Ledger, Neufund Partner to Create Security Tokens Framework

Crypto hardware wallet Ledger to allow users to manage security tokens through Ledger’s desktop app.

Cryptocurrency hardware wallet firm Ledger has partnered with German crypto startup Neufund to let users manage security tokens via Ledger’s desktop app, according to a press release Dec. 6.

Ledger’s collaboration with blockchain-based equity and crypto fundraising platform Neufund aims to develop a framework for security tokens. Ledger Live — a recently launched desktop application for crypto asset management — is reportedly adding an ERC-20 integration “soon.” The app will let users manage security tokens issued via Neufund’s set of protocols.

Previously, Neufund teamed up with cryptocurrency exchange BitBay to let investors buy and sell equity tokens with fiat currencies. At that time, Neufund was reportedly aiming to become the first end-to-end primary issuance platform for security tokens, specializing in equity tokens.

Meanwhile, Ledger announced in late November that it is expanding to New York as part of its development of institutional custody offering Ledger Vault. Ledger Vault is a form of custody solution allowing multiple members of a corporate entity such as a hedge fund to access the same cold storage wallet.

Also in November, the Germany-based IOTA Foundation announced it will integrate IOTA tokens with Ledger’s cryptocurrency hardware wallets.

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Blockchain VC Investment Surged 316% in 2018, New Study Finds

blockchain chain blocks

Venture capital investments into the blockchain industry have surged in 2018 as retail speculation faded away, a new report reveals. Sign of Maturation? According to a press release sent to Bitcoinist, a new report dubbed Q3 State of Blockchains prepared by European venture firm Outlier Ventures reveals that VCs are particularly active across all funding stages and that 119 deals are disclosed in Q3 of 2018 alone. One noteworthy detail is that the more quality

The post Blockchain VC Investment Surged 316% in 2018, New Study Finds appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

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BBVA and Santander Join EU Joint Blockchain Platform Set to Launch in 2019

Major Spanish banks BBVA and Santander have joined the launch of the E.U. International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications.

Banking groups BBVA and Banco Santander have joined the E.U. International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications (IATBA), Spanish economic newspaper Expansion writes Nov. 20.

The representatives of two Spanish banking groups were invited to an E.U. blockchain roundtable held in Brussels by Mariya Gabriel, the commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, and Roberto Viola, director of the E.U. Department of Communications Networks, Content and Technology.

According to a BBVA press release, during the meeting  E.U. officials revealed that the IATBA will launch in the first financial quarter of 2019. The main aim of the association is to develop E.U. blockchain regulation, along with preparing the launch of E.U.-wide blockchain applications.

According to Expansion, BBVA and Santander are among the first five banks invited to join IATBA. The other members of the association have not yet been disclosed.

IATBA is an initiative promoted by the European Blockchain Partnership — a collaboration of 27 E.U. countries, including UK, France, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands and Ireland. As Cointelegraph previously reported, the states cooperate to establish “a European Blockchain Services Infrastructure that will support the delivery of cross-border digital public services, with the highest standards of security and privacy.”

While the CEO of BBVA has previously noted some of the challenges and limitations of blockchain technology, the firm has already tested several blockchain solutions. In June, the bank partnered with Spanish energy company Repsol to test different blockchain technologies, namely Hyperledger and Ethereum.

Most recently, BBVA carried out a $150 million loan on a private blockchain network through a group of three funding banks including French banking group BNP Paribas and Japan’s bank holding Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG).

Santander is also interested in decentralized technologies. In July, it joined IBM’s Blockchain Platform along with four other banks, and created a research team to explore the use of blockchain in securities trading.

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Colorado Securities Regulators Crack Down on Four More ICOs for Alleged Illicit Practices

The Colorado Division of Securities issued cease and desist orders to four more ICOs allegedly involved in fraudulent and illegal practices.

The Colorado Division of Securities has filed cessation orders against four Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) allegedly involved in fraudulent and illicit practices, according to an official announcement Nov. 20.

Colorado Securities Commissioner Gerald Rome issued the new cease and desist orders following investigations by the Division’s ICO Task Force. Rome has issued 18 cessation orders to ICO projects offering unregistered securities since May, 2018. According to the announcement, at least two more orders are still pending.

The recent orders affected four crypto and blockchain-related firms; Global Pay Net, Credits LLC, CrowdShare Mining, and CyberSmart Coin Invest. All the companies were reportedly accessible to Colorado residents and allegedly violated securities laws.

Regulators state that the projects also engaged in fraudulent marketing practices; Global Pay Net allegedly falsely claimed that “investors receive 80 percent of the company’s profits.” CrowdShare Mining promised an “at least 1,000 percent” four-year return on investment for investors who bought its token.

Commissioner Rome stated that the “sheer number” of cease and desist orders against ICOs should be a “red flag […] that there is a real risk that the ICO you are considering is a fraud.” Rome also highlighted the problem of crypto investor protection, claiming that fraudsters “simply create a fake ICO to steal investors’ money,” and “trick investors into wrongfully paying them.”

Earlier this month, the securities regulator issued cease and desist orders to four ICOs for allegedly offering unregistered securities.

On Nov. 19, Italian securities regulator Commissione Nazionale per le Società e la Borsa (CONSOB) issued enforcement actions against three crypto-related firms for alleged violation of local financial laws by failing to register as financial intermediaries.

That same day, the North Dakota Securities Commissioner issued a cease and desist order against an alleged Russia-based ICO that posed as Liechtenstein Union Bank.

According to a recent study by the University of British Columbia, ICOs face a “compliance trilemma” that limits their potential. Some issuers shirk compliance measures in order to “reach a distributed pool of investors” and have an offering that is “cost-effective.”

The study explains, “If issuers forgo these costs, the risk of being non-compliant rises significantly. The result is a trilemma, whereby issuers currently must forgo one of these goals to realize the other two, or to compromise on all three.”

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Multi-blockchain Battler: Crypto Game Allows Warriors To Get Equipped From Two Platforms

The game will be launched on EOS platform first. The Ethereum blockchain platform is planned to be connected in the upcoming months.

Crypto game developer 0xGames, creator of blockchain-based space strategy 0xUniverse has created a new multi-blockchain competitive battler, titled 0xWarriors. The company says that 0xWarriors is one of the first multi-blockchain based games where players can use different blockchains, starting with EOS and Ethereum, for interactions with each other and equipping their characters.

EOS sword and ETH shield

0xWarriors is a multiplayer game where users can fight, take part in weekly tournaments and equip themselves with different items that they collect or trade in an internal marketplace. 0xGames announced that 0xWarriors will be launched on the EOS platform first, and the Ethereum blockchain platform will be connected to the game in upcoming months. According to the game developer, this will make 0xWarriors one of the first multi blockchain-based games on the market.

0xGames says that normally multi-blockchain games have a divided player base and users can’t really interact between each other within the game or exchange assets between blockchains. “0xWarriors has a true approach to multi-blockchain,” the company said. That means that users can obtain different items for their warriors from different blockchains. For example, they can possess an EOS sword and an ETH shield. 0xGames promises that it won’t matter on which blockchain the tokens are located – players will be able to use all digital assets at any time.

0xGames believes that the combination of the two ecosystems will unite two different audiences into one game world where the players can trade playable items. They announced that there are five warriors in one squad, and each user can have up to 10 squads. The warriors are free but the equipment needs to be won or purchased. Using these items, players can uniquely style their characters and each item also has unique attributes that enhance performance in battle.

Live public tournaments and free chests

0xGames plans to keep the player base active and entertained by organizing private and public multiplayer tournaments. Those tournaments will be live-streamed on platforms like Twitch or blockchain alternatives. The final three participants will get special bonuses, a percentage of the revenue collected from the event and free chests with items. Armors, items, and warriors differ by a variety of parameters. For example, items have four different levels of rarity: common, rare, epic and legendary. There are eight types of armors, including light, heavy, one and two-handed weapons, bows, wands, and shields. Warriors are sorted by strength, damage, resistance, intelligence, and dexterity. If the player’s squad wins the battle, the player can get attribute points, which are used for improving individual parameters of their warriors.

0xGames has promised to release the detailed roadmap of the project after the presale is completed. Currently, users can buy chests that include three random items like light, heavy or one-handed weapon or bows, wands, and shields.

0xWarriors has partnered with Asia-based companies such as Meet.One, an crypto wallet and block producer,  and TokenPocket, a crypto wallet, to help grow the user base after the game increased in popularity since its’ launch. A presale of the company’s tokens is currently open.

About the game developer

The 0xGames’s team started to work together in November 2017. Their first product was 0xUniverse, a game powered by the Ethereum blockchain, where players can colonize planets in a 3D-rendered galaxy.  After successfully launching 0xUniverse, the company announced new games 0xBattleships and 0xWarriors.

 

Disclaimer. Cointelegraph does not endorse any content or product on this page. While we aim at providing you all important information that we could obtain, readers should do their own research before taking any actions related to the company and carry full responsibility for their decisions, nor this article can be considered as an investment advice.

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Major Crypto Exchange Binance to Use Refinitiv KYC Solution in Internal Workflow

Binance, the world’s leading crypto exchange, will use Refinitiv’s KYC product in their internal processes.

Cryptocurrency exchange Binance will use an automated Know Your Customer (KYC) application provided by financial software firm Refinitiv, according to an announcement published Nov. 20.

Binance personally confirmed the use of Refinitiv’s software to Cointelegraph.

Formerly the Financial & Risk business division of Thomson Reuters, Refinitiv provides markets data and infrastructure, while its portfolio reportedly accounts for over 4,000 institutions worldwide.

According to the announcement, the KYC solution will enable the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchange by adjusted trade volume, Binance, to integrate the World-Check Risk Intelligence database into their internal workflow. This will purportedly allow Binance to streamline the screening process for onboarding, KYC, and third-party risk due diligence.

Speaking about the need for crypto exchanges to add KYC structures, Nadim Najjar, Managing Director, Middle East & Africa, at Refinitiv, said:

“In the past few years, regulators have been working to ensure that anyone moving cryptocurrency into fiat currency is subject to the same KYC requirements as individuals dealing with a conventional bank.”

KYC is the process of a business verifying of the identity of its customers and assessing potential risks of illegal intentions in business relationships. According to Refinitiv’s statement, the service integrates legal entity data from authoritative sources in over 200 countries and is backed by a global policy that has been tested with more than 100 regulators and financial institutions.

Earlier this month, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao said that the company is not concerned over low trade volumes caused by the current market slump, even as the exchange currently has one tenth of the trading volume it did in January 2018. According to Zhao, it is still trading far above the volumes the exchange had “two or three years ago,” and is “still profitable.”

Zhao suggested that the entrance of institutions into the industry could be a possible catalyst for market movement, echoing the prediction of investor and digital currency advocate Mike Novogratz, who said that institutional investors will start entering the market in the first or second quarter of 2019, resulting in new highs for Bitcoin’s (BTC) price.

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Retail Giant Carrefour Launches Blockchain Food Tracking Platform for Poultry in Spain

Global retail giant Carrefour, which has recently joined IBM’s blockchain-based Food Trust, has deployed blockchain to track poultry in its Spanish shops.

Retail giant Carrefour, headquartered in France and operating in more than 30 countries, is deploying a blockchain food tracking platform based on Hyperledger in its Spanish network, a press release states Tuesday, Nov. 20.

The food tracking solution, initially developed by U.S. tech corporation IBM, will be used to track free-range chickens branded as “Calidad y Origen” (“Quality and Origin”) that were raised in the northern region of Galicia without antibiotic treatment. Each package in the Spanish network will be marked by a QR code providing detailed info on the chicken’s date of birth, type of nutrition, packing date, and more.

In the press release, Carrefour writes that blockchain is a key technology for supply chains, as it provides greater transparency and allows customers to review the entire distribution process. In the nearest future, the company is planning to extend the use of decentralized technologies, implementing them to all food from the “Calidad y Origen” line.

As Cointelegraph reported earlier, Carrefour already tested blockchain tracking for French poultry in early 2018, expressing its commitment to decentralized solutions.

In October, the retail giant announced it was joining IBM’s blockchain-based Food Trust that had been created back in 2016. Since the launch of the trials in August, the program has been joined by major retailers and companies, such as Nestle SA, Unilever NV, and Walmart.

Other firms with large supply chains have often applied blockchain in order to increase transparency, cut costs, and reduce time spent on food delivery. For instance, Walmart uses a farm-to-store blockchain tracking system for its leafy greens, while U.S. fast-casual salad chain Sweetgreen is planning to trace its salads in the same way.

As well, the world’s four largest agriculture companies, mostly known as ABCD, use blockchain and artificial intelligence (AI) to automate grain and oilseed post-trade execution processes, considered to be a highly manual and costly part of the supply chain.

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Siemens Joins Blockchain-Driven Energy Platform to Increase Interoperability in Industry

German tech giant Siemens’ energy divisions join an open-source blockchain platform Energy Web Foundation.

Two energy divisions of German tech giant Siemens have joined a blockchain-driven energy platform to promote the use of decentralized technologies in the sector, according to a press release published Wednesday, Nov. 21.

According to Siemens, its Energy Management and Power Generation Services departments are partnering with open-source, scalable blockchain platform Energy Web Foundation (EWF), founded in 2017 to elaborate regulatory, operational, and market solutions for the energy sector.

Siemens officials believe that blockchain technology will help increase interoperability in the area, linking consumers with energy producers and network operators, the press release writes. Moreover, the technology could help increase the efficiency of energy systems and enable new forms of project financing.

The statement also notes that Siemens is already using blockchain accompanied by microgrid control solutions to optimize control over energy consumption. For instance, in 2016, the German firm collaborated with U.S. startup LO3 Energy to develop microgrids

that enable local trading between energy consumers and producers on a blockchain platform. The solution was trialed in one of New York’s boroughs, Brooklyn, enabled to feed the excess electricity back into the local grid and receive payments from its purchasers.

As Cointelegraph previously reported, the company’s financing arm, Siemens Financial Services (SFS), took part in a blockchain pilot in August for bank guarantees using R3 Corda technology, launched by U.K. multinational banking and financial services company Standard Chartered (SC).

Blockchain is actively tested by major energy industry players in different countries. For instance, major Singaporean utility company SP Group, which provides electricity and gas transmission in the country, launched a blockchain marketplace to trade solar energy. Also in Asia, South Korea’s largest power provider KEPCO will use blockchain and other innovative energy solutions to develop an eco-friendly microgrid.

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Tezos Korea Foundation Partners With Yonsei University for Blockchain Development

The Tezos Korea Foundation has agreed to cooperate with a South Korean university on blockchain talents development.

The South Korean branch of the Tezos Foundation has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Yonsei University to collaboratively work on the development of blockchain talents, says a Tezos official press release published Nov. 21.

The new agreement between the Tezos Korea Foundation and Digital Society Research Center at Yonsei University in Seoul aims to provide “blockchain education cooperation, training of OCaml [Objective Calm] and smart contract experts.” The MoU is primarily focused on human resources and education in the blockchain technology industry. The press release states:

“Through this agreement, both sides will strengthen the expertise of the blockchain and education expertise, and discuss various cooperation opportunities to lead the blockchain field.”

Back this summer, the Tezos Foundation had already announced a public call for research grants in July. Later, Tezos provided financial grants to four research institutions for blockchain tech and smart contracts development, as Cointelegraph reported Aug. 10.

Also this summer, the Tezos Foundation announced that PricewaterhouseCoopers Switzerland (PwC) — one of the four largest professional services networks in the world, commonly known as the “Big Four” — would conduct an external audit of its finances and operations, Cointelegraph wrote Jul. 24.

Previously this week, Japanese banking giant Sumitomo Mitsui (SMBC), the Ethereum Foundation, and the University of Tokyo jointly announced an education course, dubbed “Blockсhain Innovation Donation Course,” in the university’s graduate school of engineering, Cointelegraph reported Nov. 21.

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‘Democratic for All’: New Crypto Exchange Will Be ‘100 Percent Owned By Users’

A new crypto exchange is going to be “100 percent owned” by users – with the community benefitting from voting rights and a share in profits.

A hybrid community-owned digital asset exchange is hoping to simplify trades and investments while driving down the cost of transactions.

DAREX’s hybrid model enables users to trade utilities and securities – and the revenue generated from these transactions is subsequently shared with token holders. In time, the exchange hopes to become a “truly beneficial and democratic exchange platform for all.”

The startup is set to be “the first exchange of its kind” thanks to how it blends the benefits of centralized exchanges with a decentralized ownership structure. The platform is going to be “100 percent owned” by the Darico community through the distribution of Darico Exchange Community Shares – known as DECS for short.

As well as paving the way for profit distribution, these security tokens would enable holders to have voting rights – giving them a say on how the exchange develops in the future.

The startup hopes that individuals, institutions, professional traders and investors will all stand to benefit from what the exchange has to offer – enabling them to trade, deposit and withdraw “a variety of top-ranked cryptocurrencies.” In 2019 the company plans to allow users to transfer fiat funds in and out of the exchange using cards and bank accounts, creating the ability to cross-trade between pounds, euros, dollars and crypto.

DAREX is the third launch for the Darico ecosystem – and DECS is a collaboration between Darico and Polymath, a “specialized tokenization service that helps companies launch securities tokens on blockchain.” Tokens are going to be distributed to the community on Jan. 10 2019.

Secure, fast, reliable, transparent

The team behind DAREX says the hybrid exchange is going to pride itself on a “transparent business model” where a prominent auditing firm produces quarterly reports which are compliant with international standards – a practice that’s commonly followed by conventional financial companies. A beta version of the platform is going to launch early next year.

From a security perspective, DAREX says “failproof” cold storage is going to be used which protects funds held on the exchange, while ensuring they are accessible at all times. A monitoring system would also keep track of activity on the platform “around the clock” – helping to flag any suspicious or anomalous activity. It is hoped that these features won’t be at the expense of transaction speeds – with low-latency mechanisms “designed to make sure that trades are executed in a flash.”

Offering a vision of how its platform will look in the future, its white paper adds: “With liquidity in the cryptocurrency market gradually increasing we believe that by 2020 it will be time to implement a decentralized exchange structure. This will allow complete freedom in trading and enable the community to freely trade any cryptocurrency that is deemed valuable.”

Darex is the latest product of the Darico Ecosystem which also includes GNIUS, Darico’s wallet that supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, Neo and more than 2000 ERC20 and NEP-5 tokens. The ecosystem also contains NUYS – the terminal which enables customers to access the ecosystem’s wallet and an Index Fund.

Darico has been incorporated in Switzerland and has an office in Gibraltar – and it also has team members based in Dubai, Poland, Zurich and Ukraine.

The concept for its ecosystem came into being towards the end of 2016, and was further finessed throughout 2017. Its presale was held as 2017 drew to a close, and this was followed by a token sale for DEC as 2018 began.

 

Disclaimer. Cointelegraph does not endorse any content or product on this page. While we aim at providing you all important information that we could obtain, readers should do their own research before taking any actions related to the company and carry full responsibility for their decisions, nor this article can be considered as an investment advice.

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