Distributed storage network project Filecoin is the talk of the town as FIL was the most highly traded token on Huobi, OKEx and Gate on Thursday. These three exchanges have a predominantly Chinese user base and represent a large part of the Tier One trading volume for major pairs. On Thursday afternoon, Huobi trading volumes of FIL were more than three times that of BTC as the price reached a 7-day increase of 170%.
Filecoin has had strong success in capturing the attention of Chinese investors, including large investment groups such as Fenbushi Capital, SNZ Capital and Neo’s EcoFund. These three were part of a group that backed the $23 million Filecoin Ecosystem Fund, announced on March 25. The Filecoin Ecosystem Fund is intended to support projects and help development on the network. It could also give backers early access to new projects, which is a lucrative model for VCs in an increasingly crowded investment space. It remains to be seen which of these two consequences are a bigger priority for the funds involved.
On March 28, OKEx produced a video explaining the concepts behind Filecoin, which received around 600 shares and 3400 likes on Weibo. This shows a high level of attention from the Chinese retail audience, a demographic that is tough to obtain and hard to preserve over longer time-frames.
NFTs in Beijing, Polkadot in Hangzhou
Beijing-based BlockCreateArt hosted a major NFT art exhibition on March 26 supported by auction house Christie’s, Digital Finance Group and mining rig producer Bitmain. Interest in digital art has increased on some levels in China, but cultural and artistic differences have led to a more pragmatic approach towards leading digital artists such as Beeple. The exhibition will be stopping in Shanghai early in April.
Hangzhou was home to the Open Days blockchain exhibition sponsored by Candaq Fintech Group. The event had one hall dedicated to Polkadot projects, with speakers from Rarelink, Litenty and Phala, among others. The upcoming parachain auctions have become a topic of interest with so many local projects and projects with ties to the region being built on Polkadot.
Central bank head says digital yuan playing catch-up
The head of the Digital Currency Research Institute at the People’s Bank of China has recognized that private payment processors Alipay and WeChat Pay are in a dominant position in the Chinese payment space. During a panel appearance, Wang Changchun noted that the government-backed digital currency would be needed to maintain stability should something happen to the existing solutions. For the moment, WeChat Pay and Alipay don’t seem to be in any imminent danger of losing their market share, but that could change quickly if government-led incentives were put in place for those willing to convert.
In enterprise news, electric vehicles brand IM Motors, working with SAIC Motor and Alibaba, announced a blockchain powered service network that would incentivize customers to share data with the company. In order to achieve some level of traceability and resistance to tampering, on-chain points would be given to customers using the vehicle and related apps.
The blockchain network was announced as exclusive and private, so while it represents a slight normalization of blockchain technology, it will likely have much in common with more centralized storage networks.
This weekly roundup of news from Mainland China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong attempts to curate the industry’s most important news, including influential projects, changes in the regulatory landscape, and enterprise blockchain integrations.
ShapeShift Launches Decentralized Trading Through THORChain, RUNE at ATH
In an announcement on April 13, the Switzerland-based non-custodial crypto company stated that it was now fully integrated with THORChain, enabling users to trade native Bitcoin with Litecoin and Ethereum for the first time.
The move is a big deal because it is the first time a decentralized exchange has enabled crypto asset swaps across different blockchains without the need for bridging technology or custodian controlled wrapped tokens.
Launch all the things! 🚀 🚀 🚀 pic.twitter.com/lgkUxl2QJ6
— ShapeShift 🦊 (@ShapeShift_io) April 13, 2021
THORchain Crossing the Chains
THORchain launched its long-awaited MCCN, ‘multi-chain chaos net’ platform on Tuesday, April 13 amid a great deal of hype from the crypto community including ShapeShift CEO Erik Voorhees.
Less than a day before the launch, Voorhees stated that it would be a huge deal for crypto.
“Native cross-chain decentralized exchange. Never been done before. Arguably the biggest event in crypto this week, though it may not be obvious for a year or two.”
THORchain uses its own native token RUNE as collateral and an intermediary, so those wanting to trade BTC for ETH, for example, will have the trade go via RUNE yet the end-user will not notice.
The revolutionary platform has been in development for three years and yesterday’s launch could bring big improvements to the rapidly evolving DEX space.
Voorhees continued to extol its virtues:
“We saw the power of this technology and wanted to bring it to our users immediately. This is a continuation of our commitment to offer users an easy, self-custody platform for their decentralized trading needs.”
ShapeShift DEX users, including those making trades via the new THORChain integration, can also earn FOX Tokens with every trade which enables eligibility for other rewards on the platform.
FOX Pumps 45%, RUNE Hits ATH
ShapeShift’s FOX token exploded on the news, pumping 45% to reach an intraday high of $1.30. The exchange-based token has made 180% over the past month and hit an all-time high of $1.60 on April 6.
THORchain’s RUNE token has also been on fire, surging 19% on the day to hit an all-time high of $14.60 at the time of writing according to Coingecko.
RUNE has doubled in price over the past fortnight and pumped a monumental 1,150% since the beginning of the year.
AAX Exchange reveals: HKD, SDG, and GBP Top FIAT currencies deposited in April
[Press Release – Singapore, April 13, 2021 ]
After the 2021 easter holiday, AAX recorded the highest amount of fiat deposits into the exchange with a total over 10 million USD in 10 days. The top three currencies are Hong Kong Dollar, Singapore Dollar and Great Britain Pound.
AAX supports three methods for depositing fiat, including peer-to-peer trading, fiat gateways supported by fiat gateway partners, and direct bank transfer powered by First Digital Trust, the digital custody arm of Hong Kong-licensed and publicly registered trust company, Legacy Trust.
“For many years, the on and off-ramps between crypto and fiat have acted as a bottleneck,” said AAX’s CEO, Thor Chan. “Now that the infrastructure is in place, we’re seeing more and more individuals transition into Bitcoin for its disinflationary qualities or seek exposure to altcoins for portfolio diversification.”
“While our peer-to-peer and Fast Buy platforms are effective in serving most retail traders, with First Digital Trust we’re also able to serve high net worth investors as well as traders that are looking for cross-currency arbitrage opportunities.”
AAX, a member of the London Stock Exchange Group’s institutional partner platform, gives its investors the same tools and market infrastructure as what institutional investors generally expect to see on traditional exchanges.
Investors of all levels will find that AAX’s platform caters to their every need. Its newly created fiat deposit services provided through First Digital Trust adds an extra layer of trust to ease any concerns new investors in crypto might have when entering the crypto space.
AAX is a deep-liquidity and deeply trusted cryptocurrency exchange that is favored by more than half a million users. Powered by London Stock Exchange’s LSEG Technology, AAX offers crypto futures contracts, 50+ spot pairs, P2P fiat trading, savings products and top-grade API connectivity. AAX enables users to buy bitcoin easily via its OTC or Fast Buy platforms and supports over 20 fiat currencies.
Stellar-based gaming and collectibles platform Litemint to integrate DigitalBits
Non-fungible tokens or NFTs have stolen headlines the world over, plastered across both crypto and mainstream media. And, it’s no surprise. Beeple’s “Everyday’s – The First 5000 Days” sold at Christie’s for an astounding $69,346,250, asserting Beeple as one of the top three most valuable living artists. This sale established two historical landmarks: the first sale of a wholly digital piece of art with a unique NFT, and the acceptance of cryptocurrency (ETH) as the form of payment.
Paris Hilton recently released a comprehensive article on NFTs and their potential to empower creators. She also hinted at releasing her own. And this is only the tip of the iceberg, with musicians such as 3LAU and the King of Leons, as well as sports superstars like Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski getting in on the action.
The DigitalBits Project, first launched in 2017 with an initial focus on consumer digital assets, has since expanded to include branded stablecoins as well as the rapidly growing world of esports and gaming. The XDB Foundation, the primary contributor to the DigitalBits Project, is now looking to enter the NFT space, having recently sealed a partnership with leading NFT and Collectibles Marketplace, Litemint, a technology company specializing in the creation of unique experiences for crypto enthusiasts, collectors, and gamers.
The introduction of NFT functionality to the DigitalBits blockchain introduces a wholly new vertical to the platform. As scalability issues continue to plague Ethereum, DigitalBits provides a welcome alternative to creators and users alike, allowing for significantly reduced gas fees and wait times.
Built on Stellar since its inception in 2018, Litemint recently unveiled its NFT and Collectibles marketplace, expanding beyond its initial gaming value proposition. Litemint brings NFTs and digital collectibles to the online gaming experience, introducing unique elements such as true asset ownership and seamless transfer and tradeability not available within today’s leading online gaming environments.
DigitalBits’ origins as a Stellar fork make it highly compatible with Litemint’s existing technology and allows for the activation of a number of potential synergies between the XDB Foundation and Litemint.
“With its unique closeness to the mainstream, gaming industry and core compatibility with the Stellar technology, DigitalBits is a perfect match for our NFT and collectibles platform,” stated Frederic Rezeau, Founder and CEO of Litemint. “I am confident that together, provided our ability to execute on the open-source Stellar technology, we can leverage exceptional business opportunities with a seamless integration of DigitalBits and their consumer-oriented market.”
Other organizations are also looking to DigitalBits as an alternative for their NFT initiatives. The network is highly scalable, capable of processing upwards of 10 000 transactions per second, with transaction fees as low as 0.00001 XDB (less than a penny at today’s prices), and confirmation times ranging between 2-5 seconds. Although Ethereum is the current market leader for NFTs, the network’s inability to scale has resulted in exorbitant fees when minting and transferring NFTs, creating a huge barrier to entry. The integration of the DigitalBits network with platforms such as Litemint now provides an agile, low-cost alternative for creators and users, streamlining the issuance, transfer, and trade of NFTs.
“I’m very excited to see the upcoming integration of the DigitalBits network into Litemint’s NFT and collectibles marketplace,” said Michael Gord, Managing Director of the XDB Foundation. “NFTs have the ability to add an entirely new layer to the user experience, allowing for unique activations that can be implemented across numerous different industries. I look forward to seeing the ongoing innovation that continues to emerge from this new asset class as more and more people begin to use NFTs.”
Litemint acquired Stellarport, a leading decentralized exchange, and service platform within the Stellar ecosystem, in January 2020, citing the massive opportunity created by bringing together crypto users and gamers, bringing unmatched dynamism to both platforms. The DigitalBits Project is an open-source protocol layer blockchain specializing in consumer digital assets, the development of which is led by the XDB Foundation. The XDB Foundation is a non-profit organization focused on driving growth and adoption of the DigitalBits blockchain and ecosystem.
Disclaimer: This is a paid post and should not be treated as news/advice
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