Berkeley Blockchain Incubator Welcomes Startup Fighting COVID-19

The Berkeley Blockchain Xcelerator, an incubator program for distributed ledger technology, or DLT, startups run out of UC Berkeley, has welcomed Snark Health into its spring cohort. Snark Health seeks to combat COVID-19 by “building a framework for data-driven discussions and shared learnings” to enable the “rapid dissemination of information to improve patient outcomes.” Health startup fighting coronavirus joins UC Berkeley blockchain incubator Snarks platform aims to facilitate the sharing of best practices and information regarding the coronavirus pandemic between individuals, non-governmental organizations, and government agencies at local, state, and…

Citigroup Raises Investment in Ethereum-Based Trade Finance Startup

U.S.-headquartered bank Citi has upped its investment in the Ethereum-based decentralized trade financing startup Komgo. Kris van Broekhoven, the global head of commodity trade finance at Citigroup, revealed that the bank has “topped up” its equity in Komgo “to allow the company to continue developing,” while speaking with ConsenSys on March 10. Komgo was launched in 2018 in partnership with ConsenSys, and seeks to streamline trade financing in the commodities markets. Komgo’s platform allows equities traders, financial institutions, and trade service providers to communicate across blockchain technology. As “one of…

Interpol Enlists Korean Startup to Track Crypto on the Dark Web

The International Criminal Police Organisation (Interpol) has announced a partnership with South Korean data intelligence startup, S2W Lab, to analyze dark web activity, including cryptocurrency transactions. The startup announced the partnership on March 20 — with S2W Labs signing a one year contract with Interpol. Interpol sets its sights on the dark web S2W Lab claims to have “captured a massive amount of Dark Web data” and “established a Dark Web database.” The S2W examines the data using artificial intelligence to establish “links among multiple domains and among multiple timeframes.”…

NEM Partners with Israeli-Lithuanian Telecom Startup on Cell Phone Security

NEM, one of the oldest peer-to-peer blockchain networks, has partnered with Israeli-Lithuanian telecom startup FIX Network to increase security and data protection for cell phone users and to solve the issue of SIM swapping.  FIX Network will implement SYMBOL from NEM’s enterprise-grade blockchain into its existing cellular infrastructure. The goal is to secure the world’s eight billion SIM cards from cybercriminals with new privacy, security, management and safety solutions. Phone numbers may end up more important than social security numbers FIX Network’s architecture is designed to allow mobile operators to…

ICOBox Startup Fails to Acknowledge US SEC Action, Owes $16M

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, has ordered that ICO broker ICOBox must pay $16 million after the startup failed to act on previous legal action from the commission. U.S. District Judge Dale Fischer of California sided with the SEC in a default judgement, after the alleged unregistered broker failed to respond to the commission’s lawsuit against the startup from September 2019, according to a March 6, 2020 statement. ICOBox allegedly conducted an unregistered token offering, as well as unregistered broker activities. The SEC filed with California courts…

Bitmain Cofounder-Backed Crypto Startup Aims to Raise $140M in New Funding Roun

Bitmain cofounder-backed crypto trading platform Matrixport has announced a new funding round aiming to raise as much as $140 million at a post-investment valuation of $300 million. Singapore-based Matrixport revealed its fundraising plans to investors in recent weeks, according to people familiar with the issue, BNN Bloomberg reported on March 4. In 2019, Matrixport’s revenue reportedly accounted for $7 million to $8 million, with the company expecting to double its earnings this year. In the previous funding round, Matrixport was reportedly valued at $114 million. Backed by Wu Jihan Matrixport…

Chicago Startup Fintank Aims to Launch a Crypto Self-Regulatory Organization

Chicago-based fintech startup FinTank aims to launch a national self-regulatory organization, or SRO, in the United States. Headed up by former Chicago Board Options Exchange, or CBOE, trader David Carman and partner George Vukotich, FinTank’s SRO “will help regulate the global crypto industry,” Carman told Cointelegraph. As much of the crypto world looks toward the U.S. regulatory scene, such an SRO could impact the crypto industry worldwide. Regulation is unclear in the crypto space, even after 10 years Although regulations from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, and…

UK Startup Puts Haitian Farmers and Their Crops On the Blockchain

A UK tech company recently announced a blockchain ecosystem for farmers in Haiti, bringing clarity to the supply chain while bolstering sales. Agriledger, a blockchain outfit based in the UK, was responsible for building this new ecosystem. Their goal was ensuring that farmers receive adequate pay for their crops, a Feb. 28 post from Spring Wise stated. Each farmer is a part of the system Agriledger’s blockchain-based solution assigns farmers enrolled in the system with a digital ID number. With this ID, farmers become part of the digital supply chain.…

Peter Thiel-Backed Startup Says Texas Is the Best Place to Mine Bitcoin

Alex Liegl, CEO of Layer1 Technologies, a US-based Bitcoin (BTC) mining company that recently announced its intention to repatriate 30% of Bitcoin’s hash power by 2022, has described Texas as offering miners the “cheapest power in the world, at scale.” Less than two weeks ago, Layer1 commenced mining operations at its facility in western Texas, bringing multiple 2.5-megawatt container rigs online. Texas is the largest producer of wind power in the United States, outproducing the second, third, and fourth-largest producers combined. If Texas were an independent nation, it would be…

Why Banks Aren’t Banking Your Crypto Startup

Your bank, no matter how neo or how challenger, can’t bank Bitcoin (BTC). They could bank blockchain companies, adding value and providing services for the space, which would be good for both the bank and the clients, but they are afraid of repercussions from regulators and their partners. Since many smaller banks use “correspondent banks,” whose direct access to the Federal Reserve system’s FedWire and other official payment rails they leverage, they can’t make the decision to accept Bitcoin clients in a vacuum. They must consider their correspondents (generally, big…