Tag Archives: TheMerkel

3 Reasons to Get Excited About the Future of Litecoin | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Upcoming Litecoin Features

Although most people will look at the current Litecoin price action as a pump-and-dump, there are some genuine reasons to get excited about this currency moving forward. Similar to any other altcoin, there are some interesting developments underway as we speak. A recent Medium post highlighted some of the upcoming changes, and we have listed a few of the points below.

3. More Atomic Swaps

It is evident Litecoin has successfully set the tone when it comes to cross-chain atomic swaps. The developers successfully completed such a swap with Decred not too long ago, which is considered to have been the first of many in this regard. Being able to trade currencies across blockchains in real time – or something close to it – is a major development that could make centralized exchanges obsolete. If these developments ever come to full fruition, the cryptocurrency world will look very different.

Moreover, it appears there are some other developments in the world of Litecoin-enabled atomic swaps. Successful tests with Vertcoin and even Bitcoin show there is a very bright future ahead for this technology. Surprisingly enough, these transactions were completed in an on-chain fashion, rather than by settling things off-chain. There is still plenty of work to do in this regard, but there’s good reason to be excited about atomic swaps right now.

2. MAST

Bringing privacy to established cryptocurrencies which never focused on it before has proven rather difficult. After all, Bitcoin and Ethereum don’t have any privacy-oriented functionality right now, nor does Litecoin. That situation may come to change sooner than people would expect, though, as MAST technology is currently being developed behind the scenes. This feature introduces additional privacy by hiding “lumped” transfers through a Merkle root.

There are other benefits to MAST, as it will eventually introduce smart contracts to Litecoin. Although this technology is already available to Bitcoin developers and users, there is no “convenient” implementation of the technology just yet. If all goes according to plan, MAST should be introduced after the SegWit2x Bitcoin hard fork. There is no official fixed date for this implementation, though, and the date may be pushed back in the end.

1. Covenants

Although this feature has not been talked about that much, Litecoin’s covenants will play a big role in the ecosystem moving forward. Being able to select LTC coins to be lumped together and stay together is an intriguing approach. This would allow users to keep their coins bound together without getting them mixed up with other network transactions. It is a bit of a complicated solution, which may explain why it is not something the developers are rushing to release either.

The reason why covenants matter so much is because they pave the way for colored coins on top of Litecoin. Additionally, there will be a way to introduce “vaults” in order to lock up LTC balances in case someone successfully stole currency. From a security point of view, this makes a lot of sense, although there may not be an initial demand for this feature right away. According to our information, covenants will allow users to build in delays for transactions potentially created by an assailant and create a “master key” enabling users to spend funds faster than the assailant would ever be able to.

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Source: 3 Reasons to Get Excited About the Future of Litecoin

What Is BTCPay Server? | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle BTCPay Server

Accepting Bitcoin payments has proven to be quite a difficult venture for a lot of merchants these days. It is unclear why that would be the case, though. After all, there are a lot of merchant service providers people can use to accept Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. BTCPay Server is a new, free and open-source solution facilitating Bitcoin payment acceptance.

BTCPay Server is a Viable Solution

There is always a demand for alternative solutions to existing Bitcoin payment processors. More specifically, a lot of people use Coinbase or BitPay to accept Bitcoin payments, which makes a lot of sense. Both companies have built a solid reputation in this regard, even though they are not perfect under any circumstances. There is plenty of room for competition in this space; that much is certain.

Whether or not BTCPay Server can provide what businesses are looking for remains to be determined. Having a free and open-source alternative could go a very long way in the quest to take Bitcoin mainstream. That is not a guarantee for success whatsoever, although it certainly seems there will be some use for it right away. Moreover, one can integrate Bitpay services with BTCPay Server, which is pretty interesting to take into account.

Under the hood, BTCPay Server provides a Bitcoin acceptance solution which doesn’t require any private key information whatsoever. This also means businesses accepting payments can store their Bitcoin in any way they like or convert it to fiat currency as needed. Customers will be greeted with a user-friendly checkout page, which will certainly be appreciated as well. After all, solutions must be convenient in order for both businesses and individuals to take them seriously.

Moreover, there is an option to manage and generate reports accordingly. A lot of businesses want to gain more insights into how they generate revenue in Bitcoin and what they can do to improve upon things. Plus, it provides a convenient way to search for invoices based on whatever criteria makes the most sense to clients. It’s an interesting way to go about accepting Bitcoin payments.

The thing that makes BTCPay Server most different from its competition is that users are advised to download the source code and host the software on their own servers accordingly. It is not necessarily a less intuitive approach, but it does require some hands-on experience, to say the least. Then again, Bitcoin is all about taking back financial control, as is any solution facilitating BTC payments.

That being said, there is an option to sign up for a BTCPay Server account if businesses prefer to do so. While this is a more-than-valid approach to getting on board with this new service, hosting it oneself is always the better way to go. It will be interesting to see which of these approaches businesses like best when everything’s said and done. More ways to accept Bitcoin payments is never a bad thing; that much is certain.

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Source: What Is BTCPay Server?

Bitpetite Bitcoin Mixer Runs a Dubious Investment Program | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Bitpetite Investment Scam

There has always been a certain demand for Bitcoin mixing services. Given the fact that Bitcoin lacks privacy or anonymity, there are always people who wish to remove any traces associated with their coin balances. Bitpetite is one of the more recent Bitcoin mixers to have gained in popularity. However, it also offers an investment service which raises a lot more questions than it does answers. In fact, it has a lot of signs of being a Ponzi scheme.

BitPetite Investment Option is Controversial

While we covered the Bitpetite Bitcoin mixer not long ago, there are some things about this site which are raising a lot of questions right now. It turns out the team – or operator – has added an investment feature to this platform which guarantees returns of 3.60% every day. While no one doubts this mixer is popular, such returns are a clear sign of a Ponzi scheme waiting to collapse.

To put this into perspective, a Bitcoin mixer is always looking for additional funding, for obvious reasons. There are plenty of people looking to “mix” very large amounts of Bitcoin these days. If a particular mixer can’t support a large amount of coins, its transactions can’t go through. Without additional funding, missing out on such large transfers would be the only course of action. The Bitpetite team certainly isn’t looking forward to that by any means.

That being said, there is no real reason as to why the mixing service provider should offer an investment program that will attract a lot of negative attention. By offering fixed daily rewards – or even more than the projected 3.60% – this is evidently not something people with knowledge in this space will invest in. The mixer claims to use investors’ money to improve the overall service, although it remains to be seen if that is actually the case.

It is true Bitpetite charges a service fee to anyone looking to make use of its Bitcoin mixer. Then again, that still doesn’t warrant this high ROI investment structure whatsoever. There are some interesting aspects to this investment structure that warrant a second look. For example, users can invest with cryptocurrency directly or have their funds converted to USD. That’s a very unusual turn of events, to say the least.

Moreover, the program provides a choice of investment terms and currently projects returns of 147% within six weeks. A lot of people will like these numbers, even though most educated users should be well aware that this is nothing more than a pure scam. With guaranteed daily interest rates ranging from 3.6% to 4.5%, it is evident this scheme can’t be legitimate whatsoever. Even if the company’s mixer were to become overly successful, it can’t guarantee that people who invest 750 Bitcoin today will earn 1,102.5 BTC within six weeks.

Moreover, this dubious investment scheme also raises a lot of questions regarding the legitimacy of the Bitpetite mixer itself. Although users seem to be more than happy with the service for now, one has to wonder what would happen if the funding ever dried up. Based on this investment scheme, the team is more than willing to take people’s money without problems. That’s not the most appealing approach by any means.

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Source: Bitpetite Bitcoin Mixer Runs a Dubious Investment Program

WikiLeaks Notes a 50,000% ROI From Bitcoin Over Seven Years | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Bitcoin WikiLeaks ROI

Most people are all too aware of how WikiLeaks was “forced” to accept Bitcoin donations many years ago. Although this decision was somewhat controversial at the time, it turned out to have been one of the more solid decisions the group has made so far. In fact, the donations raised using Bitcoin since 2010 have yielded a 50,000% return to date. It’s been a rather fruitful endeavor, to say the very least.

WikiLeaks Doesn’t Regret Accepting Bitcoin

It has always been pretty interesting to take note of the Wikileaks venture. Not only is the site sharing a lot of confidential information with the public, but it is also a proponent of Bitcoin, the world’s leading cryptocurrency. WikiLeaks and Bitcoin were forced into a marriage of sorts back in 2010. During that time, the US government forced third-party payment processors to stop supporting WikiLeaks altogether.

It was this monumental decision which had a positive influence on both BTC and WikiLeaks accordingly. A lot has happened since 2010, as it was the year in which most people finally started paying attention to Bitcoin. Coincidentally, it is also the year during which 10,000 BTC were spent on two pizzas, which went down in the history books as the first “official” transfer of value related to Bitcoin.

For WikiLeaks, things have turned out pretty well as far as BTC is concerned. Because Bitcoin was its only way of accepting donations, the team eventually started investing in it as well. After all, Bitcoin is censorship-resistant, global, and can’t be controlled by banks, governments, or anyone else who feels entitled to try exactly that. It made for a perfect fit with the WikiLeaks team.

As the above tweet by Julian Assange shows, the decision couldn’t have been made at a better time. An ROI of over 50,000% in seven years is absolutely spectacular. It is far more than any other traditional asset could ever have yielded over the same period unless some massive price manipulation had taken place. Bitcoin isn’t free from manipulation, mind you, but it mainly serves to drive the price down rather than make it go up.

While there are still some people who claim Bitcoin is in a bubble, it is evident such comments are less and less impactful every single time. Indeed, the most recent remarks by Jamie Dixon have become more of a meme than something people actually take seriously. A lot of naysayers have been proven wrong over the past few years, and this trend is far from over, by the looks of things. It is unfortunate to see so many people genuinely compare Bitcoin to a pyramid scheme or a tulip bubble.

In the end, there is never a bad time to invest in Bitcoin. Some experts claim the biggest ROI potential is already behind us, whereas others see the situation as just the beginning of what is yet to come. It will be interesting to see who is right in the long run. Rest assured a lot of people will wish they had paid more attention to Bitcoin back in 2010. Buying in now will still yield some positive results, although it may take a while before major gains materialize, depending on how greedy one is.

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Source: WikiLeaks Notes a 50,000% ROI From Bitcoin Over Seven Years

Bitcoin Price Returns to $5,750 After Sunday’s Necessary Correction | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


Order has been restored in the world of cryptocurrency as the Bitcoin price is back on track right now. Thanks to a solid 3.61% gain over the past few hours, we’re now looking at a Bitcoin price of $5,750 again. It was to be expected the Bitcoin price would mount a strong comeback today, as the losses suffered over the weekend after often recovered on the next Monday.

Bitcoin Price is Back on Track

No one can deny the expected Bitcoin price correction has paved the way for a new all-time high to be achieved in the coming days. Although the drop to almost $5,500 wasn’t entirely unexpected, some people got queasy because of it anyway. Corrections are a natural evolution in the world of finance, as they often solidify a new platform of support before the next leg up. In the case of the Bitcoin price, that support seems to hover near the $5,500 mark for now.

That doesn’t mean the Bitcoin price will never drop below $5,500 again, mind you. While that may appear to be a stable floor, for the time being, speculators and manipulators can ensure the $5,500 level won’t last long if they effectively concentrated their dumping efforts. For now, it served its purpose, though, and eventually allowed the Bitcoin price to return to $5,747 as a result. A healthy bounce in the right direction again, that much is certain.

With the Bitcoin price slowly inching back above $5,700, the big question becomes how things will evolve from here on out. It is certainly possible we will see another attempt to breach $6,000 but things may enter sideways trading motion for some time as well. The year 2017 has been exceptionally bullish for Bitcoin already as we speak, and one shouldn’t get too greedy either. However, the momentum is in place for a new all-time high before the year is over, that much is pretty evident.

Thanks to nearly $2bn in 24-hour trading volume, there is no reason to be concerned over the Bitcoin price right now. There is still enough market volatility to make things somewhat tense, although a major sell-off is not necessarily on the horizon. Then again, a price difference of $200 or more has become a nearly daily occurrence for Bitcoin as of late, and the next dip or jump may be just around the corner for all we know.

Once again, Bitfinex is leading all exchanges when looking at the rankings based on trading volume. Its volume is twice as high as bitFlyer, which has briefly surpassed Bithumb for the time being. This competition between Japan’s and South Korea’s leading exchange is pretty interesting to keep an eye on, although no one knows for sure how things will evolve in the coming hours. Everything looks pretty solid for Bitcoin right now, but things can always change on a whim’s notice.

All of this goes to show the global demand for Bitcoin is still intact. Any dips sustained during the weekend are often a temporary setback unless a major crash would have occurred. Dropping down to $5,500 is next to nothing as far as the Bitcoin price is concerned these days. Solid momentum will eventually push the price to $6,000 and potentially even higher. When that will happen, remains anyone’s best guess, though

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Source: Bitcoin Price Returns to $5,750 After Sunday’s Necessary Correction

XRP Price Resumes Bullish Trend as $0.30 Remains Critical Target | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


The people who assumed XRP’s bull run was over will be quite annoyed when they look at the charts right now. Contrary to what people expected, the XRP price is still going up as we speak. Thanks to a new 6.66% value increase over the past 24 hours, we now have an XRP price of just over $0.27. The quest for each $0.30 is still in full effect.

XRP Price Continues Upward

When the Bitcoin price went through a brief correction over the past 36 hours, all alternative currencies were affected as well. Even though Bitcoin is still recovering as we speak, Ripple’s native asset is making some headway ahead of the rest. More specifically, the XRP price has gone up quite a bit over the past 24 hours, slowly pushing the value to $0.30. Although it remains to be seen if that goal can ever be reached, things look promising right now.

With an XRP price of $0.2726, the 6.66% gain looks as if nothing major has changed. Considering how XRP successfully clings on to the $0.26 level for quite some time now, the XRP price changes will take place well behind the decimal point for the time being. That doesn’t have to be a bad thing per se, though, as it shows demand for this blockchain banking currency is still increasing as we speak.

At the same time, it is good to see the XRP market cap remain well above the $10bn mark. One has to remember the XRP price has exploded in value compared to a year ago. A lot of investors have made solid returns by just holding onto their XRP balance, although there is plenty of profit taking to contend with as well.  The chart of the past few days reflects this perfectly, as the XRP price has bounced between $0.24 and $0.27 all week.

Thanks to almost half a billion US Dollars worth of trading volume, XRP is more than capable of sustaining this upward momentum right now. This does not guarantee the XRP price will ever hit $0.30, mind you, but it seems a plausible outcome for the time being. Considering how the currency is gaining value in both USD and BTC value over the past 24 hours, it is evident the bull run isn’t over just yet.

The vast majority of XRP trading volume originates from the Bithumb exchange. Coinone and Korbit complete the top three as we speak. This growing demand by South Korean traders should not be overlooked by any means. They have been flocking to XRP for quite some time and the rest of the world has to follow their lead by the look of things. Bithumb has four times the volume of Coinone, though, which is pretty spectacular.

Although the future looks bright for XRP, cryptocurrency markets remain extremely volatile at all times. Any gains made today can be wiped out in an hour from now for all we know. It will be interesting to see if the XRP price can effectively reach $0.30 in the coming hours and days. All signs point toward a positive outcome, but no one can accurately predict the future whatsoever.

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Source: XRP Price Resumes Bullish Trend as $0.30 Remains Critical Target

STK Global Payments Announces Global Advisory Board | #VentureCanvas

Guest | The Merkel


stk logo

October 15, 2017, Switzerland – STK Global Payments, creators of the STK token, is announcing their Global Advisory Board, four weeks ahead of its public Token Generation Event beginning on November 13, 2017.

Built on the Ethereum blockchain as an ERC20 token, the STK token will enable users to transact with cryptocurrency in global markets and at brick-and-mortar stores in real-time. “STK will bridge the gap between the 22 trillion dollar marketplace and one of the fastest growing currencies in the world,”  said Miro Pavletic, co-founder and Director of STK Global Payments. “We’ve simplified the blockchain process so that you can use cryptocurrency as easily as you would a debit card or cash.”

STK’s Global Advisory Board has decades of combined strategic experience spanning multiple industries, including finance, technology, political science and regulatory affairs. The Board includes a founding member of Ethereum, a Stanford University Visiting Fulbright Scholar, an award-winning publisher and entrepreneur and a Blockchain Specialist with multiple successful exits.

“This is an incredibly distinguished group of industry leaders, with a wealth of both practical and strategic experience,” said Pavletic. “We’re fortunate to benefit from their thought leadership as we move into the development and implementation phase ahead.”

STK Advisory Board

Ethan Wilding 

Co-Founder of Ledger Labs, and a founding team member of Ethereum 

Ethan Wilding is the former Chair of the Certified Bitcoin Professional exam, one of the first not-for-profit programs to establish a standard body of knowledge in the field of blockchain technologies. Ethan earned a Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Waterloo and taught at the Balsillie School of International Affairs. He is globally recognized for his role as a founding team member of Ethereum.

“STK aims to break down the cryptocurrency usability barrier and make crypto as familiar to use as traditional payments, all with no fees and no confirmation delays. To do this they are leading the way by implementing a cutting-edge Ethereum blockchain technique called State Channels; this technique will be become the standard for many types of cryptocurrency payments.” — Ethan Wilding

David LEE Kuo Chuen 

Professor, Entrepreneur, Director and Advisor

Visiting Fulbright Scholar (2015) at Stanford University and Professor for Fintech and Blockchain at Singapore University of Social Science

Professor David LEE Kuo Chuen is the founder of several companies including California-based Left Coast and Singapore’s Ferrell Group. He is an investor in several successful Blockchain companies including Qtum and TenX. David has held several esteemed positions in the financial industry, including Director of the Sim Kee Boon Institute for Financial Economics at Singapore Management University and Group Managing Director of OUE and Auric Pacific. He graduated with BSc, MSc and PhD from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

“One of the areas of financial services and financial technology that I’m most passionate about is the idea of financial inclusion. People around the world face many barriers when it comes to accessing, spending or saving their money. A universally accessible solution like the STK token, that provides advanced financial services to people regardless of country or currency is something I am excited to be a part of.” David LEE Kuo Chuen

Richard Kastelein 

Founder of Blockchain News

Richard Kastelein is a partner at ICO services collective CryptoAsset Design Group, and Director of educational company Blockchain Partners (an Oracle Partner).  An award-winning publisher & entrepreneur, Richard has advised several blockchain start-ups through successful ICOs and has authored more than 1400 articles on blockchain technology on leading industry publications including Harvard Business Review, Venturebeat and Blockchain News.

“I like to support a solid project with a solid team. I got involved with STK because the team was very strong. When you couple that with a brilliant product you get a winner. I’ll use the solution myself, so I’m confident there is a market for their mobile-first, crypto-friendly solution. And, they’re fellow Canadians, which added to my decision.” — Richard Kastelein 

Chami Akmeemana 

Blockchain Specialist

Chami Akmeemana has had four successful venture exits in the last decade, and currently advises a select roster of Blockchain companies. Chami was the Director of regulatory and government affairs at ConsenSys Inc, Fintech Advisor to the Ontario Securities Commission and Managing Director, Fintech and Blockchain at the Global Risk Institute. Chami is also the Chairman of the Blockchain Association of Australia.

“This is a true game changer for the financial payments and retail sectors. “The STK token represents a significant stride in the journey to achieve real time settlement of cryptocurrencies in all forms of mainstream financial transactions, in large part leveraging State Channels, which is one of the latest updates to the Ethereum Blockchain.”  — Chami Akmeemana

The STK public token sale begins on November 13, 2017. A pre-sale is available starting October 30, 2017.

Visit www.stktoken.com for more details.

For media inquires:

Amanda Ashford

amanda@getstack.ca

This is a sponsored press release and does not necessarily reflect the opinions or views held by any employees of The Merkle. This is not investment, trading, or gambling advice. Always conduct your own independent research.

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Source: STK Global Payments Announces Global Advisory Board

LND Demo App Brings the Lightning Network to All Users | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle LND Desktop App Lightning Network

The Lightning Network is one of those big developments a lot of Bitcoin enthusiasts have been looking forward to. While this technology is still in development as we speak, some significant progress has been made in the past few weeks. A desktop application for LND has been released to the public, which marks an important milestone for both Bitcoin and the Lightning Network.

LND Desktop App is now Available

A few weeks ago, we touched on the concept of LND, which is one of the many Lightning Network implementations in development right now. What makes this particular project so interesting is how it effectively provides an interface for both users and developers. In its current implementation, the Lightning Network is still in the early stages of development, and ensuring one can benefit from its new features will not be easy under any circumstances.

That being said, the LND developers have made some major progress so far with their client. More specifically, a test version of LND is now available to desktop users all over the world. The demo wallet is part of a two-week testing blitz designed to collect feedback and identify any lingering bugs that need to be addressed. It will be interesting to see if people come up with anything that needs to be improved upon.

It is important to note this LND test wallet has cross-platform functionality and will work on Windows and Linux for the time being. There is no Macintosh support, but considering this is an early alpha build, no one should have expected anything else. This doesn’t mean we won’t see MacOS support in the future, mind you, but for now, it is not necessarily on the agenda for the developers.

Additionally, it is worth noting the desktop demo app is fully SegWit-enabled. Even though Segregated Witness activated on the Bitcoin network quite some time ago, very few wallets and service providers have integrated it so far. Something needs to change in this regard, and it seems the LND desktop client will do exactly that. We can only hope to see more wallets do the exact same moving forward.

According to the team’s blog post, the Lightning protocol specifications are almost complete as well. For now, the goal is to ensure compatibility with this desktop app for the next two weeks, but it is possible we will see more support being added in the future. After two weeks’ time, the team will switch over to a regular release cycle. No specific deadlines have been provided in this regard, but things are expected to continue to move along nicely.

Last but not least, it is worth pointing out that the Lightning Desktop App is powered by Neutrino. For those who are unaware, Neutrino is open source and is packaged as a new client operation mode for Bitcoin. It will serve as the new backend for LND for quite some time to come. It also allows users to take full advantage of Lightning applications without needing to fully sync their nodes. This should effectively lower the barrier to entry, although it will be interesting to see how things play out in this regard.

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Source: LND Demo App Brings the Lightning Network to All Users

UTRUST Blockchain Payments Platform Announces ICO for November 2 | #VentureCanvas

Guest | The Merkel


utrust logo

Bitcoin Press ReleaseCryptocurrency payments platform UTRUST has announced the launch of its ICO on November 2 2017 (2pm UTC), after making firm progress in gaining regulatory compliance in Switzerland, one of Western Europe’s fastest growing blockchain hubs.

October 15, 2017, Zug, Switzerland: Building on progress in solidifying its business structure, UTRUST is pleased to confirm that its public ICO will now commence on November 2, 2017 (2pm UTC). UTRUST tokens will be up for sale at a base rate of $0.065 each. The ICO will run for a maximum of seven days or until a hard cap of $49 million is reached, or until sold out, whichever occurs first. No further tokens will ever be issued and any unsold tokens will be burnt, permanently reducing the total supply, currently at 1 billion. This ICO represents the final round of fundraising for a blockchain payments system targeting some 2.5 billion unbanked.

UTRUST is being incorporated as a Swiss GmbH (essentially a limited liability company) and remains fully committed to achieving adherence to all relevant rules and regulations by financial entities within operational jurisdiction in Switzerland. This is in line with UTRUST’s mission to operate as a legally compliant and future-proof platform, in recognition of the impending need for implementation of KYC/AML procedures which will be the standard for regulated cryptocurrency exchanges.

As such, UTRUST tokens will not offer redemption rights and cannot be used as a means of payment, pending completion of regulatory qualification with Swiss authority FINMA. The UTRUST whitepaper and terms of use are currently being updated to reflect these developments, while initial steps towards the KYC/AML onboarding process will be announced soon.

About UTRUST

UTRUST has currently raised $3.5 Million through private early investors and the sold out pre-ICO, with the public ICO scheduled for November 2nd 2017.

UTRUST is the world’s first cryptocurrency payments platform to implement consumer protections on a mass scale. The company is building a global PayPal–like payments platform with extensive cryptocurrency support.

UTRUST’s end goal is to provide all the benefits of fast, secure, convenient, and inexpensive cryptocurrency transactions, in tandem with the world’s first cryptocurrency payment protections, which consumers need to fully embrace blockchain technology en masse.

With 2.5 billion unbanked people in Emerging Markets yet to benefit from financial inclusion, UTRUST is also planning to build the bridge to enable the unbanked worldwide to access the mainstream global financial system.

UTRUST ICO and Tokens

UTRUST’s public ICO will be held on November 2nd. The company will use the collected funds to establish key industry partnerships and to develop the world’s first PayPal-like cryptocurrency payments platform. The ERC20 compatible tokens are created over the Ethereum protocol, and can be used as a means of payment on UTRUST’s payment gateway along with other cryptocurrencies.

UTRUST’s token can be used for making zero fee payments to the thousands of merchants accepting any cryptocurrency via UTRUST, and be traded against other currencies on supported exchange platforms.

UTRUST will allocate a certain portion of the revenues to buyback and destroy the tokens in circulation. Being a deflationary currency by design, the demand for UTRUST tokens will increase with time, which combined with buyback should lead to appreciation in its market value.

To learn more about UTRUST’s ICO please go to: https://utrust.io/ico

The Team

UTRUST is backed by a highly experienced team from various sectors including corporate management, startups, payments, cryptocurrency development, law, finance, and computer science. Some of the prominent members of the team include:

Nuno Correia, CEO

Nuno Correia is an early cryptocurrency investor who has been involved in the cryptomarkets since the beginning of 2011. Having founded multiple B2C businesses in the past, Correia has a background in Law and Marketing, and his passion lies in transforming the future of digital payments.

Filipe Castro, CIO

Filipe Castro holds a business degree from MSENG and is passionate about disruptive technologies. He has experience developing electronic payment systems and other software solutions during the early days of his career. Castro is engaged in business development and strategic development of new ventures.

Artur Goulão, CTO

Artur Goulão comes with previous experience in the payments industry. He has previously donned the role of a CTO in one of leading digital payment platform and is currently serving as the Head of Development at a Swiss-based Cybersecurity company. With a background in computer science from IST and MIT, Goulão is well-acquainted with both classical and blockchain smart contract based approach.

Roberto Machado, CPO

Founder and Product Manager at several startups prior to UTRUST, he has been leading different teams to build highly-reliable software products, with a focus on the end user experience. Previously, he has worked together with major international companies such as AT&T, Betfair, Airtel, and Uphold, being responsible for the vision outline, goals and product strategy of solutions used by millions of users.

Other significant team members include Luis Ferreira as Head of Engineering; Laura Esteves as Head of Operations; Joao Ferreira as Head of Design; Nick Olender as Head of Sales and Partnerships; and Francisco Baila as Product Designer. UTRUST has a team of software engineers like Miguel Palhas, Gabriel Poca, Ronaldo Sousa, Fernando Mendes, Bruno Azevedo, Pedro Costa, and Joao Justo.

UTRUST’s diverse advisory team includes Francisco Maia, Francisco Cruz, Joao Paulo, Sergio Viana, Marc Howland, David Dryan, Daniel Pierce and Sascha Benz.

Learn more about UTRUST: https://utrust.io
Read the UTRUST Whitepaper: http://ift.tt/2wIcSjO
Visit UTRUST on bitcointalk: http://ift.tt/2uJVf0I
Learn more about UTRUST’s ICO: https://utrust.io/ico
Follow UTRUST on Twitter: https://twitter.com/UTRUST_Official
Join UTRUST on Facebook: http://ift.tt/2uAs2pM
Join the UTRUST Slack conversation: http://ift.tt/2wrS0QA
Join UTRUST on Telegram at: http://ift.tt/2wvYRI5
Read UTRUST’s posts on Medium: http://ift.tt/2wVvDTt

Media Contact
Contact Name: Nuno Correia, UTRUST CEO
Contact Email: nuno@utrust.io
Contact Phone: +41 22 518 70 77
Location: Zug, Switzerland

Watch UTRUST‘s new video here:

UTRUST is the source of this content. Virtual currency is not legal tender, is not backed by the government, and accounts and value balances are not subject to consumer protections. This press release is for informational purposes only. The information does not constitute investment advice or an offer to invest.

Disclosure: This is a Sponsored Article.

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Source: UTRUST Blockchain Payments Platform Announces ICO for November 2

Viacoin Developers Complete Atomic Swap With Litecoin | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Viacoin Atomic Swap Litecoin

Atomic swaps are all the rage among cryptocurrencies right now, by the looks of things. After a successful swap between Litecoin and Decred, we have seen similar projects focus on Ethereum and Bitcoin. Amid all of this is Viacoin, an altcoin which also wants to get involved in cross-chain atomic swaps. A new feature has been introduced as part of its Clearinghouse tool to help make this become a reality.

Viacoin Introduces Atomic Swap Functionality

Contrary to what most people think, the purpose of Viacoin is not necessarily to be part of an atomic swap itself. It is certainly possible we will see Viacoin-to-other-altcoin swaps in the near future, but for now, that is not necessarily the team’s objective. Instead, the developers are expanding the Clearinghouse functionality in such a way that it can be used as a “spill” in the world of cross-chain swaps.

Viacoin’s Clearinghouse feature has always been designed to allow for peer-to-peer trading on the native blockchain. This currency is different from Bitcoin and virtually all other altcoins in the market right now. This new project also allows for a lot of innovation in the long run, including this new atomic swap-related effort. With the atomic swap implementation having been tested successfully, things are looking promising. Moreover, the developers successfully exchanged VIA for LTC in the process, which is a big first step.

Under the hood, it appears this atomic swap implementation works very similarly to the one used to swap Decred and Litecoin. That isn’t entirely surprising, considering all three of these coins share some similarities which serve to make the process quicker. It is also an on-chain swap implementation, rather than the faster off-chain method. Then again, it is certainly possible we will see off-chain atomic swaps in the future, though the latest developments will need some time to come to market first.

For now, it seems the focus is on exchanging Viacoin with “compatible” currencies, all of which also recently completed cross-chain exchanges of their own. Right now, those coins include Decred, Litecoin, and Vertcoin. This doesn’t necessarily mean we will see a Viacoin to Bitcoin swap or anything similar in the near future. However, we have learned that it is possible to exchange between blockchains with very different architectures as well, as the Zerocoin mixer is currently doing exactly that.

Moreover, due to Viacoin’s Clearinghouse implementation, it may effectively become the “bridge” between all the blockchains of the world needed to provide atomic swaps. It would be the same as converting an altcoin to Bitcoin in order to buy Ether, for example, but without having to go through a centralized platform or an intermediary. Some people may claim services such as Changelly and ShapeShift do exactly that already, yet they still require intermediaries to do so. Atomic swaps are very different in this regard.

Whether or not Viacoin can play an important role in this regard remains to be seen. The possibility is there for the taking, even though the end goal is still to complete atomic swaps between all different currencies directly. It may take months, or even years, until that becomes feasible. Until then, we will need some form of a temporary solution, and Clearinghouse may be the way to go in that regard. It is an interesting development to keep an eye on; that much is certain.

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Source: Viacoin Developers Complete Atomic Swap With Litecoin

Monero Research Lab Unveils Subaddresses for Additional Transaction Privacy | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Monero Subaddresses Whitepaper

The Monero developers and the community continue to make major strides. According to a new whitepaper issued by the Monero Research Lab, subaddresses will be coming to this ecosystem pretty soon. It is an interesting venture, to say the least, as it will allow for the extension of wallet addresses. There are some clear benefits to using subaddresses, and it doesn’t appear this functionality is present in any other cryptocurrency right now.

Monero Subaddresses are a big Deal

The way most people think of a cryptocurrency wallet address is rather straightforward. It is generated to send, store, and receive currency. Users can generate as many different wallet addresses as they like, assuming their client allows for it. Some altcoins even allow for stealth addresses, which are for one-time use only. All of those features work just fine, but there is room for future improvement as well. After all, there are plenty of innovative projects being worked on in the world of cryptocurrency.

The Monero Research Lab has drafted a new whitepaper which explores the concept of subaddresses. This type of address is an extension of a wallet address generated by the user. All subaddresses are to be derived from the same master wallet address. More importantly, to the outside world, there will be no link between the subaddresses and the master wallet address. Monero is one of the currencies focusing on privacy and anonymity, which explains why its team is taking this particular approach.

Any incoming transaction can be scanned to determine whether or not it belongs to one’s subaddresses. It is a major improvement in the privacy department, to say the very least. We have seen a similar development in the Bitcoin world, as BIP32 introduced a similar feature. It is this particular feature which leads some people to believe that Bitcoin has privacy-oriented aspects, even though that is not entirely correct. For Monero users, the introduction of subaddresses removes the need to generate new wallets with new seeds every single time. It is a big step forward that shouldn’t be overlooked.

While this whitepaper looks pretty promising, there is still some work to be done. Integrating subaddresses with Monero transactions will not be easy. In fact, the current implementation requires a change in how transactions are handled entirely. It is unclear how long this process will take, but it is good to see the details outlined in the whitepaper. The end goal is to ensure that no Monero wallets can be linked in any way, and subaddresses are a logical next step in this regard.

Moreover, the Monero team is still pondering how they can make subaddresses efficient enough to be used by the entire community. This is a bigger challenge than it seems, although the whitepaper hints that a trivial number of elliptic curve operations are needed. Scanning incoming transactions for ownership is no more difficult than scanning for ownership by a single standard wallet address. It’s a very efficient solution in theory, although more testing is needed prior to drawing any conclusions.

All of this goes to show the development of any cryptocurrency is a 24/7 job. One can’t just create an altcoin and expect it to be successful without ever introducing new features. The Monero team is working on a lot of different projects as we speak, with some of them being far more technical in nature compared to others. Subaddresses are a rather technical change, to say the very least, and they may not matter to everyone. However, it is a feature with tremendous potential for people who truly value transaction privacy.

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Source: Monero Research Lab Unveils Subaddresses for Additional Transaction Privacy

Bitcoin Price Drops to $5,500 as Expected Correction Sets in | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Bitcoin Price Correciton 5500

We have seen some pretty bullish Bitcoin price action over the past few days. However, when the momentum turns against the world’s leading cryptocurrency, all markets will suffer. Right now, the Bitcoin price is heading back toward US$5,500 all of a sudden. There is no clear reason for this sudden reversal, and it remains to be seen how long it will take before the Bitcoin price returns to its previous levels.

Bitcoin Price Downtrend Isn’t Worrisome yet

As was somewhat expected, the weekend brings us a negative Bitcoin price trend. Although things looked pretty decent yesterday, we have seen signs of a small correction starting to become visible as early as Friday afternoon. Given the recent bull run all the way up to nearly US$6,000 over these past few days, it was only a matter of time until things would retrace at some point.

One has to admit a brief Bitcoin price correction doesn’t have to be a bad thing. The most recent correction kept the price below US$4,500 for a while, yet eventually allowed the price to break the US$5,500 resistance in short order. The current retracement is pushing the Bitcoin price down toward US$5,500, which is a necessity before we can attempt a run at US$6,000 once again.

Although this current price dip comes out of the blue, it is only normal would see such a shift. The weekend is often pretty boring or troublesome for cryptocurrency trading. This weekend has been no different in this regard, at least where the Bitcoin price is concerned. It is nothing to be even remotely concerned about, mind you, as manipulation and speculation are slightly more lucrative ventures over the weekend. If the price were to drop to US$5,000 or lower, one should get slightly concerned, though.

One thing to keep in mind is how Bitcoin is still noting a nice trading volume. Compared to previous Sundays, the 24-hour volume is almost twice as high. With US$1.89 billion worth of cryptocurrency changing hands across all global centralized markets, there is no reason to think the demand for Bitcoin will dwindle in the near future. In fact, it seems more likely we would see a nice bounce in the next few days.

Not a day goes by without Bitfinex leading all Bitcoin exchanges in terms of trading volume. The platform is still well ahead of Bithumb and bitFlyer, although it seems the gap is shrinking a bit. Bithumb still values one BTC at nearly US$5,570 right now, though, which seems to confirm this is only a small dip to be bought up. Once again, it’s nothing to worry about in the slightest, as we will not necessarily see dirt cheap bitcoins anytime soon.

All of this goes to show cryptocurrency markets remain volatile at every turn. There is a lot of speculation and manipulation taking place on a regular basis, and Bitcoin is no exception in this regard. Things will look very different when we head into next week, but it remains to be seen if the Bitcoin price will go up again at that time or move even lower. These are exciting times for the cryptocurrency community, though; that much is certain.

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Source: Bitcoin Price Drops to $5,500 as Expected Correction Sets in

Litecoin Price Moves Toward $70 as Bullish Momentum Intensifies | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


It has become evident Bitcoin is not the only bullish cryptocurrency in town right now. Litecoin has shown a lot of positive momentum over the past few days as well. With the Litecoin price rising from around $50 to $69 over the course of a handful of days, there is plenty of reason to be excited about this altcoin. Good things continue to happen to the Litecoin price as we speak, and reaching $75 or potentially more remains a real possibility for now.

Litecoin Price Remains in Bullish Mode

It is good to see the Litecoin price finally get some appreciation from the rest of the cryptocurrency world. After falling from its previous all-time high of $90 all the way down to below $50, things were not looking all that great by any means. This happened during a time when Bitcoin also went into a correction mode, although the world’s leading cryptocurrency eventually soared to a new all-time high not too long ago. For Litecoin, things have gone a bit differently, even though there is a lot of positive momentum in the market right now.

To be more specific, the Litecoin price has reached $69.19 at the time of writing. This is yet another 17.5% gain over the past 24 hours in USD value alone. Additionally, LTC also gained 14.28% against Bitcoin, which is still near its all-time high as we speak. This ultra-bullish mode for Litecoin will not go by unnoticed whatsoever, that much is certain.  It is unclear how high the Litecoin price can go, though, but $75 is certainly within reach right now.

All of this momentum can be attributed to the strong Litecoin trading volume over the past 24 hours. With $424.26m worth of volume across all exchanges, things are looking extremely good for Litecoin right now. This volume also guarantees LTC is one of the most popularly traded cryptocurrencies as of right now. If this momentum keeps up, the trading volume will keep increasing and the price will continue to go up accordingly, by the look of things.

No one will be surprised to learn Bithumb is the leading exchange ranked by trading volume for Litecoin right now. They are followed by GDAX and Bitfinex. It good to see the Chinese exchanges make a comeback as well, as OKCoin and Huobi are fifth and seventh on the list respectively. It is only normal we will see the Litecoin price momentum spill over into the next few days, as good things will continue to happen for this particular currency.

Although the Litecoin price momentum is pretty bullish right now, there is also a  real risk of getting caught up in all of the momentum. Buying any currency ear the temporary top can be quite problematic, to say the very least. Then again, there is still lots of room left for future price appreciation as far as Litecoin is concerned. It will be interesting to see how this venture plays out in the coming hours and days.

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Source: Litecoin Price Moves Toward $70 as Bullish Momentum Intensifies

Bitcoin Price Returns to $5,750 After Brief Dip | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Bitcoin Price After the dip

Ever since the Bitcoin price reached a new all-time high of just over US$5,800, things have not gone all that well for the leading cryptocurrency. A retracement was to be expected at some point, for obvious reasons. However, it seems things are picking up once again, and a return to US$6,000 is still a possibility for the coming weeks and months.

Bitcoin Price Momentum Slowly Picks up Again

It is good to see the Bitcoin price undergo healthy consolidation before things move to the next level. While that is not necessarily a popular opinion whatsoever, it is a fact that the Bitcoin price has been extremely bullish for over a week now. That can’t go on indefinitely, of course. As is usually the case with Bitcoin, the price dropped by almost US$250 at one point. Volatility is second nature to cryptocurrencies, and Bitcoin illustrates that point perfectly.

Some people were growing concerned when the Bitcoin price started heading back down to US$5,500, though. That is only understandable, even though most experts and enthusiasts know the price will go up and down on a rather regular basis. In the case of Bitcoin, multi-hundred dollar swings are not uncommon by any means; that much is certain.

A US$250 drop is nothing new under the sun, and it is something we’ll have to endure in order to reach a new all-time high in the long run. The jump from US$5,000 to US$5,800 in particular took less than a day, which was clearly too difficult to maintain. However, we have seen the Bitcoin price drop by US$1,000 or more as well, which would have been rather problematic at this time. Thankfully, things never got to that level, which indicates the uptrend could resume in the coming days and weeks.

Moreover, we have seen Bitcoin maintain its US$2.186 billion trading volume with relative ease. Considering it is a Saturday today, that is rather surprising, to say the very least. Over the past few weeks, this volume had dipped quite a bit and hardly succeeded in remaining above US$1 billion over the weekend. With the trading volume at this level, it is not unlikely we will see the Bitcoin price return to US$5,800 in the next few days. There is still a long way to go before we see US$6,000 though, as profit-taking will be in full effect, to say the very least.

On the exchange front, very little has changed for Bitcoin. Bitfinex is still schooling the other exchanges right now, with nearly twice the volume as Bithumb. bitFlyer is still hanging onto third place, with a substantial lead over Bitstamp. The altcoin currently generating most Bitcoin volume is not Ethereum or Bitcoin Cash for a change, but Monacoin instead. This Japan-oriented cryptocurrency has been making some waves as of late; that much is certain.

All signs are looking pretty positive for the Bitcoin price moving forward. Reaching US$6,000 remains a likely possibility, although it is unclear when that will happen exactly. For the time being, there is no reason to be concerned over the Bitcoin price whatsoever, as things will continue to evolve for quite some time to come. Beware of any lingering volatility, though, as the value of Bitcoin will continue to fluctuate on a regular basis.

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Source: Bitcoin Price Returns to $5,750 After Brief Dip

Will Russia Push Mining Regulation and Stop Subsidizing Electricity Costs? | #VentureCanvas

Daniel Dob | The Merkel


The digital currency community in Russia has been facing uncertainty for the last few months due to the government’s passive-aggressive stance toward possible regulation. Now, it seems that despite recent statements condemning cryptocurrencies, bitcoin mining might become a legal endeavor for those who are interested.

Bitcoin mining to exit the legal gray area

Not long ago, there were numerous reports that Russia was planning to fully legalize and subsidize mining throughout the country. However, it is important to point out that bitcoin mining in Russia has occupied a legal gray area due to the lack of regulation. Moreover, the reasonable cost of electricity made home-mining operations profitable.

Now, following the country’s crackdown on digital currencies, and after reports that access to exchanges might be banned in the future, it seems the government wishes to regulate mining activities as well. A crackdown began a few days ago, when President Vladimir Putin warned of the serious risks that digital currencies bear, such as terrorism financing, money laundering, and tax evasion.

Those declarations don’t make much sense, considering that the government – along with the Institute for Internet Development and the Russian Association of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency – has reportedly already laid out plans to make electricity costs more bearable for miners through government subsidies.

Many observers believe that the plan was more of a way to encourage miners to register with the government. By doing so, mining will become more profitable, and miners will be required to abide by stricter regulation, be more transparent, and of course, follow tax laws. In return, this will theoretically reduce money laundering and tax evasion carried out by bitcoin users who prefer to mine.

It remains unclear whether the government will follow through with its subsidization plans. Either way, regulation for miners will be drafted and most likely become obligatory in the near future.

Based on these developments, what do you personally think about Russia’s recent changes in its attitude toward digital currencies? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

 

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Source: Will Russia Push Mining Regulation and Stop Subsidizing Electricity Costs?

Having Switched From Mining Gold to Cryptocurrency, Hive Notes 633% Growth | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Hive Drops Gold Mining Cryptocurrency

In Canada, the mining industry has seen some significant growth as of late. Especially when it comes to gold mining, there is still a lot of money to be made. Even so, some companies are pivoting their business models from mining gold to mining Bitcoin and altcoins. Vancouver-based Hive Blockchain Technologies, Inc is worth keeping an eye on in this regard.

Mining Gold is Passe, it Seems

Plenty of people dream of mining gold, for obvious reasons. Due to its scarce nature and high market value, a successful gold mining operation can quickly turn into a lucrative business. It does involve a lot of hard work – mainly manual labor – and it requires a ton of money just to get started. Even then, there is no guarantee of success whatsoever, which means a lot of people will lose money in the process. Still, the allure of finding a gold vein woos a lot of people to this day.

Even experienced gold miners like Frank Giustra are keeping an eye on cryptocurrencies, though. This new breed of mining money has been attracting a lot of attention of late. Especially now that one Bitcoin is worth about four times as much as an ounce of gold, mining operators are increasingly contemplating switching from gold to cryptocurrency. The latter still requires a significant upfront investment, but the manual labor is kept to a minimum as computers do all of the hard work. Overall, it appears to be a far more lucrative venture right now; that much is obvious.

It is not entirely surprising, then, to learn that Giustra is one of the many people backing a Vancouver-based cryptocurrency mining initiative. The company goes by the name of Hive Blockchain Technologies Inc, and it is one of the first publicly traded stocks to provide exposure to cryptocurrency mining. This news comes at a time at which investors are looking for exposure to cryptocurrency valuations through CFDs and ETNs. Exposing such people to the mining process in this way is an interesting, albeit justifiable course of action. Under a previous name, the company used to be involved in gold mining operations. 

It has to be said, Giustra’s decision has proven rather prudent so far. As an early backer, he’s successfully netted a 633% return on his investment as of right now, as the Hive shares are shooting up in value. After the initial share sale brought in CA$30 million, the company’s market capitalization has grown to around CA$553 million. That’s quite significant growth, considering this was mainly achieved well ahead of the current Bitcoin price rise. It is evident investors know where the real money is made, and cryptocurrency is the market to keep an eye on in every way possible.

Importantly, Hive has a first-mover advantage in this industry. Up until now, there have been virtually no companies exposing investors to cryptocurrency mining earnings. The company entered the space at a most opportune time, considering the trading of Hive Blockchain Technologies Inc only began on September 18th. Such spectacular growth in just a month should not be overlooked by any means.

For the time being, Hive only mines Bitcoin by the looks of things. However, the company will mine different cryptocurrencies moving forward. It also plans to purchase a second Genesis Mining data center in the near future. Plus, it will buy more mining hardware in both Iceland and Sweden, which should open up a lot of new and exciting opportunities. It is evident the cryptocurrency mining industry is firing on all cylinders right now and a lot of people want to be a part of it. It will be interesting to see how this market evolves in the coming months and years.

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Source: Having Switched From Mining Gold to Cryptocurrency, Hive Notes 633% Growth

PBoC Will Develop RMBCoin Rather Than Legalize Public Cryptocurrencies | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle PBoC RMBCoin

There are many consequences of China’s recent cryptocurrency regulatory measures. One positive impact is the fact that China is no longer a factor in regards to Bitcoin’s price, which set a new all-time high this week. At the same time, the country’s central bank plans to go ahead with RMBCoin, which will be China’s own central bank digital currency. This news is anything but surprising, as it seems to have been the plan all along.

RMBCoin is here to stay

When the Chinese government announced its crackdown on ICOs and CNY trading for cryptocurrency exchanges, it was evident all of this was done as part of a bigger picture. More specifically, the government is seemingly planning to focus its attention on RMBCoin once again. This concept has been around for nearly two years now, even though it remains to be seen if it will be a viable project in the long run. After all, a lot of countries want their own national digital currency, and every single one of those currencies will be issued and controlled by the national central bank.

In the case of China, that means the People’s Bank of China will be in full control of RMBCoin and its issuance. That’s not necessarily something to look forward to, even though the government feels it is the only viable approach for the time being. Considering that the PBoC has no plans to legalize bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies right now, it only makes sense for it to focus further on a central bank digital currency.

Local news source Yicai confirms those sentiments, even though it remains to be seen how things will play out in this regard. It seems public cryptocurrencies are of little interest to the PBoC due to “an inherent lack of value.” It is always ironic to hear such statements coming from a central bank, as these institutions are notorious for creating helicopter money backed by nothing but an empty promise to honor the value of a piece of paper. Cryptocurrencies are assigned value due to scarcity and the free market, which is something no central bank digital currency can or will ever achieve whatsoever.

While it is true that Bitcoin and most altcoins are subject to severe speculation, the same goes for most other investment vehicles approved by the PBoC. Bonds, stocks, and even foreign currencies are all subject to speculation as well. Cryptocurrencies are a lot different from these entities, as they cannot be controlled by an overreaching government. It is this aspect which causes concern for the PBoC, as it stands to gain nothing whatsoever from legalizing cryptocurrencies.

Moreover, China is home to the Digital Currency Research Institute. This entity was formed earlier this year, with a strong focus on blockchain-based digital currency research and development. It seems RMBCoin is the institute’s primary focus for the time being, although that doesn’t mean this is the only concept the group is exploring right now. Then again, very little is known about this initiative or its research at this point in time.

As one would expect, the PBoC claims a central bank digital currency is backed by “sovereign credibility.” This is another far-fetched sentiment from a government known for being anything but transparent or forthcoming when it comes to critical and credible information. While RMBCoin may appear to be a worthwhile venture right now, it remains to be seen how things evolve in this regard.

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Source: PBoC Will Develop RMBCoin Rather Than Legalize Public Cryptocurrencies

As Mining Margins Fall, Profits Head Underground with Ice Rock Mining | #VentureCanvas

Guest | The Merkel


ice rock mining

As Cryptocurrencies have become more popular, the profit margin on mining them has dramatically shrunk. The level of difficulty has increased exponentially which in turn incurs more costs.

However, the profit margins can be increased from significantly lowering the expense of electricity to mine, as well as cutting out other side expenses. But, it is not always that easy to directly profit from mining done on your own accord.

There does seem to be a way though for those interested in mining to get in on this facet of cryptocurrency. It comes from Ice Rock Mining who have an interesting approach to minting new cryptocurrency coins.

Taking it Underground

Ice Rock Mining is using an old Soviet Bunker, situated in Kazakhstan, to set up a large mining operation that it believes will be able to efficiently mint different cryptocurrencies at a cheaper rate.

The advantage of taking the cryptomining operation underground, into this bunker, is that the usual expenses, such as mining, cooling, and even rent and maintenance of the mining housing are dramatically lowered, and in some cases negated.

Ice Rock Mining have procured the bunker and as such do not have any overheads when it comes to rent, and because the makeup of the bunker is essentially just rock, there is very little maintenance.

Ice Rock Mining also believe they have the perfect ecosystem for their 4,600 ASIC rigs in the tunnels of the mine as the temperature remains constant at 12 degrees throughout the year, helping the mining operation stay cool and efficient.

They are also situated alongside a hydroelectric power source which provides them with some of the cheapest electricity around. The state they are paying $0.03 per/kWh of power.

So, with all these cost-cutting methods in place, what does it mean for those wanting to mine their own cryptocurrency who are not in possession of a Soviet-style bunker?

Open for Business

Ice Rock Mining is looking to combine a few facets of cryptocurrency in order to enact a business. They see that there is the opportunity to share their mining space with others who also want to profit on their large margins. They are creating an ICO to make this happen.

Ice Rock Mining allows for investors, as well as miners, to take part in their ICO as people can either buy their tokens – ROCK tokens – in the style of normal cryptocurrencies, holding onto them as they grow in value.  

However, they also offer mining packages which will allow individuals who cannot profit in mining take advantage of their set up through cloud mining. Essentially, people will be able to buy a package that suits them where they own space in the mine to mint different coins.

Making it Profitable Again

Because mining Bitcoin, especially, is hardly profitable for casual miners at home, Ice Rock Mining is trying to offer an alternative method of mining, through cloud mining, but additionally, they hope to make cloud mining profitable as they have managed to increase their margins through cost-cutting measures.

What Ice Rock Mining is accomplishing is seemingly taking the costs of mining, and mitigating them through the use of an ideal underground space. Electricity and cooling costs are extremely low and rent is negated as they own the entire cave system. By allowing the investor to be a part of this, the margins are naturally much larger than competitive cloud mining operations.

Disclosure: This is a Sponsored Post

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Source: As Mining Margins Fall, Profits Head Underground with Ice Rock Mining

The Positive Impact of Recent Regulatory Measures on the Global Cryptocurrency Markets | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Bitcoin Regulation Trading Impact

No one can deny the latest batch of cryptocurrency-related regulations has caused some interesting shifts in the world of cryptocurrency. Some things have certainly improved in this regard, as the majority of trading volume has finally moved away from China. In fact, one could argue we have seen a better Bitcoin ecosystem created because of these regulations.

Regulation Isn’t Always Negative

While a lot of cryptocurrency users aren’t big fans of regulation, the repercussions aren’t always as negative as people would assume them to be. Most forms of regulation are designed to hinder the growth of Bitcoin; that much is fairly obvious. Particularly in countries such as Russia, China, and even the United States, things have evolved in a rather awkward direction as of late. That doesn’t necessarily mean nothing good comes from these developments, though.

Perhaps the biggest example of something positive resulting from regulatory measures is China no longer being the Bitcoin trading powerhouse. Although the country is still home to most mining operations, its exchanges are no longer much of a factor. Granted, they halted all CNY trading a while ago, although that appears to have been a temporary measure first and foremost. There is no official indication as to when those services will be resumed, though.

According to a recent Bloomberg article, things are definitely shifting in different directions due to these new forms of regulation. With the Bitcoin price mounting, we have seen some pretty interesting changes introduced. In particular, the Bitcoin trading volume has shifted from the Chinese yuan to the Japanese yen and Korean won. We have seen this trend emerge over the past few weeks, and things have not changed in any significant way ever since.

The US dollar is also trying to mount a bit of a comeback in this regard, even though it will always be a tertiary market at best. For some unknown reason, none of the USD trading pairs come even close to yen or won trading right now. It will be hard to overcome these hurdles right now, given the size of the gap. Then again, the situation continues to evolve virtually every single day, and a lot of changes are still on the horizon, by the looks of things.

The same applies to Ethereum, mind you, as its trading volume mainly comes from the same markets right now. Additionally, the BTC/ETH markets are seemingly shrinking a bit as well, although that is mainly due to the ongoing bullish Bitcoin price run. This doesn’t mean we won’t see more BTC/ETH volume in the near future, though, but for now, Bitcoin is clearly dominating all trading portfolios. That is only normal, as it is the world’s largest cryptocurrency.

Although all of these changes are a direct result of regulatory decisions, most people will not see things that way. The Japanese market is pretty important to all cryptocurrencies right now, thanks to its positive regulatory stance. South Korea is still trying to figure out how it wants to handle things in this regard, but the general attitude appears to be relatively positive for the time being. Things can still change in the very near future, though, as nothing has been set in stone just yet.

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Source: The Positive Impact of Recent Regulatory Measures on the Global Cryptocurrency Markets

The Positive Impact of Recent Regulatory Measures on the Global Cryptocurrency Markets | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Bitcoin Regulation Trading Impact

No one can deny the latest batch of cryptocurrency-related regulations has caused some interesting shifts in the world of cryptocurrency. Some things have certainly improved in this regard, as the majority of trading volume has finally moved away from China. In fact, one could argue we have seen a better Bitcoin ecosystem created because of these regulations.

Regulation Isn’t Always Negative

While a lot of cryptocurrency users aren’t big fans of regulation, the repercussions aren’t always as negative as people would assume them to be. Most forms of regulation are designed to hinder the growth of Bitcoin; that much is fairly obvious. Particularly in countries such as Russia, China, and even the United States, things have evolved in a rather awkward direction as of late. That doesn’t necessarily mean nothing good comes from these developments, though.

Perhaps the biggest example of something positive resulting from regulatory measures is China no longer being the Bitcoin trading powerhouse. Although the country is still home to most mining operations, its exchanges are no longer much of a factor. Granted, they halted all CNY trading a while ago, although that appears to have been a temporary measure first and foremost. There is no official indication as to when those services will be resumed, though.

According to a recent Bloomberg article, things are definitely shifting in different directions due to these new forms of regulation. With the Bitcoin price mounting, we have seen some pretty interesting changes introduced. In particular, the Bitcoin trading volume has shifted from the Chinese yuan to the Japanese yen and Korean won. We have seen this trend emerge over the past few weeks, and things have not changed in any significant way ever since.

The US dollar is also trying to mount a bit of a comeback in this regard, even though it will always be a tertiary market at best. For some unknown reason, none of the USD trading pairs come even close to yen or won trading right now. It will be hard to overcome these hurdles right now, given the size of the gap. Then again, the situation continues to evolve virtually every single day, and a lot of changes are still on the horizon, by the looks of things.

The same applies to Ethereum, mind you, as its trading volume mainly comes from the same markets right now. Additionally, the BTC/ETH markets are seemingly shrinking a bit as well, although that is mainly due to the ongoing bullish Bitcoin price run. This doesn’t mean we won’t see more BTC/ETH volume in the near future, though, but for now, Bitcoin is clearly dominating all trading portfolios. That is only normal, as it is the world’s largest cryptocurrency.

Although all of these changes are a direct result of regulatory decisions, most people will not see things that way. The Japanese market is pretty important to all cryptocurrencies right now, thanks to its positive regulatory stance. South Korea is still trying to figure out how it wants to handle things in this regard, but the general attitude appears to be relatively positive for the time being. Things can still change in the very near future, though, as nothing has been set in stone just yet.

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Source: The Positive Impact of Recent Regulatory Measures on the Global Cryptocurrency Markets

What Is CryptoCribs? | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle CryptoCribs Airbnb Cryptocurrencies

A lot of traditional business models have been disrupted as of late. Cash money is slowly being replaced by payment cards, mobile payments, and cryptocurrency. Booking a hotel? Services like Airbnb make it easy. CryptoCribs is a platform combining the concept of Airbnb with cryptocurrency. Although the site may not look as professional as the real deal, the potential is certainly visible to everyone.

CryptoCribs is a Unique Platform

Spending cryptocurrency is slowly becoming a lot easier, even though there is still plenty of work to be done in this regard. Especially when it comes to allowing people to spend cryptocurrency on goods and services they need on a regular basis, there is plenty of room for improvement. CryptoCribs shows how some of the more innovative concepts can easily come together in a platform that offers the best of both worlds.

More specifically, this platform combines elements of Airbnb with the use of multiple cryptocurrencies. Right now, CryptoCribs supports both Bitcoin and Ether payments, although Monero may be added in the next few weeks as well. The latter point has not been officially confirmed, mind you, but the developer of this platform is actively considering it. CryptoCribs is a great outlet for all of the aforementioned cryptocurrencies; that much is certain.

As is always the case with new platforms, users need to be cautious first and foremost. This is not a professional team on the same level as Airbnb, mind you. It seems to be a one-man project right now, although things will continue to evolve as the platform grows more popular and the service is used more often. The potential for growth is certainly there for CryptoCribs, although most people will look at it as a niche market first and foremost.

As the name of the platform somewhat suggests, CryptoCribs is all about finding places to stay in different countries and spending cryptocurrency in order to do so. The platform offers a few different locations right now, and there is a review system in place as well. It has all the traits of an Airbnb for cryptocurrency, albeit on a much smaller scale for the time being. According to the site, this platform was mainly designed to enable peer-to-peer travel, which is an interesting concept.

Moreover, anyone in the world can become a host on CryptoCribs, which is a nice touch. The specific requirements remain hidden behind the signup process, but it will be similar to other platforms focusing on rental services. It is good to see this platform embrace cryptocurrencies, as it makes the spending of Bitcoin and Ethereum a lot more convenient for different purposes. Being able to spend such currencies on travel destinations that aren’t hotels is pretty interesting.

In the long run, the future looks rather bright for CryptoCribs. If the site gets a more professional design and some more hosts, there is no reason to think things will not take off. Though there is still a fair amount of work to be done before this platform will even be remotely appealing to mainstream users, the foundation has been laid for sure. It’s an interesting site to keep an eye on, as we need more initiatives like this one to make cryptocurrency succeed.

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Source: What Is CryptoCribs?

Ethereum Price is on Target to hit $400 in the Near Future | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Ethereum Price 400 Target

Now that this week’s Bitcoin craze has finally calmed down a bit, most altcoins are mounting a strong comeback. The Ethereum price is certainly moving up nicely over these past 24 hours, thanks to a 6.49% gain in USD value. With the Ethereum price pushing back toward the $350 mark, the world’s biggest altcoin is slowly recouping some of the losses sustained earlier this week.

Ethereum Price Heads Back Toward $350

No one can deny the past month has been pretty interesting for Ethereum holders. There have been some good moments and a significant dip as well. More specifically, the Ethereum price dipped to just below $200 less than a month ago. For a lot of people, this was a clear indication to stock up on some Ether as a way to make profits later on. The people who pursued this option will be quite pleased with how things have gone recently.

Ever since that big dip, the overall trend for Ethereum has been bullish. More specifically, the dip was followed by a rather quick bounce back to $258, indicating things would continue to head in the upward direction for some time to come. Right now, the Ethereum price is closing in on the $350 mark, further confirming the upward trend which has been forming for quite some time now.

Whether or not the Ethereum price will reach a new all-time high in the future, remains to be seen. If this trend keeps up, there is no reason to think Ethereum won’t be worth $400 or more before the year is over. Some people expect an Ethereum price of $1,000 in the near future, although that may be a stretch too far. After all, that would put the Ethereum market cap at over $95bn, making it surpass Bitcoin in the process.

One thing keeping the Ethereum price momentum going is the trading volume. More specifically, there is over $869m in 24-hour trading volume for Ethereum right now, which is a lot higher compared to what we have seen over the past few weeks. It is always good to see the trading volume go up, a sit seems all markets are picking up the pace. Most altcoins are noting their highest volume in days, and Ethereum is no exception in this regard whatsoever.

The largest market for Ethereum trading is Bithumb right now. Bitfinex and Coinone complete the top three. It is good to see fiat currency markets dominate the trading volume in this regard, as the first ETH/BTC trading pair comes in fourth place. All other trading markets for Ethereum in the top 12 are fiat-currency related, which means people are either massively buying Ether with fiat or looking to cash out. Only time will tell how this market evolves moving forward.

For the time being, things are looking pretty good for the Ethereum price. Reaching $350 shouldn’t be too much of an issue for the time being, although markets will always evolve in the direction we least expect. With this strong trading volume in place, it is expected the Ethereum price will continue its march toward $400 for at least the rest of the day. An interesting trend to keep an eye on, that much is certain.

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Source: Ethereum Price is on Target to hit $400 in the Near Future

Announcing Rilcoin ICO | #VentureCanvas

Guest | The Merkel


rilcoin ico

Recently, Rilcoin is about to declare its Initial Coin Offering cam-paign. The company has set an aim to give new definition to the crypto investment platform by building an industry that can widen up the applications of blockchain to the most considerable extent.

Rilcoin is going to be a totally new platform for asset management systems which would provide a fresh perspective to financial in-struments and investment tactics. It will offer individuals to invest in cryptocurrencies supported by Blockchain protection as well as real-world assets which would altogether avail a whole new manner of funding.

Investors are allowed to exchange cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum or any other currency to get Rilcoin to be used within the platform. Rilcoin will be a cryptocurrency based on a technology equivalent to Fiat Currency. Some of the features which won’t be like fiat currency will be made favourable through smart contracts. The flexibility of Rilcoin to include all the benefits of fiat currency makes it a unique one among all the other cryptocurrencies. It is go-ing to be the first cryptocurrency involving qualities of fiat currency.

Giving great importance to customer satisfaction by maintaining an utterly experienced team, Rilcoin would be easy to be understood by even those who don’t have a financial background and can avail great earning leverages getting into a volatile market.

Important Investment Instruments

  • CWF, i.e. “Connect World Funds” is one of the ways intro-duced for investors to buy tokens that indicate real-world in-vestment funds offering to switch in between these funds via exchanging their coins. Rilcoin allows to purchase the new to-kens through Connect World Funds, so now an individual only needs to check out the earned profit amounts.

Rilcoin platform proposes with Crypto-Funds Investments facility to invest in evolving crypto markets providing potential assets’ insights via cryptocurrencies as well as fiat currencies. It is not necessary to spend higher amounts to get higher earn-ings; the platform introduces investors with best of the oppor-tunities.

  • Rilcoin users are also provided with Crowd-Funding facility so that they may perform operations according to the ideas of other in-vestors. It gives leverage for getting knowledge of the economic as well as financial sectors coming from specific forums.

Rilcoin’s ICO

Investors who are going to participate in Rilcoin ICO will be re-warded with Rilcoins.

Currently, there are 30 Million of Rilcoin tokens for this particular level of the project. Each token costs $1.

Rilcoin tokens would represent Rilcoin shares as well as offer in-vestors to purchase services at a more beneficial value in compari-son to other cryptocurrencies. All of the investors will also be al-lowed to own a specific part of the dividends too.

Summary

Name: Rilcoin

Start Date: October 15, 2017; 00:00:00 UTC End Date: January 12, 2018; 00:00:00 UTC

How to be a part of ICO?

Any individual who is interested in participating in Rilcoin ICO can do it via rilcoin.io . One has to fill the form on the official website to further get Rilcoin tokens in his/her associated wallet.

Online Availability

Facebook
 : http://ift.tt/2wWvLAd

Twitter
 : https://twitter.com/rilcoin

Medium : http://ift.tt/2xt1lnI

Currency name: Rilcoin

Official website: http://rilcoin.io/

This is a sponsored press release and does not necessarily reflect the opinions or views held by any employees of The Merkle. This is not investment, trading, or gambling advice. Always conduct your own independent research.

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Source: Announcing Rilcoin ICO

Why Bitcoin Cash Isn’t King | #VentureCanvas

Gabrielo Myrone Banks | The Merkel


falling king

Born August 1, 2017, Bitcoin Cash is to its proponents what Bitcoin ought to be. As of now, it features 8mb blocks as opposed to one or two. Its transaction time is just under a minute and a half per block, and its fees are low, about seven cents per transaction. However, Bitcoin Cash did not take over Bitcoin after the fork. Let’s look at a few reasons why.

1. Segwit worked

Litecoin’s SegWit activation led to adoption and drove prices higher. Perhaps, some traders took wind of this and held Bitcoin despite some negative sentiment.

2. Access and adoption wasn’t wide

Not everyone that knew about the fork took advantage of it. Some kept their coins on Coinbase or another online wallet or exchange that did not divvy up a fork dividend.

3. The retailers weren’t ready

The old credo, “Build it and they will come” did not not apply. Retailers and restaurants that accepted Bitcoin just weren’t there leaving Bitcoin Cash without the killer app it could have used.

4. Name recognition

When it comes to cryptocurrencies, anything new comes with both speculation and, perhaps, a bit of paranoia. No one knew what would happen with either coin after the fork. But SegWit had proven to work with Litecoin. And the market loves predictability, especially when it comes to an event such as the integration of optimizing software.

5. No easily recognizable utility or network

The chant for bigger blocks has been sounding to a crescendo for the past couple of years, and SegWit proponents’ negation of this has kept pace. The lay user of bitcoin never really understood what the fight was truly about, and can hardly tell the difference between the two.

 

Bitcoin is expecting another fork in November. However, after the first fork (Aug 1), speculators and traders have learned that staying along for the ride with Bitcoin for the forked coin may prove profitable. Especially if they can ride the storm for both coins.

There was a palpability for fear in the market as a lot of altcoins saw their growth slowly decline. Traders were jumping ship to bitcoin. Who can blame them? Bitcoin is now cruising past five thousand and nearing six as of the time of writing. On the other hand, we watched altcoins suffer this past week. Bitcoin Cash has caught itself in a balancing act., as its supporters have to maintain a code that will lead to profitability for miners in order to ensure the long term success of the cryptocurrency.

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Source: Why Bitcoin Cash Isn’t King

Russian Finance Minister: We Will Control the Issuance and Circulation of Cryptocurrencies | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Russia Regulation Bitcoin

It will take a significant amount of time until we finally know how Russia truly plans to treat cryptocurrencies. Just in this past week, we have seen more conflicting reports on the matter than ever before. It turns out the rumored ban on cryptocurrencies will not entirely happen, although significant restrictions will be put in place. The government is contemplating introducing purchase limits for all Russian citizens, which is a unique take on things, to say the least.

Another Plot Twist in the Russia-Bitcoin Story

If it were up to Russian government officials, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies would be legalized and banned at the exact same time. The fact that so many conflicting opinions regarding cryptocurrencies are out there is pretty intriguing, although it makes the job of coming to a unified solution a lot harder. Then again, it does not appear as if the country’s regulators want to take a unified approach anytime soon. Instead, this conflicting information seems to please some government officials, although it is unclear as to why this is the case.

Anton Siluanov is the Russian Finance Minister. His latest statement is of great importance to the Bitcoin industry in Russia as a whole; that much is certain.  According to Siluanov, the new plan of the Russian government is to curb the amount of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies people can buy. Moreover, the government will control the issuance and circulation of cryptocurrencies. This latter point is pretty vague at best, as it allows a lot of room for speculation.

For the time being, no information has been revealed as to how all of this will be achieved in the future. That’s not entirely surprising, as controlling Bitcoin itself is impossible. Going after the centralized exchanges facilitating the purchase and sale of cryptocurrencies is a different matter entirely. However, it is evident such measures cannot be put in place without officially legalizing cryptocurrencies and their associated mining operations, which is a somewhat positive aspect to all of this.

Considering we have seen some very controversial statements regarding cryptocurrency in Russia, this latest bit of news is rather positive. Although there is no real reason for Russia – or any other country – to oppose cryptocurrencies in any way, there will always be proponents and opponents of innovative financial tools. No one denies that cryptocurrencies pose some risks also found in other forms of financial instruments. However, their decentralized nature makes it impossible for any government to exert any real control over this ecosystem directly.

The Russian state has a responsibility to protect consumers and enterprises from financial harm; that much everyone can agree on. The means by which this should be achieved, however, will always be met with a certain degree of scrutiny. It is difficult to embrace financial innovation and focus on regulation at the same time. In fact, the two concepts may prove to be mutually exclusive when it comes to cryptocurrencies.

For the time being, no one can claim anything has been set in stone as far as Russia is concerned. Government officials there have very different ideas as to what needs to happen regarding cryptocurrencies, and the general public is keeping a close eye on these proceedings. Right now, the tone is more positive than negative, but no one knows what next week will bring. It’s an interesting debate, to say the very least.

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Source: Russian Finance Minister: We Will Control the Issuance and Circulation of Cryptocurrencies

düber (DBR) Transforms the Cannabis Industry Through Blockchain | #VentureCanvas

Guest | The Merkel


duber ico

düber Technologies Inc., a software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider serving the cannabis industry, is thrilled launch its Initial Coin Offering (ICO). The Pre-sale will start at 15:01 UTC on Oct 11. The ICO will use a SAFT (Simple Agreement for Future Tokens) structure conducted under Rule 506(c) of Regulation D of Section 4(a)2 of the U.S. Securities Act, as amended (the “U.S. Securities Act”) which accredits token buyers as investors.

The düber token (DBR) is intended to incentivize and improve information exchange in the cannabis community, including consumers, retailers, labs, processors, and growers. Examples are rewarding community members for providing product information and photos, submitting product reviews, participation in loyalty programs and interaction with advertising and other communication channels.

Blockchain technology will measure and allocate growth in economic surplus throughout the supply chain as a result of increased information exchange across all network participants. The DBR is an Ethereum (ETH) blockchain cryptocurrency that can be used within the network to pay for goods and services provided by licensed cannabis businesses.

“At düber, we believe that we have the unique opportunity to transform the cannabis industry through incentivizing the creation and sharing of information, which benefits all patients, consumers, and businesses,” said Glenn Ballman, founder of düber. “We have chosen the SAFT ICO structure, and combined it with a broad-based seeding program to enable a wide distribution of the tokens to members of the cannabis community.”

düber is an emerging leader of technology and services within the cannabis industry. The company provides integrated retailer and supply chain solutions including online ordering, supply chain management, retail automation and advertising and has a healthy track record of growing sales for cannabis retailers.

“We began implementing düber’s technology in 2016 and have seen sales and order sizes increase as customers order online, use self-serve systems located in the store and respond to product advertising,” said Nick Antonie, owner of Herban Legends, Seattle. “We believe in the vision düber has for the future of the industry and appreciate how its technology allows us to deliver a superior customer experience.”

To visit düber’s ICO website, including the white paper and the private placement memorandum prepared in connection with the ICO, visit www.dubercoin.com. The private placement memorandum contains information on the offering, including details on purchaser qualification requirements and risk factors.

ABOUT DÜBER TECHNOLOGIES INC.

Headquartered in Seattle, WA, düber Technologies Inc. is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider serving the cannabis industry. düber’s mission is to help small companies compete with large corporations through superior technology. The company currently provides customers with online ordering, self-serve systems, global product search, digital signage and advertising products and has plans to launch several more including retail point of sale and a home delivery engine for retailers. düber operates in state jurisdictions that have legalized both medical and recreational cannabis and assists with compliance of the laws of these jurisdictions. To learn more about düber Technologies Inc., please visit http://ift.tt/2g82773.

ABOUT THE DÜBER SAFT ICO

The SAFTs will only be offered in the United States on a private placement basis pursuant to exemptions from the registration requirements of the U.S. Securities Act and in Canada by way of private placement exemptions from Canadian prospectus requirements, in each case to qualified “accredited investors” only. All securities issued will be subject to restrictions on re-sales in accordance with applicable securities laws. The SAFTs have not been and will not be registered under the U.S. Securities Act or any state securities laws and may not be offered or sold within the United States or to, or for the account or benefit of, U.S. persons absent U.S. registration or an applicable exemption from U.S. registration requirements. This news release does not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities in any jurisdiction where such offer or sale is prohibited or unlawful.

This is a sponsored press release and does not necessarily reflect the opinions or views held by any employees of The Merkle. This is not investment, trading, or gambling advice. Always conduct your own independent research.

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Source: düber (DBR) Transforms the Cannabis Industry Through Blockchain

Bank of Lithuania Blasts Cryptocurrencies and ICO Activity | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Bank of Lithuania Cryptocurrency ICO

Most European countries have not issued any official guidelines on cryptocurrencies or initial coin offerings. That is only normal, as such decisions need to be made by the European Union first and foremost. So far, it seems, the EU doesn’t consider either of these topics a priority. Lithuania is trying to set the tone in this regard, although its central bank has simply “clarified” its position for the time being. The tone isn’t positive by any means, though.

Bank of Lithuania Doesn’t Like Cryptocurrency

No one will be surprised to learn there is another central bank out there that doesn’t like cryptocurrencies or ICOs one bit. Back in 2014, the Bank of Lithuania warned the public about both Bitcoin and altcoins. In its recent clarification, those words were reiterated. It is evident that the central bank doesn’t want cryptocurrency to succeed in any way, and that it will continue to oppose the concept for quite some time to come.

To be more specific, the Bank of Lithuania confirmed that financial services providers must remain “dissociated” from cryptocurrency activity at any cost. This leaves very little room for interpretation, as it means no bank is allowed to let consumers buy or sell cryptocurrency right now. It is unclear whether many companies will adhere to this guideline, though, as that does not appear to be the case whatsoever.

Bank of Lithuania’s Marius Jurgilas commented as follows:

‘Virtual currency is an instrument involving high risk, while profiteering on it may lead to significant losses of funds. Therefore, in order to protect the customers of financial institutions, financial institutions legally operating in our country and supervised by the Bank of Lithuania must strictly dissociate themselves from this product type in their activities. An illusion that virtual currencies are supervised or safe can in no way be created.”

Moreover, the Bank of Lithuania touched upon the concept of cryptocurrency debit cards. We have seen a lot of problems with such cards thanks to new guidelines proposed by both Visa and MasterCard. It is evident even customers within the EEA will struggle in this regard, as Lithuania’s central bank has decreed that no financial market participants in the country should provide opportunities for customers to pay in payment instruments linked to unregulated financial assets. That’s a very strong statement, to say the very least.

Additionally, the Bank of Lithuania’s statement covered the topic of initial coin offerings. This new business model has received a lot of opposition from governments all over the world of late. Lithuania will not be any less hostile in this regard; that much is rather evident. Such activities are unregulated for the time being and are seen as posing a significant financial risk, as they allow unprofessional investors to help bring new projects to life. The potential for losing money is very real and ICOs need to be restricted in this regard.

All of this goes to show Lithuania doesn’t want to be part of the cryptocurrency ecosystem in any significant way right now. It is still possible these opinions will change, but for the time being, things aren’t looking all that promising for the country. It will be interesting to see if any actual regulation will be drafted to nip cryptocurrency and ICO activities in the bud.

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Source: Bank of Lithuania Blasts Cryptocurrencies and ICO Activity

Cannabis Vendors and Consumers Can Now Use Dash to Power Payments | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Marijuana Dash

It is evident the marijuana industry can benefit from cryptocurrency and blockchain technology in the future. Although some altcoins have been created to make that happen, most efforts are still small-scale. Dash is trying to make a big impact here, as digital payments platform Alt Thirty Six has turned to Dash as a “payment method of choice” for cannabis customers, merchants, and vendors. This is an exciting venture for the industry and the cryptocurrency community alike.

Dash and Marijuana are an Intriguing Experiment

There are many reasons why governments oppose both cryptocurrencies and the marijuana industry. Both of these concepts can be extremely powerful when used properly, even though they mainly make headlines due to associations with illicit activities. Regardless of what governments may think, digital payments platform Alt Thirty Six is focused on the marijuana industry as we speak. The company also shows some love for cryptocurrency these days, as it has tapped Dash to power cannabis-related payments moving forward.

This new partnership caught a lot of people by surprise, which is only normal at this stage. Up to this point, Dash has not been associated with the cannabis industry in any significant manner, although it makes a lot of sense to explore this option. After all, Dash offers cheaper and faster payments compared to more traditional payment solutions. Additionally, the currency introduces a degree of privacy benefiting both consumers and merchants.

Considering that the cannabis industry is heavily regulated in the US right now, this news is rather positive for Dash and cryptocurrency in general. Alt Thirty Six has been exploring new payment solutions for quite some time now, as it wants to reduce reliance on cash-based transactions for all parties involved. Dash makes a lot of sense in this regard, especially thanks to its InstantSend feature.

Interestingly enough, it seemed to be only a matter of time until this partnership came to fruition. The Dash forum already hosted a thread concerning a potential partnership with Alt Thirty Six. More specifically, there was talk about CannTrade, which is a well-known entity in the cannabis B2B marketplace and distribution chain. This company was looking for third-party service tools to grow sales, and they signed a three-year exclusive deal with Dash Core to list this new method of payment on its platform.

It is important for any cryptocurrency to make headway in the retail sector. Altcoins often struggle in this regard, and even Bitcoin isn’t making too much progress these days either. For its part, Dash is certainly taking some big steps forward. Although the currency is now associated with an industry most consumers still dislike – for reasons unknown – it is a major development in the world of cryptocurrency regardless.

In the end, it will be interesting to see if this new partnership brings more positive momentum to the cryptocurrency ecosystem. Most people agree Bitcoin would be a terrible payment option for the marijuana industry, at least until micropayments become possible. Whether or not Dash is the solution retailers and consumers have been waiting for remains to be determined, though.

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Source: Cannabis Vendors and Consumers Can Now Use Dash to Power Payments

B2BX Raises EUR 5 Million During Ongoing Pre-Sale | #VentureCanvas

Guest | The Merkel


b2bx logo

Bitcoin Press Release: The first cryptocurrency exchange-aggregator B2Bx has reached the soft cup of 5 million during the first week of its crowdfunding campaign.

The B2Bx ICO started on October 2nd and will last until November 17th. The minimum cap of 5 million was achieved in the first six days. B2Bx will continue to give bonuses to contributors in the next two weeks. Bonuses will be 10% in the second week and 5% from October 18th to October 25th.

Artur Azizov, the CEO of the project is pleased with the current results: “We are glad to see the support that crypto community gives to our project. Today when there are more than 800 projects per week entering the market the result we achieved displays how high the assessment investors give to us.”


B2Bx project was founded by B2Broker company, a participant of the fintech market for over 3 years. The biggest part of funds will be spent on developing the software. B2Bx’s product already has a working version which gives anyone an opportunity to evaluate its prospects in practice. The company will be mainly focused on corporate investors which is the main distinctive feature.

Token Details

The B2BX tokens are native to the B2BX ecosystem. Built over Ethereum protocol, these ERC20 compatible tokens serve as a medium of value exchange. The platform has set a maximum token cap of 40 million B2BX tokens, of which 40,000,000 are made available to the crowdsale participants.

The B2BX tokens can be purchased against BTC, BCC, ETH, LTC, DASH, and XMR. Priced at EUR 0.63 per token, the platform will be offering early bird discounts during the first three weeks of the crowdsale. Participants in the crowdsale have to purchase a minimum of 10 tokens, with no maximum limit.

About B2BX

B2BX is an aggregator of cryptocurrency liquidity for marginal trading, trading with physical delivery and distribution of liquidity to brokerage companies. It plans to establish the first official B2B cryptocurrency exchange-aggregator or marketplace, connecting at least 5% of the market of Forex/DMA and Stockbrokers, and give them the opportunity to provide their clients with the trading in cryptocurrencies.

 
Learn more about B2BX at – https://www.b2bx.pro

Access the B2BX Whitepaper at – http://ift.tt/2wHGkpM

Find B2BX on Bitcointalk at – http://ift.tt/2gbrXHm
Follow B2BX on YouTube at – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4KhGwIE_hoteTMqNjarBVw

Media Contact
Contact Name: Alexander Karelin

Contact Email: Akarelin@b2broker.net

Location: Moscow, Russia

B2BX is the source of this content. Virtual currency is not legal tender, is not backed by the government, and accounts and value balances are not subject to consumer protections. This press release is for informational purposes only. The information does not constitute investment advice or an offer to invest.

Disclosure: This is a Sponsored Article

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Source: B2BX Raises EUR 5 Million During Ongoing Pre-Sale

Spice VC Combines Venture Capital With Blockchain Technology | #VentureCanvas

JP Buntinx | The Merkel


TheMerkle Spice VC Blockchain

Blockchain technology can be used in many different ways to serve any purpose one can think of. Until this point, no venture capital firm has itself used the blockchain for any specific purpose, despite investing in companies which do. Spice VC may be the first mover in this regard, as it aims to solve the liquidity problem right now. It’s an interesting concept that warrants a closer look.

Spice VC and Blockchain Technology

One issue haunting the investment ecosystem is how funds are slowly drying up. While large amounts of money still change hands on a monthly basis, there has been a decline in liquidity. In the worst case scenario, this will eventually lead to illiquid markets, which should be avoided at all costs. Unfortunately, that is much easier said than done right now, especially with the situation not having improved in the slightest.

Spice VC feels they have found the answer to this problem, although it is not a conventional solution by any means. Rather, they are looking toward the blockchain for additional liquidity. More specifically, the company will use the Ethereum blockchain as a way to create its own custom token. It is a bit unfortunate to see yet another ICO on the horizon, especially when there may not be a need for it whatsoever.

Spice VC managing partner Tal Elyashiv commented as follows:

“Until now, the privilege of investing in tech was reserved for very few. The new model makes the VC model available and attractive to three huge new investor groups. First, the major institutional investors, which in Europe allocate much less to the VC asset class than in the U.S. Second, thousands of smaller accredited investors which until now could only invest in tech as angels or in crowdfunding sites without any liquidity, and last, a new class of crypto investors looking to diversify into general tech.”

The main purposes of this token are to provide liquidity and serve as a tradable asset. It’s an intriguing combination, albeit not one that can be achieved out of the blue by any means. It is commendable that this firm wants to combine aspects of VC funding with blockchain technology, though. No one can deny there are some intriguing opportunities which may or may not work out in the long run. If nothing else, it will certainly open VC to pre-qualified investments, which isn’t a bad thing.

At the same time, the company has to take regulatory measures into account. This is a fund and not your average initial coin offering by any means. This means Spice VC’s tokens will be considered securities. All regulatory compliance has been taken care of already, meaning US investors must adhere to very specific guidelines in order to be eligible. It will be interesting to see how things play out in this regard, though, as it is the first time we’ve seen a project of this type come to market.

Whether or not Spice VC will be a successful venture is very difficult to know right now. No one can deny the combination of blockchain and venture capital opens up exciting opportunities. However, solving liquidity issues with yet another proprietary token may not necessarily attract the attention this team is hoping for. An interesting future awaits; that much is certain.

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Source: Spice VC Combines Venture Capital With Blockchain Technology