Sovereign Wealth Fund Hiring Blockchain Talent to Invest in Web3, Pantera Capital Raises $600M

Sovereign Wealth Fund Hiring Blockchain Talent to Invest in Web3, Pantera Capital Raises $600M for 4th Fund from Endowment

Funds continue to flow into the cryptocurrency market, with Pantera Capital being the latest to raise funding for its another crypto venture fund.

Pantera Capital has raised $600 million for its fourth venture fund, according to tech news site The Information, citing a person with direct knowledge of the matter.

The fund is expected to reach $1 billion when it closes in March and will invest in venture equity and crypto tokens that have launched and are in development.

About 75% of the capital for the new fund is coming from institutional sources such as endowments, much different from the firm’s $175 million it raised in 2018, which was mainly funded by individuals, including wealthy crypto investors.

Just two months back in September, Pantera raised $369 million for its then-new blockchain fund. As of August, the firm had $4.7 billion in assets under management.

Tiger Management alum Dan Morehead founded Pantera in 2003 as a global hedge fund which later shifted its focus to digital currencies and since then has backed more than 80 blockchain companies and 65 early-stage deals, including Coinbase, Circle, and Ripple.

The reservations of Pension funds, sovereign wealth funds, endowments, and other institutions are surely dissipating as they increasingly invest in crypto space this year. “Institutions are coming” is certainly not a meme anymore.

Banks are also increasing their efforts with Fidelity, UBS Asset Management, and State Street Global Advisors, confirming that they are looking into the potential of offering exposure to crypto, much like rivals BlackRock and Invesco.

Assets in European exchange-traded products (ETPs) and mutual funds with crypto exposure have topped €10.5 billion, according to Morningstar data.

Fidelity said it was “keeping close to the evolution of cryptocurrencies” as part of their wider exploration of the potential for digital assets, while Clemens Reuter, global head of ETFs at UBS, said, “(Cryptocurrency is) an area everyone needs to look at the moment.”

Citi is also hiring 100 people over the next several months to bolster its blockchain and digital assets divisions. The bank has also made Puneet Singhvi the head of digital assets for its Institutional Clients Group (ICG) as of Dec. 1.

“We are focused on assessing the needs of our clients in the digital asset space,” Citi has said in a statement.

Singapore sovereign wealth fund Temasek is another one hiring more blockchain talent to lead the efforts in exploring opportunities in AI and Blockchain technologies, “which the firm believes are long-term trends and will have a transformational impact across multiple industries and geographies.”

As per the job description on LinkedIn, Temasek is prioritizing projects on multi-currency payments, financial assets tokenization, and self-sovereign identity with a secondary focus on making select investments into web 3 venture funds and direct investments.

Read Original/a>
Author: AnTy

Polkadot’s Chain Candidate Goes Live in Anticipation for the Proof of Stake (PoS) Version

Polkadot’s initial mainnet has been launched by Web3 Foundation and Parity Technologies according to a blog post on May 26. This much anticipated sharding protocol has been in the works for around three years and is expected to facilitate the integration of blockchain networks.

The recently released live version is, however, centralized as it’s limited to some agents; Polkadot plans to hand over governance to its community once the testing period is over.

According to the announcement, Polkadot’s genesis block has already been mined marking the commencement of its first Chain Candidate (CC1). Notably, this platform was spearheaded by Gavin Wood, an Ethereum co-founder, who branched out to start Polkadot back in 2016 with Web3 Foundation as the lead developers. Wood now says the CC1 might as well be the mainnet,

“Polkadot’s first chain candidate (‘CC1’), which may well become the Polkadot mainnet, has been launched.”

Polkadot’s Mainnet Underlying Value

As highlighted earlier, the Polkadot initiative aims to link chains in a more seamless way for interoperability. Polkadot has, therefore, leveraged a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) algorithm in order to eliminate scalability challenges within its ecosystem through sharding. The blog reads,

“[Polkadot] connects several chains together in a unified network, allowing them to process in parallel and exchange data with strong security guarantees between chains. By parallelizing the workload, Polkadot solves major throughput issues.”

However, the CC1 which went live is currently under a Proof-of-Authority (PoA) consensus as Web3 foundation is in control of the network. As of now, the mainnet client users can receive DOT tokens and stake them to become or nominate validators within Polkadot’s network. Notably, the DOT digital assets were already in the secondary market as Simple Agreements for Future Tokens (SAFT) but will not be transferred within Polkadot’s live mainnet until its community votes to initiate a token transfer feature. Wood echoed that,

“During this phase, nothing will actually become at stake and no rewards will be paid, however once we move to the next stage, the community validators will be selected to maintain the network according to their overall DOT backing and our Proof-of-Stake system (NPoS) will be live. If you want to be in it from the start, then you’ll need to stake now.”

Polkadot’s Prospects

This project kicked off on a good note by issuing 5 million DOT tokens at $144 million back in 2016. By early 2019, the Polkadot was valued at $1.2 billion as per a Wall Street Journal Report. The company later sold another 500,000 DOT tokens towards the end of 2019 and is now making headlines with its much-awaited mainnet. Wood touts the project as a long-term player in the crypto industry,

“Polkadot is, in many respects, the biggest bet in this ecosystem against chain maximalism. Even if there were one perfect chain, I don’t think it would stay perfect for very long.”

Read Original/a>
Author: Edwin Munyui

Web3 Foundation Is Funding a Project To Bring Bitcoin to Polkadot Via BTC-Parachain

The non-profit organization behind Polkadot, which is the Web3 Foundation, has decided to finance a new bridge that links the blockchain Polkadot network to Bitcoin (BTC).

The London-based developer company Interlay is going to be funded by Web3 and build a BTC Parachain that brings BTC-backed assets onto the Polkadot network. The parachain will use the open source XCLAIM framework and leverage collateralized intermediaries.

Polkadot Uses Parachains to Link Other Networks

Polkadot was launched back in 2016 by Gavin Wood, the co-founder of Ethereum. They connect and launch blockchain-based apps by employing parachains to link various networks. As soon as the Polkadot BTC bridge is be finished, users can access and employ the parachain in order to create PolkaBTC on the 1:1 rule by using their deposited BTC. The original BTC will be redeemable at any time. Here’s what Interlay had to say about XCLAIM:

“XCLAIM is on average 95% faster and 65% cheaper than using HTLC atomic swaps with Bitcoin.”

The Parachain Stores DOT Collateral

The parachain is completely interoperable on the Polkadot ecosystem and stores DOT collateral that users can have allocated through a premium in case the redemption process fails. The Web3 Foundation is regulated in Switzerland and has been issuing grants between $3,000 and $100,000 to different projects that aim to improve the Polkadot platform.

According to Web3’s GitHub page, the foundation has financed almost 100 projects in 5 different funding waves until now. Some of its other projects are a Metamask plugin, an EOS interoperability bridge and a parachain that Links Polkadot to the future Libra ecosystem.

The Polkadot Ecosystem Fund

Back in October 2019, Web3 launched a Polkadot ecosystem fund with Polychain Capital. While it hasn’t been mentioned how much this new fund had set aside, the sum was in the millions, said a spokesperson then. How much Interlay is going to receive is not yet clear, as grant amounts for each team are not to be disclosed, mentioned another spokesperson.

Read Original/a>
Author: Oana Ularu

Web3 Foundation’s Polkadot Ecosystem Looks To Implement Kadena’s Pact Smart Contacts

The Web3 Foundation, known for the creation of its Polkadot protocol, is currently studying how to integrate the Pact smart contract programming language created by a startup called Kadena to it. Right now, the two organizations have started a partnership to find solutions for this integration together.

Pact was originally created as a way to make smart contracts easier to execute on different types of blockchains. When the language was created, Kadena hoped that it would be adopted as a standard in the future, just like USB is today.

The founder of Kadena, Stuart Popejoy, revealed the project to the world back in June 2019 and affirmed that it could be used in both private and public blockchains, making it a hybrid language. Also, the project is supposed to be the first smart contract technology that can be read by humans, not only machines, which is also something very important to make it more mainstream.

Kadena’s blockchain platform went live this month after the announcement of a $20 million USD token sale. At the moment, there are ten proof of work blockchains running it and they are supposed to allow data to be shared in several different networks.

As the project created by the Web3 Foundation has the goal of uniting proof of stake protocols, the two companies saw as fit the idea to partner and connect the services that they provide.

The Web3 Foundation was created by one of the co-founders of Ethereum, Gavin Wood. The company has just recently launched its DOT tokens and has a network valued at around $1.2 billion USD but it is not being freely commercialized right now.

Read Original/a>
Author: Gabriel Machado

Gavin Wood Launches Its Experimental Network Kusama, A Testnet For Polkadot

The developers of Web3, the company behind the Polkadot protocol, have recently finished the testnet for the blockchain protocol. According to Gavin Wood, one of the main developers who are working on the program, the project, which is called Kusama, is already available.

Kusama will be an unaudited and experimental version of Polkadot and it was officially launched during the Berlin Blockchain Week.

Wood affirmed that the network needs at least 50 validators to be working properly, so it would be around a month before developers can fully experience the potential of the new testnet. After that, though, the KSM tokens can be transferred.

He also took some time to explain what was already working on the network. People cannot trade yet, but they can already stake their tokens for rewards, start to be validators, set up session keys and claim tokens.

The main difference that will happen once over 50 nodes are set up is that Kusama will stop being a centralized network that and fully become a decentralized proof of stake project, which is the main goal. As soon as this happens, the governance rules that will govern the network will be properly activated and start to be live.

According to the developers, Kusama will only exist while it is needed. The whole idea was to set up something to “step into the unknown” and simply let people play. As the stepping stone for Polkadot, the network will possibly be abandoned after the actual launch of the network.

At the moment, Polkadot is expected to be launched next year, but there is no specific data set yet.

Read Original/a>
Author: Gabriel Machado