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Is This the Blockchain Firm That Will Get Enterprise to Finally Embrace Open Networks?

Concordium, whose CEO is a Volvo board member, is looking to shake up the seemingly glacial world of enterprise blockchain.

Republished by Plato



Concordium, an ambitious project whose founders have close links to companies including Volvo, IKEA, Saxo Bank and Nasdaq, is looking to shake up the seemingly glacial world of enterprise blockchain. 

The most striking thing about Concordium, which launches its third testnet next month, is the way it pushes what was once anathema to big corporates: public and permissionless blockchains.

Businesses, wary of tipping their hands and giving away any competitive advantage, have traditionally preferred the idea of private and permissioned blockchains. But many advocates of blockchain tech believe only open systems hold true transformational promise. The oft-cited analogy centers on the relevance of internet versus intranet.  

Read more: ‘Boring Is the New Exciting’: How Baseline Protocol Connected With 600 Corporates

Toeing the line between the privacy requirements of regulated businesses and full-broadcast blockchains like those of Bitcoin and Ethereum has led some very smart people to opt for an attenuated architecture when it comes to distributed ledgers. 

However, Concordium is confident it has found a third way, keeping sensitive data private using a clever identity and zero-knowledge-proof (ZKP) system, providing firms with a safe, flexible option to deploy open blockchains.

The momentum around projects like Baseline Protocol, which now has some 600 big firms using it, is a solid indicator ZKP tech is ready for prime time.

‘Something totally new’

According to Concordium CEO Lone Fønss Schrøder, sometimes you need a permission-based ledger; but in order to realize new business models, it has to come in combination with baked-in permissionless possibilities. 

“I think that’s really what large corporations are looking for,” said Fønss Schrøder. “If you look at Hyperledger, for example, or R3, I don’t think it is blockchain in the sense of really providing something new. It’s not decentralized. Companies are seeing it as just another way to do their mainframe applications. But when you talk about permissionless blockchain, it’s something totally new.”

Blockchain today simply doesn’t meet the needs of corporations, says Fønss Schrøder, and a lack of permissionless flexibility has led to no uptick in business adoption. 

Concordium’s chief marketing manager, Beni Issembert, went further: Businesses underwhelmed by today’s enterprise blockchain offerings are squarely in Concordium sights.

“Businesses that are open-minded feel a lot of frustration and desolation when it comes to using Hyperledger and R3 Corda. And we are talking to those disappointed businesses,” Issembert said.

Concordium CEO Lone Fønss Schrøder
Source: Concordium

Big-name partners

It would be easy to write Concordium off as some kind of naive newcomer – both R3 and Hyperledger declined to comment on the Concordium white paper. 

But the project, which has its roots in Denmark, features an impressive cast of players from business and academia. On the science side, Concordium’s research center at Denmark’s Aarhus University is run by widely cited cryptographer Ivan Damgard. Last September, Torben Pryds Pedersen, creator of the Pedersen Commitment cryptographic primitive, was appointed as Concordium’s CTO.

Read more: Staying Alive: Why the World of Enterprise Blockchain Has Turned to Collaborations

In terms of corporate clout, Fønss Schrøder is a boardroom director at IKEA, vice chairman of Volvo and spent 22 years at A.P. Moller Maersk. Concordium’s founder, Lars Seier Christensen, founded Saxo Bank in 1992, while the blockchain’s advisers include former Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen, and heavy hitters from Nasdaq, Mastercard and Skype.

It’s one thing to announce a paradigm shift in the way businesses intend to use blockchain technology, but another to show hard evidence of this new permissionless demand. 

“We are already in contact with those people [Volvo and IKEA] and looking at ways to fulfill what they would like to do. But we are not only targeting 20 or 40 businesses,” said Issembert. “We are focused on the next generation of commerce, the new unicorns; firms that you don’t have to convince the best approach is an open system.”

Open use cases

It should be pointed out that Volvo has blazed a trail when it comes to tracking the minerals used in electric car batteries with the help of Hyperledger Fabric. IKEA has also done some interesting blockchain experiments with the likes of Tradeshift using the Maker protocol. 

Neither Volvo nor IKEA would confirm to CoinDesk whether they were testing Concordium at this time.

Read more: IKEA in ‘World First’ Transaction Using Smart Contracts and Licensed E-Money

If large corporations have been mostly happy with proofs-of-concept using closed enterprise blockchains, what are the new use cases that open systems like Concordium can offer? 

Fønss Schrøder said a major opportunity exists in rethinking the way procurement and supply chains work, for example. (In terms of new entrants to the enterprise blockchain space, there have also been some interesting moves from the EOS ecosystem, particularly in Latin America.)

“It could be smart contracts, which actually will function as marketplaces for you and your whole procurement sector,” said Fønss Schrøder. “I think about what Maersk has been doing, but the disadvantage for Maersk is that this should never have been built on a permission-based blockchain; it should have been permissionless. But that’s the kind of logistical use case I’m sure we will be able to support.”

Volvo board member Fønss Schrøder also sees plenty of uses for open blockchains in the car industry, across secondary markets, for instance, and the service agreements that come with that.

“Nearly every car sold by Volvo has some kind of lease arrangement or car-care, and blockchain is well suited to support this on the insurance side and on the service side,” said Fønss Schrøder.

Public, but private

As far as the ZKP secret sauce, Issembert called this the “backbone of the network,” but could not disclose details.

“For the ZKP design approach, we are going to come to the market with our own solution. It’s not something that has been seen yet,” he said.

Read more: WATCH: ‘Big Four’ Exec Says Privacy Is Key to Enterprise Blockchain Adoption

Next month sees Concordium’s third testnet come into being, with a view to going live in January 2021. 

“We will have the smart contract layer ready and then we will see which corporations will build on it,” said Fønss Schrøder. “It will be very interesting. I don’t think we will disappoint you.”


The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.



How NFTs, DeFi and Web 3.0 are intertwined

Republished by Plato



While blockchain itself provides the technology constructs to facilitate exchange, ownership and trust in the network, it is in the digitization of value elements where asset tokenization is essential. Tokenization is the process of converting the assets and rights to a property into a digital representation, or token, on a blockchain network. 

Distinguishing between cryptocurrency and tokenized assets is important in understanding exchange vehicles, valuation models and fungibility across the various value networks that are emerging and posing interoperability challenges. These are not just technical challenges, but also business challenges around equitable swaps.

Asset tokenization can lead to the creation of a business model that fuels fractional ownership, the ability to own an instance of a large asset. While discussing asset tokenization in a previous article, I also mentioned the value of an instance economy in democratizing finance, commerce and global access, as well as in creating a broader global marketplace at a scale never before seen.

With digital assets and their fungibility in a blockchain ecosystem, there are various drivers of valuation. These include: 1) tokens based on crypto economic models that are driven by supply and demand, and the utility of the network; 2) nonfungible tokens, or NFTs, which have an intrinsic value such as identification, diplomas and healthcare records — essentially, tokens that are simple proof validations of the existence, authenticity and ownership of digital assets; and 3) fungible tokens that are valued on various bases, such as the sum total of economic activity in the network (cryptocurrency), its utility (smart contracts and transaction network processing), assigned values (stable coins and security tokens), and so on.

In this article, I address the complex issue of the hyperbolic and rapid rise of NFTs, after a similarly meteoric rise of decentralized finance, or DeFi, creating amazing innovations — with immense promise of democratization, new business models and global marketplaces with global access — all fueled by the basic premise of decentralization and fundamental constructs of tokenization and wallets. While NFTs may be characterized as one-of-a-kind cryptographic tokens with some intrinsic value to a holder or to a market (art, collectibles), the NFT movement is indicative of a larger token revolution that will not only fuel massive innovation and growth in Web 3.0 protocols but also test the resolve of the DeFi movement, along with its ability to intersect and provide platforms and an exchange vehicle for all token types.

Growth in Web 3.0 protocols

The first two generations of web protocols were largely about disseminating information and connecting people. They fueled a massive growth in information and collaboration, and did wonders for connecting the world. However, those web protocols were never designed to move things of value. Also, as the Web 2.0 era reached its fullest potential, vulnerabilities such as “fake news” and the “batched relay” of the movement of assets via a series of intermediaries emerged. Threats to the commerce and financial infrastructure of the system risk destabilizing it.

Web 3.0 promises to safeguard all things we value: information, truth and digital assets — both fungible and nonfungible. Whereas Web 2.0 was driven by the advent of social, mobile and the cloud, Web 3.0 is largely built on three new layers of technological innovation: edge computing, decentralized data networks and artificial intelligence.

The growth of NFTs has not only empowered the ability for artists, skilled professionals and entrepreneurs to encapsulate innovation in a tokenized form but has also fueled the democratization of the platform as one of the promises of blockchain technology. The underlying infrastructure includes decentralized storage technologies, efficient consensus protocols, off-chain computing, and oracle networks to provide connectivity and validation to existing systems.

Collectively, the Web 3.0 set of technologies envisions a connected, trustless, accountable network for efficiently delivering value, thus crafting an infrastructure for things of worth. NFTs represent both transferable entities and nontransferable tokens that we value. The latter include things such as our identification, healthcare records and passports, things that represent us and allow us to participate in the digital economy with our own unique, digital identities.

As we dare to envision a shift toward a world with decentralized control, governance based on distributed technology that challenges every business model, and governance structure built upon centralized business frameworks, we do have to ponder some things. Not only the shift itself, but the motivation, incentive and monetization elements that fuel and power the economic infrastructure to move things that have value — thereby keeping up with our changing perception and subsequent realization of that value.

Intersecting with finance — DeFi

DeFi is the movement in the blockchain applications space that leverages decentralized network technology to disrupt and force a transformation of old financial products into trustless, transparent protocols, facilitating digital value creation and dissemination with few to no intermediaries. It is widely understood and accepted that — due to new synergies and co-creation via new digital interactions and value-exchange mechanisms — blockchain technology lays the foundation for a trusted digital transactional network that, as a disintermediated platform, fuels the growth of marketplaces and secondary markets.

While DeFi aims to deliver the promise of finance democratization, NFTs test the resolve of DeFi by delivering a competitive yet inclusive asset class, plus avenues to provide a medium of exchange, fungibility by other fungible asset classes, and liquidity to a traditionally illiquid market.

Asset classes resulting from DeFi protocols and NFTs avail themselves of the advantages of fractional ownership of the assets, blurring the lines between asset classes and using constructs like digital wallets as a receptacle for them. This is all supported by underlying layers of Web 3.0 that provide security and availability via decentralization, as well as trust and immutability via consensus, extending these principles to basic computer infrastructure like storage and interconnect.

Commercialization of Web 3.0 protocols, which manifest as fungible utility tokens, further blurs the lines with diverse financial innovation products introduced by DeFi (such as base assets and derivatives), products that are also tokenized. So, while decentralization is the underlying theme — and the wallet and the token are fundamental constructs — these blurring lines are quite profound.

This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading move involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making a decision.

The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

Nitin Gaur is the founder and director of IBM Digital Asset Labs, where he devises industry standards and use cases and works toward making blockchain for the enterprise a reality. He previously served as chief technology officer of IBM World Wire and of IBM Mobile Payments and Enterprise Mobile Solutions, and he founded IBM Blockchain Labs where he led the effort in establishing the blockchain practice for the enterprise. Nitin is also an IBM Distinguished Engineer and an IBM Master Inventor with a rich patent portfolio. Additionally, he serves as research and portfolio manager for Portal Asset Management, a multi-manager fund specializing in digital assets and DeFi investment strategies.

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Has the rally ended for altcoins like LINK, ADA, and NPXS?

Republished by Plato



With most altcoins rallying at the current point in the market cycle where Bitcoin is making a comeback, there are a few altcoins that may have ended their price rally. Among these, LINK ranks in the top 10 cryptocurrencies based on market capitalization.

LINK’s oracles may have filled the void left from the removal of XRP from Grayscale’s fund. However, that does not seem to have had an impact that would last long enough to boost the price on spot exchanges. The asset is currently trading at the $32 level, down from its ATH. Though there is anticipation that the price will rally to its ATH, the dropping trade volume across exchanges signals otherwise.

After being added to Grayscale’s fund, LINK’s price went up steadily, however, a boost from institutional demand may not be enough to boost the asset’s price. 93% HODLers are profitable before the asset takes a dip in the current cycle

The altcoin rally may have ended for LINK, ADA and NPXS

Grayscale LINK Holdings || Source: Bybt

LINK’s institutional demand has had only a partial impact on price, and the trend reversal depends on the HODLers profitability at the current price level and the rally of altcoins led by ETH. Historically, Bitcoin’s rally has had a negative impact on LINK’s price and that remains to be seen as Bitcoin traders above $60000 once again this weekend.

Another top altcoin, Cardano has offered HODLers an ROI of over 440% in 2020. This altcoin has been considered to be the one to HODL in the long term based on on-chain analysis and trader sentiments. In the current cycle, 65% HODLers are profitable at the price level of $1.23. This is one of the top altcoins in which the concentration by large holders is low, below 50%, currently at 24%.

Additionally, at this point in the rally, there is a significant drop in ADA’s trade volume across exchanges. This drop in liquidity may lead to a drop in price over the following week. Though large transactions in the past week have been above $30 Billion, the volume is dropping consistently.

The altcoin rally may have ended for LINK, ADA and NPXS

ADA price chart || Source: Messari

Unlike ADA and LINK, in the case of NPXS, the price is back to the same level as a month ago. The 24-hour trade volume has taken a plunge with a near 100% drop in 24 hours, and this is a unique position in NPXS’s price cycle. Moreover, the on-chain sentiment is bearish and this may be the ideal time to buy altcoins like these that are consolidating. The confidence is consistently high in top markets on spot exchanges, and the dropping trade volume is a sign of consolidation.

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Kraken Daily Market Report for April 09 2021

Republished by Plato




  • Total spot trading volume at $1.02 billion, down from the 30-day average of $1.34 billion.
  • Total futures notional at $417.0 million.
  • The top five traded coins were, respectively, Bitcoin, Tether, Ethereum, Ripple, and Polkadot.
  • Strong returns from Waves (+23%), Basic Attention Token (+17%), Keep (+13%), and Filecoin (+12%).

April 09, 2021 
 $1.02B traded across all markets today

#####################. Trading Volume by Asset. ##########################################

Trading Volume by Asset

The figures below break down the trading volume of the largest, mid-size, and smallest assets. Cryptos are in purple, fiats are in blue. For each asset, the chart contains the daily trading volume in USD, and the percentage of the total trading volume. The percentages for fiats and cryptos are treated separately, so that they both add up to 100%.

Figure 1: Largest trading assets: trading volume (measured in USD) and its percentage of the total trading volume (April 10 2021)

Figure 2: Mid-size trading assets: (measured in USD) (April 10 2021)

Figure 3: Smallest trading assets: (measured in USD) (April 10 2021)

#####################. Spread %. ##########################################

Spread %

Spread percentage is the width of the bid/ask spread divided by the bid/ask midpoint. The values are generated by taking the median spread percentage over each minute, then the average of the medians over the day.

Figure 4: Average spread % by pair (April 10 2021)


#########. Returns and Volume ############################################

Returns and Volume

Figure 5: Returns of the four highest volume pairs (April 10 2021)

Figure 6: Volume of the major currencies and an average line that fits the data to a sinusoidal curve to show the daily volume highs and lows (April 10 2021)

###########. Daily Returns. #################################################

Daily Returns %

Figure 7: Returns over USD and XBT. Relative volume and return size is indicated by the size of the font. (April 10 2021)

###########. Disclaimer #################################################

The values generated in this report are from public market data distributed from Kraken WebSockets api. The total volumes and returns are calculated over the reporting day using UTC time.

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