Zimbabwe Eyes Crypto, Brave Solana, BTC & ETH Investments Flows + More News

Source: Adobe/luzitanija

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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Adoption news

  • The Zimbabwean government is weighing options of adopting cryptocurrency as a legal payment service and is consulting various stakeholders on the merits of the virtual currency, local outlet The Sunday News reported. Charles Wekwete, the country’s Permanent Secretary and Head of e-government Technology Unit in the Office of the President, reportedly stated that “consultations with the private sector are underway” at the Computer Society of Zimbabwe (CSZ) information communication technologies (ICT) Summit.
  • Brave said it will integrate the Solana (SOL) blockchain into the Brave browser, providing default Solana ecosystem support to Brave’s 42m monthly active users and 1.3m verified Creators. Brave will soon default to Solana for cross-chain and Solana native dapps (decentralized applications), they added.
  • A member of Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies, Luizão Goulart, proposed a bill to provide public and private sector workers with a crypto payment option that would allow them to receive their payments in crypto.
  • Vikram Pandit, former boss of banking giant Citigroup, says that all major banks will soon be seriously considering plunging into the world of crypto trading, Bloomberg reported. In “one to three years, every large bank and, or securities firm is going to actively think about ‘shouldn’t I also be trading and selling cryptocurrency assets?’” he was quoted as saying.

Investments news

  • Digital asset investment products saw inflows totaling USD 174m last week, or 40% less than a week before, per CoinShares data. Bitcoin (BTC) saw inflows totaling USD 95m last week, or 65% less than a week before. Inflows into ethereum (ETH) almost doubled, reaching USD 31m last week.
MTD - month-to-date; YTD - year-to-date; AUM - assets under management. Source: CoinShares
  • Matter Labs, the firm behind Ethereum Layer 2 scaling protocol zkSync, has raised USD 50m in a Series B funding round led by Andreessen Horowitz (a16z). The funding will be used to finance Matter Labs’ business growth, including expanding scientific and engineering teams.
  • Crypto compliance SaaS startup Notabene has raised USD 10.2m in a Series A funding round co-led by F-Prime Capital and Jump Capital, which brings its valuation to USD 45m. New investors include crypto exchanges Luno and Bitso, as well as the venture capital arms of Blockfi and Gemini Frontier Fund, among others.
  • Meow, a developer of a bridge between institutional investors and crypto market yield, said it has raised USD 5m in a seed round of funding, with participation from Coinbase Ventures, Gemini Frontier Fund, Lux Capital, and other investors.

CBDCs news

  • The Bank of France called for further research on a central bank digital currency (CBDC) for wholesale use in the financial sector after finding efficiency advantages for markets and payments, Bloomberg reported. In its first report since starting to look into the subject in 2020, the bank said that the testing showed a CBDC could maintain standards for securities settlements and avoid potential fragmentation from the existence of multiple private versions, as well as make cross-border payments “faster, cheaper, more transparent and more inclusive.”

Regulation news

  • India is considering a middle path on cryptocurrencies, instead of outright banning them, which is not considered feasible in view of large investments in such instruments by Indians, the Economic Times reported, citing "a government source." The assets are unlikely to become legal tender, so the country’s lawmakers will likely go for a “middle path that balances the concerns of all stakeholders,” it added.
  • The US House of Representatives voted to pass a bipartisan infrastructure bill that contains a controversial crypto tax reporting requirement, where the definition of “broker” would capture entities like miners and other parties that don’t actually facilitate transactions. The bill has now gone to President Joe Biden for his signature.
  • The Central Bank of Nigeria has ordered all Nigerian commercial banks to freeze the accounts of certain individuals for purportedly trading in crypto, People’s Gazette reported. The listed accounts belong to two individuals and a company, according to the outlet.

NFTs news

  • Non-fungible token (NFT) market OpenSea has crossed USD 10bn in all-time sales volumes, according to data from DappRadar. The total sales volume currently stands at USD 10.33bn, more than triple the size of the second-biggest market Axie Infinity (AXS), which has a volume of USD 3bn.

Blockchain news

  • NEM (XEM) has announced its Harlock hard fork, which will enable NEM nodes to vote on whether or not the NEM blockchain will merge into the Symbol blockchain as a “subChain,” or “a type of transaction-specific sidechain.”
  • The Cronos Mainnet Beta is now live as the first Cosmos (ATOM) chain for decentralized finance (DeFi), NFTs, and the Metaverse, Crypto.com said. Also, their partner blockchain accelerator Particle B has announced the CRO EVM Fund, which will grant up to USD 1m per project to at least 100 projects committing to building applications, toolings, and infrastructure on Cronos.

Exchanges news

  • Huobi Group is moving its spot-trading operation to Gibraltar as it takes steps to leave China. The company has received approval from the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission to start migrating its operations to affiliate Huobi Technology (Gibraltar) Co. and offer spot-trading services through Huobi Gibraltar, Bloomberg reported.
  • Crypto exchange BitBay has announced plans to rebrand the exchange to “Zonda”, along with a new strategy for the future. They have also appointed a new board of directors, which includes Przemysław Kral as CEO; Kamil Sikorski as Chief Growth Officer; and David Sendecki as CCO and Money Laundering Reporting Officer.
  • Crypto platform Blockchain.com announced the former US Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC) attorney and Deutsche Bank exec CJ Rinaldi as their Chief Compliance Officer.

Mining news

  • London-based crypto miner Argo Blockchain has filed to raise up to USD 57.5m in senior notes that would be due in November 2026, with an interest rate of 8.75%, per the filing. Argo will use the proceeds of the fund for general corporate purposes, for construction of its Texas mining facility, as well as for potential acquisitions or investments in businesses within the crypto and blockchain technologies.
  • Mining company Atlas Technology Group LLC has entered into a partnership with Luxor Technology Corporation for mining pool services for 100 megawatts (MW) of its Bitcoin mining operation. Atlas will be deploying a portion of its North American ASIC fleet in Compute North’s facilities and will leverage Luxor’s Bitcoin mining pool for hashrate liquidation, they said. Atlas anticipates that the first phase of its Compute North deployment will be complete by December 15.