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December 12,2023

Crypto Fundraising December 5 - 11

On behalf of the Web3 community, we would like to extend our warmest congratulations to the companies that announced their success in fundraising between 5th December and 11th December 2023. We are thrilled to see such tremendous support from all involved. Well done! 

Ten (Obscuro) raised $7.5M - Ten is excited to announce that they have raised $7.5 million to complete their mission of bringing Encryption to Ethereum.

Endless Clouds raised $2.5M - Endless Clouds successfully raised more than $2.5 million in its latest funding announcement. This investment round draws support from influential entities and individuals across the gaming and blockchain sectors.

$FLOKI raised $1.25M - FLOKI is the people's cryptocurrency and utility token of the Floki Ecosystem. What started as a meme has developed into an industry-leading utility project.

Shadow raised $9M - Crypto data platform startup Shadow, which says it can reduce development costs on Ethereum, has raised $9 million in a seed round led by Paradigm.

Curvance raised $3.6M - DeFi platform Curvance has raised $3.6 million in a seed funding round from over 20 DAOs and developers, including Offchain Labs.

Pyth Network of the "strategic fundraising round" announced this week, some of the largest players in the crypto industry.

Carv raised $4M - Carv, a self-sovereign identity (SSI) oracle and data-sharing protocol with its first flagship AI-powered gaming superapp, secured strategic funding earlier this year from HashKey Capital and a $100B Global Big Tech.

QANplatform (QANX) raised $15M - QANplatform, the quantum-resistant hybrid blockchain platform enables developers and enterprises to rapidly build software applications like DApps.

SYMMIO raised $11M - SYMMIO is thrilled to announce that they have closed a $1.1M OTC round. The round was led by 0x_Messi, with participation from a veteran group of investors.

Theta Token raised $100M - Theta Labs&lsquo video streaming solution, which is powered by blockchain technology, and which has announced that its token presale has reached $12 million.

Sona raised $6.9M - Alongside the launch news, the company also announced its $6.9 million seed funding round from Polychain Capital, Haun Ventures and Rogue Capital.

Versatus (VRRB Labs) raised $3.7M - Versatus (formerly VRRB Labs) has raised $2.3 million in seed funding at a valuation of $50 million.

CyberTitans raised an undisclosed amount - A multiplayer strategy game with crazy mechanics where you lead your Titans against the world.

MAP Protocol raised an undisclosed amount - MAP Protocol has announced receiving strategic investments from Waterdrip Capital and DWF Labs.

To stay updated with news about future Web3 Funding Rounds, Follow CryptoWeekly

December 11,2023

Cardano Celebrates The Birthday And Legacy Of Ada Lovelace

The notable and deliberate connection between Cardano and Ada Lovelace holds significance. Cardano, recognized for its scientific philosophy and research-oriented approach as a blockchain platform, derives its name via Gerolamo Cardano, a Renaissance mathematician. Conversely, the cryptocurrency operating on the Cardano blockchain is named ADA in homage to Ada Lovelace.

The contributions of Ada Lovelace

Born on December 10th, 1815, Ada Lovelace was an English mathematician and writer who gained prominence for her contributions to the Analytical Engine designed by Charles Babbage, which was one of the early mechanical general-purpose computers. Her notes on the engine encompass the first algorithm intended for machine processing, establishing her as one of the initial computer programmers.

Cardano deciding to name its native token as ADA serves as a tribute to Ada Lovelace and her pioneering work in computing. The Cardano platform, with its emphasis on technological innovation and foundational research, resonates with the essence of the various contributions that Lovelace made to early computing and programming concepts. Commemorating her birthday on December 10th serves as a reminder of her profound impact on mathematics and computer science.

Cardano continues to grow

The Cardano platform continues to experience notable growth and advancement, particularly in the realm of stablecoins. A prominent figure in the Cardano community, known as ADA Whale, highlighted the accelerating rise of stablecoins on the Cardano blockchain, stating that the financial performance of ADA mirrors the increasing strength and adoption of the platform.

As of the time of this writing, ADA is trading at approximately $0.55, which is a slight dip compared to its previous position at just over $0.60 less than 24 hours ago. More remarkably, it has surged by 51.62% over the past week and an impressive 139.75% year to date.

December 11,2023

Solana Closes The Gap On Ethereum With Massive NFT Sales

This year, Solana (SOL) exhibited remarkable performance, emerging as a substantial challenge to supremacy shown by the biggest altcoin by market capitalization, Ethereum (ETH). In particular, Solana has garnered attention for its noteworthy on-chain activities and trading dynamics.

Solana dominates NFT market

Having surpassed Ethereum not only in on-chain engagement but also in the critical metric of NFT sales, Solana has demonstrated its prowess. While Ethereum has traditionally dominated the NFT industry with its trading volume, projects, and user adoption, persistent issues such as network congestion and escalating fees are causing its dominance to wane. Unsurprisingly, competitors like Solana are narrowing the gap.

The success shown by Solana in the NFT sector also reflects a growing recognition of its potential by investors and developers. While Solana lags significantly behind Ethereum in historical data, its ascent suggests a potential seismic shift in the market dynamics of the industry.

Still a ways to go

In a historic performance this year, Solana achieved over 800% in gains, establishing record DEX volumes and network transactions. On December 9th, 2023, Solana eclipsed Ethereum in NFT sales, recording over $16 million in transactions. Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum followed closely with sales of $13.4 million and $11.4 million, respectively.

On the flip side, it is essential to note that the aforementioned current NFT sales, while noteworthy, are still below the levels recorded by Solana in 2022, where it achieved over $1 billion in NFT volume. In comparison, the all-time NFT sales of Ethereum stand at $41 billion, while those of Solana stand at approximately $4 billion.

December 10,2023

New Security Policy Introduced By Tether

Tether, the entity responsible for the largest stablecoin in the cryptocurrency market, has implemented a proactive security measure by introducing a novel policy on wallet freezing. This decision, made on December 1st, 2023, is in accordance with the regulations of the U.S. Office of Foreign Asset Controls (OFAC), specifically targeting individuals listed on the Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) List. Tether wants to comply with existing laws, aiming to bolster the overall security of its platform and the broader cryptocurrency ecosystem.

A need to work with regulators

The move represents one of the initial significant actions undertaken by Paolo Ardoino, who recently became the Chief Executive Officer of Tether. Ardoino has been outspoken about this decision, underscoring the dedication that Tether has to maintaining rigorous safety standards and strengthening ties with global law enforcement and regulatory entities.

The newly implemented policy therefore entails the freezing of wallets already featured on the SDN List and any prospective additions. The strategy is being viewed as a deliberate choice to prevent the inappropriate use of USDT tokens.

Previously, Tether had been hesitant to freeze wallets linked to sanctioned entities, such as the Tornado Cash protocol. However, this change in stance signifies a notable shift in the approach taken by the company to compliance and security.

No room for malicious entities

Following the announcement, blockchain records revealed that Tether had designated contract addresses associated with Tornado Cash as blacklisted. This was done as part of an effort to combat illicit activities. In any case, the recent policy is anticipated to establish a new benchmark in the cryptocurrency industry. The company recently took a big step to improve safety by freezing over 40 wallets.

Also, by voluntarily enhancing its security protocols, Tether is not only giving precedence to the well-being of its users but is also contributing to the overall integrity of the cryptocurrency market. This move is regarded as progress toward fostering a more secure and dependable platform for the global community of Tether users.

Ardoino strongly believes that Tether has to meet the evolving needs and challenges of the industry. According to the announcement, the aim is to continue collaborating closely with global regulators and law enforcement to establish a stable and secure environment for digital asset transactions.

December 09,2023

Ghost Aims To Revolutionize Blockchain Privacy And Efficiency

Ghost, a decentralized PoS (Proof of Stake) ecosystem, has emerged as a frontrunner in the realm of privacy-focused blockchains since its inception on June 20th, 2020. There are several key features when it comes to this platform, including but not limited to protocols, exchanges, and the overall expanding ecosystem which helps provide a comprehensive overview of its capabilities.

Ghost at a glance

Ghost operates on a 120-second block time, with the native token operating under the same moniker. Boasting a maximum supply of 55 million, with 23.8 million in circulation, stakers can reap rewards ranging to 28%, with the higher percentage applicable to veterans holding 20,000 Ghost coins. Notable exchanges facilitating Ghost transactions include TradeOgre, NONKYC, Crexsoft, ExchangeAssets, Uniswap (wGHOST on Polygon), and Ghost Pirate, serving as a fiat on-ramp.

Ghost also caters to a diverse user base with an array of wallets, including full-node options like Ghost Core, Ghost Desktop, and Ghost Vault. Light-node users can opt for Ghost Electrum, SHELTR (with a Web3 interface for Wrapping/Unwrapping), and the Telegram bot known as GhostPayBot. Plus, Ghost extends compatibility with popular wallets like MetaMask, Trust, and Coinbase Wallet, albeit exclusively for Wrapped Ghost (wGHOST) transactions.

The importance of privacy

The main privacy aspect when it comes to Ghost lies in its adept utilization of diverse protocols. For starters, there is the RingCT (Ring Confidential Transactions) aspect. At the consensus layer, RingCT ensures untraceability by utilizing 32 ring signatures, double that of Monero, to obfuscate transaction origins. Furthermore, there are the Stealth Addresses, which offer a one time use of hidden addresses that also enhance overall transaction confidentiality.

In addition, acting as the range proofing protocol, Bulletproofs employs zero-knowledge range proofing, scaling more efficiently than zk-SNARKs. Finally, there is also a protocol that conceals the IP addresses of users during transaction broadcasts, further fortifying the privacy framework. All these privacy protocols collaboratively safeguard the anonymity of users when executing transactions on the Ghost blockchain.

Future goals

The Ghost ecosystem extends beyond the mainnet blockchain, encompassing wGHOST on Polygon. The roadmap reveals exciting developments are on the horizon, with plans to introduce Ghost VPN and Ghost eSIM in Q1 2024, further enhancing user privacy and security.

The Ghost community eagerly anticipates several upcoming developments, including on-chain governance, which will grant users a voice in decision making processes, wGHOST on Cardano, which is scheduled for Q3 2024 and will enhance interoperability, and hardware wallet support via integrations with popular wallets like Trezor, Ledger, and Bitfi.

There is also the Taproot integration to look forward to, which will enhance Ghost Core with Taproot technology for improved smart contract capabilities. Lastly, there is GhostChat, a fully anonymous messaging service with end to end encryption via AES-256, ensuring private communication within the Ghost ecosystem.

A force to be reckoned with

In DeFi applications, privacy-preserving smart contracts and blockchains are critical for protecting user data and maintaining transaction confidentiality. With that in mind, Ghost aims to stand as a pioneering force in the decentralized landscape, prioritizing privacy and user autonomy. With robust privacy protocols, a growing ecosystem, and exciting developments on the horizon, Ghost continues to carve its niche as a formidable player in the blockchain space.

December 08,2023

Bitcoin Reaches New Heights But Dips Slightly

The cryptocurrency market is currently pausing, with Bitcoin (BTC) dropping to around $43,000 after crossing the $44,000 mark not too long ago. Over the past 24 hours, there has been significant volatility, with many coins reaching multi-month highs and then declining.

A slight correction

Bitcoin attempted to surpass $44,000 again on two separate occasions but was unsuccessful in both, indicating a temporary halt in bullish momentum. The derivatives market also saw liquidations of long positions, totaling close to $14 million in a one hour period.

In addition, various altcoins are retracing, although some like BitTorrent (BTT) have performed exceptionally well, experiencing massive gains within a 24 hour timeframe. On the contrary, PYTH, the native cryptocurrency of the Solana-based Pyth Network, lost a significant amount in the same period.

Ups and downs

In the broader financial context, European equities are slightly up, with the Euro Stoxx 50 futures gaining 0.2%. In Asia, Indian stocks rose after the decision to maintain rates was made by the central banks. Furthermore, Woodside Energy Group and Santos Ltd. are in talks for a potential merger to create a dominant liquefied natural gas exporter. Elsewhere, The Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia is increasing its investment in a technology venture with Alibaba Group, reaching a total of about $200 million.

Lastly, the Dollar-Yen pair experienced a rapid decline, surprising option traders and leading to a surge in short-term implied volatility, reaching a more than four-month high. The movement includes anticipation of the upcoming policy decision by the Bank of Japan on December 19th.

December 08,2023

Helium Mobile Introduces New Mobile Plan Integrated With Blockchain Technology

Helium Mobile, a trailblazer in crypto carriers, has recently introduced an innovative nationwide scheme in the United States. Starting now, the groundbreaking mobile service will combine the Helium Network, built on the Solana blockchain, with a nationwide 5G network, offering unlimited data, text, and calls for $20 per month.

A comprehensive solution

As aforementioned, not only will the new Helium Mobile plan provide users with unlimited data, text, and call services, but the strategic move also follows a successful limited trial in Miami earlier this year, demonstrating the viability of this novel approach to mobile services.

At the core of the offering by Helium Mobile is the integration of the Helium Network, an Internet of Things (IoT) project anchored on the Solana blockchain, with a robust nationwide 5G network. Users can also act as builders of their network by establishing Helium Mobile Hotspots, serving as mini cell towers to extend coverage. Finally, to address coverage gaps, Helium collaborates with T-Mobile, with Helium compensating T-Mobile for backup coverage.

The times are changing

Primarily, this decentralized approach aims to eradicate dead zones, revolutionizing the user experience of mobile connectivity. Despite the ambitious plan, Helium Mobile faces inquiries about its revenue model. Still, investors have scrutinized the profitability of the Helium Network, which recorded only $6,650 in revenue through its wireless network in June 2022.

In summary, this initiative by Helium Mobile represents a significant stride in the fusion of blockchain and telecommunications, potentially reshaping the future of mobile communication. HNT, the native token of Helium Network, experienced a surge as a result of the announcement, rising by 27%. In any case, the initiative is a strong indicator of how many companies in a variety of fields are adopting blockchain technology.

December 07,2023

French Bank Becomes First Institution To Issue A Stablecoin On Ethereum

Societe Generale FORGE, a subsidiary under the umbrella of the venerable French banking institution Societe Generale, is reportedly introducing EUR CoinVertible (EURCV), a stablecoin linked to the Euro and deployed on the Ethereum blockchain, as indicated in a recent announcement via Bitstamp.

Introducing EURCV

EURCV is an ERC20 token crafted to offer a cryptocurrency with minimal volatility, maintaining a steady value reflective of the Euro. The stablecoin is collateralized by cash deposits and cash equivalents denominated in EUR.

Societe Generale assures the presence of robust legal frameworks to guarantee the separation and accessibility of reserve assets for token holders. Moreover, Bitstamp is commencing order book operations for multiple trading pairs with Flowdesk, a crypto market maker, which was chosen to supply liquidity and engage in active market-making for EURCV on Bitstamp and other platforms.

Initially, the facilitation of EURCV deposits and withdrawals will be restricted to investors whitelisted by Societe Generale, with the bank asserting the application of its existing KYC and AML compliance procedures for the onboarding of digital token holders.

An important development

Although not the pioneer in Euro stablecoins, EURCV stands out as the first to be endorsed by a largely regulated European bank. In 2018, a state owned bank in Brazil known as the Brazilian National Social Development Bank introduced a stablecoin pegged to the Real. Additionally, both Circle and Tether have also entered the market with similar Euro pegged tokens targeted at retail investors.

The launch of EURCV closely follows the inaugural bond issuance on the public Ethereum blockchain by Societe Generale, wherein a digital green bond worth 100 million Euros found full subscription by institutional asset managers AXA and Generali.

December 07,2023

Binance Plea Agreement Finally Approved By District Judge

A US district judge has reportedly approved the plea agreements reached between Binance, former CEO Changpeng Zhao, and the Department of Justice (DoJ). Binance confessed to charges related to the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), failure to register as a money transmitter, and violations of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA).

The context

After much back and forth, the biggest crypto exchange in the world agreed to settle the matter by paying over $4 billion to the DoJ. The founder and CEO of Binance, Changpeng Zhao, was also found culpable for not implementing a comprehensive anti-money laundering (AML) program, a breach of the BSA, and subsequently stepped down as Binance CEO. Richard Teng was named as the new CEO shortly afterwards.

US customers were prioritized

As per court records, Binance acknowledged prioritizing growth and profits over adherence to various regulations and laws. Established in 2017, Binance concentrated on attracting high-volume clients, including those based in the United States. After swiftly becoming the largest cryptocurrency exchange, Binance predominantly garnered its clientele in the US.

Furthermore, due to its service to customers based in the United States, Binance was obligated to register with FinCEN as a money services business and establish an effective AML program aimed at reasonably preventing the facilitation of money laundering, as outlined in the court documents.

December 06,2023

Huge Security Vulnerability Discovered By Thirdweb

Thirdweb, a smart contract development entity operating within the Web3 ecosystem, has detected a security vulnerability that has the potential to impact a variety of smart contracts in the Web3 domain. The company, which supplies tools for deploying multi-chain smart contracts in areas like gaming, minting, marketplaces, and wallets, caters to a user base exceeding 70,000 developers.

No panic just yet

On December 4th, Thirdweb revealed a vulnerability in a widely used open-source library, affecting specific pre-built smart contracts, including some developed by the company. Despite the identification of this vulnerability, the investigations have determined that there has been no exploitation of the flaw in smart contracts. This presents a limited timeframe for Web3 firms to implement preventive measures and avoid potential security breaches.

Thirdweb nevertheless stressed the urgency of addressing the vulnerability promptly, highlighting the risk associated with affected pre-built contracts such as DropERC20, ERC721, ERC1155 (all versions), and AirdropERC20 if left unrectified.

In response to the discovery, Thirdweb issued a proactive warning to the Web3 ecosystem, urging users who deployed its contracts before November 22nd to take independent mitigation steps or use a tool provided by the company.

Time is of the essence

Thirdweb recommended that developers assist users in revoking approvals on all affected contracts using, as suggested by DefiLlama developer 0xngmi. This measure aimed to offer additional protection to users who might choose not to implement contract mitigation steps.

In light of the identified vulnerability in the open-source library, Thirdweb has taken proactive measures. The company has reached out to the maintainers of the open-source library responsible for the vulnerability and contacted other teams that may be affected. Thirdweb has also committed to enhancing its investment in security, doubling bug bounty payouts to $50,000, and implementing a more rigorous auditing process for its smart contract deployment tools.

Moreover, Thirdweb is providing a grant to cover contract mitigations for affected users, although the full details of the vulnerability remain undisclosed for security reasons. It is noteworthy that Thirdweb successfully raised $24 million in a Series A funding round in August 2022, with contributions via prominent entities like Haun Ventures, Shopify, Coinbase, and Polygon.

December 06,2023

Qatar May Buy A Massive Amount Of Bitcoin Soon

Speculation is circulating within the cryptocurrency community regarding a potential $500 billion investment in Bitcoin (BTC) by the Qatar Sovereign Wealth Fund (QSWF). The motivation behind this significant move appears to be the potential for substantial profits and the increasing recognition of Bitcoin as a mainstream asset.

Qatar looking to get involved

The unverified information emerges as Bitcoin recently surpassed the $43,000 mark, fueled mainly by optimism surrounding the possible approval of a Bitcoin spot exchange-traded fund (ETF) in the U.S as well as the upcoming BTC halving event in April 2024.

According to Bitcoin advocate Max Keiser, the QSWF, tasked with managing the extensive oil and gas-derived wealth of the country, is considering allocating up to $500 billion to the flagship cryptocurrency. To contextualize, this investment would overshadow the publicly disclosed Bitcoin holdings of MicroStrategy, founded by Michael Saylor, by an astonishing 671 times. MicroStrategy currently stands as the largest corporate holder of Bitcoin, possessing 174,530 BTC following its November acquisition.

Still just a rumor

Keiser anticipates that the colossal investment by the QSWF could propel the price of Bitcoin to reach highs of $100,000. If realized, the involvement by Qatar into the crypto industry would signify a significant milestone in the institutional adoption of digital assets.

Addressing the rumor, Bitcoin advocate Luke Broyles emphasized the crucial aspect of the supply and demand dynamics concerning BTC. Broyles pointed out the remaining $76 billion worth of BTC on crypto exchanges, underscoring the fundamental principle of its fixed supply. He suggests that any substantial investment would inevitably drive prices higher.

However, Broyles expresses skepticism about the Qatar news, considering it a mere rumor, and he would be shocked if it were even remotely true. Other cryptocurrency experts share his viewpoint, noting that the QSWF currently holds $475 billion and is unlikely to allocate its entire portfolio to BTC.

December 05,2023

El Salvador BTC Advisor Shares Plans For Argentina

Samson Mow, Bitcoin advisor to El Salvador President Nayib Bukele, recently unveiled a strategic plan for incoming Argentine President Javier Milei, set to assume office on December 10th. As the CEO of JAN3, Samson emphasizes tailoring solutions to the growing economic challenges of Argentina, prioritizing stabilization, dollarization, and closure of the central bank before considering Bitcoin integration.

CBDCs out and BTC in

There is a meeting planned in the first quarter 2024 between Milei and Mow, who expresses relief at the abandonment of the central bank digital currency (CBDC) concept. Signals suggest positive inclination toward Bitcoin adoption in the new government, with parallels drawn to the strategy adopted by El Salvador. Mow highlights the role that Bitcoin has in the economic restructuring of Argentina and advocates for its effective adoption going forward.

While much has been discussed about Milei and his agenda, particularly regarding the elimination of the local central bank and the adoption of the dollar, his stance on Bitcoin policies remains unclear. However, in a recent interview, Mow shared details about his affiliations and intentions to integrate BTC in an effective and seamless fashion.

Still a long way to go

Mow stressed the necessity of tailoring strategies to address the distinctive economic hurdles that Argentina has faced for years. He believes that the initial phase will involve exploration, as there are no one-size-fits-all solutions, before underscoring the significance of customizing initiatives according to the unique circumstances of each country, encompassing its distinct culture and institutions.

Mow also advocated for Bitcoin as a long-term solution to inflation, contrasting its stability with the inflationary nature of fiat currencies. In the long term, Bitcoin resolves the inflation issue faced by Argentina or any other country, he stated.

Additionally, Mow claims that achieving a stable inflation rate, similar to that of the USD, is imperative before embracing Bitcoin. Initially, there is a need to address the immediate issues, and once those are resolved, the incorporation of Bitcoin can be realistically explored, he further explained.