Bison Trails, Coinbase Custody Colab to Add Solana (SOL) Staking as Institutional Demand Grows

Bison Trails and Coinbase Custody are further scaling their collaboration by introducing staking on Solana (SOL) blockchain. According to a press release shared with Bitcoin Exchange Guide, this initiative will enable Coinbase clients to leverage enterprise-grade validators within the Bison Trails ecosystem.

The two entities have been working together and have recently introduced staking on Polkadot as well. This latest milestone, therefore, comes as a significant boost in the ongoing partnership between Coinbase Custody and Bison Trails. Interestingly, both firms are based in New York, with former being regulated by NYDFS while the latter operates as an Infrastructure-as-a-Service Company.

Following this development, Coinbase Custody will feature among the pioneer digital asset cold storage providers to offer to stake on Solana. Combined with the Bison Trails infrastructure, Coinbase Custody is set to give its users an option to stake Solana tokens while their digital assets are stored offline and safe. The press release reads,

“Customers of both Coinbase Custody and Bison Trails will be able to select their Bison Trails validator via the Coinbase interface. This will make it simple to participate in securing Solana and Polkadot in just a few clicks.”

While the press release does not specify a speculated reward range, it highlights that staking SOL tokens at the moment increases the time-frame of becoming active before inflation adjustments are triggered for users to start earning rewards.

Bison Trails CEO, Joe Lallouz, has touted this advancement, noting the underlying value proposition in user experience,

“It’s a seamless integration and a phenomenal user experience. We look forward to working with the Coinbase Custody team to continue to add support for more protocols in the near future.”

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Author: Edwin Munyui

Solana (SOL) Added to Coinbase Custody; Cue in the Institutions

Solana has announced a partnership with Coinbase Custody, a registered fiduciary under the New York State Banking Law.

Over the past few weeks, the Solana Foundation has been working with the Coinbase team to integrate the Solana blockchain.

“This partnership closely aligns with our mission to bring speed and security to decentralized finance,” said Solana team.

Now, in addition to non-custodial wallet SolFlare and TrustWallet, investors get another option to store SOL in the offline cold storage system of Coinbase Custody.

With this move, Solana will be attracting institutional attention as Coinbase custody offers a comprehensive set of insurance policies for larger institutions to safely and more securely custody SOLs.

Additionally, Coinbase Custody, which also provides its services to Grayscale, offers staking and governance, “which are equally crucial for the long-term health of the network.”

Solana recently gained spotlight after derivatives exchange FTX launched its decentralized derivatives platform on it. FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried described Solana as a “fully decentralized blockchain,” which is “fast as fuck” and doesn’t need a trusted centralized sidechain.

Solana can “process 10,000 times as much as Ethereum; and it’s 1,000,000 times cheaper,” said Bankman-Fried at that time.

On the back of Coinbase Custody news, SOL jumped 26% but has since dropped 6% to now trade at $3.42.

For now, SOL is only available on Binance and FTX, but after this partnership, it might get listed on Coinbase as well. Solana has announced several partnerships so far in 2020, including Chainlink, KIN, and Terra Stablecoin.

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Author: AnTy

Bitcoin Self-Custody Provider Casa Now Allows Users to Buy BTC via Apple Pay

  • Bitcoin self custody service provider, Casa now allows its customers to buy and hold their own bitcoin.
  • Selling BTC is not supported yet.

According to the official announcement, Casa now allows buying bitcoin with Apple Pay, which gets deposited instantly into the Casa App — straight to the multisig storage. The digital asset here is the real bitcoin and not the IOUs from an exchange. The Colorado-based bitcoin security service provider said,

“With this update: purchasing bitcoin is fast, safe, simple, and direct. You can grow your investment without the risks that come with using a centralized exchange.”

Traditionally, bitcoin investors have to register with the exchange, deposit funds for trading, and then move their digital asset to the wallet. But Casa wants to make the bitcoin journey of new users simpler and faster, said chief executive Nick Neuman. He said,

“With the dollar declining in value and a new era of potential inflation on the horizon, consumers are naturally looking for a safe asset class that’s outside the turbulence of the existing financial system.”

With the Casa app, one can buy up to $250 per day, with a $20 minimum order size, and up to $1,500 per year. The company plans to increase these limits over time.

The Casa app charges a flat processing fee of $0.30 per transaction, plus 2.9% of the total amount purchased. It further includes a mining fee as BTC purchase is sent straight to the Casa wallet.

The purchase feature is launched in their iOS app only and soon will be coming to the Android app too.

The company also clarified the feature as a 100% opt-in, so if one decides not to buy bitcoin, all the existing KYC-free features are preserved. In case you are buying BTC, know-your-customer requirements include no documents and no photo ID scans but card information, full name, email, phone number, and address.

All the information is collected and verified through Apple Pay and processed by their purchase partner Wyre.

“Minimal info collected,” says the company adding, KYC data is also “never stored on Casa’s servers.”

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Author: AnTy

Gemini To Offer Custody Services For Unstoppable Domains’ .Crypto Web Extensions

  • The Winklevoss-led Gemini exchange, will now custody ‘Unstoppable domains’ for parties who wish to keep their .crypto domains safe.

The fear of losing your private keys has always seen crypto investors, especially institutional grade investors, relinquish the control to custodial services for safekeeping. Similarly, NYDFS-registered crypto exchange, Gemini will start to custody .crypto web domains, a censorship-resistant domain service from Unstoppable Domains, a blockchain firm.

These .crypto domains are self-custodial domains, meaning you are fully in charge of your website and run on the Ethereum blockchain as non-fungible tokens (NFTs). NFTs are unique collectible tokens that hold a specific value. As self-custodial domains, .crypto web domains are decentralized and resistant from any censorship.

Gemini exchange custodial services

The new product service that Gemini is offering is rather contradictory to the overall purpose of having a self-custodial domain. Imagine if the government takes over Gemini and forces the famous billionaire twins, Tyler and Cameron, to freeze your domain. This will kill off the main competitive advantage that a .crypto holds – censorship resistance.

However, the product is built for corporations mostly who have no problem with censorship resistance if they could build their decentralized website. Those non-controversial companies who want to keep their domains safe since they are not in use currently. Brad Kam, founder of the San Francisco-based decentralized domain name registrar, Unstoppable Domains said,

“These are traditional businesses. They’re not the kind of people that would be building decentralized websites early. That’s the reason why the custody service is more appropriate for them.”

The new .crypto custodial service will first be tested by two traditional domain naming system (DNS) firms, 101domain and EnCirca.

Unstoppable in developments

Unstoppable Domains launched at the tail end of 2019 after raising $4 million in a seed round from billionaire venture capitalist Tim Draper’s, Draper Associates, in a bit to promote free speech across the globe. The platform has since released over 200,000 censorship-resistant .crypto domains and extended its support for Chrome and Opera browsers.

Recently, Unstoppable Domains released a decentralized chat app aiming to give users complete data privacy in their communication.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Standard Chartered To Launch Crypto Custodial Services for Institutions in 2020

  • Standard Chartered Bank announces plans to launch institutional-grade crypto custody through its venture capital and investment firm, S.C. Ventures.

Speaking to CoinDesk, Alex Manson, the head of S.C. Ventures confirmed the firm is looking into launching a solution to allow institutional players to adopt digital assets such as Bitcoin. Manson terms the solution as the best and most secure solution yet in the market for institutions aiming to dip their feet into cryptocurrencies.

S.C. Ventures is a Singapore based firm, branching from U.K. based Standard Chartered Bank charged with the responsibility to offer new technological solutions and new revenue streams for its parent company. The latest venture into crypto custodial services will add to the bank’s recent exploits in blockchain technology.

Without revealing much, Manson said the custody solution would be focused on crypto with plans to add security tokens on the way. He added that over 20 companies had taken an interest in S.C. Ventures custody from different areas of the globe. He also hinted the pilot project could be ready by the end of this year.

The crypto custody is in line with nine other projects (not blockchain based) which the Standard Ventures firm will explore in the coming months.

Read more >> London-based Standard Chartered will start using the blockchain for supply chain finance

No Gateway for Institutional Players in the Crypto Sphere

According to Alex, SC Ventures is seeking to launch the crypto custody due to recent challenges and fear by institutions to invest and safely store their digital assets. He said:

“If digital assets more broadly are here to stay as an asset class, then you will need the infrastructure to keep them safe.”

To push its efforts in the digital assets space, S.C. Ventures participated in the twice over-subscribed $18 million Series A round of Metaco, an institutional-grade crypto custodian. Manson stated the investment in Metaco is to improve the underdeveloped infrastructure that offers a digital assets gateway to institutional investors.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Compound’s DeFi Craze Continues As Institutional Crypto Custodian, Curv, Opens Up Support

Curv, the crypto custody startup, is using the Compound protocol to help institutions earn passive income on their crypto assets. The startup has gained popularity among asset managers, exchanges, and other institutional clients. However, as of now, only deposits are made possible on the platform, and Curv said that as it reaches more people, it would add borrowing of crypto assets as well.

Curv integrates Compound protocol in its platform, which allows these institutional investors and hedge fund managers to lend their crypto assets and use smart contracts to earn passive income or withdraw loans in any ERC-20 tokens.

Josh Schwartz., Curv Chief Operating Officer, commented on their decision to integrate Compound in their platform and said:

“We got requests for it maybe about two, two-and-a-half months ago. The Compound is the first DeFi integration. They’ve seen a lot of growth lately, and they lead the way with 40% of DeFi value locked up in their protocol. Compound has a long list of institutions who would love to interact with them but need a secure stack to do so.”

The COO also highlighted that they had to build a separate policy engine to integrate Compound’s Ethereum-based smart contracts on its platform.

Curv is currently in an expansion mode and opened its first office in Asia in April of this year with an office based in Hong Kong in association with Japan-based Crypto Garage. The firm also raised $23 million in Series A funding round, which attracted investment from the likes of Coinbase Ventures and the investment arm of Germany’s Commerzbank.

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Author: Rebecca Asseh

Coinbase Custody and IOHK Partner to Provide Institutional-Grade Staking For Cardano’s ADA in Q4

IOHK, the lead developer of Cardano blockchain, and Coinbase Custody, the institutional-grade custodian launched by Coinbase Inc., announced a partnership to allow users to stake their ADA tokens. Along with staking, the partnership also allows assets to remain safely locked in a cold storage wallet.

In the announcement emailed to us on Friday, the staking-custody service offered by Coinbase, a first of its kind, will be rolled out in the latter stages of the year when the staking service on Cardano blockchain goes live.

This service will ensure that users of ADA on Coinbase will be able to reap the rewards on Cardano’s proof-of-stake (PoS) network while keeping the digital assets secure in the cold wallet storage facilities. The statement reads:

“Agreements like these are essential to driving widespread adoption of cryptocurrencies, as they allow institutional and large investors to safely and securely manage their funds while also keeping in line with regulatory requirements.”

This is also expected to sway the regulators’ view on the use of cryptocurrencies without the worry of a security breach, which previously provided a barrier to digital assets being widely adopted.

Speaking on the partnership with IOHK, Sam McIngvale, Head of Product, Coinbase Custody, said the exchange tested the Cardano staking testnet protocol with over a thousand stake pools sampled. Sam concluded,

“We are pleased to have been selected as the custodian, and we’re proud to be a full-service, regulated, comprehensively-insured, and 100% offline staking provider in crypto.”

Cardano’s founder and CEO at IOHK, Charles Hoskinson, was equally pleased with the partnership stating the aim is to include the unbanked population and provide a gateway to financial investments to people who have previously were neglected. On the custody- staking services, Hoskinson said:

“This custody agreement allows us to offer the same secure storage solutions that can be found in traditional finance to ADA holders, without sacrificing what makes Proof of Stake blockchains special – being able to participate in the network.”

Cardano’s native token, ADA, is on a sustained rise since the announcement of the launch of the Shelley-era in the coming weeks. IOHK has already deployed the Shelley node on the Cardano mainnet, signaling everything is ready for the hard fork.

The token currently places seventh on Coinmarketcap charts with a total market capitalization of $2.6 billion after an 8 percent surge in price the past 24 hours.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Crypto Custodian, Curv, Raises $26M Led By Commerzbank, Digital Currency Group, Coinbase Ventures

Crypto custody firm, Curv, which claims to enhance the multi-signature technology through a “secrecy computational model,” closed a $23 million Series A funding round. They will use the new capital to expand its business to global clients, improve its secrecy features, strengthen its technological infrastructure, and grow its team.

The funding was led by Digital Currency Group (DCG) and CommerzVentures, subsidiary of one of Germany’s leading banks, Commerzbank, which deals with the investments of the bank. Other participants in the round include Coinbase Ventures, Tokyo-based Digital Garage Lab Fund, and Team8, a cybersecurity firm headquartered in Israel.

Curv is a cryptography startup that raised $6.5 million in a seed funding round in 2018, launching its International Digital Wallet service providing users with security, independence, and flexibility in its digital asset storage. The firm uses the multi-party computation (MPC) cryptography system to keep funds safe.

MPC generates random private keys and shares them across a group of designated authorities instead of the multi-signature technology that secures the wallet through one fixed private key and hard computations.

On the significance of employing MPC over multi-signature technology, Curv CEO, Itay Malinger said,

“There is not any point in time or space where there will actually be a private key. MPC breaks that paradigm, so you don’t have additional layers of security like guards or cameras or World War II bunkers that can take 24 hours to get at.”

Real industry adoption

Curv is experiencing sustained growth in the number of clients, including top industry players such as Franklin Templeton (to secure and custody tokenized shares), trading platform eToro and trading desk, Genesis Trading, also owned by DCG. Itay declined to give too much on its future partners and customers but said Curv is speaking to several exchanges and institutional players on Wall Street.

The funding will also support tX, a group of engineers developing on Curv, to ensure the platform is ready for both crypto-focused and traditional financial institutions in the international markets.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Coinbase Custody Adds Cosmos (ATOM) Staking; Joining Tezos (XTZ) and Algorand (ALGO)

Coinbase Custody, a custodian independent entity launched by Coinbase Crypto exchange primarily focused on offering custody and staking service has added Cosmos (Atom) staking services for its clients.

Coinbase Custody was among the first to offer safe, offline staking services, for Proof-of-Stake (PoS) based tokens, allowing its clients to earn staking rewards and participate in on-chain governance process without risking their funds. The announcement was made through an official blog on May 21st.

Cosmos is also a proof-of-stake based blockchain known to offer interoperability between different blockchains. Clients can stake their Cosmos tokens to a validator and in return share the block rewards. Prior to Cosmos staking, Coinbase Custody was already offering staking services for Tezos and Algorand. [Also available on and Anchorage]

With the addition of Cosmos, clients would now be able to login to their Coinbase Custody account and stake as much of the Cosmos asset they want. The client would also have the option to chose the delegator either in the form of Coinbase Custody or choose a third-party validator.

How Coinbase Custody Staking is Different From the Rest of The Market?

Coinbase custody makes use of secure offline cold wallets instead of the usual hot wallets, which are used by a majority of the firms offering staking service. Hot wallets are prone to hacking attacks that place the client’s assets at risk of being stolen. Whereas Coinbase Custody offers all its staking services via offline secure wallets.

Coinbase Custody believes its vast experience in offering Tezos staking service makes it one of the most experienced and secure staking service provider. Coinbase’s support of Tezos also makes it the biggest validator of Tezos and, coupled with its clean record on security and losses of funds, makes it a reputable solution.

Bryce Ferguson, Product Manager, Coinbase Custody also promised that in case if there is any lapse on their side and slashing takes place, they would cover all the risk and the client would not have to worry about any kind of loss of their asset. Ferguson said:

“Although slashing is unlikely, we want our clients to feel comfortable that in choosing our Cosmos staking service they are choosing an option that aims to mitigate risk.”

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Author: Silvia A

Bakkt Warehouse Reveals Over 70 Institutional Investors Onboarded For Custody Service

Bakkt has just announced that they have added over 70 new custody clients and given them the option to be covered by an insurance policy that provides coverage of more than $600 million.

The Bitcoin warehouse made the announcement on Monday, through a blog post. It further added that it closed a partnership with the insurance broker, Marsh, in order to provide approximately $500 million in coverage.

Bakkt clients would need to buy this insurance on their own, making an addition to the custodian’s already existing coverage of $125 million. Marsh has been active in the crypto industry ever since 2018. It provides and facilitates insurance for Ledger and

Bakkt Completed the SOC 1 Type I Examination

Bakkt said it has, at the moment, over 70 custody service customers. To build trust and to gain these new clients, the company completed the SOC 1 Type I examination conducted by KPMG. SOC 1 Type I is a type of evaluation on how firms report controls at a specific moment in time.

PricewaterhouseCoopers also conducted the SOC 2 Type II examination on Bakkt’s enterprises and the infrastructures Intercontinental Exchange, its parent firm, hosts. This type of analysis is for a 6-month period of customer data protection measures the firm that’s being evaluated is taking.

Bakkt Is Working on a Retail-Focused App

Bakkt seems to be very busy lately, as it now focuses on developing an app focused on retail, in attempt to attract over 30 million new users after closing partnerships with two financial institutions that haven’t been yet named in the blog post.

This app will be related to the acquisition of loyalty rewards Bridge2 Solutions, an acquisition that Bakkt recently made. Here’s what the company’s Monday blog post reads further:

“Our enterprise loyalty products provide critical infrastructure to companies around the world, and we’re proud to power thousands of programs that unlock digital assets for consumers.”

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Author: Oana Ularu