Fed Chair Calls Blockchain ‘Important New Technology’
Jan19

Fed Chair Calls Blockchain ‘Important New Technology’

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen had some positive words to say about the blockchain on Wednesday during an appearance at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco. After delivering a speech in which she opined on everything from the strength of the economy to the Federal Reserve’s plans for interest rates, Yellen sat down to discuss those and other important issues with Ed Wasserman, the event moderator and Dean of the Graduate School of Journalism at UC Berkeley.

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DFS Approves BitLicense for Coinbase
Jan18

DFS Approves BitLicense for Coinbase

In a press release on Tuesday, the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) announced that it has granted Coinbase, Inc. the virtual currency and money transmitter license needed to continue its operations in New York. The company had announced that it applied for the state’s “BitLicense” in August, 2015, and has been operating in New York under the terms of a safe harbor provision while it waited for formal approval.

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RBI’s Research Institute Completes Test of Blockchain Tech, Releases White Paper
Jan17

RBI’s Research Institute Completes Test of Blockchain Tech, Releases White Paper

The Times of India is reporting that the research arm of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has concluded its first trade application test of blockchain technology. The end-to-end test was conducted in collaboration with banks and other financial institutions, clearing houses, and regulators, and was facilitated by the RBI’s Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology (IDRBT). The project received technical support from cryptocurrency firm MonetaGo, which provided the technology used in the test.

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Interview with Movie Producer Tony Caradonna – First Ethereum Financed Movie ‘The Pitts Circus’ with ROI
Jan17

Interview with Movie Producer Tony Caradonna – First Ethereum Financed Movie ‘The Pitts Circus’ with ROI

The Ethereum platform is supporting many exciting new developments. We caught up with Tony Caradonna from ‘A Ken Evil Thing’ to discuss a movie that he is working as producer on called ‘The Pitts Circus’.

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Coinbase CEO Responds to IRS Summons with Alternative Option
Jan16

Coinbase CEO Responds to IRS Summons with Alternative Option

Coinbase co-founder and CEO Brian Armstrong published an online post on Medium this weekend to explain his company’s position on the ongoing battle with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) over the tax agency’s effort to access information about Coinbase customers. He also took the opportunity to offer another option that would negate the need for the John Doe Summons by issuing all Coinbase customers a 1099-B at the end of each year.

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Israel to Tax Digital Currency Sales as Property
Jan15

Israel to Tax Digital Currency Sales as Property

In a statement released this week, the Israel Tax Authority (ITA) announced that it has decided to treat digital currencies like Bitcoin as assets rather than as foreign currencies for the purpose of taxation. That announcement has come more than three years after Israel’s government first began talking about the possibility of taxing profits from Bitcoin trading.

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Report Forecasts Blockchain Industry Value of $7.74 Billion by 2024
Jan14

Report Forecasts Blockchain Industry Value of $7.74 Billion by 2024

In a report from Grand View Research published last month, the authors project that the blockchain industry could experience growth over the next decade that would result in its value rising to as much as $7.74 billion by 2024. The report projects that much of that growth will be fueled by financial sector interest in the blockchain in the Asia-Pacific market and North America as a host of factors combine to promote greater acceptance and adoption of the technology.

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Cashaa Preparing to Expand Services to India and Nigeria
Jan12

Cashaa Preparing to Expand Services to India and Nigeria

London-based p2p marketplace Cashaa recently announced that the company is preparing to launch its services in India and Nigeria next week. The launch is formally scheduled for January 18, and will see the company bring its unique zero-fee cash transfer services to cash senders and recipients in those two important countries. According to information provided by Cashaa, the service’s testing period resulted in more than 10,000 trader sign-ups, and transfers of some $2 million made using the company’s blockchain-powered platform.

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GameCredits to Launch Platform and Store
Jan11

GameCredits to Launch Platform and Store

GameCredits recently announced that it will be launching its new GameCredits Mobile Platform and Mobile Store in April, 2017. The new platform and mobile application is expected to launch with a wide array of new games, and the company is anticipating that the platform will host hundreds of additional games by the end of the second quarter of this year. The GameCredits platform will break new ground in its use of digital currency for mobile gaming. In remarks to DCEBrief, GameCredits Inc. CMO Jon Comer said,

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DTCC to Implement Blockchain Technology
Jan10

DTCC to Implement Blockchain Technology

The Depository Trust and Clearing Corp (DTCC) announced on Monday that it will be replacing its existing databases with a blockchain-based system, in a process that is expected to see the new system in use next year. The company is a post-trade service provider that records and reports information for virtually all securities trading activities in the United States. DTCC has selected IBM to work on the project in collaboration with tech firms R3 CEV and Axoni, with work scheduled to begin later this month and conclude sometime in the first part of 2018.

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The Seam Partners with IBM to Form Cotton Blockchain Consortium
Jan09

The Seam Partners with IBM to Form Cotton Blockchain Consortium

In a press release this weekend, commodity trading and management systems company The Seam announced that it is collaborating with IBM to create a cotton industry consortium devoted to the creation of a blockchain-based “supply chain and trading ecosystem.” The effort will make use of IBM’s blockchain technology and expertise, and will use the Hyperledger Fabric in an industry-first.

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Yes Bank Announces New Blockchain Vendor Finance Solution
Jan06

Yes Bank Announces New Blockchain Vendor Finance Solution

In a recent press release, Yes Bank announced that it has fully digitized its vendor financing with Bajaj Electricals using a multi-nodal blockchain solution. The solution utilizes the Hyperledger fabric, IBM Watson Conversation, and blockchain smart contracts from Cateina Technologies to enable Bajaj Electricals to integrate their newly digitized processes with the systems used by Yes Bank. The new solution will enable Bajaj to carry out seamless digital transactions with its vendors.

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Ripio to Use New Funding to Promote Financial Inclusion in Latin America
Jan06

Ripio to Use New Funding to Promote Financial Inclusion in Latin America

According to 2016 estimates from the Center for Financial Inclusion, roughly 70% of people throughout Latin America suffer from a lack of basic banking services. While other estimates have been somewhat more optimistic, the general view seems to be that more than 200 million people in the region remain unbanked. Bitcoin payments service BitPagos is looking to change that dynamic by using its $1.9 million Series A round of funding to expand its services in Latin America and help serve the region’s unbanked and underserviced population.

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Global Blockchain Business Council to Launch this Month in Davos
Jan05

Global Blockchain Business Council to Launch this Month in Davos

The Bitfury Group announced in a press release today that it is collaborating with global law firm Covington to launch a new blockchain advocacy group called the Global Blockchain Business Council (GBBC) in Davos, Switzerland during the upcoming World Economic Forum Annual Meeting that begins on January 17, 2017.

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Travel Agency Destinia Now “Bitcoin Only” in Venezuela
Dec29

Travel Agency Destinia Now “Bitcoin Only” in Venezuela

The popular travel agency Destinia recently announced that it will be relying on Bitcoin for all its transactions in Venezuela. In a post on the company’s blog, the company confirmed that its decision to forsake the Bolivar for Venezuelan transactions is designed to make it easier for that nation’s residents to use their services. The country’s currency has plummeted in value over the last several years, as the Venezuelan economy continues its freefall.

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KPMG Hong Kong Banking Report Expresses Cautious Optimism on Blockchain
Dec28

KPMG Hong Kong Banking Report Expresses Cautious Optimism on Blockchain

In a recent report titled Hong Kong Banking Outlook 2017, KPMG expresses an optimistic view of Hong Kong’s progress in the adoption of FinTech, but also urged caution in its future handling of blockchain technology. The report noted the financial industry’s increased interest in distributed ledger technology, and the accompanying rise in FinTech investment throughout Hong Kong – investment that has helped to jump-start FinTech innovation in the region. KPMG’s analysis anticipates future investment growth over the coming year.

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Blockchain Conference to be Held in Estonian Capital in March
Dec27

Blockchain Conference to be Held in Estonian Capital in March

Estonia will play host to its first major blockchain conference next year, as developers, blockchain experts, and entrepreneurs will come together in the capital city of Tallinn on March 9, 2016. Blockchain & Bitcoin Conference Tallinn will focus on blockchain solutions for government, and commercial applications for industries ranging from banking, healthcare, and trading to logistics and notary services.

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Blockchain Sub-Committee Launched to Transform China’s Logistics Industry
Dec26

Blockchain Sub-Committee Launched to Transform China’s Logistics Industry

At last week’s 2016 China Shenzhen Fintech Summit, the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing (CFLP) revealed the launch of the Blockchain Application Sub-Committee – an initiative that will see the nation’s logistics firms collaborate with Chinese financial institutions and new blockchain firm Shenzhen Digital Singularity to help introduce blockchain technology into China’s logistics industry. Shenzhen Digital Singularity will be responsible for organizing and leading the initiative, which will work to establish rules and standards to guide the industry in its adoption of blockchain technology.

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Euroclear Blockchain Pilot Completed; Launch Planned for 2017
Dec21

Euroclear Blockchain Pilot Completed; Launch Planned for 2017

Euroclear recently completed its initial pilot test for Euroclear Blockchain, the company’s new London-based bullion settlement service. That two-week pilot involved major players in the London market like Citi, Scotiabank, MKS PAMP Group, and others, with more than 600 over-the-counter bullion trade transactions successfully settled using Euroclear Blockchain. The service meshes Euroclear’s settlement systems with the Paxos distributed ledger platform, and is the first of a planned series of products that the company plans to introduce to the gold markets.

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Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Among Group Funding Axoni Startup
Dec20

Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Among Group Funding Axoni Startup

Reuters is reporting that its sources say Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan have joined with a group of financial firms to provide investment funding for New-York based tech company Axoni. The funding commitment is expected to be announced sometime this week, and will involve as much as $20 million in investment capital. Reuters sources reportedly asked to remain anonymous, as they had no authority to publicize the deal, and Axoni has refused to confirm or deny the report.

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