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Today in Crypto: Jack Dorsey’s Block Acquires Music-Centric Startup Hifi, VALR Exchange Partners With Visa, DFINITY Developing Blockchain-based Recycling-focused Tech

Sead Fadilpašić
Last updated: | 3 min read
Source: AdobeStock / nsit0108

Get your daily, bite-sized digest of cryptoasset and blockchain-related news – investigating the stories flying under the radar of today’s crypto news.
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Investment news

  • Block, the fintech firm founded by Jack Dorsey, has acquired the music-centric startup Hifi, according to Hifi founder and CEO Damian Manning. The deal is “furthering our shared purpose of economic empowerment,” Manning wrote. This is Block’s – formerly Square – second investment in the music tech sphere after buying the music streaming service Tidal in 2021. The deal terms have not been shared.

Payments news

  • VALR, the largest South African crypto exchange by trading volume, announced a strategic partnership with Visa, for the issuance of Visa cards and delivery of other digital payment solutions, said the press release. VALR recently obtained approval to offer crypto services in Europe and is in the process of obtaining licenses in Dubai, Mauritius, and South Africa. The VALR-Visa partnership follows other Visa partnerships with major global crypto asset service providers such as Coinbase, Crypto.com, and Circle.

Blockchain news

  • After announcing the Voluntary Recycling Credits (VRC) standard to address the growing global waste issue last June, global management consultancy Roland Berger partnered with The DFINITY Foundation, a Swiss-based not-for-profit organization and a major contributor to the Internet Computer Blockchain. According to the press release, through this partnership, The DFINITY Foundation will develop the underlying technology for the first global standard to incentivize recycling activities – based on blockchain, thus ensuring secure, transparent tracking of offset activities. According to the press release, “the incorporation of blockchain technology into the VRC standard is not merely an advancement, but a foundational element critical for its success.”
  • Acme, founded by Nilesh Khaitan, Principal Technical Program Manager at Venmo, is building an intent-based network to simplify on-chain transactions to OneTap, a press release said. “Acme’s experience makes on-chain transactions accessible to non-crypto natives, and empowers developers to simplify and secure digital asset transactions for their users with One API call,” it added. It is backed by self-custody platform and infrastructure provider Safe‘s Account Abstraction SDK, Safe{Core}, and web3 infrastructure platform Gelato‘s Gasless Relayers. Safe{Core} SDK guarantees the security of each on-chain intent propagated via Acme’s network, and Gelato abstracts gas fees, making on-chain transactions smooth and hassle-free, it said. Acme’s beta launch is marked by distributing free NFTs to 200,000+ non-crypto native attendees as part of the OneTapToSaveAmazon campaign.

Exchange news

  • KuCoin announced the launch of Pre-Market Trading, described as “the first in the industry over-the-counter (OTC) trading product among CEXes that allows users to trade new tokens before they are officially listed.” Per the press release, this feature is a spot trading product that provides an early access advantage to both retail investors and professional users/institutions, who can secure shares before listing or locking in selling prices in advance. Celestia is the first featuring project of Pre-Market Trading: users will have early access to its native TIA token with the advantage of assuring selling prices in advance, the exchange said.
  • Bitget unveiled its latest monthly Proof of Reserves (PoR) report, with its total reserve ratio of 207%. According to the press release, user funds are fully backed 1:1 and available on demand. As of the data collected on October 10, the total value of cumulative reserves exceeds $1.38 billion, encompassing 31 prominent digital assets, including BTC, ETH, USDT, USDC, and others. The reserve ratios have consistently been surpassing 200% for the past nine months, doubling the industry standard of 100%, the exchange said. Bitget also established a $300 Million Protection Fund, as an additional safeguard to protect the users from potential losses arising from compromised accounts, unforeseen loss of assets, or extraordinary market events.