Symantec’s “Internet Security Threat Report” Highlights Crypto’s Increased Use in Cyber Crime
Internet security firm Symantec has published their 23rd Internet Security Threat Report. The document identifies an increase in the incidents of cyber crime that involve cryptocurrency in some way. The most prominent examples are cryptojacking and ransomware attacks.
More Cyber Criminals Using Cryptocurrency
The report largely focuses on the following areas: cryptojacking, ransomware, targeted attacks, mobile attacks, and attacks leveraging the software supply chain.
Symantec claims that the cryptojacking was the largest trending attack of 2017. They worked out that there had been an 8,500% increase in the number of examples detected on computers.
Cryptojacking is the use of a computer system to mine cryptocurrency without the owner of the machine knowing. Privacy-focused cryptos are often favoured. Monero (XMR), for example, is a popular coin to secretly mine. Firstly, because provides a large level of anonymity for the criminal. Secondly, because regular CPUs can mine the coin effectively. This is in contrast to digital currencies like Bitcoin that require specialised equipment to generate new coins.
Symantec speculates that cyber criminals were drawn to cryptojacking in 2017 because of the surge in the price of practically all existing cryptocurrencies. Monero, for example, started the year at around $13 per coin. By the end of 2017, a single XMR coin cost around $350.
In addition to the immense profitability of cryptojacking, Symantec highlights how easy it can be to turn an unknowing computer user’s machine into a cryptocurrency miner. They state that it often requires no more than a few lines of code running on a device.
Since cryptojacking involves a large amount of processing power, it can often slow users’ machines down. Symantec also states that overworking a CPU in such a way can cause “batteries to overheat and devices [can] become unusable.” In addition, the security experts claim that cryptojacking could cause even greater problems for organisations that are being billed based on CPU usage.
The Internet Security Threat Report went on to mention ransomware as another of the major online threats of 2017. Ransomware attacks involve hackers encrypting the contents of a computer system. They then demand paying (usually in cryptocurrency) to unlock the machine.
The cybersecurity experts highlighted the WannaCry attack of last year as one of the largest examples of such cybercrime. They state that demands made by groups committing such attacks had actually fallen this year since the attacks of 2016 frequently overpriced themselves. A blog post about the report stated:
“In 2017 cyber criminals seemed to find the sweet spot that victims are willing to pay. The average ransom demand in 2017 was $522, less than half of the average of 2016.”
Being an emerging currency for the internet, it should come as no surprise that criminals are favouring cryptos for their attacks. Already in 2018, there have been examples of ransomware attacks against government departments in Atlanta. For now, there is nothing to suggest that such attacks will diminish during 2018.
Ledger Live now includes ClubNFT for free NFT back-up
ClubNFT, a company building next-generation tools and services to analyze, monitor, and protect NFTs is partnering with Ledger to enable all users of the Ledger Live app to quickly and easily download a backup of their NFTs to their own computer, ensuring the safety and longevity of their collections no matter what may happen in the future.
Founded by Artnome’s Jason Bailey and Chris King in 2021, ClubNFT’s mission is to help protect artists and collectors from marketplace dependency for the safety and preservation of their NFTs, educate anyone interested in the space, and help collectors make good decisions about what to buy next, where, and why.
Founded in Paris in 2014, Ledger is a global platform for digital assets and Web3 and is the leading manufacturer of cryptocurrency wallets. Ledger Live, an accompanying app to Ledger, enables users to update their Ledger wallet, install apps that support cryptocurrencies and buy and sell coins.
“Ledger Live and ClubNFT are an ideal combination for delivering the best security and protection for NFTs,” said Jason Bailey, co-founder and CEO of ClubNFT. “By using a Ledger to backup onchain assets and ClubNFT to backup and pin offchain assets, users can ensure their NFTs are well-protected for the long-term. Plus, creating a ClubNFT backup is free, trustless, and doesn’t require any transaction signing.”
Beyond the backup accessible through Ledger Live, ClubNFT will provide additional service and insights to Ledger users that include:
- Free pinning (for 6 months) for Ledger Marketplace and Mint Pass NFT holders whereby ClubNFT will host NFT artwork and metadata (in addition to the marketplace, for redundancy), ensuring marketplace shutdowns or technical problems do not take users’ NFTs offline
- Which NFTs in their collection were minted following best-practices, using IPFS for off-chain content, and which were not
- Which marketplaces consistently follow these best practices, and which do not
- A number of technical insights of interest to conscientious collectors
Since launch in June of 2022, ClubNFT has backed-up more than 2M NFTs and pinned more than 1.5M NFTs.
ClubNFT is a technology company pioneering the next generation of NFT solutions to help collectors analyze, monitor, and protect their NFTs. They provide a free service to protect NFT collections from marketplace shutdowns, censorship, and bankruptcies by giving collectors the ability to self-custody the artwork and metadata for their NFT collection. ClubNFT is led by a team of seasoned professionals with expertise in technology, finance, and the art world. For more information, please visit www.clubnft.com.
CME Group Announces First Day of Trading of Event Contracts on Bitcoin Futures
CME Group, the world’s leading derivatives marketplace, today announced the first day of trading of event contracts on Bitcoin futures.
“Our new event contracts on Bitcoin futures provide a limited-risk, highly transparent way for a wide range of investors to access the bitcoin market via a fully regulated exchange,” said Tim McCourt, Global Head of Equity and FX Products at CME Group. “These cash-settled, daily expiring contracts will further complement our existing suite of 10 event contracts tied to our benchmark futures markets, which have traded more than 550,000 contracts to-date. In addition, these new contracts will offer an innovative, lower-cost way for investors to trade their views on the up or down price moves of bitcoin.”
CME Group offers event contracts on a growing number of its benchmark futures markets, including gold, silver, copper, crude oil, natural gas, E-mini S&P 500, E-mini Nasdaq-100, E-mini Dow Jones Industrial Average, E-mini Russell 2000 and euro-U.S. dollar foreign exchange futures. Valued up to $20 per contract, these daily options on futures enable participants to know their maximum profit or loss when entering a trade.
CME Group event contracts are listed with and subject to the rules of CME. For more information on this product, please see: www.cmegroup.com/eventcontracts.
As the world’s leading derivatives marketplace, CME Group (www.cmegroup.com) enables clients to trade futures, options, cash and OTC markets, optimize portfolios, and analyze data – empowering market participants worldwide to efficiently manage risk and capture opportunities. CME Group exchanges offer the widest range of global benchmark products across all major asset classes based on interest rates, equity indexes, foreign exchange, energy, agricultural products and metals. The company offers futures and options on futures trading through the CME Globex® platform, fixed income trading via BrokerTec and foreign exchange trading on the EBS platform. In addition, it operates one of the world’s leading central counterparty clearing providers, CME Clearing.
Join the Plena Smart Wallet Referral Program and Win Big with $1,000,000 in PLENA Tokens!
Plena Smart Wallet, which is one of the first self-custodial wallets to support Account Abstraction is thrilled to unveil its hotly anticipated referral program that offers rewards worth up to $1,000,000 in $Plena tokens. The program aims to incentivize users to invite their friends and family to join the platform while offering them a chance to earn some significant rewards.
The rules are fairly simple and straightforward. To participate in the program, users simply need to share their referral link with their friends and family. Once a new user downloads the app and signs up through their referral link & successfully completes 3 Transactions on the Fantom chain, both the referring user and the new user will be earning 50 points each. Existing customers can make as many referrals as they like but they must be a new Plena App customer. This means that the more friends and family members you refer, the higher your chances of winning a significant reward.
The program has turned referrals into a game, where users can earn rewards in the form of $Plena tokens for each referral they make & track the leaderboard. ** Limited time offer** In addition to the exciting rewards for individual referrals, Plena Smart Wallet’s referral program offers users the opportunity to win even bigger rewards.The platform is giving away rewards worth up to $100,000 in $Plena tokens to the Top 100 on the leaderboard.
Plena Smart Wallet is a super-friendly self-custodial crypto wallet which offers native support for Account Abstraction. Its revolutionary approach to tackling persistent issues in the cryptocurrency market, such as poor user experience, is enhancing the accessibility of blockchain technology to the general public. Plena’s objective is to onboard the next billion users through its innovative smart contract wallet, which allows users to begin their cryptocurrency journey without requiring extensive knowledge of blockchain.
Say Goodbye to Poor User Experience and Hello to an Exciting Crypto Journey. Join the Next Billion Users Now!
AugmentLabs DAO is launching the world’s most advanced algorithmic stablecoin
AugmentLabs DAO is launching the world’s first algorithmic stablecoin with multi-prong fail-safe mechanisms. This comes on the back of a successfully completed multi-million dollar seed token sale and an ongoing private token sale.
A decentralised stablecoin is an absolute necessity for the cryptocurrency space given the collapse of trusted, centralised systems in 2022. Stablecoins are the medium of exchange which drives Decentralised Finance (DeFi). Centralised stablecoins suffer from third-party risks, and major algorithmic stablecoins fail during periods of duress due to attacks, exacerbated by bank runs. AugmentLabs is here to majorly disrupt the stablecoin space by reducing centralisation risks and offering a transparent and open alternative.
AugmentLabs has designed a decentralised stablecoin system with two components: AGC token, which functions as the collateral and DAO, as well as USC, which is the algorithmic stablecoin. Of note, the Automated Marketcap Comparison Framework (AMCF), which is an oracle, provides the fail-safe mechanism that underpins the entire protocol.
The key feature in the AMCF oracle is that it is proprietarily designed to make the stablecoin protocol antifragile and maintain stability, with the ability to halt mint/burn during duress and to cap the supply side of USC depending on usage. This ensures the sustainability and survivability of the algorithmic stablecoin ahead of all its competitors and predecessors.
The concept was worked-on and established since 2017 by an international team of cryptocurrency experts looking for alternatives to obsolete and flawed designs of decentralised stablecoins. The team spent 5 years researching and running data modelling on major stablecoins before establishing a DAO. With each failure observed in the industry, the AugmentLabs DAO strengthened the design of the protocol.
Having spent the last 5 years being researched upon and tested robustly, USC is the most advanced stablecoin to date, and the AGC protocol forms the safest form of algorithmic collateralising, with dynamic fail-safe mechanism in the AMCF oracle coupled with swift decision-making by the AGC DAO.
Alongside state-of-the-art design in the AGC Protocol, the token sale proceeds from the seed and private sales are entirely used to provide additional collateralisation in terms of open liquidity in the decentralised markets. This builds a deep and solid foundation in early liquidity pegging USC.
AugmentLabs DAO has prioritised use-cases for the stablecoin ahead of launch, with a planned roll-out of multiple games, marketplaces and defi-protocols which will focus primarily on USC usage in Q1 2023. At launch, there will be an organic yield-driven protocol providing significant rewards for staking of USC. Users of USC will also be able to look forward to a debit card partnership at launch that will allow them to spend using Visa cards and withdraw fiat at a wide network of ATMs.
AugmentLabs DAO aims to establish USC as the top and primary algorithmic, decentralised stablecoin of the entire cryptocurrency space by the year 2025. This will be achieved by building aggressively on use-cases, combined with the robust and sustainable design with fail-safe processes.
The Blur Airdrop Unveils NFTFi on CoinEx: The DeFi Platform That’s Taking NFTs to the Next Level
On February 14, the highly anticipated Blur airdrop was finally kicked off. According to Dune Analytics, as of February 15, over 40,000 addresses have claimed the Blur airdrop, with 8.2% of them receiving over 10,000 tokens. Most users received between 1,000 and 10,000 BLUR tokens, with 7,000 tokens distributed to every user on average. On CoinEx, the BLUR price stood at about $0.8 on the distribution day. Based on that figure, the Blur airdrop provided users with $5,600 worth of tokens on average, making it another airdrop legend following the Aptos airdrop.
Behind Blur’s boom: The NFT blue ocean
As a newcomer to the NFT market, Blur has captured the spotlight over the past year. Since its launch in March 2022, the project has gained a massive following through its airdrop announcement. Meanwhile, its aggregation system, which enables frequent trading, has earned extensive recognition among active NFT traders. In fact, Blur has surpassed OpenSea, which is the No.1 NFT marketplace, in terms of trading volume, demonstrating the fierce competition in the NFT market.
The popularity of Blur indicates that while there is a huge demand for NFTs, the market and its derivative tools remain underdeveloped. Data from NFTGO shows that the market cap of three top projects, specifically BAYC, CryptoPunks, and Otherside, has already reached 2 million ETH, which is worth over $3.1 billion according to the real-time ETH price on CoinEx.
That being said, the unique characteristics of NFTs make it difficult for us to accurately capture the value of each NFT. Like traditional collectibles, different NFTs come with varying features, and the attribute preferred by collectors may offer an NFT a different price tag. The lack of clear valuation methods makes NFT trading more challenging than FT trading, which also blocks the market circulation of NFTs and results in poor liquidity.
Moreover, blue-chip NFTs are often expensive and inaccessible to retail investors, hindering the development of the NFT market. Although the No.1 crypto Bitcoin is quoted at $20,000, retail investors get to purchase 0.01 or even a smaller amount on exchanges. However, the floor price of Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) stands at 67 ETH, which is worth over $100,000, making it unaffordable to ordinary investors.
The NFT market has continued to explore new ways to address those problems, which triggered the appearance of the NFTFi category, spanning NFT marketplaces and aggregators, lending, renting, derivatives, fragmentation, and oracles.
NFT marketplace and aggregator
NFT marketplaces are considered the core of the entire NFT ecosystem. With an NFT marketplace, users can list their NFTs or purchase NFTs from others at any time. Moreover, most NFT trading platforms offer multiple sales models, including fixed-price sales, Dutch auctions, English auctions, and private transactions. Right now, trending NFT marketplaces include OpenSea, Rarible, LooksRare, and X2Y2. Except for OpenSea, all of these projects have issued their own tokens, and you can always check them out on CoinEx if you are interested in trading these tokens.
Aside from centralized marketplaces, some decentralized projects are working to solve NFT’s poor liquidity. For instance, Sudoswap introduced the AMM mechanism of DEXs into the NFT market. This allows users to provide liquidity and benefit from instant pricing through trade matching on Sudoswap, which addresses the liquidity problem in the decentralized NFT market. However, this method is more suited for NFT projects ranking in the middle or bottom of the market because the AMM mechanism eliminates rarity differences. Meanwhile, AMM is not applicable to blue-chip NFT projects, as they are subject to greater price differences.
In the NFT market, if a seller listed an NFT on OpenSea, users who only use LooksRare will not be able to see that NFT. As a result, when buyers are searching for their favorite NFT, they may have to switch between multiple NFT markets, which significantly drives up the time cost.
This has led to the rise of aggregators, which have become a major channel for buying NFTs. For example, in addition to its own marketplace, Blur also aggregates OpenSea, LooksRare, and X2Y2, allowing traders to quickly comb through the essential statistics of the relevant NFTs on just one platform. For professional traders, aggregators like Blur are much more efficient than regular marketplaces like OpenSea.
Many top projects are trying to deploy their own aggregator. Uniswap, a well-known DEX, recently acquired Genie and launched its own NFT aggregator, which supports popular NFT marketplaces such as OpenSea, X2Y2, LooksRare, Sudoswap, Larva Labs, Foundation, NFT20, and NFTX. OpenSea has also acquired NFT marketplace aggregator Gem, aggregating platforms that include OpenSea, Rarible, LooksRare, X2Y2, NFTX, and NFT20.
NFT lending has emerged as an essential part of the NFTFi category. Many NFT holders hope to obtain temporary liquidity without selling their assets, which has led to a growing demand for NFT lending. At the moment, NFT lending mainly includes two models: Peer-to-Peer and Peer-to-Pool.
NFTfi is a typical provider of Peer-to-Peer lending services. This lending model allows borrowers and lenders to negotiate all the lending conditions, including the amount, term, interest rate, and liquidation method. As such, Peer-to-Peer lending features smaller interest rate spreads, and since no external oracles are needed, users are not exposed to oracle risks. That said, Peer-to-Peer lending is subject to high time costs, and borrowers may need to spend a long time finding suitable lenders.
Many NFT lending platforms have leveraged AAVE’s lending model, employing the Peer-to-Pool approach, in which the protocol matches the two sides and makes decisions on behalf of lenders. This approach is more efficient and enables quick matching but lacks capital efficiency and is subject to significant interest rate spreads. For instance, if there is 1,000 ETH in the pool, but the borrower only wants to borrow 500 ETH, the interest he/she paid will be evenly distributed among all lenders, meaning that the lenders would receive a much smaller interest payment. As a result, most of the funds in the pool are not fully utilized. Moreover, under the Peer-to-Pool model, the platform might be run by users. For example, the well-known NFT lending platform BendDAO experienced liquidity crunches due to the liquidation of NFTs during a market downturn.
Last year, Ethereum approved the ERC-4907 smart contract standard, which introduced the concept of “expires” to enable collateral-free NFT renting through contracts. Collateral-free renting allows NFTs to be wrapped in a way that preserves their original features, but the wrapped NFT will be destroyed when the rental period expires. Since the release of ERC-4907, collateral-free renting has become the mainstream approach in the NFT rental market, replacing conventional collateralized renting, and most platforms including reNFT have adopted collateral-free renting. Despite that, NFT renting remains a small market, as the demand for renting blue-chip NFTs is limited, and most application scenarios for NFT renting are in fields including gaming and metaverse land.
In the financial sector, derivatives are indispensable products, and NFTFi’s experiments with derivatives have also attracted market attention. Many platforms are working on NFT-based futures and options, despite their lack of popularity. For example, nftperp provides NFT futures, allowing investors to go long or short on NFTs, while NiftyOption offers NFT options. Right now, the NFT derivatives market is still in its infancy, but as the relevant products are upgraded, investors will be able to use hedge against price swings in the NFT market through various strategies.
As NFTs are indivisible, blue-chip NFTs like BAYC and CryptoPunks are extremely expensive, making it a challenge for retail investors to join the game. To address the problem, many projects are exploring NFT fragmentation, i.e., splitting NFTs into multiple fragments that investors can purchase and share the returns. Fractional.art, a leading NFT fragmentation project, offers Uniswap-based trading functions that allow users to trade fragmented NFTs anytime, anywhere. Despite its advantages, NFT fragmentation also faces challenges, such as potential disputes over the distribution of airdrop benefits.
Accurately capturing NFT prices has always been one of the biggest challenges in the NFT market because prices affect a wide range of operations, including borrowing and liquidation. In light of that, NFT oracles were launched to solve the problem of NFT valuation. For instance, Abacus oracle uses a peer incentive pricing mechanism and the Abacus Spot liquidity valuation to provide NFT pricing services, which accurately capture the value of an NFT. Other platforms like Upshot and Banksea are also exploring their own pricing mechanisms. With a focus on accurate real-time NFT pricing, oracle projects are competing fiercely in the sector.
NFTFi is an essential part of the NFT market, and NFT segments are striving for a shared goal: achieving the large-scale circulation of NFTs and making them more accessible. At the moment, many NFTFi projects are still in a nascent stage and may present impressive innovations that will lead to the exponential growth of the NFT market. For instance, Blur’s third airdrop triggered a rapid increase in the transaction volume and floor price of blue-chip NFTs such as BAYC and Azuki. By the same token, the advancement of NFT infrastructure will also attract more users to the market.
BLUR and many innovative NFTFi tokens are now available on CoinEx (https://www.coinex.com/), you can go to the exchange to trade the latest NFTFi token at any moment. In addition, CoinEx has announced the “NFTFi Special Event: Join Trading Volume Ranking, 5,000 USDT For Grabs” promotion, starting from Feb 16 to Feb 22, 2023 (UTC).
Renq Finance Is Holding Its First Stage of Token Presale
Renq Finance, an innovative multi-chain non-custodial DEx, is now holding its first token presale on its official website. Currently in the first stage of the presale process, Renq Finance aims to conduct 8 presale stages in order to raise almost $20 million.
An 8-Stage Token Presale
Renq Finance is now raising funds for the project through its first token presale. The whole process is divided into 8 stages, and Renq is currently organizing the first stage of the presale. During the first phase, the price of RENQ tokens is $0.02, which will increase after each stage’s hard cap has been reached. Thus, the token price will gradually increase, going from $0.02 to $0.055 in stage 8 of the presale.
With a total supply of 1,000,000,000 tokens, RENQ is an ERC-20 token that will act as the governance token of Renq Finance. During the presale, Renq aims to offer half of the total supply to early investors in order to raise $19.27 million. Those holding RENQ tokens will be able to access all future activities in the Renq ecosystem.
The other 500,000,000 tokens will be divided into 6 categories: RENQ Pool (10%), RENQ Vault (10%), RENQ Farms (10%), Exchange Listings (10%), Liquidity (5%), and Team (5%).
How to Buy RENQ?
If anyone wants to join the Renq presale, they should connect their Metamask or Trust Wallet on Renq Finance’s official website and buy the amount of RENQ desired. Once the presale is finalized, the user will be able to claim their RENQ tokens. The RENQ tokens sold will be delivered to users’ crypto wallets.
It is important to note that there will not be a vesting period; thus, users will get their tokens once the presale ends.
Meet Renq Finance
Renq Finance is an all-in-one solution for worldwide crypto investors. The main goal of Renq is to provide a completely decentralized solution for traders looking for a DeFi platform to help them with everyday crypto activities. Through its wallet app, Renq Finance aims to offer users a direct trading option while having the main goal of elevating decentralized trading.
Besides, Renq Finance is constantly working to develop various tools for crypto traders, such as a cryptocurrency data aggregator, perpetual futures, a vault, a lending protocol, a DeFi and NFT Launchpad, and multiple forums. Through all these projects, Renq Finance wants to build an engaged community that can highly contribute to the evolution of the entire Renq ecosystem.
According to its roadmap, Renq Finance aims to launch its Mainned during Q1 of 2024. By then, the company will launch the DeFi services, including a mobile wallet app and a desktop wallet plugin, both offering multiple valuable features, such as margin loans and ERC-271 positions.
BitKeep NFT Market soars to top 2 on Polygon
As of February 2023, BitKeep NFT Market has taken the number 2 spot on the top nonfungible token (NFT) marketplaces on Polygon, according to data from DappRadar — a platform that allows users to track and analyze the performance of decentralized applications (DApps).
BitKeep NFT Market registered a 21.21% increase in unique active wallets that interacted with the platform and saw an impressive $161,000 of total incoming value within the past seven days at the time of ranking, second only to OpenSea. This indicates a surge in the popularity of BitKeep NFT Market and echoes the positive shift toward decentralized applications in general over the past few months.
Get ready to take the NFT world by storm!
BitKeep NFT Market is also the best-rated mobile NFT marketplace application on Google Play globally, ranked sixth among all multichain NFT marketplaces by volume. With a staggering 320,000 NFTs listed for sale, more than 51,000 monthly active users and a remarkable $31.6 million in total trading volume since its launch in March 2022, BitKeep NFT Market is one of the largest NFT trading platforms on the BNB Chain, with a number two placing on Polygon.
Discover the most seamless NFT trading experience with BitKeep NFT Market!
First launched on BitKeep’s wallet application in March 2022, the platform has partnered up with major blockchains like Ethereum, Polygon, BNB Chain and Arbitrum, being the first NFT marketplace to allow the purchase of NFTs on the platform with tokens from any partnered blockchain. BitKeep NFT Market also boasts a bulk transfer function for users to easily transfer multiple NFTs instantaneously, with support for bulk listing and purchasing in the future.
Acknowledging that some users, particularly the most ardent of NFT hunters, also look to mint NFTs directly from projects, the BitKeep NFT Market incorporates a unique “mint” section that features potential blue-chip freemint and whitelist projects for users that are carefully selected by the BitKeep team. BitKeep is also committed to pushing for growth in the wider NFT space, supporting initial NFT offerings of popular NFT projects.
BitKeep is a decentralized multichain digital wallet that provides an all-in-one solution for a comprehensive portfolio of services, including an integrated NFT marketplace, wallet function, swap services, DApp browser, launchpad and daily column, which features regular insights into promising decentralized finance projects. It offers reliable and secure asset management and trading services to more than 8 million users worldwide, covering 168 countries in North America, Europe and Asia. It is the top-rated wallet on Google Play globally, surpassing even MetaMask. BitKeep currently supports over 250,000 types of cryptocurrencies across over 80 chains, including major ones such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Polygon, BNB Chain, Fantom and Solana.
BitKeep places a strong emphasis on user security, incorporating DESM encryption for the storage of users’ private keys to ensure an additional layer of security to safeguard user funds.
MultiversX Announces EGLD Staking & ESDT Tokens Now Available to Over 1.5 Million Ledger Live Users
Today, MultiversX is happy to announce the next step in its partnership with Ledger through the integration of EGLD staking into the Ledger Live App, offering more than 1.5 million users secure access to EGLD staking services.
Together with this milestone, Ledger is now also involved in proposing and validating blocks on the MultiversX blockchain network through their very own staking pool, run in collaboration with Figment. Ledger’s staking pool already has 7 nodes and can currently accommodate an unlimited amount of EGLD.
Staking is the way to contribute towards the network’s security and decentralization, and even to its scalability in the case of the MultiversX blockchain, as it can linearly grow in throughput in tandem with more shards added.
Moreover, Ledger’s integration of MultiversX now extends to ESDT tokens – MEX, USDC, and RIDE are already available for secure storage, management, and transfer, with more MultiversX tokens soon to follow.
By never sharing the private key outside the chip or device, wallets like Ledger and xPortal provide the highest level of security, offering users an invaluable additional safety layer. MultiversX is thankful for the new integrations with Ledger products and the continuous support received from their team.
MultiversX is a highly scalable, secure, and decentralized blockchain network built from first principles to solve the two fundamental problems critical for widespread, global adoption: a transition from dialup to broadband and a significant UX paradigm shift.
Ledger is a global platform for digital assets and Web3. It’s the world leader in Critical Digital Asset security and utility. With over 5M devices sold to consumers in 200 countries, 100+ financial institutions, and brands as customers, 20% of the world’s crypto assets are secured, plus services supporting trading, buying, spending, earning, and NFTs. Ledger products include Ledger Stax, Nano S Plus, Nano X hardware wallets, Ledger app, [ Ledger ] Market, the world’s first secure-minting and first-sale distribution platform, and Ledger Enterprise.
Hamilton Lane’s $2.1 Billion Flagship Direct Equity Fund Now Available for Investment on Securitize
Individual investors can now access Hamilton Lane’s flagship direct equity fund, Equity Opportunities Fund V (“the Fund”) through a new Securitize feeder fund tokenized on Polygon. Leading private markets investment firm Hamilton Lane (NASDAQ: HLNE) recently closed the Fund on nearly $2.1 billion of investor commitments, and is making a portion of the vehicle accessible via a feeder fund on a secondary basis to individual investors. The new tokenized fund will significantly increase access to this historically high-performing asset class, with minimum investments reduced from an average of $5 million traditionally to $20,000.
Securitize is the leading platform for expanding access to some of the highest-performing, real-world, private markets asset classes, which have historically been inaccessible to most investors, including private equity, venture capital, fine art and mature start-ups, consistent with U.S. regulations.
Hamilton Lane is one of the world’s largest investors and allocators of capital to the private markets, having deployed more than $37 billion across the private markets in 2021*, and with nearly $824 billion in assets under management and supervision, composed of more than $107 billion in discretionary assets and approximately $717 billion in non-discretionary assets, as of September 30, 2022. Equity Opportunities Fund V provides investors with diversified exposure to unique and differentiated deals through an efficient fee structure. Including this Fund, Hamilton Lane’s direct equity platform has raised approximately $3.7 billion since the outset of the fundraise. Currently comprising 30 investments in mostly mission-critical businesses, as of September 2022 Equity Opportunities Fund V has already achieved a strong gross internal rate of return.
“The new Hamilton Lane tokenized fund is a major step in the continued democratization of the private markets by significantly expanding access to the historically high-performing private equity asset class, particularly through reduced investment minimums,” said Carlos Domingo, co-founder and CEO of Securitize. “Private equity has outperformed the S&P 500 by 70% over the past 20 years, but that performance has mostly been enjoyed by major institutions, sovereign wealth funds and university endowments. Individual investors can begin accessing these opportunities, too.”
The feeder fund will be accessible to qualified purchasers with at least $5 million in invested assets, of which there are approximately two million in the U.S. The fund is offered by Securitize’s registered investment advisor, Securitize Capital, through its broker-dealer and alternative trading system, Securitize Markets, which is also a member of FINRA and SIPC. Securitize and Hamilton Lane intend to launch two additional feeder funds in the months ahead.
Victor Jung, Head of Digital Assets at Hamilton Lane, commented: “Hamilton Lane is committed to investing in and adopting transformational solutions with an aim to deliver best-in-class services to investors looking to access the private markets. We’re excited to launch Equity Opportunities Fund V on the Securitize platform – our latest step towards helping more investors gain access to the historically strong returns and performance opportunities generated within the private markets, while increasing usability and transparency through the use of blockchain technology.”
Shares in the feeder fund will be tokenized on the Polygon blockchain, which is fully compatible with the Ethereum ecosystem, inheriting its robust security while also being orders of magnitude more efficient.
Highly regarded for its scalability, Polygon is rapidly becoming the blockchain of choice for major institutions with existing institutional partnerships ranging from BitGo, to Cumberland DRW and GSR, as well as multiple major brands from the retail, entertainment, tech, gaming, and payments space. The existing Polygon network is home to some of the biggest Web3 projects, such as Aave, Uniswap, and OpenSea, and well-known enterprises, including Robinhood, Stripe and Adobe. The Polygon blockchain is carbon neutral with the goal of leading Web3 in becoming carbon negative.
“The tokenization of private funds is a massive leap forward for investors and fund managers – a broader pool of investors enticed by greater opportunity and disintermediation – but also for the greater understanding that practical applications of blockchain will make a marked difference in democratizing financial opportunity,” stated Colin Butler, Global Head of Institutional Capital at Polygon Labs. “Polygon makes these asset classes accessible, secure, and scalable, and frankly the Polygon network is being built to become the home of global financial markets.”
The new tokenized feeder fund is offered by Securitize’s registered investment advisor, Securitize Capital, through its broker-dealer and alternative trading system, Securitize Markets, which is also a member of FINRA and SIPC.
*The 2021 capital committed includes all primary commitments that closed during the year 2021 for which Hamilton Lane retains a level of discretion as well as nondiscretionary advisory client commitments for which Hamilton Lane performed due diligence and made an investment recommendation. Direct Investments includes all discretionary and nondiscretionary advisory direct equity and direct credit investments that closed during 2021. Secondaries includes all discretionary and nondiscretionary advisory secondary investments with a signing date during 2021.
All Private Equity – Hamilton Lane’s definition of “All Private Equity” includes all buyout, venture capital, and growth equity funds.
Buyout – Any Private Markets fund that generally takes control position by buying a company.
MSCI USA Small Cap Value Index – The MSCI USA Small Cap Index is designed to measure the performance of the small cap segment of the U.S. equity market.
MSCI World Index – The MSCI World Index tracks large and mid-cap equity performance in developed market countries. Russell 3000 Index.
S&P 500 Index – The S&P 500 Index tracks 500 largest companies based on market capitalization of companies listed on NYSE or NASDAQ.
Securitize is expanding investor access to high quality, real-world private market assets, leveraging tokenization to make previously inaccessible investments available to more investors, consistent with securities laws. From private equity and venture capital to fine art and start-ups, Securitize brings together businesses seeking to raise capital and investors seeking potential returns historically found in the private markets, with over 1.2 million investors and 3,000 businesses already connected. Securitize, or through its subsidiaries, is an SEC-registered stock transfer agent, broker-dealer, alternative trading system, and registered investment advisor, as well as a member of FINRA and SIPC. Learn more at http://www.securitize.io.
About Hamilton Lane
Hamilton Lane is one of the largest private markets investment firms globally, providing innovative solutions to institutional and private wealth investors around the world. Dedicated exclusively to private markets investing for more than 30 years, the firm currently employs more than 575 professionals operating in offices throughout North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and the Middle East. Hamilton Lane has nearly $824 billion in assets under management and supervision, composed of more than $107 billion in discretionary assets and approximately $717 billion in non-discretionary assets, as of September 30, 2022. Hamilton Lane specializes in building flexible investment programs that provide clients access to the full spectrum of private markets strategies, sectors and geographies. For more information, please visit www.hamiltonlane.com or follow Hamilton Lane on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/hamilton-lane/.
About Polygon Labs
Polygon Labs develops Ethereum scaling solutions for Polygon protocols. Polygon Labs engages with other ecosystem developers to help make available scalable, affordable, secure and sustainable blockchain infrastructure for Web3. Polygon Labs has initially developed a growing suite of protocols for developers to gain easy access to major scaling solutions, including layer 2s (zero-knowledge rollups and optimistic rollups), sidechains, hybrid chains, app-specific chains, enterprise chains, and data availability protocols. Scaling solutions that Polygon Labs initially developed have seen widespread adoption with tens of thousands of decentralized apps, unique addresses exceeding unique addresses exceeding 211 million, over 1.12 million smart contracts created and 2.36 billion total transactions processed since inception. The existing Polygon network is home for some of the biggest Web3 projects, such as Aave, Uniswap, and OpenSea, and well-known enterprises, including Robinhood, Stripe and Adobe. Polygon Labs is carbon neutral with the goal of leading Web3 in becoming carbon negative.
21Shares Unveils World’s First Crypto Staking Index ETP
21Shares AG (“21Shares”), the world’s largest issuer of cryptocurrency exchange traded products (ETPs) and a subsidiary of 21.co, today unveiled the 21Shares Staking Basket Index ETP (Ticker: STAKE) – the world’s first crypto staking index ETP offering diversified staking income. The index represents the first-ever basket product of crypto assets that provide exposure to staking rewards while tracking the performance of underlying staked cryptos through a single ETP. The 21Shares staking index methodology used for this product was built in collaboration with Swedish index provider Vinter.
The 21Shares Staking Basket Index ETP tracks proof-of-stake (PoS) cryptocurrencies, including Binance Coin, Cardano, Cosmos, Polkadot, Solana, and Tezos. The index will rebalance on a semi-annual basis in March and September to reflect market shifts.
“Staking is a long-standing feature of the blockchain ecosystem that allows crypto holders to earn rewards in exchange for locking up their assets,” said Arthur Krause, Director of ETP Product at 21.co, parent company of 21Shares. “Our research has shown that investors are interested in diversified, crypto-native return streams – especially amid crypto winter. In particular, we’ve heard demand for a reliable and safe way to access staking, one of the most attractive potential return streams available in the crypto ecosystem. The 21Shares Staking Basket Index ETP does just that, and will be an attractive addition to many portfolios.”
The 21Shares Staking Basket Index ETP is available today for trading on the BX Swiss exchange, and is seeking to list on Xetra Deutsche Boerse. This launch follows the success of 21Shares’ existing single asset staking products – 21Shares Solana Staking ETP and 21Shares Tezos Staking ETP.
Jacob Lindberg, CEO of Vinter, adds “We are pleased to be launching the world’s first crypto staking index ETP with 21Shares, which is another milestone in our great partnership. This product addresses demands from retail and institutional investors globally, and we look forward to continuing our work with 21Shares as they seek to launch more innovative investment products that build bridges into the crypto world.”
Today’s announcement is the latest in a string of innovative ETPs offerings from 21Shares over the last year, including the world’s cheapest Bitcoin ETP (CBTC), as well as two risk-controlled products, the 21Shares S&P Risk Controlled Bitcoin Index ETP (SPBTC) and 21Shares S&P Risk Controlled Ethereum Index ETP (SPETH). 21.co now lists 40 products across 12 exchanges in 8 countries.
To learn more about the 21Shares Staking Basket Index ETP, please visit https://21shares.com/product/STAKE.
21.co is the world’s leader in providing access to crypto through simple and easy to use products. 21.co is the parent company of 21Shares, the world’s largest issuer of cryptocurrency exchange traded products (ETPs) – which is powered by Onyx, a proprietary technology platform used to issue and operate cryptocurrency ETPs for 21Shares and third parties. The company was founded in 2018 by Hany Rashwan and Ophelia Snyder. 21.co is registered in Zug, Switzerland with offices in Zurich and New York. For more information, please visit 21.co.
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