Mark Cuban is a major player in the crypto community, even more so than the “Dodgefather” himself, Elon Musk.
Although the Dodgefather pumps both Bitcoin and Doge on a consistent basis he stays away from discussing any prospective altcoins like, for instance, the second most popular coin by market cap, Ethereum.
On the other hand, Dallas Mavericks owner, billionaire tech investor and Shark Tank star Mark Cuban doesn’t just proudly boast his diverse portfolio of altcoins, he believes that Ethereum is a far better investment than Bitcoin.
“Ethereum right now has an advantage over Bitcoin as a store of value and transactional,” says Cuban in a podcast with the Defiant’s Camilla Russo. “As more people get into NFTs, all they’re going to know is Ethereum. I know everyone’s going to bitch at me. But, if I decided I like digital art how do I buy digital art — with Ether.”
Cuban added that smart contracts and DeFi make Ethereum a tour de force in the crypto industry.
Additionally, when speaking more about NFTs [or nonfungible tokens], he says they will someday soon include mainstream music, movies, trading cards, and even virtual land.
“This is like the early internet days all over again,” Cuban told a CNBC reporter. “I think [NFTs and blockchain tech is] going to be huge.”
Cuban was not always a cryptocurrency bull.
In 2019 he made headlines when he said he’d “rather have bananas than Bitcoin,” calling crypto “too complicated.”
He touted Bitcoin as an excellent store of value, but believed it was too slow and immutable to become a global transactional currency. Cuban eventually came around on Bitcoin, however, saying it’s a better investment than gold due to its algorithmic scarcity.
As for Ether, he says he’d rather buy more Ethereum on a price pullback than Bitcoin.
“When Bitcoin pulled back to $30,000 I didn’t buy more,” Cuban told Camilla Russo earlier this year. “When Ethereum pulled back to $1,000 I did buy more — and if it did that again I’d buy more”
Cuban is more bullish on Ethereum because of the applications [or DApps] that can be built on top of the platform, namely DeFi, yield farming tools and NFT marketplaces; all of which do not exist on Bitcoin’s blockchain.
He even amassed his own digital art collection and sells NFTs on platforms like Mintable and Rarible. In particular, he believes the lifetime royalty fees offered to NFT artists will shake up the entire entertainment and art industries.
“When I realized there was a little thing called resale percentage, so that when I put up something for sale and it got resold I’d get a percentage for life — that changes how music, video, and how the internet works forever.”
“Make no mistake — Ethereum would never have existed without Bitcoin as a forerunner. That said, I think Ethereum is ahead of Bitcoin in many ways and represents the bleeding edge of digital currency.” — Fred Ehrsam, co-founder of Coinbase
Cuban would likely agree with the aforementioned quote. He isn’t selling his Bitcoin anytime soon — unlike yours truly — and believes nothing will ever dethrone Bitcoin as the ultimate store of value.
However, digital art, the DeFi ecosystem, NFTs, yield farming, and decentralized applications work best on Ethereum and will attract more people into cryptocurrency in the long run.
This year alone Tom Brady, WWE, Trevor Lawrence, the NYSE, Snoop Dog, Mike Shinoda Grimes, Elon Musk, Aphex Twin and even Tony Hawk have released their own NFTs. I fully believe their fanbases will get behind their favorite artist — or stock exchange — and learn more about Ethereum in the process.
Both Bitcoin and Ethereum will coexist, but only one will become a global computer utility token while the other does one single thing really, really well.
“Bitcoin, right now, has evolved to be primarily a store value, and it’s very difficult to use it for anything else,” Cuban said in an interview with Market Insider. “You really have to work a lot harder on bitcoin than you do on Ethereum.”
He added: “In a few years, I think Ethereum and maybe 2 or 3 other blockchains will have their place, and those will be the winners.”
After the successful proceeding of the first phase of the testing of the Digital Yuan, Hong Kong is in talks with China to stretch its cross-border testing. This has marked yet another step toward wider adoption of the currency.
Hong Kong to Stretch Testing of Digital Yuan to China
The Monetary Authority of Hong Kong has recently conducted tests with the Digital Currency Institute of the People’s Bank of China.
In addition to this, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority said in an e-mailed response to the questions asked that it involved a bank designated by the mainland authority, as well as the merchants and bank staff.
The e-mailed response said:
“We have tested the use of the related app, system connectivity, and certain use cases such as cross-boundary purchases.”
Along with this, the statement said:
“We are discussing and collaborating with the PBOC on the next phase of technical testing, including the feasibility of broadening and deepening the use of e-CNY for cross-boundary payments.”
Also, it should be known that the People’s Bank of China is pretty ahead of other major central banks in the development of its own digital currency.
The bank is looking forward to replacing cash and maintaining control over a payments landscape that has become increasingly dominated by technology companies not regulated like banks.
Payment Infrastructure Underpinning e-CNY can Address Substantial Portion of Cost Base
As revealed in the report released on Wednesday by Oliver Wyman, the usage of the Digital Yuan in Hong Kong could lead to a much faster and cheaper cross-border payment and clearing process.
Michael Ho, the Principal of Financial Services at Oliver Wyman and Co-Author of the report said:
“If the payment infrastructure underpinning e-CNY were to roll out for cross-border payments at scale, we believe it can address a substantial portion of this cost base.”
China could promote the overseas use of digital yuan starting with the Greater Bay Area, a massive urban cluster that includes Shenzhen, Macau, and Hong Kong.
In a recent announcement, it has been revealed that the identity platform for fraud prevention and Anti-Money Laundering compliance, Acuant has partnered with Chainalysis. The recent partnership between the AML compliance and the blockchain analysis company is meant to assist financial institutions with AML solutions.
Acuant Partners Chainalysis to Provide AML Solutions
The partnership between Chainalysis and Acuant will be helping in assisting the cryptocurrency businesses assess risk, safeguard them against illegal transactions, automate workflows, and protect their reputations with Anti-Money Laundering solutions.
In addition to this, it should be known that the customers of both partners, Acuant and Chainalysis, will now be able to leverage both the platforms via the interface provided by Acuant to manage transactions that are indicative of higher risk.
The customers will be provided with access to Chainalysis Know Your Transactions (KYT) as well as Chainalysis Reactor, their graphical investigative software.
Talking further about the investigative software, it can be utilized to follow the flow of funds across the blockchain for investigations.
The amalgamation of the Chainalysis Know Your Transactions and Acuant integrates a data set of thousands of services with the solutions that help to review both the fiat and crypto transactions.
The Integration of Identity Platform and Blockchain Analysis Firm
Well, along with this, the integration will be helping in detecting any kind of suspicious activities, manage the investigations, and moreover, file the suspicious activity reports (SARs).
The real-time alerts on the highest-risk activity will be allowing the compliance teams to target the most urgent activity and following that, fulfill the regulatory obligations to report the transactions that are suspicious.
Jose Caldera, the Chief Product Officer at Acuant said:
“Our partnership with Chainalysis will further augment our support to the cryptocurrency industry. This partnership is bringing together and integrating the top Anti-Money Laundering solutions in the marketplace today. We look forward to working with Chainalysis to strengthen our platform and to continue to be a leading solutions provider in the crypto space.”
DeFi lending protocol, Aave protocol, has built a permissioned pool for institutions to test out before getting involved within the DeFi ecosystem. The permissioned test pool is designed to be compliant with AML regulations with mandatory Know Your Customer (KYC) verification process from relevant partners. The pool would be coming to mainnet sooner rather than later.
Aave Permissioned Pool for Institutional Investors
Earlier on May 12, a Twitter user posted a tweet tagging Aave’s official Twitter account expressing concern that an anti-money laundering warning had appeared on Aave’s homepage.
Responding to this, the founder of AAVE, Stani Kulechov tweeted back saying that there had been a mistake and that “The text is actually incorrect and relates to another pool we’re testing out” explaining that Aave is still fully decentralized, and the text had appeared in the wrong place before later revealing that Aave is testing out a private pool for institutional investors.
Another user replied asking whether the specified pool was for testing out compliance features. Kulechov then confirmed the private pool was built for institutions to practice “before aping into DeFi.”
Even though Aave was launched at the beginning of 2020, it has experienced significant growth in total deposits and daily deposits since the summer of 2020.
Aave’s recent launch on Polygon and the introduction of its liquidity program was followed by its total value locked rising from $5.4 billion on April 25 to roughly $11.4 billion on May 12.
Aave Deposits and Permissioned Pool for Institutional Investors
Aave’s head of institutional business development, Ajit Tripathi, confirmed that the protocol had indeed designed a permissioned pool.
However, the “private pool” description in Kulechov’s Tweet was not entirely accurate as the pool will be on public chains but will have permissioned access for institutions, describing that the purpose of the pool was educational.
Aave has totaled over $45 billion in deposits, with 2021 seeing the protocol average $231 million in deposits per day. Over 46,000 unique Ethereum users have become lenders on Aave, with the average all-time deposit reaching $173,000. AAVE is currently trading at $566 at the time of writing.
Top cryptocurrency exchange Binance has recently announced the suspension of withdrawals for Ether (ETH) and tokens (ERC-20) based on Ethereum. Binance has recently tweeted that the withdrawals of Ethereum and all the tokens based on its ERC-20 standard are going to be suspended during the temporary maintenance of the wallet.
Binance Announced Suspension of Withdrawals for ETH and ERC-20
The suspension is going to happen from 8:00 am UTC and extend until 9:00 am UTC.
In addition to this, the exchange assures the users that the trading and deposits will be continuing their operations during this period.
Noticing further, the incident is for the third time that Binance has shut down the withdrawals of cryptocurrencies temporarily.
Earlier this week, the users of the exchange were temporarily unable to withdraw their XLM and ETH.
Following that, the leading exchange suspended all the withdrawals completely, however, they were later restored.
As reported, high gas fees have resulted in Binance suspending the withdrawals of ETH and ERC-20 tokens before the users demanded the exchange reverse its decisions.
This decision by the leading exchange was fueled by the unpredicted volatility in the prices of assets recorded in the entire crypto space, which eventually led to a rise in the gas prices of Ethereum.
Ethereum Expandability Issues Behind the Suspension
Despite many of its benefits, the network currently faces great issues with expandability and has reportedly driven gas prices to heights that were never seen before.
The Etheruem chain is suffering from network congestion, and it was followed by the decision to suspend ERC-20 and ETH transactions increased by over 1,200 gas alongside over 151,000 pending transactions.
The current inflow of the crypto investors may not be able to be supported due to the expandability issues of Ethereum and subsequent network congestion and high gas fees to a large extent.