19 Nov 2021 · 4 min read
Wasabi Lightning Wallet Grant, Binance's New Integration & Funding, Norway Crypto Mining Ban Talk + 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.
- Bitcoin (BTC) privacy wallet Wasabi Wallet has announced their Lightning Network Privacy Research Grant, consisting of BTC 1, to help the production of a privacy-focused Lightning Network wallet. Those who are interested may apply with a team or individually, and the selected research team will be given BTC 0.5, while the other half will go to three select individuals that will form another research team.
- Binance has announced it has completed the integration of Arbitrum One mainnet and has opened deposits for ether (ETH) on Arbitrum One Layer 2. Binance will open withdrawal for Arbitrum One Network on a later date, but no further announcement will be posted.
- Binance.US may raise a "couple hundred million" dollars in a funding round set to close in a month or two, while the crypto exchange has also decided on a new headquarters, chief executive Changpeng Zhao said, per Reuters. Zhao said the firm's US affiliate has the option to go for an initial public offering (IPO), and that he was not ruling out listing the parent company in future.
- Crypto exchange Bitstamp has announced it will become the main liquidity provider for the Estonian LHV Bank, which starts offering cryptocurrency trading to its customers. LHV will launch cryptocurrency trading on Monday having allowed customers to invest in cryptocurrency related exchange-traded funds (ETFs) via certain investment accounts since 2018.
- Norway is considering a crypto mining ban proposal put forth by two Swedish regulatory officials, Minister of Local Government and Regional Development Bjørn Arild Gram hinted in an interview with Euronews. Norway is “currently considering potential policy measures” to address the “challenges related to crypto mining.”
- Bitcoin mining company Bitdeer Technologies is merging with Blue Safari Group Acquisition Corp. in an estimated USD 4bn special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) agreement that will allow the firm to trade in the US, per Bloomberg. Shares of the SPAC hit an all-time high of USD 10.49 after the announcement.
- Central bank digital currencies (CBDC) like Russia’s digital ruble do not pose any threat to United States sanctions, US Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo told CNBC in an interview. He also argued that the US dollar “will remain the dominant currency in the world” despite the increasing popularity of cryptocurrencies.
- Chinese Xiongan New District warned citizens of telecom fraud using the digital yuan, according to a notice signed by the local government and central bank branch. Xiongan district, near Beijing, was one of the first places to pilot the e-CNY.
- Layer 2 scaling platform Celer’s multi-chain network cBridge has surpassed USD 1bn in total cross-chain transaction volume and assets bridged. The project reached a daily peak of USD 25m on November 17, but has been progressing steadily and rapidly since July 2021.
- A pair of paintings from contemporary artist Banksy have sold for a combined ETH 3,093 in an auction at Sotheby’s. The “Trolley Hunters” piece sold for almost USD 6.7m, while “Love is in the Air” sold for the equivalent of USD 8m at the time of the sale.
- Moshe Hogeg, the Israeli crypto mogul behind the blockchain smartphone startup Sirin Labs and a host of other crypto startups, was arrested on Thursday on fraud and assault charges, according to local news outlet Haaretz. A statement published on the official Twitter page of the Israeli police on Thursday said in Hebrew that “eight suspects were arrested on suspicion of committing fraudulent offenses in the field of cryptocurrencies, amounting to hundreds of millions of shekels,” although it did not name any of the suspects.
- The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced that it charged Ryan Ginster with conducting two unregistered and fraudulent securities offerings that raised over USD 3.6m in crypto from retail investors. He allegedly raised the funds through platforms MyMicroProfits.com and Social Profimatic, which promised astronomical rates of return by falsely claiming returns through, amongst other activities, purported "cryptocurrency trading and advertising arbitrage."
- US department store Macy’s is releasing a series of parade-themed non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on November 25, Thanksgiving Day, with plans to donate the proceeds to charity. The collection of 9,500 NFTs will be sold through Sweet’s NFT marketplace, and while the NFTs will be free to mint, 10% of their resale profits will be donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
- The Blockchain Association, one of the crypto industry’s largest lobbying groups, has raised USD 4m in new funding with participation from Kraken, Digital Currency Group, and Filecoin Foundation. Filecoin Foundation has also pledged an additional USD 2m as a match once the Blockchain Association raises the amount in outside funding.
- Crypto trading firm Copper.co is in talks with investors to raise funds that would value it at around USD 3bn, Bloomberg reported. The investors include Tiger Global, SoftBank Group and Accel to participate in the USD 500m funding round, but the deal has not yet been finalized.
- Private equity firm KKR plans to lead a Series D investment round for crypto platform Anchorage which would push it to a valuation of around USD 3bn, The Information reported.
- Crypto exchange-traded product (ETP) issuer 21Shares has announced the seed funding of the 21Shares Polygon ETP on the SIX Swiss Exchange by the Polygon Foundation (MATIC). The 21Shares Polygon ETP is accessible to any investor using a bank or broker that has access to the SIX Swiss Exchange, with no additional special set-up needed.
- Crypto VC Outlier Ventures has unveiled the latest strategic members to join the Outlier Ventures Partnership, which include Snoop Dogg, deadmau5, consumer brand guru Shaun Neff, and others. These new members, who the firm calls “Outliers”, will invest in, advise and collaborate with startups going through Outlier Ventures’ Base Camp accelerator, dubbed the Y-Combinator of the Metaverse.