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Blockchain

Digital Currency Group Acquires Luno, A Popular Exchange In Africa

NEW YORK, SEPTEMBER 9, 2020 – Digital Currency Group (DCG), a global enterprise that builds, buys, and invests in blockchain companies, today announced the acquisition of Luno, a leading cryptocurrency exchange. Based in London and with regional hubs in Singapore and Cape Town, Luno has grown significantly in recent years, with nearly 400 employees and more […]

The post Digital Currency Group Acquires Luno, A Popular Exchange In Africa appeared first on BlockNewsAfrica.

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NEW YORK, SEPTEMBER 9, 2020 – Digital Currency Group (DCG), a global enterprise that builds, buys, and invests in blockchain companies, today announced the acquisition of Luno, a leading cryptocurrency exchange. Based in London and with regional hubs in Singapore and Cape Town, Luno has grown significantly in recent years, with nearly 400 employees and more than five million global customers spanning over 40 countries.

[Disclaimer: This post is a paid press release.]

New York-based DCG will be making a significant financial commitment to help Luno expand globally, both in geographies where Luno currently operates and beyond. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Led by co-founder and CEO Marcus Swanepoel, Luno has become a digital asset powerhouse in many emerging and frontier markets, providing digital asset education, knowledge, and investment tools for individuals in Africa, Asia, and Europe. Luno has helped broaden the global crypto investment community and the company has seen record growth of its customer base in 2020. 

In Africa, the company saw more than 550,000 new users on its platform in Q2 2020 and contributes the largest share of cryptocurrency trading volume on the continent across non-P2P exchanges. Luno is a leading exchange in several countries that have the highest percentage of cryptocurrency ownership, including South Africa (third-highest of its citizens owning digital currencies), Nigeria (fifth-highest), Indonesia (sixth-highest), and Malaysia (tenth-highest).

DCG is an investment firm that has backed more than 160 blockchain companies around the world. In addition to its venture portfolio, DCG is the parent company of several wholly-owned subsidiaries, including Grayscale Investments (the world’s largest digital currency asset manager), Genesis (a leading digital asset prime brokerage), CoinDesk (the preeminent media and events company in the industry), and the recently-launched Foundry, which provides institutional expertise, capital, and market intelligence to bitcoin miners and manufacturers. 

DCG first invested in Luno in its seed round in 2014. 

We are proud to have supported Luno as an early investor, and we recognize a shared commitment to building mission-driven companies that can help transform traditional financial services and improve economic freedom for people all over the world,” said DCG Founder and CEO Barry Silbert. “Luno is a high growth, global business and there is a massive opportunity to expand organically and through acquisitions.

DCG enables its subsidiaries to operate as independent companies, providing leadership, partnership, and investment capital to help scale the businesses. The Luno leadership team will remain entirely intact and Swanepoel will lead acquisition efforts in his role as CEO. 

“The past seven years have been an incredibly exciting journey for Luno – helping millions of our customers get access to crypto for the first time,” said Swanepoel. “DCG has been an integral part of the Luno story during all of this time, and we’ve been fully aligned on our vision and culture since day one. Having the full backing of DCG just as we’re experiencing such a pivotal moment of growth in the industry is not just an exciting and important milestone for Luno, but more importantly it will significantly accelerate our ability to reach our goal to help upgrade 1 billion people to a better financial system by 2030.”

We have been extremely impressed with Marcus and the Luno team since we made our initial investment,” added Silbert. “Marcus understands our culture and appreciates how well Luno fits into the DCG family. He is a focused, high integrity leader and exactly the kind of person we want running one of our companies at this critical moment when the crypto industry is at an inflection point.

Founded in 2013, Luno has been backed by global tech giant the Naspers Group and Balderton Capital amongst others. During these last seven years Luno has maintained its commitment to upgrading the world to a better financial system. The company believes that the legacy system was built for a non-digital age, ignoring the needs of modern individuals and adding unnecessary inefficiencies and gatekeepers. The world now has access to new technologies like Bitcoin and Ethereum that will fundamentally change how the world views and uses money. Like communication evolving from landlines to mobile phones, money is finally catching up with other information revolutions.

Luno maintains regional offices in Kuala Lumpur, Lagos, Jakarta, and Johannesburg, and will continue to focus on the existing geographies where it operates across Europe, Africa, and Asia. The Luno team has also developed an aggressive road map for future growth and will ultimately compete with financial services firms globally. Luno is actively hiring for positions all over the world. 

About Digital Currency Group

DCG is a global enterprise that builds, buys, and invests in blockchain companies all over the world. Founded in 2015 by CEO Barry Silbert, DCG is the most active investor in the blockchain sector, with a mission to accelerate the development of a better financial system through the proliferation of digital assets and blockchain technology.  

Today, DCG sits at the epicenter of the industry, backing more than 160 companies in 35 countries. DCG also invests directly in digital currencies and other digital assets.  

In addition to its investment portfolio, DCG is the parent company of Grayscale Investments, Genesis, CoinDesk, and Foundry.

About Luno

Luno is a leading global cryptocurrency company on a mission to upgrade the world to a better financial system. 

Co-founded by CEO Marcus Swanepoel and CTO Timothy Stranex, Luno launched in 2013 and has built a team of nearly 400 with its headquarters in London with regional hubs in Singapore and Cape Town. With over 5 million customers spanning in over 40 countries, Luno’s products and services make it safe and easy to buy, sell, store, and learn about cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. 

Disclaimer: This post is a paid press release.

Source: https://blocknewsafrica.com/digital-currency-group-acquires-luno-a-popular-exchange-in-africa/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=digital-currency-group-acquires-luno-a-popular-exchange-in-africa

Blockchain

Bad guys can’t cash out their loot in 2016 Bitfinex hack

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Assets stolen from Bitfinex crypto exchange in a hacking incident back in 2016 will take over a century to be cashed out, blockchain intelligence firm Elliptic said in its latest report.

On Thursday, the company published a statement about the infamous hack that resulted in Bitfinex losing 120,000 bitcoin (valued today at around $7 billion). It detailed nearly 80% of the illegally obtained funds are still in the hacker(s) wallet.

The remaining 21% have been moved around by the malicious cyber attackers that have only managed to launder 4% of their total haul, which is approximately $270 million.

A roadblock for the attackers

Elliptic pointed out that the reason for their thesis is the evolution of crypto tracking tools, regulations, and law enforcement methodologies that make stolen or ill-gotten digital assets very challenging to cash out today.

The intelligence company explained that the hackers used “peel-chains” to exchange the stolen funds. In this method, crypto tokens are moved around numerous times, moving fast from wallet to wallet, and only a small amount of the bitcoin is “peeled off to their actual destination along the way.”

Back then, it was extremely hard to track crypto-assets laundered using this method. But today, the emergence of automatic tracing systems capable of determining the ultimate source or funds in an address makes the job a lot easier for the authorities.

The hacker after the cyber attack

After the successful attack on Bitfinex in 2016, the laundering process started in 2017 through the largest darknet market that time – Alphabay. Later that year, it was shut down by law enforcement, prompting the move to Hydra – the biggest illegal marketplace today.

Cryptoslate cited part of the report from Elliptic, stating, “After a hiatus in 2019, the launderers returned to Hydra in 2020 and are currently depositing $3 million of the stolen bitcoin every month.”

According to the report, to date, there is now approximately $72 million worth of the stolen cryptocurrency sent to Hydra.

 

Image courtesy of Cointelegraph News/YouTube

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://bitcoinerx.com/blockchain/bad-guys-cant-cash-out-their-loot-in-2016-bitfinex-hack/

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Blockchain

Three reasons why Cardano is going on this price trajectory

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Rising trade volume across spot and derivatives exchanges have supported Cardano’s ongoing price rally over the past few weeks and months. The altcoin, at the time of writing, was trading at the $2.32-level, with the crypto gaining by 20% in 24 hours to touch one ATH after the other. The aforementioned hike in price and trade volume were evidenced by the increase in market capitalization as well.

Thanks to the aforementioned factors, Cardano is now ranked third among the market’s top-10 altcoins, based on data from CoinMarketCap.

What’s more, based on the attached chart, currently there is more ADA staked than in the past 30 days. In fact, it is at nearly half a million. With 100% of its HODLers profitable at the press time price level, ADA’s rally is likely to be a long one, especially with the altcoin’s staking rewards data offering a similar conclusion. With a relatively high percentage of ADA staked, a direct relationship has emerged between staked ADA and ADA’s price.

While the current on-chain sentiment is slightly bearish, the net network growth stood at a positive 5%. Further, while there has been a slow drop in large transactions, that could mean that more retail traders are buying ADA v. HODLers and institutions. Unless trade volume drops and cascading sell-offs occur, the price is likely to hold at its current price level.

In the case of Cardano, the concentration by large HODLers has remained largely below 30% and this is key to its ongoing rally. Top memecoins and altcoins that are rallying like DOGE, LINK, BNB, and ETH, among others, have a high concentration by large traders. This is essential to supporting the price at its key levels.

$80 billion worth of large transactions have transpired over the past week and the inflows are anticipated to increase even more. Less than 15% HODLers have held ADA for over 12 months, despite YTD gains of over 500%. And, ADA’s HODLers are lower in numbers than expected. Ergo, the short-term ROI could be the key reason for the short HODLing duration.

Based on data from Messari, the ROI over the past week was nearly 40%.

Why Cardano's price rally is a long one

ADA short-term ROI || Source: Messari

In the past year, the ROI was over 700%. This is a relatively high gain for HODLers, despite several dips.

ADA’s latest developments and the increasing demand in the second phase of the altseason make it one of the hottest altcoins to buy and HODL. In fact, one can argue that ADA continues to remain undervalued at the press time price level.


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Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://ambcrypto.com/three-reasons-why-cardano-is-going-on-this-price-trajectory

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Blockchain

Data shows the ‘Bitcoin price drops ahead of CME expiries’ claim is a myth

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Historically, activity surrounding the Bitcoin (BTC) monthly futures and options expiry has been blamed for weakening bullish momentum. A few studies from 2019 found a 2.3% average drop in BTC price 40 hours before the CME futures settlement date. 

However, as Cointelegraph reported in June 2020, the effect faded away. While 2020 seems to have rejected the potential negative impact of CME expiries, so far, the current year appears to validate the theory. Bitcoin’s price has been suppressed ahead of futures and options expiry in the first three months of 2021.

Bitcoin performance before and after CME expiry, USD. Source: TradingView

Some investors and traders have pointed out that Bitcoin’s incredible rally after the recent futures and options expiry dates has become a trend.

BTC has effectively rallied in the days following the expiry, but expanding this analysis uncovers a less-than-satisfactory trend.

Three consecutive events don’t prove a trend

The past 13 months have been nothing short of spectacular for Bitcoin, as the cryptocurrency posted 788% gains. August 2020 turned out to be the worst month, as BTC presented a 7.5% negative performance. Thus, choosing random starting points within the month will likely show a similar positive trend.

For example, if one uses the “last quarter” moon phase as a proxy, the odds that a rally takes place after each event are very high.

Bitcoin performance after “Last Quarter” moon, USD. Source: TradingView

As depicted above, indeed, Bitcoin rallied after five out of the last six instances. The only conclusion might be that positive trends are the norm rather than the exception during bull runs.

Although there might be some explanation to the reason behind Bitcoin’s end-of-the-month underperformance, these are only hypotheses.

While market makers and arbitrage desks could benefit from suppressing the price after a rally, other forces, including leverage futures longs and call option holders, would balance that out.

Bitcoin price did not drop in three of the last seven expiries

Therefore, it makes sense to analyze the potential price suppression ahead of the expiry instead of looking for explanations for a rally during a bull market.

Bitcoin performance before and after CME expiry in 2020, USD. Source: TradingView

Both October and December 2020 expiries failed to present any negative pressure ahead of such dates. Meanwhile, the 12% positive performance on the five days that preceded the most recent April 30 expiry also puts a big question mark on how meaningful the CME event really is.

Considering there hasn’t been a price decrease ahead of monthly futures and options expiries in three of the last seven instances, this evidence should put a nail in the coffin of the unfounded myth.

As mentioned earlier, trying to develop theories on why sellers acted more aggressively on specific dates is unlikely to yield results.

As shown above, Bitcoin’s price failed to underperform in three out of the last seven expiries. A 57% success rate should not define a trend when a positive performance after a specific date has been proven common during a bull run.

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/data-shows-the-bitcoin-price-drops-ahead-of-cme-expiries-claim-is-a-myth

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