23 July

“Arbitrum has been upvoted by Reddit. The rollup technology was selected by the social media site to make Reddit’s Ethereum-based Community Points system ready for prime time. Arbitrum beat out 21 other entrants to become the winner of its “Scaling Bake-Off.”

Community Points, which are ERC-20 tokens that can be earned by Reddit users for quality comments or other contributions, can be spent on things such as exclusive badges, custom emojis and GIFs.

Community Points are being experimented with in two communities. One is r/CryptoCurrency, where the Points come in the form of “Moons;” the other is r/FortNiteBR, where the Points are known as “Bricks.” Together, these two communities contain around 4.8 million members.

Reddit launched its own layer 2 rollup using Arbitrum tech on the Rinkeby testnet today, before migrating to the Ethereum mainnet. In addition, Reddit is looking for developers to build a more decentralized web at ‘Reddit-level scale.’

The second quarter saw a record $4 billion in venture capital raised by cryptocurrency firms, amid a bumper crop of $30.8 billion in fintech deals generally, a 29% increase from the year before.

The report mentioned sizable funding rounds, such as those from stablecoin company Circle, which snagged a then-record $440 million in May. (The new largest funding round by a crypto firm came earlier this week when crypto derivatives exchange FTX announced it raised $900 million.) Also noted by CB Insights was hardware wallet maker Ledger’s $380 million funding in June, and a $300 million round in April for custody firm Paxos (which, like Circle, also acts as the steward of stablecoins).

Crypto has brought about a new age in banking compliance, the report said. Blockchain analytics companies, which track transactions and aid regulators and law enforcement, are another hot area in terms of funding. CB Insights also singled out crypto custody and infrastructure as sub-segments that were notable for their ability to raise money.”

See Also: FTX CEO Says US Is Next Big Target Market
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“JPMorgan will let wealth management clients invest in Grayscale and Osprey crypto trusts.

The move gives a wide array of JPMorgan clients – including those plugged into the commission-free Chase trading app – easy access to indirect crypto investing. Trust products from Grayscale and Osprey are “price exposure” vehicles that sidestep custody headaches.”

See Also: Almost Half of Family Offices With Goldman Ties Want to Add Crypto Exposure: Report
See Also: BankProv Launches Payments Network for Crypto Customers

Vitalik Buterin : Things that Matter Outside of DeFi (Recommended Watch)

“The eastern European country, which is a global leader in cryptocurrency adoption according to Chainalysis, is trying to become the jurisdiction of choice for crypto startups, and is one of the few nations in the world to present a strategy for developing its digital asset industry.

Tokenized assets, it says, should become part of the existing financial system, and there should be an official way to buy virtual assets for fiat money.

Education also features in the plan, with the development of programs dedicated to blockchain and virtual assets starting at school-aged children. There should be a special program for members of parliament and a Master’s course on decentralized finance.

The report predicts that if its recommendations are followed, by May 2024 Ukraine should become of of the top-10 crypto nations, with 47% of the population using digital assets and 10% of businesses having their assets tokenized.”

See Also: Colombia Central Bank Launches Blockchain Bond Project

ConsenSys researcher Mikhail Kalinin has created a pull request for EIP-3675, which would upgrade the blockchain’s consensus mechanism to proof of stake. The proposal, which sets the stage for “the merge” to Ethereum 2.0, will be discussed at Friday’s core developers meeting.

We are ensuring that core specs are in place so that post London and Altair, the engineering process can move swiftly.”

The crypto ATM company plans to install kiosks at “thousands” of Circle K locations with over 700 already live in 30 states. CEO Brandon Mintz is aiming for 6,000 kiosks across North America before 2021 is done.

We feel that the Circle K brand has a wide and diverse customer base with people from all walks of life visiting these stores.

The tie-up comes as the crypto ATM industry continues to grow. Bitcoin Depot’s own statistics indicate the industry is up 155% year-over-year.”

BlockFi aims to go public in 12 to 18 months, according to documents circulated to investors Wednesday. BlockFi is [also] set to close its Series E on July 27, the documents show. The round amounts to $500 million. BlockFi is expected to command a $4.75 billion post-money valuation.

BlockFi’s road to Wall Street grew complicated this week as state securities regulators in the U.S. began questioning the legality of the firm’s marqueé BlockFi Interest Account (BIA) offering.

Regulators in Texas, Alabama and New Jersey each alleged BIA is an unregistered security in violation of state laws. New Jersey is giving BlockFi until July 29 to explain itself. If the pair fail to come to a resolution, the state could halt BIA account onboarding.

We have active dialogues with regulators worldwide. We firmly believe that the BIA is lawful.”

See Also: BlockFi Faces Crackdown by a Third US State, Texas
See Also: Dfinity Faces Class-Action Lawsuit Claiming ICP Token Is Unregistered Security