Abra Launching First US Regulated Crypto Bank


By Jack Kubinec

  • Abra Bank will launch in the US during Q1 2023, with an international bank to follow
  • “As a regulated licensed bank, it’s no longer my opinion [that matters] on transparency and public disclosures,” Abra’s CEO told Blockworks

Abra, the crypto exchange and lending platform, is launching the first US regulated crypto bank, the company said Monday.

The move, in the eyes of industry participants, is a bullish indicator that somewhat shakes off the sector’s bear market woes — plus the pending trips of crypto lenders Celsius and Voyager to bankruptcy court. 

Abra’s move positions the company in what has been a yearslong arms race within crypto to create the first US regulated interest-bearing crypto account — offering consumers crypto exposures with legal safeguards.

All customer deposits into Abra Bank are set to be converted into stablecoins that accrue interest similarly to traditional banks. The bank will allow customers to transfer funds into over 100 cryptocurrencies. Abra also partnered with American Express in June to launch a crypto credit card.

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AI-Based Startup Optic Raises $11M to Put the ‘NF’ in NFTs

Optic’s near-term plans include creating a public API for Web3 developers and new tools for NFT creators and collectors.

By Brandy Betz

Optic, a startup that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to authenticate non-fungible tokens (NFTs), unveiled its business on Wednesday and raised $11 million in a seed round led by Kleiner Perkins and crypto-native investment giant Pantera Capital. The company will use the funds toward building out the cost-intensive infrastructure and hiring engineering talent, Optic co-founder and CEO Andrey Doronichev told CoinDesk in an interview.

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World’s first NFT museum in Seattle aims to ‘pull back the curtain’ on blockchain art

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are a type of digital asset.

  • In January, the world’s first permanent NFT art museum opened its doors in Seattle.
  • It aims to “pull back the curtain” on blockchain-based digital art.
  • Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are a type of digital asset that has exploded in popularity recently, with NFT artworks selling for millions of dollars.

The world’s first permanent NFT art museum has opened in Seattle, aiming to “pull back the curtain” on blockchain-based digital art.

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are a type of digital asset that has exploded in popularity recently, with NFT artworks selling for millions of dollars. NFTs exist on a blockchain, a record of transactions kept on networked computers.

The museum opened its doors on 14 January, and has been providing an outlet for artists, creators, and collectors to display their NFTs in a physical setting while aiming to educate the public about this fairly new market for digital art.

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Nexo, Mastercard Launch World’s First Crypto-Backed Card

The Nexo Card allows you to spend the value of your cryptocurrency without selling it.

By Matthew Humphries

If you dabble in cryptocurrency, a new payment card has just launched with the support of Mastercard that allows you to spend the value of your crypto without actually selling it.

As Reuters reports, the card was created through a partnership between Mastercard and digital finance lending company Nexo. The so-called Nexo Card is being touted as the world’s first “crypto-backed” payment card.

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Intel designs new crypto mining chip that’s ‘1000 times better’ than current processors

The ‘blockchain accelerator’ chip is also claimed to be more energy efficient, one of crypto’s biggest criticisms 

By Adam Smith

Intel is designing a new chip specifically designed to mine cryptocurrency.

The manufacturer announced that the “blockchain accelerator” is set to ship later this year, saying that the technology “has the potential to enable everyone to own much of the digital content and services they create” as people “usher in the era of metaverse and Web 3.0”.

The chip itself will apparently provide “over 1000x better performance per watt than mainstream GPUs for SHA-256 based mining”, with the company saying it will provide more details at the International Solid State Circuit Conference (ISSCC) this month.

“We are mindful that some blockchains require an enormous amount of computing power, which unfortunately translates to an immense amount of energy. Our customers are asking for scalable and sustainable solutions, which is why we are focusing our efforts on realizing the full potential of blockchain by developing the most energy-efficient computing technologies at scale,” senior vice president Raja M. Koduri wrote.

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10 CRYPTOCURRENCY CAREER OPPORTUNITIES THAT WILL BLOOM IN 2022

These cryptocurrency career opportunities will gain more prominence in 2022.

by Sayantani Sanyal

The use of cryptocurrencies continues to gain momentum worldwide. Investors, especially the younger generation, envision cryptocurrency as digital gold and an exquisite form of an asset class that can yield more profits than traditional stocks or other investment opportunities. As demand for cryptocurrency grows, so does the number of job roles in crypto and blockchain companies. These crypto job roles require the candidates to possess a strong understanding of blockchain technology and are equipped with optimal knowledge to get a job. The scarcity of skilled individuals in the blockchain domain leads to fluctuations in the demand and supply chain, resulting in making the jobs extremely high-paying. In this article, we have listed the top cryptocurrency career opportunities that will gain more prominence in 2022.

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Japanese firms will test a bank-backed cryptocurrency in 2022

Three of the country’s largest banks are working together on ‘DCJPY.’

By I. Bonifacic

Japan is about to take a significant step toward developing a digital currency. Per Reuters, a consortium made up of approximately 70 Japanese firms said this week they plan to launch a yen-based cryptocurrency in 2022. What’s notable about the project, tentatively called “DCJPY,” is that three of the country’s largest banks will back it. At a news conference on Wednesday, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Mizuho Financial Group and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group said they’ve been meeting since last year to build a shared settlement infrastructure for digital payments.

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Facebook’s Calibra is a secret weapon for monetizing its new cryptocurrency

 

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The newly formed subsidiary will build Facebook’s digital wallet

Facebook’s announcement this morning of a new cryptocurrency, Libra, and the nonprofit association that will oversee it raises questions about the future of global banking and Facebook’s role in it. But behind Facebook’s ambitions to create a quasi-nation state ruled by mostly corporate interests is a secret weapon, one the company hopes it can use to create another platform used by billions of people — and generate enormous new revenue streams along the way.

It’s called Calibra, and it’s a new subsidiary of Facebook the company is launching to build financial services and software on top of the Libra blockchain. At first blush, Calibra resembles a fairly standard payments company — but its tight integration with Facebook’s enormous user base could give it a significant advantage over any rivals. Thanks to its proximity to the technical development of Libra, and its ability to leverage WhatsApp, Messenger, and Instagram, Calibra could very well become Facebook’s next big thing.

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Facebook plans to launch its cryptocurrency in 2020

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Share of Global Consumers Who Would Switch to a Big Tech Provider for Banking Services, by Segment

 Facebook is in the process of finalizing plans to launch its crypto in 2020, reports the BBC. The social media giant will roll out the digital currency in around a dozen countries by the first quarter of next year, with the company planning to begin testing for the crypto, internally dubbed GlobalCoin, by the end of this year, according to the outlet.

Here’s what it means: Facebook has tech and resources, but trust will be the currency that’ll really determine the success of its crypto project.

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Bitcoin regulation : South Korea is making progress

 

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On June 8th, the South Korean Advisory Committee met to develop a legal framework for national crypto exchanges. Following the Coinrail Market’s recent hack, the South Korean government is enforcing stricter investor protection guidelines: Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML).

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NYSE operator’s crypto project Bakkt brings in $182M

File: Crypto Losses Near $700 Billion In Worst Week Since Bubble Burst

The Intercontinental Exchange’s (ICE) cryptocurrency project Bakkt celebrated New Year’s Eve with the announcement of a $182.5 million equity round from a slew of notable institutional investors. ICE, the operator of several global exchanges, including the New York Stock Exchange, established Bakkt to build a trading platform that enables consumers and institutions to buy, sell, store and spend digital assets.

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4 Blockchain projects solving real-world problems

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From wealth management to autonomous robots: four prominent startups at the end of 2018

Investors are no longer interested in ICO projects with no real use. According to Icodata, $150 million were raised in October 2018 through token sales compared to $1.5 billion in January of the same year. “The blockchain space is getting to the point where there’s a ceiling in sight,” claims Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin. The Russian-Canadian programmer believes that the next step will be “real applications of real economic activity.”

Despite the statements and hopes that the end of 2018 will bring about a return to practicality, it is still difficult for applicable projects to break through the information noise. We have picked out four noteworthy blockchain projects that have not yet gained traction in the media, despite featuring a range of out-of-the-box solutions.

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