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Blockchains and NFTs

The world’s first NFT dates back to 2014, when New York artist Kevin McCoy’s animation known as Quantum was originally minted on Namecoin, a blockchain forked from Bitcoin. Quantum eventually sold for US$1.47 million at a Sotheby’s auction in June 2021, but its host blockchain is buried deep in the history of NFTs, rarely visited […]

Echoes of El Salvador as Malaysian minister calls for crypto adoption

Top blockchain and crypto news: Bitcoin buzz in Malaysia. Yuga Labs teases Otherside. Blockchain verdict in China.

Fusang delays security-token IPO amid market jitters

Conflict in Ukraine takes a toll on Malaysian exchange’s $10 million IPO just a week before planned listing.

‘We may create another kind of elite,’ Animoca chairman warns

Blockchain gaming unicorn Animoca Brands co-founder and executive chairman Yat Siu said Web 3.0 needs rapid adoption in order to become more decentralized at Australia Blockchain Week in Melbourne on Wednesday. See related article: FTX heads Down Under as Australia looks to crypto industry Fast facts “If people don’t move into the space quickly enough, […]

Ethereum Classic surges on 79% weekly rally

Ethereum Classic (ETC) is leading the crypto market’s weekly rally by gaining 79.2% over the past seven days, a time frame in which all but five non-stable tokens in the top 100 by market cap landed in the green.  See related article: How Ethereum Classic’s 51% attacks reveal risks to Bitcoin and Ethereum Fast facts […]

NFT Marketplace Competition Heats Up

Opensea, an NFT marketplace on the Ethereum blockchain founded in 2017, currently dominates the NFT landscape with a market share of over 80% as of February 2022. OpenSea’s monthly trading volume on Ethereum soared to a new record high of US$5 billion in January 2022, surpassing its previous peak of US$3 billion reached in August […]

NFT Marketplace Rivals’ Arrival | Interview: Zach Burks

The NFT marketplace landscape is getting more and more competitive. What are your thoughts on staying ahead in this competitive landscape? The NFT space is definitely the hottest industry on earth right now and it is the fastest-growing industry. There’s a lot of competition. At Mintable, we’re also growing very quickly. In order to continue […]

Regulations on the Radar

While blockchains and NFTs can theoretically eliminate plagiarism and fraud, there is as yet no clear distinction between NFTs that have been inspired by the designs of others and those that are simply copycats. Nike, for instance, has filed a lawsuit against StockX for selling NFT images of its shoes, while Hermès has sued an […]

New Investors and Investments

As NFT adoption grows, massive amounts of capital are pouring into the industry.  January 2022 saw the close of investment rounds in several high-profile companies, including NFT marketplace OpenSea, which raised US$300 million in Series C funding from investors led by Paradigm and Coatue. The new investment valued OpenSea at US$13.3 billion. Hong Kong-based Animoca Brands, […]

The Metaverse Conquest | Interview with Sébastien Borget

The Sandbox metaverse is made up of 166,464 unique land NFTs, digital pieces of real estate, that players can own to publish their creations, monetize their games or rent to other creators. These lands will host a wide range of experiences, and their limited number makes The Sandbox seem like a virtual Manhattan when it […]

Getting Creative | Interview with Audrey Ou

Traditional art and NFTs Art collectors have become much more interested in NFTs over the past year. Crypto-native NFT projects, like profile photos, are opening an entirely new market to art fans. The ranks of mainstream art collectors are also expanding, since many young NFT collectors go on to explore other forms of art, including […]

NFTs Behind the Pictures | Interview: Reeve Collins

1. What are programmable NFTs?  Programmable NFTs are completely customizable digital objects that can be programmed to change their appearance and purpose over time, allowing for the creation of unique objects and collectibles that can change in response to future events.  Picture a massive multiplayer online role playing game like World Of Warcraft, where you […]

Decoupling of NFTs from Cryptocurrencies

NFTs are increasingly being seen as an asset class that is distinct from cryptocurrencies, and this is reflected in the rising valuations and trading volumes in recent months. For instance, sales of Bored Ape Yacht Club tokens doubled from December 2021 to a record US$313 million in January 2022, according to CryptoSlam data. In contrast, […]

The Boost from Blockchain Gaming

From the lookout: Unbeknownst to those outside the NFT space, there’s a mammoth blockchain game on the horizon. Even before the launch of Star Atlas, which promises cinema-quality graphics, investors are already pouring millions of dollars to purchase in-game NFT items. The unreleased game’s leaderboard shows a player with US$4 million worth of assets. This […]

NFT Hacks and Scams

As NFTs continue to draw new users, hacks and scams have begun to surface in the nascent industry. According to blockchain analytics company Chainalysis, the two most popular NFT-related crimes are money laundering and wash trading. The amounts involved are, however, relatively small with Chainalysis estimating that such criminal activities generated illicit profits of US$10 […]

Trends Driving NFTs Growth

Avatars accounted for most of the growth in the NFT space in 2021, but diverse use cases are starting to emerge. More niche products are also emerging, including fractionalized property ownership, and DeFi products made specifically for the NFT ecosystem are expected to grow this year. Such developments were discussed in detail during interviews with […]

Trends Within the Trend

What major use cases or trends will we see in the NFT space in 2022? Trend 1: Mass adoption. Currently, we estimate there are around 1 million unique wallets globally that have been used to buy, sell or hold NFTs. We believe this number will rise sharply as more companies and developers create NFTs to […]

Asia Primed For NFT Growth

Asia looks set to become the next big market for NFTs, with some experts predicting the region may surpass the West as early as this year. Global Google search interest for the term “NFT” surged past “crypto” in January, with the search engine’s data showing growth originating in the East. Data from Taiwan, Japan and […]

State of the NFT Market

NFTs serve as the bridge for millions of users who are beginning to move to Web3.0 through digital collectibles. New use cases outlined in the report have the potential to disrupt traditional industries such as music, art, ticketing and even education. Global sales of NFTs reached US$18.5 billion in 2021, which was 570 times higher […]

Introduction

In March 2021, a non-fungible token (NFT) in the form of artist Beeple’s digital collage sold for US$69 million at a Christie’s auction. It created a buzz among retail and professional investors who began to take a serious look into this new revenue stream for digital artists. Around the same time, Dapper Labs’ NBA Top […]

Metaverse Set to Boost NFTs

NFTs are widely expected to gain increased popularity as the metaverse becomes more established, thanks to the technology’s ability to provide indisputable proof of ownership. Ownership of virtual real estate, which involves the use of NFTs, has grown rapidly. In Decentraland, one of the most popular metaverses, property prices have risen 400-500% in the months […]

NFT Avatars — A New Identity

NFT avatars are digital portraits, often illustrating animated or pixelated characters. Avatars are algorithmically generated to give each NFT unique identifiable traits, such as a particular hairstyle, mustache, glasses, or even laser eyes — a social trend Bitcoiners cite to support the cryptocurrency’s climb to US$100,000. In many instances, the ownership of these avatars represent […]

Apes Gone Wild! BAYC ‘selling like crazy’ amid otherwise sluggish NFT market

Strong sales from leading NFT series may be a sign the market is maturing as investors become more discerning, observers say.

BAYC creator Yuga Labs raises valuation to $4B

Bored Ape Yacht Club creator Yuga Labs announced on Wednesday Asia time that it has raised US$450 million in a funding round, bringing the Web 3.0 company to a total valuation of US$4 billion.  See related article: The future is decentralized: How Web3 can reshape the world Fast facts The funding round was led by […]

FIFA, Crypto.com set Qatar World Cup sponsorship deal

Adding to its ambitious roster of sports sponsorships, Crypto.com will be the exclusive cryptocurrency trading platform backing the Qatar World Cup after bagging the deal for an undisclosed amount, the international soccer association announced on Wednesday, Asia time.  See related article: Crypto.com discloses details of US$34M hack Fast facts Singapore-based Crypto.com stands to gain massive […]

How DeFi can lift up the poor in emerging markets

Traditional banks are failing the nearly 2 billion people in the world without access to financial services, writes Khalid Howladar. But DeFi can be a lifeline.

BSN, China Mobile support local NFTs with new chain launch

China’s state-backed Blockchain-based Service Network (BSN) has announced the addition of “Zhong Yi Chain,” developed by telecommunications giant China Mobile, to its open permissioned blockchain ecosystem to bolster the growth of home-grown non-fungible tokens (NFTs). See related article: BSN to integrate CasperLabs’ chain to support NFT issuance in China Fast facts The new chain serves […]

Challenges to Address

The rapid rise of NFTs has sparked concerns about speculative bubbles as well as the negative impact on the environment. As discussed earlier, China permits trading in NFTs so long as there is a holding period after each purchase. The country’s state media have also warned against speculative behavior surrounding NFTs.  In places such as […]

Malaysia’s crypto proposal; Hong Kong’s 11-yr-old NFT coder

A Malaysian minister has proposed making Bitcoin a legal tender. Meanwhile in Hong Kong, an 11-year-old programmer makes his way into the NFT business.

How an 11-year-old programmer created his own NFT minter

Inspired by the success of Beeple, Miguel Wang created CryptoTigers to generate pixelated tiger images for the Year of the Tiger.

More courts in China accept blockchain-stored evidence

Sichuan and Inner Mongolia are two regions that recently announced their first cases using blockchain-stored evidence, local media reports. See related article: How blockchain technology is shaking up courtrooms in Asia Fast facts See related article: Court in China says trading in cryptocurrency ‘not protected by law’

Algorand upgrades will boost speed and privacy, founder says

Algorand is planning a series of upgrades to bolster the network’s privacy and speed, and developing permissioned co-chains with a trustless decentralized bridge between chains, founder and MIT professor Silvio Micali said at Blockchain Week Australia on Tuesday.  See related article: What is Algorand and why is it a blockchain to watch? Fast facts Algorand […]

Malaysia ministry: adopt crypto as legal tender to engage the young

Malaysia’s deputy minister of its Communications and Multimedia Ministry told the parliament on Monday the country should consider adopting cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin as legal tender, local media The Star reported. See related article: Will El Salvador’s lead on Bitcoin inspire others to follow suit? Fast facts Zahidi Zainul Abidin, the deputy minister, said the communications […]

India rules out offsetting losses against gains in new crypto tax law

In a move that may adversely impact crypto adoption in the country, India’s government said its pending tax law for virtual digital assets will not allow offsetting gains on one crypto with losses from another. See related article: India may impose 28% GST on crypto transactions Fast facts India’s government plans to collect a 30% […]

Plant a tree in metaverse, and S.Korea will plant two in fire-damaged forest

The Korea Forest Service is starting a tree-planting campaign in the metaverse in conjunction with fintech company Dunamu — for every tree planted in the metaverse, it will plant two trees in the fire-affected mountain forest of Andong. See related article: South Korea places $185M bet on the metaverse Fast facts An event is planned […]

The Flippening: When will Ethereum overtake Bitcoin?

Ethereum’s market value passing up Bitcoin’s may not be a matter of if, but when. Dr. Kosrow Dehnad and Joe Duncan offer a predictive model.
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Crypto milestone on Wall St.: Goldman Sachs makes OTC Bitcoin trade

Goldman Sachs announced its first over-the-counter crypto options trade on Monday, becoming the first major U.S. bank to do so, marking a milestone for crypto adoption on Wall Street. See related article: Goldman Sachs: Bitcoin could reach $100K price by beating gold Fast facts The trade was in the form of a Bitcoin non-deliverable option […]

India’s crypto GST plan; Australia’s crypto reforms

South Korea prepares for the imposition of FATF travel rule heat up. Meanwhile in Australia, reforms are set to be introduced for the crypto sector.

How to bolster security in a fragmented multi-chain world

The $320 million Wormhole hack laid bare the vulnerability of cross-chain bridges, writes Alex Smirnov of deBridge. How can we plug the gaps?

FTX heads Down Under as Australia looks to crypto industry

Bahamas-based crypto exchange FTX announced the establishment of an Australian branch on Monday Asia time as part of the company’s global expansion plans. See related article: New crypto regulation — including tax reform — coming to Australia Fast facts FTX Australia will be headquartered in the nation’s financial capital Sydney and will be fully licensed […]

Australia may regulate DAOs under senator’s proposed act

Australian senator Andrew Bragg called for “urgent” regulation of decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) under the nation’s Corporations Act as part of his Digital Services Act proposal at Blockchain Week Australia on Monday.  See related article: ​​New crypto regulation — including tax reform — coming to Australia Fast facts DAOs can replace companies and are therefore […]

Bored Apes creator to launch new metaverse ‘Otherside’ 

Yuga Labs, creators of the Bored Apes Yacht Club (BAYC) non-fungible token (NFT) collection, teased the launch of its metaverse called Otherside, coming in April. See related article: BAYC’s floor price surpasses 100 ETH since ApeCoin launch Fast facts The teaser video released by Yuga Labs on Saturday featured Yuga Labs NFTs including Mutant Ape […]

S. Korean exchanges set stage for Friday’s travel rule arrival

Financial Action Task Force (FATF) travel rule compliance service providers VerifyVASP and CODE have signed a memorandum of understanding to link their services before the rule goes into full effect in South Korea this Friday. See related article: South Korean crypto businesses scramble to meet FATF travel rule Fast facts The two entities are backed […]

Taiwan’s MaiCoin crypto exchange mulls Nasdaq listing: report

MaiCoin, Taiwan’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, is considering a Nasdaq listing within two years, Bloomberg reported on Friday. See related article: Taiwan has a chance to develop crypto amid China’s clampdown, Filecoin Foundation director says Fast facts MaiCoin is also completing its Series C funding round which would value the company at US$400 million. MaiCoin expects […]

Asian Games host gets central bank support for digital yuan pilots

The People’s Bank of China and four state departments confirmed their support for bidding regions in the southeastern province Zhejiang to carry out the next batch of digital yuan pilots. See related article: PBOC branch chief seeks clarity on digital yuan as legal tender Fast facts See related article: Hong Kong makes apt testbed for […]

India may impose 28% GST on crypto transactions

The Indian government is working to determine whether cryptocurrencies can be classified as goods or services, which can impose a different taxation scheme on digital assets, local media reported. See related article: India’s crypto tax will incur losses for government, says WazirX CEO Fast facts Government officials believe crypto trading is similar to gambling and […]

New crypto regulation — including tax reform — coming to Australia

Sweeping reforms are coming to Australia’s crypto sector, including a new tax system, additional protections for investors, and regulation for crypto exchanges and brokers. See related article: Australia on track for a crypto boom by 2030, EY report says Fast facts The Australian government will release documents relating to the regulation on Monday as it […]

Russian bank given crypto license: China to monitor outflows

As the conflict between Russia and Ukraine rages on and sanctions continue to mount, Russia-based bank Sberbank obtains a crypto license from the Central Bank of Russia. Meanwhile in China, social media platform Weibo allows its users to mint NFTs of their social media posts.

From crisis currency to consumer adoption: What next for crypto?

Cryptocurrencies have won credit for their role in Ukraine’s war, showing utility that will drive them beyond the battlefield, says Amber Group’s Michael Wu.

What US Fed’s interest rate hike means for China and its CBDC

Capital control limiting outflows may be less of an issue in the future with e-CNY being a ‘controllable currency,’ experts say.

Weibo launches NFT marketplace, allowing users to mint posts

Weibo, a social media platform known as the Chinese equivalent of Twitter with 249 million daily active users, launched its non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace TopHolder on Thursday, allowing users to mint their original posts into NFTs and sell them. See related article: Zuckerberg confirms NFTs coming to Instagram Fast facts Users will need to pass […]

Europe’s first metaverse ETF lists on London Stock Exchange

Europe’s first metaverse-themed exchange-traded fund (ETF), the ETC Group Global Metaverse UCITS ETF (METR), listed on the London Stock Exchange Thursday, available for sale across Europe. See related article: Hong Kong gears up for its first metaverse ETF Fast facts The ETF will track the Solactive ETC Group Global Metaverse Index, which currently offers exposure […]

Shinhan Card sends all employees to metaverse training camp

South Korean financial institution Shinhan Financial Group’s credit card subsidiary announced Friday that all of its employees are headed to the Gather.town metaverse for training on data usage in business operations. See related article: S. Korean, S. African banks team up for stablecoin-based remittances Fast facts Shinhan Card employees will complete missions on the metaverse […]

Eqonex appoints former Binance UK head as CEO

Nasdaq-listed crypto exchange Eqonex has appointed Jonathan Farnell, a former head of Binance U.K., as its new CEO and a director on the board. See related article: UK regulator may cancel Eqonex’s registration over Binance, Bifinity ties Fast facts Helen Hai, president of Binance’s payment arm Bifinity, has also been appointed to the board. The […]

Jack Dorsey’s Block funds Japanese fintech company Kyash in $41M round

Tokyo-based mobile financial platform Kyash has raised US$41.2 million (about 4.9 billion yen) in its Series D funding joined by Jack Dorsey’s Block. See related article: After Facebook’s name change to Meta, Square has now become Block Fast facts Kyash has accumulated a total funding of about US$107.7 million since its launch in 2015, which […]

Coinbase wallet announces support for Solana

The largest U.S. crypto exchange Coinbase announced on Friday support for the Solana ecosystem through its wallet browser extension, allowing users to manage their Solana (SOL) and Solana-based SPL tokens See related article: Solana wallet Phantom brings valuation to $1.2B after $109M Series B Fast facts Solana’s integration with the wallet enables users to access […]

Russia’s Sberbank obtains crypto license from central bank

The Central Bank of Russia has given the country’s largest bank, Sberbank, a license to issue and exchange digital assets only two months after the central bank had called for a full ban on cryptocurrency. See related article: Russia retreats from crypto ban as it pushes rules for industry Fast facts The move may allow […]

Ukraine legalizes crypto; Korea’s crypto policy ideas

Ukrainian President signs a digital assets bill into law. Meanwhile in China, Cannan plans to buy back shares.

4M trees required to negate the carbon emissions of CryptoKitties NFTs: report

Around 4 million trees are required to offset the nearly 240 million kilograms of carbon dioxide produced by the CryptoKitties non-fungible token (NFT) collection, according to research by NFT Club, an NFT education company.  See related article: ​​NFTs and music: Is the fan outcry over NFTs’ environmental impact warranted? Fast facts Sorare, Axie Infinity, Art […]

Ethereum moves closer to proof-of-stake after Kiln 

Ethereum’s merge on the Kiln testnet on Wednesday was a success, as the blockchain passed the final public test before its highly anticipated transition from a proof-of-work (PoW) consensus mechanism to proof-of-stake (PoS), which is expected to happen by the end of Q2, 2022. See related article: The best of Ethereum 2.0 is yet to […]

S.Korean crypto industry calls for local language white papers

South Korean digital asset experts gathered at the National Assembly on Thursday to discuss president-elect Yoon Suk-yeol’s crypto campaign promises, which included his plan to bring back initial coin offerings (ICOs). See related article: A crypto bull wins the presidency: What it means for South Korea Fast facts The head of crypto exchange Upbit’s investor […]

BAYC’s floor price surpasses 100 ETH since ApeCoin launch

Bored Ape Yacht Club’s (BAYC) floor price surged to 106.5 ETH since the launch of ApeCoin, while its spin-off collection Mutant Ape Yacht Club’s (MAYC) floor price rose to 23.65 ETH at press time. See related article: Bored Ape Yacht Club teams up with Animoca Brands to develop play-to-earn game Fast facts The ApeCoin launch […]

Binance wins crypto license in Dubai days after FTX

Binance has received a virtual asset license in Dubai to offer services to qualified investors, as the world’s largest crypto giants continue their Middle East drive.  See related article: Binance wins license in Bahrain, explores acquisition of Brazilian brokerage Fast facts The license will allow Binance to operate within Dubai’s “test-adapt-scale” model and serve pre-qualified […]

Canaan to buy back up to $100M shares to drive value

Chinese crypto mining rig maker Canaan announced Wednesday its plans to buy back up to US$100 million worth of shares over the next two years. See related article: Chinese mining rig maker Canaan secures purchase order from Genesis for 30K units Fast facts The Nasdaq-listed company’s latest move comes after it completed its previous US$20 […]

Indonesia’s crypto scene is booming. What are the risks?

Crypto’s growing popularity is also leading to more fraud and abuses, writes Ronald Molenaar of ADVANCE.AI. What can be done to better protect users?

Bitcoin, crypto market in the green after Fed rate hike

Bitcoin and most of the top cryptocurrencies by market capitalization landed in the green on Thursday after the U.S. Federal Reserve raised interest rates on Wednesday. See related article: Is Bitcoin really a hedge against inflation? Fast facts The U.S. central bank hiked its benchmark interest rate by 0.25 basis points, for the first time […]

Renewables uptake: Bitcoin the problem or solution?

There is more to transitioning to renewable energy than one might expect, and in Australia, one Bitcoin mining company says the industry can play a role.

Zelenskyy legalizes cryptocurrency in Ukraine

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has signed a virtual assets bill into law to legalize cryptocurrencies in a country that is receiving millions in crypto donations for military and humanitarian aid in its war against Russia. See related article: Ukraine crypto donations top $36M amid Russian invasion Fast facts The law determines the legal status for […]

Hong Kong’s flagship bank HSBC heads into The Sandbox metaverse

HSBC, a leading global banking and financial services provider, announced a partnership with blockchain gaming platform The Sandbox, in a statement released on Wednesday, to build its presence in the Hong Kong-based firm’s metaverse. See related article: Who are the biggest players in the metaverse today? Fast facts HSBC will develop a plot of LAND, […]

China highlights crypto crimes; Kazakh miners busted

Chinese authorities cracked down on crypto related crimes on Consumer Rights Day. Meanwhile in Kazakhstan, the former President’s brother was busted for illegal crypto mining operations.

Bitcoin avoids European ban as lawmakers decline to outlaw ‘proof of work’

Top blockchain and crypto news: PoW spared as Europe revamps MiCA rules. Yuga Labs acquires CryptoPunks rights. China’s Mango TV makes NFT debut.

China lashes out at crypto fraud on World Consumer Rights Day

No more Burger King, Nike and Muji. This year’s annual focus on marketplace abuse names and shames crypto scams.