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Just-Launched Ziglu Wants to Make It Stupid Easy to Buy Crypto

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U.K.-based cryptocurrency platform Ziglu has launched, following a £5.25 million (US$6.6 million) seed round. As a starting point, the platform aims to painlessly put crypto in the hands of consumers.

Announced Monday, Ziglu allows users to exchange GBP for bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH), litecoin (LTC) and bitcoin cash (BCH), with more fiat currencies to be added and a debit card coming in July or August.

Ziglu is the brainchild of Mark Hipperson, co-founder and CTO of U.K.-based Starling Bank, one of a crop of so-called “challenger banks” that took on the incumbents with sleeker, more intuitive and transparent services.

Things have changed since 2015 when all the challengers entered the market, though, said Hipperson. 

“In 2020, we think the 25-45 [age] demographic will want easy, safe access to crypto,” he said. “Only about 1% of people go to the large platforms to buy crypto and we think we can do better, and perhaps get them better prices as well.”

The marketplace for apps that offer crypto is heating up. For instance, Square, the fintech unicorn launched by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, rolled out bitcoin purchases in mid-2018 and recently reported bitcoin revenues of $306 million on its Cash App service.

In Europe, London-based Revolut, which recently raised $500 million, valuing the platform at $5.5 billion, allows users to buy cryptocurrencies sourced from the Luxembourg-based BitStamp exchange.  

Ziglu’s original plan was to launch with five major exchanges, but for now it’s connecting to two, both of which Hipperson declined to name. The startup has had to adapt its go-to-market plans in light of COVID-19, he said. More exchanges will be added in the coming weeks, he added.

Part of Ziglu’s secret sauce involves routing requests to find consumers the best deal. For example, if the best price for bitcoin happens to be in dollars on Kraken, the service converts fiat and sources the deal on that exchange.

The forthcoming debit card has Mastercard as a scheme partner and Global Processing Services is Ziglu’s payment processor. The seed round was sourced from high-net-worth individuals and friends, but no VCs, Hipperson said.

In terms of fiat, Ziglu plans to add currencies based upon customer demand. 

“I’d expect we would be at 15 currencies” by the end of the year, said Hipperson.

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Source: https://www.coindesk.com/just-launched-ziglu-wants-to-make-it-stupid-easy-to-buy-crypto

Blockchain

Crypto Derivatives September’s Recap: Binance Futures Leading As BitMEX Down 30%

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This week, Belgium’s Financial Services and Markets Authority made a startling revelation. Cryptocurrency fraud victims have lost at least €10 million between May 2019 and September 2020, the financial regulator said.

Belgians Have Lost €10 Million In Cryptocurrency Fraud

Belgian citizens have lost almost 10 million euros to fraudulent crypto investment schemes. Belgium’s apex financial authority, the Financial Services and Markets Authority, said on Monday. According to the watchdog, this data is from May 2019 to September 2020. Speaking about the modus operandi adopted by the scammers and crypto robbers, the FSMA said:

These platforms often use very aggressive methods to try to persuade you to invest ever larger sums. They will also try to persuade you to let them take control of your computer remotely so as to be able to make certain payments.

Adding to its statement, the regulator pointed out ‘fake advertisements that typically use images of celebrities.’ Potential victims get beguiled by platforms displaying these adverts circulating on social media. When interested folks click on them, cryptocurrency shysters call them to ‘to discuss an investment offer.’

Apart from bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, online robbers offer investment schemes in foreign exchange products and contracts for differences (CFDs) that can be traded in markets with commodities and shares.

The FSMA had already apprised users about potential cryptocurrency frauds and scam-filled activities in 2018. Since then, it has added fake credit letters to its list of unscrupulous investment offerings. These the regulator said claim ‘to offer loans on favorable terms but intend to steal money.’ Also, investors need to stay away from fraudulent wealth management and alternative investment scams, FSMA mentioned.

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Is This Why The UK FCA Banned Crypto Derivatives For Retail Customers?

As per the latest update from the cryptocurrency scene in the UK, the country’s top financial watchdog, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), has banned the sale, marketing, and distribution of cryptocurrency derivatives and ETNs to retail customers effective January 6th, 2021.

The FCA enumerated several reasons to justify it’s latest banning move. Volatility in crypto prices, the so-called ‘lack of inherent value,’ and inadequate understanding of cryptocurrency systems are others. But the financial regulator also specified that ‘prevalence of market abuse and financial crime in the secondary market’ is why retail players should stay away from crypto derivatives.

Also, there is no legitimate need for retail customers to invest in these products, the FCA added. The most crucial question now is: Will these measures actually block the propagation of crypto fraud and scams? Will such a ban actually protect users?

In a world where fiat and traditional market scams are dominant and much more widespread than digital currency fraud, an outright ban on different crypto investment opportunities will only do so much. What is required is tightening law enforcement on scammers and the bad actors, which will eventually make crypto investment safe for users.

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Source: https://coingenius.news/crypto-derivatives-septembers-recap-binance-futures-leading-as-bitmex-down-30-9/

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Pantera says they’re placing a heavier bet on DeFi than the rest of the market

Despite the recent slump, Pantera believes that most of the growth in the next bull cycle will be generated by DeFi.

The post Pantera says they’re placing a heavier bet on DeFi than the rest of the market first appeared on Blockchain Consultants.

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In an October 6 webinar, Pantera Capital disclosed that their Digital Asset Fund intends to invest more heavily into DeFi assets than the rest of the market. 

Source: Pantera Capital.

Pantera’s co-chief investment officer, Joey Krug said that unlike other funds that allocate most of their portfolios to stores of value like Bitcoin (BTC), his company is prepared to place its primary bet on DeFi:

“And so if you look at portfolio construction, we can see that relative to the market, we’re taking a different bet with the Digital Asset Fund. Most of the market is basically payments and store of value. So things like Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, etc. …> For the most part, we’re much more overweight, smart contract platforms, decentralized finance, open finance, whatever you want to call it is we think that’s where that sort of growth is going to be seen this bull market.”<!—->

Krug also noted the rapid pace of growth in the DeFi space — both in terms of the value locked and trading volume on decentralized exchanges. During the webinar, a Pantera Capital representative also confirmed that they believe DeFi is the future of finance and not just another bubble. 

Source: Pantera Capital.

Meanwhile, Pantera CEO Dan Morehead opined that the influx of fiat into the economy has pushed crypto prices higher and that Pantera expects an even stronger rally in the near future:

“We think the next two or three years [there’s] going to be a massive rally.”

Pantera says they’re placing a heavier bet on DeFi than the rest of the market

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Source: https://blockchainconsultants.io/pantera-says-theyre-placing-a-heavier-bet-on-defi-than-the-rest-of-the-market/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=pantera-says-theyre-placing-a-heavier-bet-on-defi-than-the-rest-of-the-market

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Blockchain

FCA Bans Retail Crypto Derivatives Offerings Across the U.K.

There have been significant concerns in the United Kingdom over a possible ban on crypto-based derivatives for about a year. While it seemed like the government […]

The post FCA Bans Retail Crypto Derivatives Offerings Across the U.K. first appeared on Blockchain Consultants.

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There have been significant concerns in the United Kingdom over a possible ban on crypto-based derivatives for about a year. While it seemed like the government […]

Source: https://blockchainconsultants.io/fca-bans-retail-crypto-derivatives-offerings-across-the-u-k/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=fca-bans-retail-crypto-derivatives-offerings-across-the-u-k

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