Bitcoin has tanked. The world’s number one cryptocurrency by market cap has fallen all the way from around $40,000 just a few weeks ago to about $31,000 per unit at press time. While this has all happened before during the month of January, this time around feels somewhat different.
Bitcoin Is Falling Into Oblivion
The currency has lost about ten percent in the last two days. Just yesterday, the asset was trading for around $34,000, which means it has lost another $3,000 off its most recent price, and the rest of the crypto market appears to be following suit. Other currencies such as Ethereum, Litecoin and Ripple’s XRP have all dropped down by roughly five to ten percent at the time of writing, and it is estimated that approximately $100 billion or more may have been shaved off the entire crypto space.
Ethereum, which had recently attained a new all-time high of approximately $1,439 per unit, has shaved about nine percent off its total value and is now selling for about $1,182 at press time.
Some analysts appear confident that this is a natural correction of sorts. Michael Sonnenshein – CEO of Grayscale Investments – explained in an interview with CNBC:
From 2016 – 2017, we experienced six corrections of approximately 30 percent or more on the way to new highs… Who’s to say whether we’ve seen the bottom of the correction, but at Grayscale, we know that there continues to be a flurry of demand, especially from institutional investors who have longer term holding preferences.
Anthony Scaramucci – founder of Sky Bridge Capital – also mentioned that bitcoin, while it’s been doing rather well as of late, is still vulnerable to price swings and remains as volatile as ever. He commented:
I think you’ve got to accept there’s a tremendous amount of volatility in bitcoin, and it’s still in early stages. Imagine Amazon and Jeff Bezos and a few venture capitalists are still holding most of Amazon, and the company is experiencing explosive growth, exponential activity. If you look at Amazon in the first three years, you saw 50 percent drops in price. Bitcoin’s moves are akin to that because you’ve got close holders of bitcoin that are releasing bitcoin to the marketplace and the buying stability is shoring up, but it’s still not 100 percent there.
Another Link to Criminal Activity…
Interestingly, the bitcoin dip is occurring right after Janet Yellen – the person slated to take over for Jerome Powell as the new Secretary of the Treasury – commented that she’s potentially looking to curb bitcoin and crypto activity in the coming months due to its alleged affiliation with criminal behavior such as money laundering and terrorist funding.
It’s quite funny how no expert in finance can come up with a newer or more original argument regarding reasons to limit bitcoin’s breadth and use.
ChiliZ To Expand Operations, Will Invest $50 Million in the US
Following milestone partnerships with sports teams in Europe, ChiliZ have their eyes set on conquering the United States. The fintech platform will open a new office in one of the world’s major commercial cities, New York.
ChiliZ To Set Up New York Office
Maltese blockchain giant, ChiliZ is scaling up operations after securing several partnerships with top European sports franchises. Reuters reported earlier today that the fan engagement platform would open an office and invest $50 million in the United States. According to its chief executive, Alexandre Dreyfus, the move should bring the firm within reach of top United States sports outfits. He told Reuters :
“A huge focal point for us in our global growth plans is the U.S.. That’s why we’re opening a New York office and investing $50 million into the country’s sports industry in order to launch Fan Tokens with leading franchises from the five major U.S. sports leagues”
On launching Fan tokens, ChiliZ has made headway through its subsidiary, Socios. It has partnered with football behemoths like FC Barcelona, Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, AS Roma, Galatasaray, and Atlético de Madrid to launch branded fan tokens. These permit owners to engage in club polls, access VIP rewards, and partake in chat forums.
The company currently has offices in Malta, France, Turkey, Korea, Switzerland, and South America. It had earlier announced that it would open offices in New York and Madrid. With the New York office inching towards reality, Chiliz is undoubtedly advancing towards global growth.
Aims To Double Up on 2020 Revenue
Speaking further about the expansion, Dreyfus boasted about his company’s capacity to generate returns for its partners in the sports and entertainment industry. He said:
“We head to the U.S. with a proven track record in generating millions of dollars of revenue for some of Europe’s biggest sporting organisations. In 2020, we shared more than $30 million with our partners, but this year we’re targeting a minimum of $60 million.”
Revenue from the company’s partnership with seven-time European champions AC Milan proves Dreyfus is not bluffing. The Italian football giant launched its token ($ACM) on Binance on February 24th. Within hours of the launch, over $6 million was generated as trading volume hit $50 million in the first 30 minutes.
Big Market For ChiliZ?
For Joseph Edwards, Enigma Securities head of researcher, there is no better time to seize the initiative. He opined that the soaring interest in NFTs indicates a big market. He elaborated further that NFTs bridge the gap between fans and their subject of interest, especially as Covid-19 caused a disconnection.
“Fan tokens right now are just hitting the perfect itch at the perfect time – fans are disconnected physically from their fandom, and this helps bridge that gap,”
NBA Top Shots seems to be a perfect example. The NFT platform has continued to gain momentum as interest surges. It reached a record-breaking $231 million in sales over the past 30 days. Perhaps, ChiliZ is taking a cue from this to target the American sports market.
Bitcoin has brought new thinking to payments and financial inclusion: SEC chair nominee
When it comes to Bitcoin, market opinions are often divided, with those who support the asset and those who don’t. Similar camps may now appear to take hold of US regulators and policymakers. Recently, President Biden’s nominee for chairman of United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Gary Gensler appeared to share his perspective on the crypto sector. Gensler said that cryptocurrencies “have been a catalyst for change.”
Speaking to US Senator Mike Rounds during his Senate confirmation, Gensler added:
Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have brought new thinking to payments and financial inclusion, but they’ve also raised new issues of investor protection that we still need to attend to.
His opinion on crypto is in stark contrast to Treasury secretary, Janet Yellen’s, who believed that Bitcoin is “extremely inefficient for conducting transactions” and that it is a “highly speculative asset.” It goes against Senator Elizabeth Warren’s views, who thinks Bitcoin would only “end badly.”
However, if Gensler is confirmed, a move that many crypto enthusiasts are looking forward to, the nominee plans to work to “promote the new innovation.”
I think, as I teach at MIT on these subjects, that these innovations have been a catalyst for change. Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies have brought new thinking to payments and financial inclusion but they’ve also raised new issues of investor protection…If confirmed at the SEC, I will work to promote innovation.
He quickly stressed on the importance of investor protection and said:
It’s always important to update our market oversight to new technologies…It’s important to stay true to our principles of investor protection.
Gary’s answer to concerns of crypto. pic.twitter.com/DR9u6FfDex
— CryptoBomber (@GSL24236982) March 2, 2021
Furthermore, in his opening remarks, Gensler said that markets—and technology— “are always changing” and must not be taken for granted.
Our rules have to change along with them. I believe financial technology can be a powerful force for good but only if we continue to harness the core values of the SEC in service of investors, issuers, and the public.
Gensler is most famously known for testifying before Congress for crypto and blockchain several times in the past. He even argued against the notion that crypto was similar to Ponzi schemes.
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Crypto services firm BCB Group raises $4.5M led by North Island Ventures and Blockchain.com Ventures
BCB Group, a crypto payment/trading services provider, today announced it has closed a $4.5 million investment round. The strategic funding was co-led by North Island Ventures and Blockchain.com Ventures; with participation from Pantera, L1 Digital, and Pack Capital.
As a dual regulated institution, BCB Group offers an end-to-end suite of payment processing, cryptocurrency trading, and custody. Services are accessible through a unified API-enabled platform; allowing clients to access a full range of crypto-asset products in one place.
The proceeds of the round will be used to fund investments in several new initiatives…
These initiatives include: BCB Treasury, a service designed to help companies interested in investing in bitcoin as a treasury asset. BCB Yield Accounts, a product offering clients a return on their positions. And BCB Wealth Partners, a comprehensive crypto service for private wealth clients.
“There’s so much more we want to offer our clients; and many untapped regions we’d like to be in to help those markets grow via reliable payments and market infrastructure. This funding round comes at a very exciting time for BCB Group and will be transformative for our client experience.”
– BCB Group Founder and CEO, Oliver von Landsberg-Sadie
Previously, back in March 2019, BCB Group received funding from NKB Finance and a private investor in a $1 million seed round; which brought the company much-needed talent in engineering and operations.
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