Hey guys. We are plodding along, battling lockdowns and anticipating the halving, and expectant of a bull run soon.
As all of these major geopolitical events and macroeconomic factors occur, the crypto industry keeps itself busy. I’ve covered some of the major events that have occured in the past few days (mostly in the last few days.)
Let’s get cracking.
1. Binance to Acquire CoinMarketCap for $400M?
To start with, let’s talk about what’s making the most rounds. Well, there’s another headline in today’s roundup relating to a certain project that is always in the news - for the wrong reasons - but this story is pretty big.
Rumours are going about that Binance will acquire the most popular crypto market tracker CoinMarketCap for $400 million. Reports are emerging that the negotiations are in the final stages, also saying that the deal should be finalized by the end of the week.
The bid for CMC is a very smart move, given that it’s on virtually everybody’s go-to list for crypto. It’s a habit for crypto investors to instantly go to CMC when they need some info and I don’t think that’s going to change anytime soon, even with all the widget solutions. It’s more popular than Binance itself, by about 100 million views per month.
Binance is on an expansion spree. Besides launching Binance.US, it has also launched a whole host of other features on its exchange in recent months. It has run into a few hitches in the past year or so - for which it was criticized by the community - but on the whole Binance’s business strategy has been exceptionally fruitful.
It’s also worth noting that CZ said, in a New Year’s message to users, that there were two acquisitions he was excited about and that this would be a focus for 2020. Perhaps we will hear of another acquisition soon.
2. Brave Just Purchased Another 500K BAT Tokens From the Market
Recently, I wrote about how the Brave had bought back over 500k BAT tokens, a good sign of the health of the network and initiative.
Well, it turns out that Brave has just purchased ANOTHER 500k BAT tokens, which happened yesterday on March 30. I spoke last time of how this was a sign of good advertising performance, as the buyback indicates there is revenue being generated from this side of the platform.
Let’s take a quick look at how much they’ve been buying since the start of 2020, shall we?
In January, Brave bought 235,353 BAT tokens. In February, that dropped to 196, 235 tokens.
But March has seen a WHOPPING increase in BAT purchases. First, on March 9, they bought more than double of what they bought in Jan - 534,441 BAT. However, yesterday’s purchase of 504,219 BAT makes March’s total BAT purchases an incredible 1,038,660 BAT!
While February might have seen a drop of roughly 17%, February to March saw a jaw dropping growth of 429%!
You can get more information about Brave-initiated purchases from the Brave transparency feed.
3. Is TRON Trying to Copy MakerDAO?
TRON and Justin Sun are constantly in the news and rarely does it seem to be for good reasons.
The project and CEO have showcased a new feature and for any other project that would be an occasion for the wider community to celebrate - but not so much for TRON, as this new feature has pissed a lot of people off (and will piss more for sure).
TRON CEO Justin Sun tweeted on Saturday about “DJed”, a new CDP platform on the TRON network that features collateralized loans. The platform features a new stablecoins called DJed (USDJ) with a governance token called JED.
Sound familiar? Well, the crypto community seems to think so, accusing the platform of being a ripoff of the MakerDAO platform. The UI itself does look somewhat similar to some of MakerDAO’s products, including the CDP portal.
A closer look at TRON's CDP Portal
Users have noted that the similarities seem to be apparent all the way through the design, including terms themselves. The source code is currently unavailable.
Now, everyone would like to get into the DeFi game but this is really going to draw some flak from more investors, simply because of how apparent the similarities seem to be.
As for how well this is going to do, there’s no telling, but TRON really does seem to be a little too far behind to be able to compete with major DeFi projects. MakerDAO, while not perfect, is still by far the best platform in providing decentralized stablecoins.
4. Opera Integrated .Crypto Domains
Opera is a pretty popular browser in its own right. While it has been overtaken by Brave (which continues to grow with a mad pace), many people flock to Opera for some of its more distinct features, like the in-built VPN.
Opera seems to be embracing new ideas, with them now becoming the first browser to integrate .crypto domains, after having partnered with Unstoppable Domains, a decentralized software company that is working on bringing decentralized web pages to the web. The partnership will include the ability to make payments.
An explanation of decentralized domains
The biggest benefit of P2P based domains is that they can’t be taken down i.e. they are uncensorable. Unstoppable Domains, which is working with multiple wallet providers and applications, and has been backed by Tim Draper, has many things on its agenda - including making crypto addresses human readable. It has also been offered grants by Ethereum and Ziliqa.
This is not the first crypto-related step that Opera has taken. In 2018, Opera announced a built-in crypto wallet. It also allows US citizens to buy crypto with a debit card and Apple Pay.
5. Crypto Becomes an Official Financial Instrument in Germany
Okay, this one is quite old (happened in early March) but I never saw it given as much attention as it should have received. This is for those who might have missed it, as it is pretty big news. So I'll go over it quickly.
Germany’s financial regulator, the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority called BaFin, published a press release that categorized cryptocurrencies as an official financial instrument by saying that it was a medium of exchange that could be traded and stored,
[A] digital representation of a value that has not been issued or guaranteed by any central bank or public body and is not necessarily linked to a currency specified by law and that does not have the legal status of a currency or money, but is accepted as a medium of exchange by natural or legal persons and can be transmitted, stored and traded electronically.
This is all a bid to battle money laundering and keep up with the changing nature of the economy. An important point in the official announcement is that it treats providers of crypto services as financial institutions.
The significance of this is that German crypto services providers, of which exchanges are only one type, must apply for a BaFin license. The deadline for this is November 2020.
A step forward for Germany. This is the kind of thoughtful and innovation-encouraging regulation of which the world needs more.