Blockchain Will Drive Next Industrial Revolution: Major Wall Street Firm 751

Steve Chiavarone, VP at financial services firm Federated Investors, talked-up blockchain in an interview with CNBC May 11, calling the technology an “economic growth driver” and listing it among five “key technologies” that he believes will “drive this next industrial revolution.”

Blockchain: Economic Growth Driver

When asked whether blockchain will be a driver of economic growth, Chiavarone made note of the automatization and increased efficiency blockchain offers, saying: 

“When you think about it from an enterprise perspective, it has the ability to replace reconciliation — which is expensive and requires back office, and time, and paperwork — with more instantaneous verification.”

He continues, saying that:

“Companies can have more efficient supply chains and can cut their back and middle office costs.” That, Chiavarone says, “will allow business to flow more efficiently, and will allow costs to be cut and that saving to be passed along.” 

In addition, he states that “any company with a supply chain can benefit from this [blockchain].”

Driving the Next Industrial Revolution

Chiavarone ranked blockchain as one of five “key technologies” that will he believes will “drive this next industrial revolution.” Along with blockchain he noted automation, robotics, Artificial Intelligence, and the Internet of things (IoT).

The interviewer then asks how investors can “play” the potential of blockchain, and whether it’s best to simply buy Bitcoin, or whether one should instead lean towards companies that utilize the underlying blockchain technology itself.  Chiavarone says that “a lot of people went to Bitcoin first,” but then points to blockchain-related companies like Nvidia and Intel that “enable blockchain verification” (a nod to cryptocurrency mining) as being good bets for those looking to support the technology. 

He also notes how many of the largest banks in the U.S., like Bank of America, have started taking interest in blockchain and “are investing heavily.” Chiavarone claims that the bank “boasted at Davos that they were investing the most [in blockchain].” This boast is likely accurate: we reported back in February that Bank of America had already filed 45 crypto-related patents.

Although Chiavarone largely stays away from discussing the specifics of the coins, it’s worth remembering that cryptocurrencies themselves are an integral part of the blockchain ecosystem.

In other bullish sentiment this week, Fred Wilson, venture capitalist and co-founder of Union Square Capital, spoke about crypto and blockchain in a blog post. Wilson — responding to anti-Bitcoin remarks made my Warren Buffet —explains how cryptocurrencies are helping produce a global, decentralized technology infrastructure:

“They [cryptocurrencies] are the fuel that powers a new form of technology infrastructure that is being built on top of the foundational internet protocols.”

He goes on to say that blockchain-enabled smart contracts are “the most important innovation we have yet seen in crypto.”

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Bitcoin Association to partner with Saxion University on Bitcoin SV massive open online courses 4184

Bitcoin Association, the global industry organisation that works to advance business with the Bitcoin SV blockchain, today announces that it has entered into a partnership with Saxion University of Applied Sciences to produce a Bitcoin SV-focused massive open online course (MOOC) This will be the first of an anticipated series of four MOOCs designed to educate about the immense power of Bitcoin’s protocol and how to build applications on the Bitcoin SV blockchain.

The MOOCs, including all assessments, will be offered free of charge, with the first course expected set to be launched in early-2021. The MOOCs will follow a progressive curriculum, beginning first with a Bitcoin Basic Course for decision makers, before moving into further, more technically advanced Bitcoin development courses. While offered by Saxion University, the courses will be available to anyone, from anywhere in the world, on demand at any time. At the end of each online course, participants will be able to take an assessment test to demonstrate their proficiency.

Saxion University has been a leader in the development of blockchain education and research programmes in the Netherlands. In 2019, Saxion established the country’s first blockchain professorship, appointing Dr. Jan Veuger as Professor of Blockchain at Saxion University of Applied Sciences and the leading professor of the newly founded Saxion Blockchain Institute.

The partnership with Saxion University is the latest in a series of Bitcoin SV education initiatives to be announced by Bitcoin Association. Last year, the Association announced its sponsorship of the Cambridge University Metanet Society, which is focused on educating students about Bitcoin SV’s ability to power a new Internet. This year, the Association announced partnerships with two online software development communities – CSDN, the largest IT and software development community in China, with 31 million users; and WeAreDevelopers, a major European development community. In 2020, Bitcoin Association has hosted a pair of Bitcoin SV DevCons – two-day virtual developer conferences, each attracting thousands of participants– to complement a growing online repository of developer resources and programming, including a new Bitcoin SV Wiki to correct misconceptions about Bitcoin.

Bitcoin Association also offers developers the opportunity to put their skills into practice with Bitcoin SV Hackathons, multi-day coding competitions for major cash prizes. The final of the 3rd Hackathon is set to be contested at CoinGeek Live September 30 – October 2 with USD $100K in BSV at stake.

SpaceChain Partners Elecnor DEIMOS to Develop Blockchain-enabled Credit Management and Payment Service for the European Space Agency-funded ECOMI Project 6462

SpaceChain UK Limited (SpaceChain) today announced a partnership with DEIMOS to collaborate under the project ECOMI – E-COMmerce platform for MIcro-geoservices. The aim of the project is to develop an e-commerce platform, store4EO, with blockchain-enabled credit management and payment services. Elecnor DEIMOS is a leader in providing systems engineering, ground segment, mission analysis, satellite integration, satellite navigation, Earth observation (EO), space situational awareness, and launchers. Through this partnership, SpaceChain will develop the underlying blockchain network that supports decentralised and transparent service purchase and distribution.

Funded by the European Space Agency (ESA), the ECOMI project is led by Elecnor DEIMOS to provide EO services to consumers in Europe and ESA partner countries. It also seeks to democratise access to EO services while ensuring secure and transparent credit management. The introduction of blockchain to the space-based e-commerce platform decentralises the distribution of services to consumers and facilitates transactions in a frictionless and transparent manner.

The store4EO e-commerce platform’s goal is to facilitate the delivery of innovative EO services to various industries, the public sector and the general public easily, and securely reinforcing that the utilisation of EO services will become the new norm.

“Our partnership with Elecnor DEIMOS is an important milestone as we collectively uncover new possibilities with e-commerce and enable the commercialisation of EO services,” said Nick Trudgen, Chief Commercial Officer and UK Director of SpaceChain. “Elecnor DEIMOS’ industry-leading engineering solution and knowledge of space, combined with SpaceChain’s expertise in decentralised infrastructure with blockchain provides an unmatched synergy for a reliable solution and unparalleled customer experience.”

EO services coupled with blockchain technology are expected to enrich the industry as more business use cases continue to increase. Redefining the way EO services are distributed is one of the driving forces behind the integration of blockchain in the project while enhancing data processing in the digital and physical supply chains of tomorrow.

“We are redefining how EO services are reaching out to consumers, and are thrilled to team with SpaceChain, given its innovation in integrating blockchain with space technologies,” said Koushik Panda, service strategy manager of ECOMI Project. “Through our shared vision to build a platform economy for EO, we are now one step closer to delivering sophisticated EO services and data to the wider public. Our ultimate goal is to create a more efficient market for EO, and in the long run, enable EO services to address industry issues that were once impossible to surmount.”

White Star Capital Announces the First Close of its $30M Digital Asset Fund 6765

White Star Capital, a global multi-stage technology venture capital investment platform, today announced the first close of its new $30M Digital Asset Fund. The new fund will invest in crypto-networks and blockchain-enabled businesses at each layer of the tech stack including protocols, infrastructure and applications. The Digital Asset Fund will deploy between $500,000 and $2.0 million in initial investments into 15-20 companies with a core focus in Europe and North America. The team will take a research-driven approach to maximize returns through early access in both equity and tokens. To date, the fund has made two investments: dfuse, a blockchain API company that helps developers build performant applications by organizing the world’s decentralized data; and Multis, a Y Combinator backed company, which offers “crypto-first” business banking accounts with an aspiration to bridge the gap between Decentralized and Legacy Finance.

The Digital Asset Fund marks White Star Capital’s first specialty fund and will be run by New York based General Partner Sep Alavi and supported by Principals Thomas Klocanas in New York and Sanjay Zimmerman in Toronto. The fund will also benefit from White Star Capital’s extended team in London and Paris, as well as a network of venture partners in Tokyo, Hong Kong, San Francisco and Switzerland.

As an early-stage investor since 2013, Sep has been investing in crypto assets and involved with blockchain companies for the past five years. Previous to joining White Star Capital, he spent 12 years working in capital markets in Paris, Chicago and New York City. Thomas, started his career as a research analyst in the fintech and financial sector at Barclays in London before spending two years at Consensys in New York and consulting for various blockchain projects such as Coinhouse and Blockstack. He joined White Star Capital eighteen months ago. Sanjay joined White Star Capital in Montreal in 2017 and was recently promoted to Principal after completing his MBA at INSEAD in Singapore, Philadelphia and Fontainebleau.

“Digital Assets are gaining adoption, and venture valuations and token round distributions have rationalized, which is an attractive entry point,” said Sep Alavi. “Incumbents are rapidly entering the space and embracing the next wave of innovation. At WSC Digital Asset, we are looking to partner with the next generation of startups building global networks and frictionless business models. We are actively interested in investing in crypto protocols, infrastructure and middleware, privacy, financial, gaming, and social use cases”

While regulation continues to evolve pragmatically and positively around the sector, enterprise and institutional giants like Fidelity, JP Morgan, Facebook, Walmart and Square are embracing blockchain technology at an accelerating pace and this is just the beginning. According to a report by Andreesen Horowitz, startup and developer activity in the space have been growing 53.9% and 74.4% CAGR since 2010.

“White Star Capital’s international footprint and network, as well as our team’s blockchain expertise position us well to make an impact in the digital asset sector,” said Eric Martineau-Fortin, Founder and Managing Partner of White Star Capital. “Our platform and network will give us access to exceptional deal flow from various companies across blockchain use cases.”

TADS Awards – The World’s First Annual International Awards for Tokenized Assets & Digitized Securities Launched in Hong Kong 7765

TADS Awards (which stands for “Tokenized Assets & Digitized Securities Awards”) is the world’s first annual international award for the asset tokenization and digital securities sectors. It celebrates these industries by recognizing and honoring significant contributions and distinguished achievements worldwide. Hosted annually, TADS Awards gathers together individuals and businesses to share the energy that tokenization brings to the financial markets around the world — https://tadsawards.org/.

The World Economic Forum forecasts that by 2027, 10% of the world’s GDP will be tokenized — with an estimated market capitalization of US$24 trillion. TADS Awards nurtures the growth of TADS industries by jointly establishing “best practices” and setting “measuring standards” for high-quality tokenized assets and digitized securities through close collaboration with other industry leaders on the global market.

“TADS Awards creates important recognition for best of breed ideas and solutions in emerging technologies like Blockchain and Digital Assets. Such a platform not only aids in creating awareness, but also fosters a healthy competitive spirit that is vital for progress and growth of the industry imperatives,” said Nitin Gaur, Director of IBM Financial Sciences and Digital Assets at IBM.

“Tokenization is a futuristic business model, providing a platform for key information exchange, empowering sustainable growth and operational efficiency through digitized and FinTech based incentives,” commented Peter Koo, APAC leader of IT & Specialized Assurance, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu.

Martin Sabine, Chairman of Somerley Capital said, “The TADS Awards recognizes pacesetters in a breakthrough area of activity which Somerley believes has the potential to disrupt and enhance the provision of financial services.”

“Asset tokenization is not the future, but the present. It is happening in front of our eyes. As our industry emerges as a whole, it is important to recognize outstanding projects and the pioneers behind them, who are paving the way for a more accessible, efficient and transparent financial future,” reflected Emi Lorincz, Board Member of the Crypto Valley Association.

“As the digital technology flagship of Hong Kong and home to the largest FinTech community with over 360 FinTech companies, we are committed to strengthening Hong Kong’s international finance center position under the digital economy era,” said Peter Yan, Chief Executive Office of Hong Kong Cyberport. He further added, “TADS Awards is a strong impetus in recognizing innovative and impactful solutions in the digital asset area. We look forward to seeing winning solutions under TADS Awards being brought to a new stage of development.”

“Asset tokenization is reinventing capital markets. Digitization of securities can facilitate cross border investment and allow investors to access valuable and unique investment opportunities worldwide. Enterprises are able to access global liquidity at a fractional cost, as  compared to the conventional financial market,” said Mr. Chan Heng Fai, Executive Chairman of American Pacific Bank.

CelerX Becomes First Mobile Esports Platform on Blockchain to Surpass $3 Million in Player Winnings in One Month 11226

Since the global release of BUST-A-MOVE Real Money Tournament in July 2020, Celer Network’s mobile eSports platform CelerX has seen new record-highs in the number of games played each week and users making an average of $20 per day – with top users making $1,000+ per day. So far, mid-August has proven to be the biggest gaming day of 2020 and complements CelerX’s $3 million worth of player winnings across the mobile esports platform and game portfolio in one month.

Following the game’s recent introduction and joint collaboration with TAITO, Next Gaming and CelerX, BUST-A-MOVE is a leading skill-based game on iOS. As the world’s first mobile eSports app that runs on blockchain and the first (and only) approved by Apple to download, CelerX supports transactions made with cryptocurrency – including 20% of BUST-A-MOVE’s player deposits. Cryptocurrency offers borderless and permission-less benefits allowing players across the globe to access the game, even if they are part of the unbanked population.

“It’s no surprise that the mobile gaming market is pegged to become a $100 billion industry by 2021. But despite the rapid growth over the past decade, monetization strategies for game developers and the user’s experience has been in a holding pattern,” said Dr. Mo Dong, Co-Founder of Celer Network. “CelerX is proud to help reshape the industry with the world’s first mobile eSports app that runs on blockchain and provides a revenue model that benefits game developers and operators on a per match approach vs. in-app purchase or ad supported monetization. As a result, the companies we work with are generating ten times the Average Revenue Per Daily Active User (ARPDAU). BUST-A-MOVE is an incredible example of this successful model that offers an innovative user experience and the game has seen record growth in a short timeframe.”

The rise of BUST-A-MOVE is met by the decline of casino visits and an increased interest in gaming due to COVID-19. The closure of entertainment centers and casinos as part of the shelter-in-place orders and the pandemic has led to challenges for the gambling sector. To that end, the global market for casinos is expected to decline by 10.8% in the year 2020 (ResearchAndMarkets.com). Meanwhile, mobile esports has benefited from lockdowns and CelerX has seen double digit growth on daily active users and revenue month over month.

Finally, after adding 800,000 first-time players in 2020 with more than 6 million games played to date spanning an international reach, the CelerX platform now boasts more than 120,000+ active global players per month.

Huobi Perpetual Swaps Joins DeFi Yield Farming Campaign with $200,000 Reward 11987

To celebrate the seventh anniversary of Huobi, Huobi Futures has launched a DeFi Yield Farming campaign with $200,000 reward to premium users on September 21.  The campaign starts at 16:00 UTC on September 21 and ends at 15:59:59 UTC on October 1.

Huobi perpetual swaps supports the following DeFi assets UNI, LINK, YFII, SUSHI, DOT, YFI and ADA for this campaign. Except for ADA and DOT, the remaining five are all DeFi tokens. So far, Huobi has 61 widely-accepted tokens in its swaps suite including 28 DeFi tokens, becoming the crypto platform that offers the most coin-margined swaps globally.

Campaign Rules: Whilst the daily cumulative Maker amount exceeds $1,000 on the designated assets – UNI, LINK, YFII, SUSHI, DOT, YFI and ADA, the prize pool will be divided according to the portion of the users’ cumulative Maker amount. It means the larger the Maker amount is, the more reward the user will receive.

1. The yield farming campaign will start at 16:00 UTC on September 21 and ends at 15:59:59 UTC on October 1;

2. Sub-accounts cannot participate in the campaign as independent accounts; sub-account transactions will be merged into their main accounts; Huobi App will not display yield farming rewards of sub-accounts.

3. Users can check their rewards at Huobi APP.

4. Rewards will be allocated in equivalent value of tokens. The number of tokens issued will be calculated based on the closing price of the day; Yield farming rewards below 1USD will not be issued.

5. Reward will be calculated to 6 decimal places for YFI, 5 decimal places for YFII, 2 decimal places for DOT, LINK, SUSHI, UNI and ADA. The exceedances will be truncated.

6. Rewards will be allocated to the user’s perpetual swaps account in the following day.  Pay attention to the SMS and Email notifications.

7. The final interpretation right of this campaign belongs to Huobi Futures.