallet, on the other hand, is a Bitcoin Lightning Network-based wallet that allows penny-transactions while reducing on-chain transaction fees. The Argentinian firm aims to make crypto accessible to everyone through fast and low fee payment channels. Muun wallet founder Dario Sneidermanis said,

“Being Argentinians, we’ve seen first-hand why this is sorely needed, maybe a little bit earlier than the rest of the world, so it’s important that organizations such as the HRF are paying attention to this.”

Independent journalist Janine, known for the Block Digest podcast and open-source incubator Blockchain Commons, will receive $15,000 to further blockchain education and training.

Janine, an internet privacy and blockchain advocate, has been at the forefront of gatekeeping privacy in the crypto ecosystem. She runs a blog, This Month in Privacy, a monthly roundup of developments and news on Bitcoin, internet privacy, and cybersecurity. Speaking to Coindesk, Janine said she might use the grant funding to launch new avenues to give the blog a multi-media component, teasing the launch of a Q&A series to speak on the web privacy, including Bitcoin.

Finally, Blockchain Commons, a non-profit, open-source Bitcoin and blockchain incubator, will use its funding to enhance Bitcoin education while helping human rights activists worldwide with decentralized financial tools.

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Author: Lujan Odera