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Myanmar’s resistance routes funding through Tether

Top blockchain and crypto news: Can stablecoins bankroll democracy? Nike swooshes into the metaverse. Animoca and Bored Apes venture deeper into the gaming jungle.

Binance to set up digital asset exchange in Indonesia with local telecom giant

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, today announced that it has set up a joint venture with the venture capital arm of Telkom Indonesia, the country’s largest telecommunication company, to develop a new digital asset exchange there. Fast facts Binance said in a statement that it has teamed up with MDI Ventures — a US$830 […]

Myanmar’s shadow government uses Tether in its fight against military rule

The National Unity Government recognizes Tether as an official currency, defying the cryptocurrency ban imposed last year.

Hong Kong-based Brinc closes $130M funding led by Animoca Brands to fuel Web 3.0 growth

Brinc, a Hong Kong-headquartered venture capital focused on Web 3.0, today announced that it has secured US$30 million in a Series B round and an additional US$100 million for startup investments. The funding was led by Animoca Brands — a Hong Kong-based blockchain gaming, metaverse and non-fungible token (NFT) company — to further fuel Brinc’s investment in […]

Nike takes next step into metaverse with virtual sneaker maker RTFKT

Nike announced the acquisition of a company that designs fashion clothing for the metaverse, RTFKT Studios, once noted for selling 608 pairs of NFT shoes in just six minutes. Fast facts After announcing the acquisition, both Nike and RTFKT Studios tweeted videos, each containing the logos of Nike, Jordan, Converse and RTFKT. RTFKT Studios, founded […]

US SPAC’s refusal to merge with Hong Kong crypto firms raises questions

Crypto 1 will consider acquisition targets worldwide but steer clear of digital assets companies in China and Hong Kong. Are the lights dimming on a major crypto hub?

Crypto fall continues; Is DeFi really decentralized?

Crypto fall continues meanwhile, is DeFi really decentralized?

Why the metaverse is a trillion dollar opportunity

Metizens can already attend concerts, visit art galleries and earn money in a metaverse, writes Joe Caselin of Hex Trust. What’s coming next?

Vulcan Forged replaces majority of tokens worth $140M stolen in hack

Blockchain gaming studio Vulcan Forged was hacked on Tuesday and 4.5 million PYR, the platform’s native token, was stolen, the company announced on Twitter. Fast facts Vulcan Forged also runs a decentralized exchange and a non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace. The attacker gained the private keys to 96 wallets and proceeded to empty them, making off […]

How sports and crypto are knocking it out of the park

The billion-dollar intersection of sports and crypto is a big win for all, writes Ben Armstrong, aka BitBoy Crypto. Here’s how to make sense of this seismic cultural shift.

South Korea’s WeMade invests in blockchain property startup Kasa

South Korean video game developer WeMade revealed today it has invested in Kasa, a blockchain-based digital asset-backed securities (DABS) trading platform with a focus on prop-tech — where information technology is applied to real estate economics. Fast facts Kasa is a platform where users can invest in commercial buildings with small amounts of money, similar […]

Bored Ape Yacht Club teams up with Animoca Brands to develop play-to-earn game

Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), one of the most successful non-fungible token (NFT) collections, is joining hands with Animoca Brands — a Hong Kong-based blockchain gaming, metaverse and NFT company — to develop a play-to-earn game utilizing BAYC’s popular avatar NFTs, according to a company statement. Fast facts The new game, which will feature play-to-earn […]

Twitch co-founder is building a marketplace for gaming NFTs

Justin Kan, co-founder of livestreaming platform Twitch, announced he will be launching Fractal, a new marketplace for gaming non-fungible tokens (NFTs). While the OpenSea NFT marketplace may be the largest, Fractal is not competing directly — it is betting on a niche in gaming NFTs. Fast facts The announcement comes days after a Twitch plug-in […]

Cryptocurrency prices take another hit in downward spiral

Macroeconomic factors and a spate of bad news override bullish outlook in crypto market as the year lurches toward its end.

South Korea’s Danal to allow crypto as payment for BMWs

Fast facts Blockchain-based payment platform Danal Fintech announced a new service plan that will allow BMW vehicles to be purchased with Paycoin (PCI) in its new partnership with Samchully Motors, the domestic dealer of the luxury automobile line. The recent announcement makes the first case in South Korea where an automobile can be paid in […]

US SPAC Crypto 1 closes IPO, says won’t pursue ‘business combinations’ with any Hong Kong crypto firms

Crypto 1 Acquisition Corp., a U.S.-incorporated blank check company, has completed its initial public offering (IPO) with gross proceeds of US$230 million, according to a company statement released Friday. Fast facts The company’s units commenced trading on the Nasdaq Global Market under the ticker symbol “DAOOU” on Dec. 7. Acting as a special purpose acquisition […]

In Hong Kong, a look at how the blockchain revolution in gaming continues

Gamers and developers gather at the annual Digital Entertainment Leadership Forum to discuss how video games may evolve in the future.

Binance’s Singapore entity pulls license application for local crypto exchange

Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange, announced today that its Singapore entity Binance Asia Services has withdrawn its application to the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) for a license to operate a regulated crypto exchange in the country, according to a company statement. Fast facts The exchange had operated in Singapore under an exemption that […]

Solana suffers network slowdown, raising questions around proof of history

Confusion surrounded the Solana blockchain community over the weekend as a sudden drop in transaction speeds was initially believed to be a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack, resulting in a lengthy debate as to the cause of the delay. Fast facts Solana-based non-fungible token (NFT) platform Blockasset was one of the first to highlight […]

China’s Yunnan province eradicates illegal power supply for Bitcoin mining

The energy authority in Southwest China’s Yunnan province said it has eliminated the illegal power supply from small and midsize hydropower stations to Bitcoin mining, as China continues to intensify its clampdown on crypto mining. Fast facts In a Friday post on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like microblogging platform, the Yunnan authority said as of the end […]

Shiba Inu now accepted at GameStop, Lowe’s and Nordstrom via Gemini-backed Flexa

It’s come full circle: Shiba Inu holders can now spend their SHIB at GameStop — the company that helped trigger the memecoin trend.

INX exec says crypto CEOs should talk to the SEC

Chief business officer of the first SEC-registered digital security says crypto companies got caught with their hands in the cookie jar.

Meet the DAO chief who wants artificial intelligence to take his job

Decentralized autonomous organizations are ripe for robot takeovers, says SingularityDAO’s Marcello Mari. After all, why do decentralized entities need leaders?

Shiba Inu coin burn and gaming deals can’t stop its price slide

$30 million worth of SHIB stolen in BitMart hack sparks hunt for the dognapper, as ecosystem developments fail to return Shiba Inu coin to its former glory.

Gaming’s new tipping point into metaverse matters

Gaming is increasingly defined by NFTs, play-to-earn and the metaverse, writes Charlie Baillie of Ampverse. Will Asia continue to lead the hottest gaming trends?

Horses are joining humans as metaverse pilgrims

Blockchain gaming unicorn Animoca Brands announced yesterday a partnership with Aquis Farm — a major racehorse-breeding business owned by Hong Kong’s billionaire Fung family — to bring equestrian activities into the metaverse. The blockchain specialist will leverage Aquis Farm’s equestrian intellectual properties to develop blockchain games and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).  Fast facts “Aquis recognises the […]

Bitcoin hashrate recovers six months after China’s crypto ban

Bitcoin’s hashrate has almost fully recovered just six months after China’s crypto ban sent miners fleeing to more hospitable shores. Fast facts Despite the recent price crash, the total Bitcoin hashrate stood at 180.5 million terahashes per second, almost approaching its all-time high of 180.67 million TH/s back in May, according to data from Blockchain.com. The hashrate took […]

Polygon goes deeper into ZK tech by acquiring Mir for $400M

India-based Layer 2 Ethereum scaling platform Polygon has acquired zero-knowledge technology developer Mir for US$400 million as part of Polygon’s continued focus on ZK tech. Fast facts Mir will help Polygon build its new project — Polygon Zero, a highly scalable, Ethereum compatible ZK rollup. A zero knowledge protocol is a cryptographic algorithm that allows […]

India’s crypto bill to impose jail and US$2.65M fines for violations

India’s proposed rules for digital assets would ban cryptocurrency for payments while the Securities and Exchange Board regulates exchanges. Will it become law?

Here comes the crypto derivatives boom

Investment banks’ hunger for a new revenue stream is likely to drive up the popularity and registration of crypto derivatives products.

Shinhan, Standard banks demo cross-border stablecoin remittance

The transaction, using the Hedera Consensus Service network, bypasses intermediaries, lowering fees.

Hong Kong sees high engagement with crypto, Visa research shows

A new survey published Wednesday by Visa shows that 18% of Hong Kong residents are active cryptocurrency investors, while 13% are passive investors, representing the second-highest engagement with crypto just after the U.S. Fast facts The survey collected 6,430 online responses from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Germany, Hong Kong, South Africa, the U.S., and the U.K. […]

What is Polygon (MATIC) — ‘Ethereum’s internet of blockchains’?

Polygon envisions a world where value can be exchanged without borders. In this Forkast.News explainer, find out how Polygon works and why its MATIC token is defying crypto market gravity — again.

Animoca Brands holds $15.9B in digital assets at end-November

Animoca Brands — a Hong Kong-based blockchain gaming, metaverse and non-fungible token (NFT) company — said it held US$15.87 billion worth of digital assets at the end of November, reflecting robust growth in its metaverse business units. Fast facts Animoca Brands said in a statement released Wednesday that in the first three quarters of this […]

Binance acquires 18% stake in HGX securities exchange in Singapore

Binance is acquiring an 18% post-money stake in Hg Exchange (HGX) — a private securities exchange that has obtained a recognized market operator license by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) — through Binance Asia Services, the blockchain ecosystem and cryptocurrency provider behind Binance, according to a company statement released Wednesday. Fast facts Binance’s investment […]

China’s PBOC wants to link e-CNY with Hong Kong’s Faster Payment System

Mu Changchun, director-general of the People’s Bank of China’s digital currency institute, said today the central bank is working with the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) to test cross-border payment features for the e-CNY, China’s much anticipated central bank digital currency (CBDC). Fast facts Mu said at a webinar, jointly organized by the PBOC and […]
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S. Korean blockchain VC Hashed under tax investigation as CEO denies tax evasion

South Korea’s National Tax Service (NTS) recently launched an intensive tax investigation into blockchain and crypto venture capital firm Hashed, while its CEO denies any involvement in slush fund raising or tax evasion, according to local media reports. Fast facts Hashed confirmed that it had cooperated with the 4th Bureau of Investigation from the Seoul […]

Top crypto CEOs face House committee grappling with regulations

Stablecoins, US dollar primacy and energy consumption were among the topics in the questioning homing in on how to regulate the crypto industry.

Suzhou will set up China’s first blockchain pilot demonstration zone

Suzhou, a city located in Jiangsu province, will set up China’s first blockchain demonstration pilot zone, supported by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), according to a local media report. Fast facts MIIT agreed to Jiangsu Province’s request for support to set up a pilot zone for blockchain in Suzhou and said it […]

Tough measures in India’s crypto bill; NFTs a hot Christmas gift

Tough measures in India’s crypto bill meanwhile, NFTs are becoming a hot Christmas gift

What is ENS (Ethereum Name Service) and how does it work?

ENS allows for a readable username that is portable across dApps and blockchains. Why is it important for the Web 3.0 world? Forkast.News explains.

Cut through the noise with curated stories, weekly

Get smarter with context and commentary on top blockchain and crypto trends in Asia. Email* SIGN UP Let me read older issues first What our readers say “Thank goodness for Forkast.News. Everyone at the Blockchain Research Institute reads it, and we encourage all of our clients to do so as well. It is hands-down the […]

Japanese crypto firms team up to form a metaverse association

Four of Japan’s virtual currency firms established the Japan Metaverse Association (JMA) yesterday with aims to promote metaverse technology and improve the framework for implementing user protection measures. Fast facts The Japan Metaverse Association aims to help the country become a forerunner in the race toward the metaverse by collecting and sharing essential information from […]
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OpenSea’s Wall Street waltz disappoints NFT devotees

OpenSea IPO plans in choppy waters. Crypto markets crumble. Bitcoin mining power struggles.

Gaming giant Ubisoft launches in-game NFTs on Tezos

Gaming giant Ubisoft is launching Ubisoft Quartz, a new platform for players to obtain what it calls “Digits” — essentially non-fungible tokens (NFTs) playable in a mainstream game — according to a company statement. Fast facts The first such NFT will appear in beta with Tom Clancy’s “Ghost Recon Breakpoint” on Ubisoft Connect for Windows […]

Iceland turns away new crypto miners amid power shortage: report

Iceland, which is suffering from a power shortage, is reducing electricity to some industrial clients and turning away new requests for power from cryptocurrency miners, reported Bloomberg, citing a statement from national power company Landsvirkjun. Fast facts The Nordic island nation is now reducing power supply for heavy consumers, including aluminum smelters, data centers and […]

Blockchain investigation firm TRM Labs raises $60M led by Tiger Global

Blockchain intelligence firm TRM Labs has raised US$60 million in a Series B funding round led by investment firm Tiger Global, the company announced on Tuesday. Fast facts Also participating in the financing round were American Express’ Amex Ventures, Visa, B Capital Group, Citi Ventures, DRW Venture Capital, Blockchain Capital, Jump Capital, Marshall Wace, Block […]

Meta says South Korea is top-tier environment for the metaverse

Meta’s South Korea representative says the country has one of the best environments for the metaverse business to thrive in, at its first press conference in Korea after rebranding from Facebook. Fast facts At Meta Korea’s VR (virtual reality) art media showcase, Jung Ki-hyun, the country director, said South Korea is accommodating to the metaverse […]

South Korean presidential candidate urges greater national leadership on digital assets

Lee Jae-myung, the ruling Democratic Party’s candidate for the 2022 South Korean presidential election, says cryptocurrency is already an integral part of the lives of Korean citizens and the country needs to be a leader in virtual assets. Fast facts At an invitational lecture at Seoul National University’s finance and economics seminar, Lee said that […]

How crypto ETFs can open doors for traditional finance to enter DeFi

Crypto ETFs make it easy to invest in digital assets without the complexities, writes Kevin Tai of Linear Finance. Imagine what a crypto index can do.

Bitcoin crash drags down South Korean NFT game stocks

South Korean game shares fell sharply, just a few weeks after announcements of new NFT metaverse ventures sent the shares up.

Nexo and Fidelity Digital Assets expand institutional lending services

Nexo, a globally regulated crypto-collateralized credit provider, has announced a partnership with Fidelity Digital Assets, an execution and custody services provider, to establish a platform to provide institutional access to digital assets with custodial and lending services, according to a news release shared with Forkast.News. Fast facts The partnership will allow Nexo to establish an […]

Manny Pacquiao launches esports team in midst of presidential campaign

‘Team Pacquiao GG’ may be coming soon to League of Legends and Axie Infinity. But whatever happened to the former pro boxer’s Pac token?

Crypto exchange Coinhako secures investment from SBI, Sygnum, Azimut

Singapore-based cryptocurrency trading platform Coinhako has received backing from the SBI-Sygnum-Azimut Digital Asset Opportunity fund, with the fundraising round being three-times oversubscribed, according to a statement released today. Fast facts The fund is a venture capital fund co-managed by Japan’s SBI Group, Switzerland’s Sygnum Bank — which claims to be the world’s first digital asset […]

BIS: DeFi has few real-economy uses, says ‘decentralization is an illusion’

With suitable regulation in place, DeFi could yet play an important role in the financial system, BIS suggests.
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Japan may limit stablecoin issuers to banks, wire transfer companies

Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) is planning a legislative proposal for the upcoming year to restrict the issuance rights of stablecoins to banks and wire transfer companies, according to a Nikkei Asia report. Fast facts The FSA’s decision to limit the issuance is meant to lower risks for stablecoin users, as FSA-authorized banks and wire […]

Kotak 1st major Indian bank to embrace crypto with WazirX partnership

Kotak Mahindra Bank, a leading private bank in India, has struck a partnership with crypto exchange WazirX, the Economic Times reported. Fast facts WazirX has opened an account with Kotak that can be used to pay and receive money from investors, according to the ET report. The account will be activated after the completion of […]

Chinese video site Bilibili tests ‘UPowerchain’ to develop metaverse

Bilibili — one of China’s biggest video sites particularly known for its content dedicated for anime, comics and games fans — is testing its blockchain UPowerchain that could help the company build its metaverse business, as Chinese tech giants are sparing no efforts to enter the metaverse space. Fast facts Bilibili has confirmed with Forkast.News […]

Fidelity launches spot Bitcoin ETF in Canada

One of the world’s largest asset managers sought SEC approval of a spot Bitcoin ETF in March and is still awaiting a response.

Can Thailand emerge as a ‘crypto-positive’ travel destination?

Tourism officials want to attract more crypto-wealthy travelers to Thailand’s shimmering shores. But will the crypto faithful come if Thailand still has a ban on SHIB and Dogecoin?

South Korean regulator jumps to a crypto exchange

Experts expect more disruption as the crypto industry matures and a younger generation places different values on status and job security.

India releases ‘National Strategy on Blockchain’ for e-governance

The Indian ministry of electronics and information technology (MeitY) has released a 52-page “National Strategy on Blockchain” document that urges closer cooperation between government and the private sector to build blockchain infrastructure across the world’s second-most populous nation. Fast facts It is to be noted that the current NSB document is an updated version from […]

Navi files for India’s second blockchain fund

The fund will track companies that use and benefit from the technology underlying cryptocurrencies, but will not invest in crypto or crypto exchanges.

Self-proclaimed Satoshi to pay US$100M in damages

A jury cleared Craig Wright of all but one charge in a civil trial brought by the estate of his alleged former business partner, David Kleiman.

PBoC has established an e-CNY distributed ledger

But the head of the central bank’s digital currency research institute says issues remain such as technical standards for blockchain interconnectivity.

Binance, Animoca Brands launch $200M investment program to accelerate GameFi startups

Binance Smart Chain (BSC) has joined hands with Animoca Brands — a Hong Kong-based blockchain gaming, metaverse and non-fungible token (NFT) company — to launch a US$200 million investment program to accelerate and incubate early crypto gaming startups built on BSC, according to a company statement released Monday. Fast facts Specifically, the duo are co-investing up to US$100 million […]

South China’s Hainan province hikes electricity fees on those who have mined crypto

On top of China, authorities in Russia and Ukraine are busting underground miners, while U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren presses a New York miner.
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Bitget suspended over Army Coin, named after K-pop boy band BTS fanbase

Singapore-based crypto exchange had claimed the fan token would support BTS members — while the band’s agency denied any association with it.
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Binance chief CZ wants to bring business back to UK: report

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume, is working to rebuild its operations in the U.K. after it was told to close down the business there back in June, the company’s CEO Changpeng Zhao, or CZ, told the newspaper the Sunday Telegraph. Fast facts CZ told the local press the company is making […]

Japan’s Elemental Knights Online game to release play-to-earn metaverse version

Japan’s mobile game Elemental Knights Online is planning to release Gensokishi Online -META WORLD-, which is its newest version incorporating elements of play-to-earn, user-generated NFTs (non-fungible tokens), and the metaverse. Fast facts Gensokishi Online’s “Meta World” metaverse will allow players to purchase land and freely edit in their creations, such as buildings and characters. The […]

Bored Ape Yacht Club artist exhibits new NFT collection at Art Basel Miami

The lead artist behind the breakthrough non-fungible token series “Bored Ape Yacht Club” (BAYC), known as All Seeing Seneca, has released a new set of NFTs over the weekend at Dfinity’s Iconoclast gallery event at Art Basel Miami, according to the artist’s Twitter profile. Fast facts With over US$1 billion in sales attributed to the […]

Global markets downturn hits crypto as well; BTC trading below $50K

For the second weekend in a row, markets were hit with a massive shock due to external factors. Market watchers weigh in on price movements and what to expect.