Cherry on Top: Bitcoin ABC, Bitmain, Ver Target of Suit Following BCH Split

Source From https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/cherry-top-bitcoin-abc-bitmain-ver-target-suit-following-bch-split/

Cherry on Top: Bitcoin ABC, Bitmain, Ver Target of Suit Following BCH Split

As if the drama surrounding the recent Bitcoin Cash split needed a sequel, the vaudevillian sideshow has reached a new stage: the legal arena.

A suit spearheaded by United American Corporation (UnitedCorp), a telecom company with a little-known blockchain subsidiary, BlockNum, is taking legal aim at Bitmain and its cofounder Jihan Wu; Bitcoin.com and its CEO, Roger Ver; Kraken and its CEO, Jesse Powell; and others. The suit “is seeking injunctive relief,” alleging that the defendants engaged in “collusion for the purpose of control of the [Bitcoin Cash] network.”

The suit indicates that it was filed on behalf of the plaintiff, UnitedCorp, and was launched on December 6, 2018, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

“We are bringing this suit on behalf of UnitedCorp because we believe strongly in the value and integrity of democratic, distributed and decentralized blockchain networks which will become more important with time. In order to maintain confidence in cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin Cash, no person or entity can be allowed to control them,” Benoit Laliberte, president of UnitedCorp, stated in a press release.

An Attempt to Control

The lawsuit claims that during the recent November 15 Bitcoin Cash split, the defendants acted in unison to hijack the network and force an undemocratic protocol change.

“This action involves a scheme by a tight knit network of individuals and organizations to manipulate the cryptocurrency market for Bitcoin Cash, effectively hijacking the Bitcoin Cash network, centralizing the market, and violating all accepted standards, protocols and the course of conduct associated with Bitcoin since its inception,” the lawsuit reads.

An accusatory presentation entitled “Anatomy of a Fraud on the Bitcoin (Bitcoin Cash) Network” delves into the specific injunctions of each defendant. Notably, it claims that the defendants colluded with China, “operating with the support of the Chinese government to centralize the Bitcoin Cash network resulting in Chinese entities now having established dominance over this important segment of the cryptocurrency market with proprietary software checkpoints and instituting other means of control over the system.”

Defending its bold allegation, the document suggests that given its ongoing trade war and economic disputes with the U.S., China has a vested interest in “[controlling] the economy of the future through increasing control of the [Bitcoin Cash] digital currency network.” It goes on to say that the China International Capital Corporation (CICC) — what amounts to China’s central bank — holds the exclusive mandate to Bitmain’s forthcoming IPO, using this as ostensible evidence for Bitmain and the Chinese government’s ties.

The document continues to outline Jihan Wu and Bitmain’s alleged culpability in this conspiracy, indicating outright the weight that Bitmain’s mining pools carry in both the Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash networks. Specifically, it accuses Wu and his mining firm of “renting” hashpower from Bitmain mining pool contributors without their consent and redirecting some 90,000 ASICs to the Bitcoin ABC network in an effort to strongarm competitor Bitcoin SV’s hashing power.

Moving on to Bitcoin.com, CEO Roger Ver and communications ambassador Sterlin Lujan, the document highlights some seemingly extraneous yet potentially prejudicial facts about Ver’s life and cryptocurrency career, specifically his political affiliation as a libertarian/anarchist and his alleged involvement in the Silk Road. The document doesn’t make any overt accusations against Ver, only implicating him via his connection to Bitmain and Wu and Bitcoin.com’s mining support for Bitcoin ABC.

The presentation also targets Bitcoin ABC and its main developers, Amaury Sechet, Jason Cox and Shammah Chancellor, alleging that the Bitcoin ABC hard fork was “more than a benign network upgrade.” According to the document’s rationale, the upgrade’s primary components, namely the addition of an OP code for smart contract oracles and modification of checkpoints (a.k.a. deep reorg prevention) — which the plaintiff has called a “poison pill” elsewhere — were added after the fork and could set the stage for network centralization and manipulation.

“Combining this change with the hashing power of Bitcoin ABC backers amounts to centralization. They will be able to override any consensus reached by the rest of the network, forcing others to conform or create an unwanted hard fork,” it states.

On its final page, the presentation targets Kraken and its CEO, Jesse Powell, for supporting Bitcoin ABC’s implementation over Bitcoin SV’s and issuing caveats against the latter’s legitimacy.

Turning Back the Clock

The nucleus of the plaintiff’s argument centers on the allegation that the Bitcoin ABC camp and its supporters manipulated the Bitcoin Cash network during the November hard fork to artificially create a longer chain than Bitcoin SV.

Hashpower that was previously employed to mine on the Bitcoin network was one of the camp’s primary tools during the split, and the temporary boost in hashing power let Bitcoin ABC supporters hijack the Bitcoin Cash network, the plaintiff claims.

With these claims in mind, the filing charges the defendants with violating the Sherman Act (a federal act that bans monopolistic business dealings), equitable estoppel (a defensive doctrine that one party can invoke when they’ve been coerced into acting a specific way) and negligence, among others.

In response to the following charges, the plaintiff is seeking restitution and disgorgement of the defendants’ assets, and it’s also asking that the Bitcoin ABC team be barred from implementing checkpoints on the protocol and for the court to dial back the recent upgrade.

“Plaintiff seeks an injunction: (a) precluding Amaury Sechet,  Shammah Chancellor, and Jason Cox via Bitcoin ABC from continuing to implement checkpoints on the Bitcoin Cash network and any other implementation of the software that would prevent the resulting chains from being able to be re-merged; and (b) requiring them to return the blockchain to its previously decentralized form with the previous consensus rules,” the filing reads.

While “[returning] the blockchain to its previously decentralized form” is ambiguous, “with the previous consensus rules” seems to imply that the plaintiff is requesting that the court dial back the network to its previous state before the November 15 hard fork. This would require a complete network rollback, so the request is tinged with irony given the plaintiff’s complaints of Bitcoin ABC’s alleged manipulation and centralized practices.

A (Messier) Mess in the Making

At any rate, the lawsuit will only augment the furor that has surrounded the November split.

On the eve of the split, Craig S. Wright, Bitcoin SV’s front man, seemed to forecast the coming legal troubles. He tweeted that his side would help any miner in Bitcoin.com or Bitmain’s mining pools “start a long messy class action” if either organization redirected Bitcoin hash power to Bitcoin cash during the split.

Some Bitcoin Cash supporters have taken Wright’s words as an admission of guilt. Vin Armani, CTO at CoinText, for example, insinuated that the Bitcoin SV camp (and its primary proponents, Craig S. Wright and Calvin Ayre) is behind the lawsuit, calling UnitedCorps a “shell company.”

https://twitter.com/vinarmani/status/1070752064765132810

Chris Pacia, an OpenBazaar developer, has echoed Amrani’s sentiments. In a separate tweet, he claims that the lawsuit proves that Ayrehat Calvin Ayre, who owns Bitcoin Cash mining pool and news site CoinGeek, used his mining pool to mine a hidden chain on the Bitcoin ABC network, something that ABC’s checkpoint implementations quashed.

“After this lawsuit I’m now certain Calvin was mining a hidden chain to reorg BCH that he had to abandon when the checkpoint was announced,” the tweet reads.

Pacia continues to reprimand the action as “malicious,” saying it also “shows [the Bitcoin SV group lacks] even basic knowledge about the codebase of the chain they were trying to take over.”

This article originally appeared on Bitcoin Magazine.

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Bitcoin News Summary – December 10, 2018

Source From https://99bitcoins.com/bitcoin-news-summary-december-10-2018/

The post Bitcoin News Summary – December 10, 2018 appeared first on 99 Bitcoins.

Here’s what happened this week in Bitcoin in 99 seconds.  Bitcoin hit a new yearly low just below $3,300. Altcoins fared even worse, with Ethereum falling below $90 and Ripple below 30 cents. The total crypto market cap stands at $108 billion with Bitcoin’s value comprising 55% of that figure. The G20 member nations […]

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Hodler’s Digest, Dec. 3-Dec.9: US SEC Delays BTC ETF Decision Again, While Nasdaq Confirms 2019 BTC Futures Launch

Source From https://cointelegraph.com/news/hodlers-digest-dec-3-dec9-us-sec-delays-btc-etf-decision-again-while-nasdaq-confirms-2019-btc-futures-launch

The United States SEC has delayed their Bitcoin ETF decision yet again, and Venezuela’s Petro is raised 150 percent in value.

Coming every Sunday, the Hodler’s Digest will help you to track every single important news story that happened this week. The best (and worst) quotes, adoption and regulation highlights, leading coins, predictions, and much more — a week on Cointelegraph in one link.

Top Stories This Week

Top Stories This Week

US SEC Delays Bitcoin ETF Decisions, Changes Deadline to Late February

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has again postponed its decision regarding approval for a Bitcoin (BTC) exchange-traded fund (ETF) this week.

According to a document released by the SEC, the new deadline is Feb. 27, 2019, and they will take the extension to further review the rule change proposals needed to list the BTC ETF.

The financial instrument was proposed by investment firm VanEck and blockchain company SolidX, with plans to list it on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE). Legally, as the proposed rule change was first published in the Federal Register on July 2, 2018, the maximum period of consideration falls 240 days later, on Feb. 27, 2019.

Venezuelan President Maduro Raises Petro’s Value by 150 Percent

Nicolas Maduro, the president of Venezuela, has raised the reference value of the national cryptocurrency, Petro, from 3,6000 to 9,000 sovereign bolivars. Speaking in Caracas this week, Maduro also ordered an increase in the monthly minimum wage by 150 percent, the sixth increase in 2018 and 25th in total during Maduro’s presidency.

At the same time, Venezuela also devalued Dicom, the official exchange rate in the country, bringing the national fiat down around 40 percent from 96.84 sovereign bolivars per dollar on Nov. 30 to 171.67 the following day.

Nasdaq Confirms Bitcoin Futures Launch for First Half of 2019

Nasdaq, the world’s second-largest stock exchange, has confirmed plans to launch Bitcoin futures in the first half of 2019. VanEck Director of Digital Asset Strategies Gabor Gurbacs told Cointelegraph that the firm has been discussing futures with Nasdaq, MVIS Indices, and other market participants for “about 18 months.”

According to Gurbacs, the new offering will differ from those trading on the on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) with its transparency and resiliency.

Major Crypto Exchange Binance to Launch ‘Binance Blockchain’ Soon

Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange by trading volumes, will launch its own blockchain “Binance Chain” in the “coming months,” according to a tweet this week. The upcoming blockchain will allow persons to create new cryptocurrencies and Initial Coin Offering (ICO) tokens. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) noted that the new plans are actually a response to the “old vision” of crypto, which will then lead to increasing adoption on a global scale.

Crypto Exchange ErisX Raises $27.5 Mln in Funding from Fidelity, Nasdaq, Others

Crypto exchange ErisX has raised $27.5 million from stock exchange Nasdaq and Fidelity, which administers over $7.2 trillion in client assets, among other clients. According to media reports, ErisX will offer both spot trading in Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) and Litecoin (LTC), as well as futures markets in the following year, pending regulatory approval.

Previous reports had noted that ErisX could include Bitcoin Cash (BCH) support, but this week’s news did not include the altcoin. According to ErisX CEO Thomas Chippas, the investment’s purpose is to hire staff and “build out our infrastructure and secure the appropriate steps are taken to develop a regulated market for digital assets.”

Most Memorable Quotations

Most Memorable Quotations

Hester Peirce

“Definitely possible could be 20 years from now, or it could be tomorrow. Don’t hold your breath. The SEC took a long time to [establish] Finhub. It might take even longer to approve an exchange-traded product,” — Hester Peirce, commissioner of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), speaking about Bitcoin ETF approval

Justin Sun

“#TRON will build a fund to rescue #ETH and #EOS developers from the collapse of their platform as long as those developers migrate their dapps to #TRON,” — Justin Sun, TRON CEO

Laws and Taxes

Laws And Taxes

US: Two New Bills Focusing on Crypto Market Manipulation, Regulations Introduced

Two new bills in the United States were compiled this month that focus on crypto market manipulation, with the aim to “position the United States to be a leader in the cryptocurrency industry.” The “The Virtual Currency Consumer Protection Act of 2018” and “The U.S. Virtual Currency Market and Regulatory Competitiveness Act of 2018” will go before the House of Representatives, and were a bipartisan effort from congressmen Darren Soto and Ted Budd.

Swiss Finance Minister Prefers Current Laws, Rejects Creation of Blockchain Legislation

Ueli Maurer, the Swiss Minister of Finance, has rejected a possible blockchain law in a speech at blockchain conference this week. Switzerland plans to work with existing laws in order to regulate and legislate the new technology and its financial applications, as opposed to introducing a specific blockchain or crypto legal framework, according to Maurer. The government expects to propose changes to six laws, including the civil code and bankruptcy law, in 2019.

New York Financial Services Department Approves Blockchain Digital Payment Platform

The Department of Financial Services of New York (NYDFS) has authorized a blockchain-based digital platform offered by New York-based Signature bank. The financial services department will allow the bank to offer its digital payment platform Signet in the state, which uses blockchain tech to allow bank clients to “transfer ‘Signets’ to make payments with no transaction fees, at any time of the day, year-round.” The department noted that Signet has been subject to a “comprehensive and rigorous review” and needs to comply with “significant regulatory conditions.”

US Congressman Plans to Introduce Federal Cryptocurrency and ICO Regulation

Republican U.S. Representative Warren Davidson announced plans this week to introduce legislation on a federal level to regulate both cryptocurrencies and Initial Coin Offerings (ICO). The new bill would create an “asset class” for both crypto and digital assets, which “would prevent them from being classified as securities, but would also allow the federal government to regulate initial coin offerings more effectively.”

G20 Leaders Call for Global Cryptocurrency Taxation and Regulation Systems

After their meeting this week, the G20 countries have called for the taxation of cryptocurrency, as well as its regulation to combat money laundering. According to a Japanese news outlet Jiji.com, the final text of a G20 document asks for a “taxation system for cross-border electronic payment services.” The document then continues that under the current laws, foreign companies without a base in Japan cannot be taxed by the local government, noting the need for this taxation system.

Adoption

Adoption

Mastercard Files Patent for Anonymization Method for Blockchain Transactions

Mastercard has filed a patent for a system that anonymizes transactions on a blockchain. According to the filing, the “the use of one or more intermediary addresses to obscure the source and destination of funds in a blockchain transaction” can be used in order to “increase anonymity of entities associated with blockchain addresses.” The system outlined by Mastercard would consist of a series of “anonymization request[s]” designed to anonymize the transactions themselves, rather than just the user behind any individual wallet.

Switzerland’s ‘Crypto Valley’ Ranked the ‘Fastest-Growing’ European Tech Hub

Zug, Switzerland, which is also known as “Crypto Valley,” has been ranked the fastest-growing tech community in Europe. According to the “State of European Tech” report from London-headquartered global technology investment firm Atomico, Zug tops the list in a comparison of year-on-year growth of attendees to tech-related “meetup” events per European city. The report notes that Zug has a 117 percent increase as compared with 2017.

More Than One Third of German Big Businesses See Blockchain as Important as Internet

A recent survey has shown that over one third of big businesses in Germany consider blockchain technology to be as revolutionary as the internet. The survey, conducted by the German Federal Association for Information Technology, Telecommunications and New Media (Bitkom), found that 15 percent of German companies think blockchain will “change society and the economy as much as the Internet.” Larger companies, with 500 or more employees, were more than twice as likely to hold that opinion, at 36 percent.

Abu Dhabi Int’l Financial Free Zone Completes Phase of Blockchain-Based KYC Project

The Abu Dhabi Global Market’s (ADGM) regulatory body, the Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA), along with Big Four audit firm KPMG, released a review of the blockchain-based Know Your Customer (KYC) utility project this week, calling it a “successful” first phase. An international financial free zone in the capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) worked on the project for four months, along with a consortium of major UAE-based financial institutions. The review notes the use of cryptography and digital signatures can support a more secure and convenient system for upholding KYC industry standards.

US Air Force Graduate Schools Develops Blockchain-Based Supply Chain Tool

The graduate school for the U.S. Air Force has developed an educational tool based on blockchain technology for managing supply chains. The tool is a live application and a set of tutorial videos released by the U.S. Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT). According to their report, “blockchain will revolutionize […] the digital infrastructure for future supply chains,” which can translate into “better visibility” for the military’s “extremely complex logistics network.” The Institute worked with private supply chain security firm SecureMarking and the University of South Dakota Beacom School of Business.

Mergers, Acquisitions, and Partnerships

Mergers, Acquisitions, and Partnerships

Seven Southern EU Member States Sign Declaration to Promote Blockchain Use

Seven southern European Union members states — Malta, France, Italy, Cyprus, Portugal, Spain, and Greece  — have released a declaration calling for the promotion of distributed ledger technology’s (DLT) use in the region. The document notes blockchain tech’s use in protecting citizens’ privacy and making bureaucratic systems more efficient, as well as its potential for use in the “education, transport, mobility, shipping, Land Registry, customs, company registry, and healthcare” industries.

Hardware Wallet Ledgers Partners with German Startup to Create Security Token Framework

Crypto hardware wallet firm Ledger and crypto startup Neufund have announced a partnership to let users manager security tokens through Ledger’s desktop application. The collaboration aims to develop an overall framework for security tokens. In addition, Ledger Live, which is a recently launched desktop app for crypto asset management, plans on “soon” adding an ERC-20 integration, which will let users manage security tokens issued via Neufund’s set of protocols.

US Trading-Comms Firm Partners With Blockchain Consortium R3

American trading-communications firm IPC system and enterprise blockchain software consortium R3 have partnered this week. IPC is known for producing trading turrets, i.e., communications systems used by financial traders on their trading desks. With the partnership, IPC will support R3’s Corda blockchain networks on its Connexus Cloud platform — a financial markets cloud-based platform for data, voice, and business communications and compliance.

Four Blockchain Companies Jointly Launch ‘Blockchain for Europe’ Association

Four major blockchain companies — Ripple, the NEM Foundation, Emurgo, and Fetch.AI — have formed a “Blockchain for Europe” Association. The organization’s aim to promote understanding and proactive regulation of blockchain and other distributed ledger (DLT) technologies across Europe, addressing the EU’s “fragmented” policy debate around blockchain. The organization will use education about the technology in the member states in order to advocate for future “smart” regulation, conducive to innovation, that will help the continent “shape the global agenda” on blockchain.

Funding Rounds

Funding Rounds

Overstock.Com’s Blockchain Venture Arm Purchases Equity in Blockchain Agri Project

Medici ventures, Overstock.com Inc.’s blockchain venture arm, has purchased $25 million in equity in agricultural blockchain project GrainChain. The project has developed a blockchain-powered system for the tracking of supply chain parties in the distribution process of harvests, allowing producers, buyers, and sellers to create smart contracts in order to secure funds throughout the grain transaction process. The platform is aimed at small- and medium-scale farmers, which can then remove the middlemen and conduct business outside of their immediate geographic area.

Seven New Funds in Ohio Plan $300 Million Investment for Blockchain Startups

Seven Ohio-based funds and other investment teams will contribute $300 million in investments into blockchain startups through 2021, as announced this week by executives. Speaking at a blockchain conference, the CEO of nonprofit JumpStart Ray Leach announced that the seven funds with investing $100 million in “early-stage startups that focus on using blockchain technology for business or government.” As well, “additional investment teams” will add $200 million for blockchain outfits working within Ohio’s social welfare projects, dubbed “Opportunity Zones.”

Sequoia Capital, Huobi Participate in $35 Mln Funding for Scalable ‘Blockchain’ Network

A new blockchain-type network led by a Turing Award recipient and various other academics have received $35 million in funding from investors including Sequoia Capital, IMO Ventures, FreesFund, Rong 360, Shunwei Capital, F2Pool, and major crypto exchange Huobi. The network, dubbed “Conflux,” aims to tackle blockchain scalability, proclaiming that its new testnet is capable of processing ”at least 6,500 Transactions Per Second (TPS), while supporting at least 20,000 nodes.”

Winners and Losers

Winners And Losers

BTC ETH

The market is holding steady after a week of declines, with Bitcoin trading at around $3,489, Ripple at $.30, and Ethereum at $91.99. Total market cap is at about $110 billion.

The top three altcoin gainers of the week are TittieCoin, Bastonet, and TRONCLASSIC. The top three altcoin losers of the week are FREE Coin, Etheera and RabbitCoin.

For more info on crypto prices movement, make sure to read Cointelegraph’s market analysis.
 

FUD of the Week

FUD Of The Week

Former Israeli PM Calls Crypto a ‘Ponzi Scheme,’ But Thinks Blockchain Is Important

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak compared digital currencies to Ponzi schemes but noted the importance of blockchain technology. Barak, who participated in the Camp David Accords in 2000, now serves as the chairman of medical marijuana producer InterCure. When asked about the comparison of the alleged marijuana investment “bubble” to crypto, Barak underlined that “he would never invest” in cryptocurrencies as “Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies [are] a Ponzi scheme.” However, Barak added that blockchain technology and smart contracts are important and useful technological and mathematical concepts.

US Securities Regulator Issues Cease and Desist to Delaware-Based Digital Asset Fund

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued a cease and desist against CoinAlpha Advisors LLC in addition to ordering a $50,000 penalty to be paid. The company had allegedly raised over $600,000 from 22 investors in at least five states, purchasing limited partnership interest in the fund in exchange for a proportional share of any profits derived from the fund’s investment in digital assets. However, even those CoinAlpha filed an exemption notice with the SEC in November 2017, the company was not registered with the SEC, meaning that they violated securities laws.

Chilean Supreme Court Rules Against Crypto Exchange Over Bank Account Closure

The Chilean Supreme Court has ruled against crypto exchange Orionx in a case over the right for state-owned bank Banco del Estado to close the exchange’s account. The high court revoked the July decision that protected Orionx and ordered the bank to reopen the account, with the court decision noting that the nature of cryptocurrencies prevents banks from receiving detailed information on transactions, customers, and companies that interact with the assets. The court has ruled that the bank did not violate any aspect of the Chilean constitution.

South Korean Financial Authority Warns 2 Banks Over Poor Crypto Transaction System

A financial authority in South Korea has warned major domestic banks Kookmin Bank and Nonghyup Bank over their lack of management of cryptocurrency transactions and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regulation. The country’s Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) has found that the banks had “unreasonable elements related to virtual [currency] handling business.” The banks have also been given orders for improvement and must submit the measures to the FSS within three months or face more “direct sanctions.”

BTC

Prediction Of The Week

Quoine CEO: Bitcoin Will Surpass Last Year’s All-Time Highs by End of 2019

Mike Kayamori, the CEO of Japanese fintech firm and crypto exchange operator Quoine, said in an interview this week that he believes Bitcoin (BTC) will “surpass” its all-time price highs by the end of 2019. He also noted that the bottom is near for the top coin, citing the pressure on Bitcoin miners as an accurate sign of its coming. Kayamori added that the better practices across the industry, Japan’s crypto ecosystem, in particular, is experiencing a period of “consolidation.”

Best Cointelegraph Features

Best Cointelegraph Features

G-20 Summit Results: Crypto Is Important for Global Economy, Needs to Be Regulated and Taxed

After the G20 summit that took place last week, the global community learned that G20 leaders believe the cryptocurrency is worth bringing up in reference to the sustainable development of the global economy. In this analysis, Cointelegraph looks at how the G20 member states see their role in both crypto regulation and taxation.

EOS Community Is Challenged After Node Announces Financial Rewards for Votes

After various previous centralization scandals surrounding altcoin EOS, a new issue has surfaced, with one of their Block Producers (BP) allegedly offering money in exchange for voting them as a proxy in a thinly veiled “gamification.” Cointelegraph delves into the BP, Starteos, and how its offer of crypto for votes was received in the EOS community.

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Report: Swiss City of Zug Named Fastest Growing Tech Hub in Europe

Source From https://news.bitcoin.com/report-swiss-city-of-zug-named-fastest-growing-tech-hub-in-europe/

Report: Switzerland's City of Zug Fastest Growing Tech-Hub in Europe

The city of Zug, home of the Swiss Crypto Valley, has been named the fastest growing technology community in Europe. Zug ranked atop the “State of European Tech” report by London-based global investment firm Atomico last week, on the strength of its year-on-year growth of attendees to tech-related meetup events.

Also read: Malaysian Financial Regulators to Intensify Scrutiny of ICOs, Cryptocurrencies

Zug Tech Ecosystem Grows

According to the report, Zug recorded a 177 percent increase in the number of tech meetups in 2018, compared to last year. The city’s crypto activity has been warmly supported by the Swiss government, which is fine-tuning its legislation and policies to improve financial innovation, with particular emphasis on virtual currencies.

“There is a huge geographic diversity among the top 20 fastest-growing tech hubs in Europe, as measured by the annual growth in attendees to tech-related meetup events in those cities. Zug in Switzerland, home to a growing crypto community, ranked number one as the fastest-growing community overall,” the report said.

Report: Swiss City of Zug Named Fastest Growing Tech Hub in Europe

Novosibirsk in Russia follows Zug with 173 percent increase in tech meetups, while Ghent (Belgium), The Hague (Netherlands) and Katowice (Poland) complete the top 5 of the fastest-growing tech communities.

Novosibirsk has reported startup activity in its science and technology hub, Akademgorodok, also known as the Siberian Silicon Valley. Success stories out of the suburb include nanotechnology firm Ocsial, precision laser manufacturer Tekhnoscan and banking software company CFT.

The Atomico report emphasized community-building, measured by the meetups of technological talent, as necessary for attracting investment to cities. This year, the density of meetups in Europe equated around 200 events per day throughout the year.

 Progressive Switzerland

Switzerland has taken a progressive stance towards cryptocurrency, legalizing its use and formalizing crypto transactions in a range of contexts. The country sees virtual money and blockchain technology as strategic innovations in global finance and is intent on maintaining the growth of the industry, while expanding the number of jobs it has to offer in the field.

Report: Swiss City of Zug Named Fastest Growing Tech Hub in Europe

The city of Zug has led this growth. According to a report by CV Venture Capital in October, the top 50 cryptocurrency and blockchain-related companies in Switzerland’s version of the Silicon Valley are now worth $44 billion combined, underscoring the steady growth of the Swiss crypto industry.

The report shows that the number of companies working either with digital coins or blockchain technologies in Zug has almost doubled to 600 in the past year. About 350 entities were featured in the directory when the CV Maps database was first launched in April of 2017.

Of the top 50 companies listed, five are unicorns that are either based in the Crypto Valley or originated from the area. They include the world’s biggest bitcoin miner, Bitmain, as well as other leading cryptocurrency organizations such as Cardano, Dfinity, Ethereum and Xapo, CV said. Bitmain’s revenue soared 1,700 percent to $2.5 billion in 2017, from just $137 million two years earlier. Its full-year net profit rocketed to $1.2 billion.

Lagging Behind

According to the Atomico study, Switzerland’s Zürcher Kantonalbank is the second most active corporate investor in Europe, after being involved in 20 financing rounds in the last 12 months. In terms of tech destinations, however, the country fell behind its European counterparts at the tenth position, while the U.K., Germany and France led the pack. Switzerland also failed to make the list of 12 destinations for U.S. software engineers looking for jobs in Europe.

Report: Swiss City of Zug Named Fastest Growing Tech Hub in Europe

Swiss state enterprises are making power moves as far as cryptocurrency is concerned. The country’s postal service, Swiss Post, and telecom provider Swisscom, both state-run, recently announced that they are collaborating on a “100 percent Swiss” blockchain infrastructure, with a view of meeting the security requirements of banks and retaining all data within Switzerland. The country was named the most “blockchain-friendly” European country earlier this year.

Apart from Switzerland, major economies, most recently the U.S., higher learning institutions and legacy financial institutions have been taking a second look at their look books and policy frameworks to keep up with crypto disruption. Areas of concern have included security and issues of access.

What do you think about the Atomico rankings? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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The post Report: Swiss City of Zug Named Fastest Growing Tech Hub in Europe appeared first on Bitcoin News.

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Charting Bitcoin Mining Profitability during the Recent Price Crash

Source From https://research.tradeblock.com/charting-bitcoin-mining-profitability-estimates-during-the-recent-price-crash/

On August 26, 2018, the Bitcoin network hash rate reached an all time high of more than sixty thousand petahashes per second, as miners, as a whole, dedicated greater resources to securing the network. Over this same time, bitcoin prices held above $6,500 per coin during a period of exceptionally low volatility. On November 14, 2018, this began to change…

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Islamic Financial Institution to Launch Interbank Blockchain Tools

Source From https://coinjournal.net/islamic-financial-institution-to-launch-interbank-blockchain-tools/

An agreement has been signed between iFinTech Solutions, a Tunis-based fintech firm, and the Islamic Corporation for the Development of Private Sector (ICD), the private sector arm of Islamic Development Bank Group (IsDB), according to its press release. Under this agreement, iFinTech Solutions would develop blockchain solutions to be deployed and implemented into Islamic banks […]

The post Islamic Financial Institution to Launch Interbank Blockchain Tools appeared first on Coinjournal.

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