Another Bitcoin Mining Scrutiny, Layoffs at Crypto Exchanges, Binance in Canada + More News
Get your daily, bite-sized digest of cryptoasset and blockchain-related news – investigating the stories flying under the radar of today’s crypto news.
- The Biden administration is expected to publish policy recommendations to lower Bitcoin (BTC) and crypto mining’s energy consumption and emissions footprint in August, Bloomberg Law reported. The study aims to drill down into claims that have touted crypto as a societal benefit or criticized it as a local nuisance and a climate nightmare, it added, citing Costa Samaras, principal assistant director for energy for the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.
- Heng Swee Keat, Singaporean Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies, stated that the way to approach Web3 is to keep an open mind and “understand the potentially transformative underlying technologies.” He added that he recognizes that this is a highly risky area, but that it also has transformative potential: “We remain keen to work with blockchain and digital asset players to encourage innovation, and build up trust in the sector.”
- Gemini Trust Co. is making its first-ever job cuts, slashing 10% of staff as trading across the industry slumps, Bloomberg reported, citing an inside memo. They called the current situation a “crypto winter” and added: “This has all been further compounded by the current macroeconomic and geopolitical turmoil.” On Friday, the company will hold a company-wide "standup" to talk about its future, per the report.
- Rain Financial, one of the Middle East’s largest crypto exchanges, laid off dozens of employees amid a recent downturn in digital assets, Bloomberg reported, citing undisclosed people with direct knowledge of the matter.
- Binance is looking to obtain Canadian regulatory approval and to welcome back Ontario users by 2024 at the latest, the Financial Post reported, citing Lawrence Truong, the exchange’s new CEO for Canada.
- The Tribeca Festival, an annual film festival in New York City, USA, has signed crypto exchange OKX as its new top sponsor, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing undisclosed people familiar with the matter. The deal will be worth "tens of millions of dollars" over a three-year period, they added.
- Institutional digital asset custody tech provider METACO was selected by Mercari, the operator of an Australian financial derivatives exchange, to launch its institutional digital asset custody operations, leveraging tech giant IBM’s digital asset infrastructure.
- Indian crypto exchange CoinSwitch Kuber started an index called the Crypto Rupee Index (CRE8) that will give real-time information on the performance of the Indian Rupee based on the crypto market.
- Oman Investment Authority, the country’s sovereign wealth fund, took an equity stake in a USD 350m round raised in April by Crusoe Energy Systems, a firm that helps fossil-fuel producers cut flaring by using stranded natural gas to power crypto mining instead, per Bloomberg. Crusoe will open an office in Muscat, Oman, to help deploy power generators and mining equipment for capturing gas at well sites, it added.
- Venture fund Canonical Crypto announced that it raised USD 20m in an oversubscribed round for its inaugural fund. The fund will invest in and work with developers, primarily those making the transition from Web2 to Web3, they said.
- CleanSpark announced it produced BTC 312 for the month of May, with a calendar year-to-date production of BTC 1,523 and a currently deployed fleet of over 25,000 miners with a hashrate of over 2.5 EH/s. As of May 31, the company had BTC 550 in its holdings, having converted BTC 210 throughout the month for operations and growth purposes.
- Bit Origin entered into a Letter of Intent with an undisclosed company to purchase 850 Antminer S19j Pro bitcoin miners, with an aggregate value of USD 6.375m. The company said it expects to enter into a definitive agreement and for the transaction to be completed in the coming weeks.
- Mobile gaming company BoomBit announced the launch of their Web3 gaming platform, metaverse, and play-to-earn ecosystem dubbed BoomLand. First to launch from its roster of Web3 games will be the so-called Hunters On-Chain game, a play-to-earn, free-to-play mobile game equipped with an NFT lending and borrowing marketplace.
- Crypto platform FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried said he has signed the Giving Pledge, a public commitment taken by the world’s richest people and families to give away the majority of their wealth to philanthropy. Bankman-Fried’s fortune is valued at USD 21bn by Forbes.
- US federal prosecutors have told the federal court that they need more time to sort through financial records and pursue a plea deal with the couple accused of laundering stolen BTC from the crypto exchange Bitfinex hack, according to Law360. The prosecutors asked that the hearing, scheduled for June 3, be moved to August 2, it added.
- Bitcoin mining company Riot Blockchain announced that Jeff McGonegal will retire from his position as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and move into a new role as Senior Advisor to Riot as of August 15. Colin Yee, currently Head of Corporate & Financial Operations, has been selected by the company’s Board of Directors to succeed McGonegal as CFO.
- Automated portfolio manager Balancer Protocol launched on Ethereum (ETH) Layer 2 scaling solution Optimism, hoping to significantly reduce gas costs and scale DeFi liquidity, they said.