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Tether (USDT) January 15th Deadline on iFinex Case: Everything You Need to Know

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Many in the cryptocurrency field have recently discussed the upcoming January 15th date as an important consideration for the ongoing case between the office of the New York Attorney General (NYAG) and iFinex, the parent company of Bitfinex and Tether.

With this in mind, below is a comprehensive summary of what happened and what to expect on this date.

The NYAG v. iFinex Case: What Happened?

Back in April 2019, the office of the New York Attorney General alleged that the popular cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex lost $850 million and then used funds from its affiliated stablecoin operator Tether (the company that issues USDT) to cover the shortfall.

As CryptoPotato reported, later on, Tether issued a statement through a blog post which said that the allegations were written in “bad faith” and were also “riddled with false assertions.”

In May 2019, Judge Joel Cohen granted a partial stay on the NYAG office’s request for documents from the two companies until their hearing takes place on July 29th. During that hearing, the judge on the case, Joel Cohen, decided to extend the preliminary injunction as he was not ready to make a final decision on whether the case should go forward or be dismissed. Hence, he extended that injunction by 90 days.

In August, however, the NYAG presented new evidence on the case, alleging that apart from covering up the $850 million, Bitfinex and Tether had served New York customers for longer than they claimed. In part, the document stated:

The OAG has uncovered substantial ties between Respondents and New York concerning Respondents’ corporate operations; trading on the Bitfinex platform; the issuance, redemption, and trading of tethers; use of financial institutions to move money and process customer deposits and withdrawals; and representations to the market that might have been misleading.

Essentially, the NYAG also attacked Bitfinex’s LEO initial exchange offering, claiming that it “has every indicia of a securities issuance subject to the Martin Act, and there is reason to believe that the issuance is related to the matters under investigation,” meaning the alleged cover-up.

Additionally, the NYAG called iFinex’s motion to dismiss “an improper attempt to impede a lawful investigation.”

The Order to Turn in Documents

In September 2020, Judge Cohen ruled that Bitfinex and Tether must turn over documents detailing their financial relationship and history to the NYAG’s office. In addition to that, he also extended an injunction that barred Tether from loaning funds to Bitfinex by 90 more days.

However, on December 9th, 2020, Letitia James, the Attorney General, filed a document, asking Justice Cohen to extend the deadline to January 15th, 2021. James said that “the parties continue to cooperate on the production of documents in response to the 354 Order, and anticipate that the production could be finalized in the coming weeks.”

Why the January 15th Deadline is Important?

With this, we arrive at the time of this writing and the importance of the January 15th deadline. There are a few reasons for which this is a critical point in this case. First, it requires that iFinex produces the necessary information for the NYAG to continue its investigation and to further substantiate the merits of its claims.

And perhaps what’s even more important, however, is the nature of the documentation. In essence, iFinex has to produce materials on the process by which they determine whether, when, and how to issue and redeem tethers, banks, documents, and communications regarding specific issuances and redemptions, as well as trading activity on the Bitfinex trading platform regarding tethers and bitcoin.

This is a landmark case for the entire cryptocurrency space as USDT is the most popular and biggest stablecoin on the market. The company issuing it has been involved in many scandals in the past, with many questioning the fact that it’s actually backed by USD.

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Source: https://coingenius.news/tether-usdt-january-15th-deadline-on-ifinex-case-everything-you-need-to-know-28/

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Bitcoin down 3.5% as MicroStrategy confirms $1bn purchase

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Bitcoin is currently trading 3.5% down from today’s high of $51,500 following MicroStrategy’s announcement that it had purchased more than $1 billion worth of Bitcoin.

MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor revealed that the Bitcoin was purchased at an average price of $52,765, taking the company’s overall holdings of BTC up to 90,531 ($4.44 billion).

Whilst many would expect this news to have a bullish reaction, the market immediately sold-off as it suppressed rumours that MicroStrategy was yet to buy after it raised $1 billion in the form of an unsecured loan last week.

Despite rallying alongside Bitcoin’s increase in value earlier this year, MicroStrategy’s share price is 43% down from its peak of $1,320 on February 8.

The high risk and potentially high reward approach from MicroStrategy has not yet converted to many other companies with the exception of Tesla and Square, with the former investing $1.5 billion in January.

This may be due to the volatile nature of cryptocurrencies in general, with market cycles being susceptible to 80% drawdowns once the hype and euphoria around respective bull markets subside.

At the time of writing Bitcoin is trading at $49,450, a stark contrast to this time last year when Bitcoin was valued at $10,000 before it crashed to $3,800 in March.

For more news, guides and cryptocurrency analysis, click here.

Source: https://coinrivet.com/bitcoin-down-3-5-as-microstrategy-confirms-1bn-purchase/

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Tether and Bitfinex hit with $18.5m penalty in NYAG case

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The New York Attorney General (NYAG) Letitia James has issued Bitfinex and Tether with an $18.5 million penalty after both parties settled an ongoing lawsuit.

Tether is a stablecoin that is pegged to the US Dollar, it has been under scrutiny for more than four years as a result of rumours that suggested it wasn’t entirely backed by USD, and that it had a role in manipulating the Bitcoin price in the 2017 bull market.

However, as previously mentioned to Coin Rivet, Bitfinex and Tether CTO Paolo Ardoino dismissed those rumours, adding that there was evidence to the contrary.

The settlement with NYAG includes a stipulation that restricts Bitfinex and Tether from offering services to New York residents, while it also states that the company has to become more transparent by submitting audits.

“Bitfinex and Tether recklessly and unlawfully covered-up massive financial losses to keep their scheme going and protect their bottom lines,” said Attorney General James.

“Tether’s claims that its virtual currency was fully backed by U.S. dollars at all times was a lie. These companies obscured the true risk investors faced and were operated by unlicensed and unregulated individuals and entities dealing in the darkest corners of the financial system.”

The price of Bitcoin immediately rose from a low of $45,800 to $49,000, quelling fears over continuation of a correction that has spanned over the past 48-hours.

For more news, guides and cryptocurrency analysis, click here.

Source: https://coinrivet.com/tether-and-bitfinex-hit-with-18-5m-penalty-in-nyag-case/

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Latest Bitcoin price and analysis (BTC to USD)

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Bitcoin is in the midst of a major correction from it’s all-time high of $58,500 following a failure to breach the psychological level of resistance at $60,000.

The world’s largest cryptocurrency is currently trading at $53,550 after temporarily taking out the $50,000 level of support.

The dramatic move to the downside coincided with a wider cryptocurrency market correction that led to a number of top exchanges like Binance suffering downtime.

Despite showing quite clear vulnerabilities in the short term, Bitcoin remains in a bullish posture on the weekly and monthly chart, that is until it begins closing daily candles beneath the $50,000 level.

BTCUSD chart by TradingView

Warning signs, however, are still there for Bitcoin. The 12-hour MACD has now suffered a bearish cross that resembles the cross in early January, while the sheer volume on this correction indicates a shift in the previously bullish sentiment.

If Bitcoin can continue its bounce and close Monday’s daily candle back above $55,400, it will likely go back to test its all-time high before the end of the week.

Much of it also depends on the economic situation around the world as lockdowns begin to ease coupled with the potential of increased interest rates in the United States.

For more news, guides and cryptocurrency analysis, click here.

Bitcoin pricing

Current live BTC pricing information and interactive charts are available on our site 24 hours a day. The ticker bar at the bottom of every page on our site has the latest Bitcoin price. Pricing is also available in a range of different currency equivalents:

US Dollar – BTCtoUSD

British Pound Sterling – BTCtoGBP

Japanese Yen – BTCtoJPY

Euro – BTCtoEUR

Australian Dollar – BTCtoAUD

Russian Rouble – BTCtoRUB

About Bitcoin

In August 2008, the domain name bitcoin.org was registered. On 31st October 2008, a paper was published called “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System”. This was authored by Satoshi Nakamoto, the inventor of Bitcoin. To date, no one knows who this person, or people, are.

The paper outlined a method of using a P2P network for electronic transactions without “relying on trust”. On January 3 2009, the Bitcoin network came into existence. Nakamoto mined block number “0” (or the “genesis block”), which had a reward of 50 Bitcoins.

More BTC news and information

If you want to find out more information about Bitcoin or cryptocurrencies in general, then use the search box at the top of this page. Here’s an article to get you started.

As with any investment, it pays to do some homework before you part with your money. The prices of cryptocurrencies are volatile and go up and down quickly. This page is not recommending a particular currency or whether you should invest or not.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author should not be considered as financial advice.

Source: https://coinrivet.com/latest-bitcoin-price-and-analysis-btc-to-usd-113/

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VeChain Review: Blockchain Supply Chain Management

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VeChain is one of the foremost supply chain focused blockchain projects currently out there. They continue getting quite a bit of attention since their main-net launch from June 2018

This was the mainnet launch that saw them release their native VET tokens that have seen increasing volume across a number of exchanges. However, VeChain is not alone in its supply chain focus and there are a number of companies and projects that have launched since then

So, with so much competition, is VeChain still worth considering?

In this VeChain review I will attempt to answer that. I will also analyse the use cases for the VET token and its potential for eventual mass adoption.

What is VeChain?

VeChain is an interesting spin on the uses of blockchain technology. Started in 2015, it is focused on business applications, primarily in the logistics field through supply chain management that provides tracking, quality control, inventory management, and much more.

The mainnet for VeChain was launched back in June 2018, and the project has pushed forward strongly since, bringing many partners into the VeChain ecosystem. In fact, hardly a month passes without the project announcing a new partnership or business that’s adopting the VeChain technology.

VeChain Technology Stack
VeChain Entire Technology Stack. Image via VeChain

It has become a part of the Price Waterhouse Cooper incubation program, is working on a proof of concept with BMW and Renault, and has recently partnered with Australian winemaker Penfolds to provide proof of authenticity for their wines being delivered to China.

Unfortunately for investors all of these strong partnerships have had little impact on the price of the VET token,  which fell throughout 2018, failed to mount much of a recovery in 2019 and early 2020, and then dropped again following the March 2020 meltdown in traditional financial markets.

Also of recent concern is the December 2019 hack in which roughly $6.5 million worth of VET tokens were stolen. We’ll discuss below how the hack played out, and whether it remains a security concern at this time.

The VeChain project has continued to forge ahead nonetheless, bringing new partnerships onboard, starting new pilot programs, and growing in the business space. This hasn’t been reflected in the token price yet, but it does point to increased adoption, which should eventually be reflected in the token price.

Proof of Authority 1.0 and 2.0

VeChain runs on a Proof of Authority (PoA) consensus model that requires nodes by authorized before they can participate in blockchain consensus. Once a node becomes authorized it joins the pool of other authorized nodes and each has an equal chance of publishing new blocks and receiving rewards. Under this system the rich nodes have no advantages, and there is no requirement for nodes to compete with one another and use vast amounts of resources.

The PoA system also features efficient bandwidth usage, which leads to higher throughput for the network. This equates to a greater number of transactions per second and increases the scalability of the network.

Proof of Authority VeChain
Benefits of Proof of Authority at Vechain

Although PoA has obvious advantages, and the VeChainThor blockchain continues to operate efficiently and securely, there are remaining limitations to this consensus method. One of these limitations is an inability to prevent a node from manipulating the entire system when it has the right to add a new block.

However there are ways the blockchain can trace any misbehavior and use it as evidence against the node later. Additionally, as part of the family of Nakamoto consensus methods, PoA only gives us a probabilistic assurance that transactions are secure. This could leave the network vulnerable to large-scale network partitioning.

Because of these limitations the VeChain Foundation is working on the next generation of Proof of Authority, which they are calling PoA 2.0. This new version of PoA will give the network the stability and security needed to support the growing number of business use cases on-chain. According to the VeChain Whitepaper 2.0 the new PoA 2.0 will deliver:

  1. Absolute finality (or safety guarantee) on blocks and transactions;
  2. significant reduction of the platform’s risk of being temporarily disrupted, which will result in better stability of blockchain service;
  3. faster-converging probabilistic finality, which will result in faster transaction confirmation for applications.

Late in 2020 the VeChain project announced they were close to delivering the improved Proof-of Authority 2.0 and would launch on testnet in 2021. VeChain’s chief scientist Peter Zhou tweeted the following:

VeChain Tweet

VeChain Cheif Scientist Tweet. Image via Twitter

VIP-193 is also known as SURFACE and it is planned to improve the scalability of the VeChain network while also speeding transaction confirmations. The improved PoA implementation will give VeChain all the strong points found in PoW blockchains while also making the blockchain more robust thanks to a Byzantine Fault Tolerance (BFT) mechanism.

What’s more, Zhou has made it clear that the prototyping of VIP-200 is now complete. VIP-200 is being created to make it possible for the VeChain distributed ledger to reach BFT finality by allowing blocks to carry extra finality related messages.

VeChain Governance and VeVote

Recently VeChain has also updated its governance model in oder to meet the needs of large enterprises, regulators, and government while maintaining its ability to scale. The new system was released this past November 11, 2019, and it gives VeChain a flexible governance model that will allow for rapid changes when needed.

VeChain VeVote
Example of Recent VeVote & Overview of Mechanism

The revised VeChain Governance Charter includes the following changes to the Articles of Association:

  1. Specified the scope of fundamental subjects that require all stakeholder voting;
  2. Redefined the categories of stakeholders with voting authority as Authority Masternode, Economic X Node and Economic Node;
  3. Adjusted the voting authority model according to the new stakeholder categorization;
  4. Streamlined the all stakeholder voting procedure.

In addition VeChain also introduced the VeVote platform as a way to increase governance transparency. VeVote is a decentralized voting platform and was adopted by a Steering Committee vote of 5-2 on December 13, 2019. The approval of the VeVote platform has also opened it up for use in voting by stakeholders.

VeChain describes VeVote as follows:

The VeVote platform provides an immutable, transparent and decentralized platform for stakeholders to cast their votes on important decisions based on their voting authority. The voting is done via VeVote smart contracts and the result will be recorded on the VeChainThor blockchain.

As of February 2021 there have been three proposals voted on and passed by the community and 1 proposal voted on and passed by the steering committee. Two of the three stakeholder votes were for contests and the third was to postpone the 2nd VeChain steering committee election to June 30, 2021. The steering committee vote was to update the VeChain Foundation Governance Charter.

The updated charter included the following major changes:

  • Specified the scope of fundamental subjects that require all stakeholder voting
  • Redefined the categories of stakeholders with voting authority as Authority Masternode, Economic X Node and Economic Node
  • Adjusted the voting authority model according to the new stakeholder categorization
  • Streamlined the all stakeholder voting procedure

The Sync 2 Wallet

Anyone who’s been using the internet knows what a web-based application is, whether the purpose is ecommerce, communications, or simply entertainment. And thanks to the development of the modern web browser these web apps are accessible across all types of hardware devices and operating systems.

While we would like to think that blockchain dApps are just as simple the truth is the technology isn’t there yet. Blockchain dApps for users to use specific browsers or wallets to access them, and users may need to switch the wallet or browser being used depending on the hardware or operating system being used. It’s really inconsistent and inconvenient for users.

Add to this the need to manage the crypto assets necessary for the dApp and pay gas fees, not to mention the need for a certain degree of technical savvy that’s needed when using decentralized platforms. All of this awkwardness, cost, and complexity has kept dApps as they are currently implemented from reaching mainstream adoption.

VeChain hopes to change all this with the introduction of the Sync 2 digital wallet app. The Sync 2, which was released in its alpha version in January 2021, provides the missing pieces of critical infrastructure in enabling the true mass adoption of dApp technology.

Sync 2

VeChain expects the Sync 2 to revolutionize dApp usage.

Sync 2 frees users from the restrictions of browser type, hardware, and OS and makes using dApps as simple and intuative as using any web-based app. In combination with VeChain’s native fee delegation protocols, users will no longer need to manage crypto to pay gas fees. Instead, dApp owners or DaaS service providers can fund gas fees on a user’s behalf.

Sync 2 is designed to work with all mainstream web browsers (e.g., Chrome, Safari, MS Edge, Firefox, etc), allowing dApps to be accessed by ever-greater numbers of users

It can be installed as a local app on desktop or mobile device, or used simply as a web application with no installation requirement, providing maximal flexibility and consistent user experience.

Put simply — Sync 2 is the missing jigsaw piece that enables a truly seamless dApp experience, paving the way for the mass adoption of decentralised applications by removing all barriers to entry. A first for the entire blockchain industry.

VeChain Partnerships

VeChain recognizes the importance of having an established business and client base, and with that in mind has been very active in creating partnerships. Through the end of the second quarter of 2019, there are no less than 31 partners which VeChain is working on pilots with, any of which could lead to a breakthrough and wider adoption of the blockchain. And they continue adding new partnerships.

A few of these partners are Price Waterhouse Cooper, Walmart China, LVMH Group, NTT Docomo, and most recently Australia’s leading wine producer Penfold’s.

Onboarding of new partners and clients is handled quite smoothly by VeChain since they operate on a Blockchain-as-a-Service model, and set up all the infrastructure for clients, including any necessary customization. It’s this model that has allowed VeChain to partner with such a broad and diverse group of industries.

The partnership with PwC has given VeChain access to many companies across China and Southeast Asia and has been valuable in spreading the word about VeChain.

VeChain Partners
Only a small selection of some of the VeChain Partners

With LVMH, VeChain is developing a system that tracks limited edition luxury goods. Pirating of these types of products is widespread, especially in China and Southeast Asia. With LVHM’s broad offerings of luxury goods, this is a perfect partnership.

VeChain has also been working with DNV GL to increase the transparency of products from the factory or farm to the consumer. In this partnership, VeChain has developed a blockchain-powered digital assurance solution they’ve called MyStory.

Using this dApp consumers are able to learn about the story behind a bottle of wine from the vineyard, to the bottler, through distribution, and to their store’s shelves. All this is accomplished by simply scanning a QR code on the wine bottle.

Another valuable partnership is the one with Chinese automaker BYD, where VeChain has been working on a proof of concept for handling carbon emission imbalances. This partnership is working on building a dApp that will track and record the emissions data of millions of cars, buses, trains, and other vehicles onto the public VeChain blockchain.

Most recently Vechain has been active in adding hospitals and tracking infection risk management in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Not surprisingly these partnerships are helping VeChain grow, although it does remain smaller than major players such as Ethereum and EOS, who have more highly developed dApp ecosystems, with greater offerings of games and other applications.

The VeChain Team

The primary driving force behind the adoption of VeChain and the VET token is the VeChain Foundation, an organization founded in Singapore which governs and maintains the project, its development, and promotion. The Foundation is governed by the Steering Committee, which is elected every two years and is currently represented by the project founders.

Sunny Lu is the CEO of VeChain and one of the founding members of VeChain. Prior to founding VeChain, he was CIO at Louis Vuitton China. He has over a decade of experience working for Fortune 500 companies in executive IT positions.

VeChain Team
From Left: Sunny Lu, Jay Zhang, Kevin Feng & Jianliang Gu

Jay (Jie) Zhang was the CFO at VeChain, and is also a co-founder of the project. Due to the hack that occurred in December 2019, which he accepted full responsibility for, he has reportedly stepped down from his role as CFO, although the VeChain website still lists him as the project’s CFO. Prior to working at VeChain he was employed at Deloitte and prior to that he spent more than a dozen years with PwC. He was responsible for the design of the VeChain governance framework.

Kevin Feng is a partner at VeChain and acts as the COO of the project. He came to VeChain with over 12 years of experience working at PwC. His expertise is in risk assurance and cybersecurity, and he was a driving force behind the development of PwC’s blockchain services.

Jianliang Gu is the CTO at VeChain, coming from TCL & Alcatel’s R&D center he has more than 16 years of experience developing mobile hardware and software. He has amassed over 100 patents in the mobile communication field.

VET and VTHO Token Economics

VeChain is the type of blockchain which uses a dual token economic model in order to avoid the cost of transactions increasing when the value of the token rises. In the case of VeChain, there is a VET token used for speculation on exchanges and governance of the blockchain. The VET token is also used for staking and the generation of VTHO tokens.

The VTHO tokens are used to pay for network transactions, with the default transaction fee equal to 21 VTHO ($0.006719 as of February 20, 2021). Users can increase the number of VTHO paid for a transaction in order to increase its priority on the network. VTHO tokens can be purchased from exchanges, or they can be generated by holding VET in a wallet.

Both tokens are drastically different in terms of the function they serve, total supply, and inflation.

By using a dual token model such as this the network fees are kept separate from the potential volatility in the price of the VET token, which in turn makes the blockchain more suitable for business and enterprise uses.

Users who choose to hold VET in a wallet will generate VTHO over time, which enables them to make transactions for free in essence. One side effect of this is that it should increase demand for VET as the network usage grows.

Besides generating small amounts of VTHO it is possible to generate much larger amounts by running nodes to help support the network. There are three types of nodes in use, and each requires a substantial amount of VET.

Authority Nodes

These nodes participate directly in consensus and require a minimum of 25 million VET. In addition, the owners of authority nodes must be able to prove they are able to make a significant contribution to the VeChain ecosystem as well as passing stringent KYC measures.

VeChain Masternodes
Benefits of Authority Nodes on the Network

Authority masternodes are awarded 30% of the daily VTHO usage.

Economic Nodes

There are three different types, and while they don’t participate in consensus, they do provide network stability. Economic nodes receive a portion of VTHO generated by a pool of 15 billion VET set aside for this purpose.

The economic nodes also receive VTHO based on their VET stakes. The three types of economic nodes and staking requirements are the Mjolnir Masternode (15 million VET required), the Thunder Masternode (5 million VET required), and the Strength Masternode (1 million VET required).

X-Economic Nodes

These are nodes that supported VeChain in its early stages of development. They receive the VTHO generated by a pool of 5 billion VET set aside for this purpose. It’s no longer possible to create new X Economic nodes.

The VET Token

VeChain conducted their ICO on August 17, 2017, raising 200,000 ETH with tokens priced at $0.0008 each or 1 ETH = 3,500 VEN. Note that I said VEN and not VET.

The original tokens were ERC-20 tokens, but these were swapped for the native VET tokens at the ratio of 1:100 after the VeChain mainnet went live on June 30, 2018. At the time the VEN token was worth $1.62, making VET tokens worth $0.0162 each.

The all-time high also occurred while the VEN token existed and was $8.28 on January 23, 2018. That would be equivalent to $0.0828 for VET. The VET token only ever reached an all-time high of $0.06044 on February 13, 2021.

VET Chart

VET Price Performance. Image via CMC

Price dropped following the swap to VET and dipped under $0.010 in August 2018, but recovered to trade between $0.010 and $0.015 until dropping again in November 2018. The all-time high for VET occurred during this period and was $0.019775.

Price remained below $0.01 until July 2020, although it nearly recovered that level in June 2019 and again in February 2020. Since July 2020 the VET token has been climbing strongly alongside the massive rally across nearly all altcoins. After hitting its all-time low of $0.001678 on March 13, 2020 the VET token has reached $0.057 as of late February 2021

Buying & Storing VET

There are a number of markets for the VET token as it is listed on quite a large range of exchanges. These include the likes of Binance, VCC Exchange, and LBank. There is strong volume on these exchanges which is more than I have seen for other coins of a similar market cap. While the trading volume for the token was once highly concentrated on just two exchanges that has changed and it is not actively traded on a number of exchanges, which helps with liquidity.

Taking a closer look at the individual order books it appears as if they are pretty robust. For example, below are the Binance BTC / VET order books. They are quite deep and there is a reasonable amount of daily turnover.

Binance VET
Register at Binance and Buy VET Tokens

Once you have bought your VET tokens you are going to want to take them offline and store them in a wallet. We all know the risks that come from keeping tokens on large centralised exchanges.

Given that these are the native VET tokens, you don’t have too much choice for storage. We actually have a post on the best VeChain wallets. Perhaps your best bet for storage ought to be a secure hardware wallet.

Traditional Competition

While the threats from blockchain projects are currently minimal, there are players in the traditional technology sector that do pose a real threat already.

One of these is IBM, who have partnered with the shipping giant Maersk to create a global shipping management blockchain platform. This platform has attracted great interest already and has nearly 100 companies on-board, including ocean transport companies, logistics companies, ports, and others.

IBM Maersk
IBM Digitizing Global Trade with Maersk. Images Source

IBM has also begun work with Walmart and Unilever to uncover new areas of the supply chain that can benefit from blockchain technology. With its technological dominance and global reach, IBM is a threat that can’t be overlooked.

SAP is also entering the blockchain logistics space and is working with shipping and pharmaceutical companies to create a blockchain-based supply chain tracking system. SAP is another huge global player with massive resource and an extensive customer base to draw upon.

The most recent addition to traditional competition is coming from the world-famous auto manufacturer BMW. It’s interesting to note that BMW was one of the early partners of VeChain.

BMW Partchain
BMW Part Chain overview. Image via BMW

It has plans to roll out its blockchain supply chain solution to 10 of its suppliers sometime in 2020. Named “PartChain”, it was designed to ensure data transparency and trace-ability for automotive components throughout the supply chain.

This will be beneficial in the complex supply chains employed by BMW, where components are sourced from multiple international suppliers. Eventually BMW hopes to create “an open platform that will allow data within supply chains to be exchanged and shared safely and anonymized across the industry.”  In the long-term they hope to bring tracking all the way to the raw materials used to create automotive components.

With all of that however VeChain maintains its lead in the space as of early 2021. There haven’t been any major developments reported from IBM, SAP, or BMW.

VeChain Opportunities and Threats

While VeChain is targeting several different markets, its core focus remains on the supply chain and logistics industries. It has also been developing its smart contract functionality and has its eyes on delivering Internet of Things solutions.

The focus on the supply chain industry makes sense, as this is a massive, multi-billion industry that can benefit immensely from the addition of blockchain technology.

VeChain has already forged several partnerships with luxury brands to develop blockchain tracking systems that will serve to maintain the authenticity of products, whether that be luxury handbags, premium wines, or the service history of automobiles.

One key to these tracking systems is the VeChain NFC chip. This tiny chip can be embedded in any product, and consumers are then able to scan products with their smartphone to confirm their authenticity. Counterfeiting of luxury goods is a huge problem globally, with some estimates claiming global counterfeiting affects some $1.2 trillion in goods annually.

Another area of strength for VeChain has been in the medical space. It’s tracking technology is now in use by a number of hospitals and other medical facilities. It is also making inroads into the food industry, as its tracking technology can be used to authenticate the freshness of highly perishable products such as seafood.

Oddly, the biggest threat competitively for VeChain is not other blockchain projects, although there is some competition from that direction, but rather from traditional companies.

In the crypto-space VeChain is up against competition from IOTA in the Internet of Things space, and from Waltonchain in supply chain management. But the adoption of these two projects remains low, and until we have a blockchain project that can scale a working case it isn’t likely there will be a leader in the blockchain space.

VeChain Development & Roadmap

There is no doubt that the VeChain team has been active making partnerships and rolling out updates, but how much of these work is actually reflected in the code?

Given that VeChain is an open source project it may make sense to go into their public code repositories. This can give you a good idea of just how much work is being done on the protocol.

Hence, I decided to dive into the VeChain GitHub and take a look at the coding activity in their repos. Below is the commit activity on two of their most active repos over the past year.

VeChain GitHub
Commits over past 12 months for Select Repos

As you can see there has been a fairly low level of activity. This is below average for some of the other projects that I have covered. There are a further 35 repositories out there although these also have low levels of activity.

Looking forward, there are quite a few things that one can look forward to. While there is no official roadmap that has been laid out, you can glean some information from this blog post.

For example, the developers are actively working on cross chain interoperability of VeChain. They are currently still working on “technical preparations” for this technology. This interoperability could no doubt increase the adoption of VeChain.

Then, there is further studies that are being done on the eventual implementation of anonymous transactions. This will be through the use of Bulletproof technology that has already being popularized on the likes of Monero (XMR). Of course as of February 2021 the most highly anticipated upgrade to VeChain is the launch of PoA 2.0.

If you want to keep up to date with the project development then you should keep your eyes on their official blog as well as their Twitter account.

Conclusion

There’s no doubt that VeChain has been one of the most successful blockchain projects in terms of generating partnerships. With pilot projects ongoing for nearly 3 dozen companies VeChain is beginning to see some successes. If it can build on those it could see increased adoption.

The project is well-thought out, with good governance, and a unique economic model that works very well when taking into account the needs of large organizations and enterprise customers. It also hasn’t faced the scalability issues common at many blockchain projects, although that could be due to lack of adoption.

It’s also been able to successfully get past the December 2019 hacking issue, which could have been a major concern for the VeChain community.

With all the successes VeChain has had, there is still the threat of competition faced from large traditional technology companies such as IBM, BMW,and SAP. Investors are understandably worried that VeChain will be buried by these mammoth companies. The VET token has been able to make strong gains during the altcoin rally of 2021, but if VeChain can’t establish a dominant position in the logistics space soon investors could lose their optimism for the project.

The coming year will be a crucial one for VeChain. If it can get PoA 2.0 launched it will have the means to attract more high-profile clients. It remains ahead of the major traditional companies working in this space, but maintaining that momentum will be key to keeping VeChain in the lead.

Featured Image via Fotolia

Disclaimer: These are the writer’s opinions and should not be considered investment advice. Readers should do their own research.

Source: https://www.coinbureau.com/review/vechain-vet/

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