A Blockchain System for Azerbaijan’s Digital Economy

Azerbaijan has been a hotbed for a series of ambitious fintech-related announcements over the past several months, as the nation’s authorities were apparently moving to implement a series of innovative technological solutions in banking and e-government systems. Repeated statements by government representatives suggested that at least part of the program relied on blockchain infrastructure. Most recently, as Cointelegraph reported, the chairman of Azerbaijan’s State Customs Committee revealed plans to implement blockchain technology to build an online-accessible cargo transportation database. Earlier in May, a high-ranking official for the Central Bank of…

Mike Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital to Launch Crypto Options Contracts Trading: Report

Mike Novogratz’s crypto investment bank Galaxy Digital is expanding its services to offer crypto options contracts trading, industry media outlet The Block reports on June 21. According to the report, Galaxy Digital’s new initiative is made in response to increasing demand from institutional investors in order to hedge the high volatility that is a calling card of crypto assets. Bitcoin (BTC) options are a type of crypto derivative that are a wide-spread method of profiting from a highly volatile market by strategically hedging risks such as reducing portfolio risks, and…

Facebook’s Calibra Digital Wallet Will Not Be Available in Its Largest Markets

Facebook’s Calibra digital wallet will not be available in some of the social network’s largest markets, including India, according to a TechCrunch report on June 19. A spokesperson told the website: “The libra blockchain will be global, but it will be up to custodial wallet providers to determine where they will and will not operate. Calibra won’t be available in U.S.-sanctioned countries or countries that ban cryptocurrencies.” Estimates by Statista suggest there were 260 million Facebook users in India as of April this year — far ahead of the tech giant’s second-largest market, the United…

Securitize, Local Advocacy Group Partner to Promote Digital Securities Adoption

Securitize — a compliance platform and protocol for token issuers backed by United States crypto exchange Coinbase — is partnering with the Japan Security Token Association (JSTA) to promote the creation of a security token ecosystem in Japan. The news was reported by Cointelegraph Japan on June 19. The JSTA is an advocacy organization focused on the digital securities industry. As Cointelegraph Japan reports, the new partners intend to closely collaborate with Japanese banks as well as local and international regulators in a bid to foster further development of the…

Russia’s Central Bank Is Considering Launching a Digital Currency

The head of Russia’s central bank has said the institution could one day launch its own digital currency. Chairwoman Elvira Nabiullina told a student conference that, while such a project “cannot be realized immediately,” various central banks, including Bank of Russia, are investigating the possibility, TASS reported Saturday. Key to the utility of a central bank digital currency (CBDC), she said, is that the technology must ensure “reliability and continuity.” “Technologies must be mature, including technologies of distributed registries,” Nabiullina said. Another question is whether citizens are ready to leave…

Digital Asset Partners With Amazon AWS Aurora on Smart Contract Language Interoperability

Blockchain software firm Digital Asset has partnered with Amazon Web Services (AWS) Aurora to make its open-source smart contract language Digital Asset Modeling Language (DAML) more interoperable. The partnership was revealed in a press release acquired by a Cointelegraph correspondent at the IMN Synchronize Europe Conference in London on June 18. The partnership will enable multi-platform DAML support for various blockchain networks, notably including Hyperledger Fabric and blockchain consortium R3’s Corda, both specifically cited in the press release. Introduced in April 2016, DAML is an expressive language designed for financial…

Brazil Authorities to Adapt Cross-Sector Regulations to React to Digital Transformation

Major government and financial authorities in Brazil have teamed up to develop a regulatory sandbox model targeting new technologies such as blockchain, Cointelegraph Brazil reports on June 13. The new regulatory initiative brings together the Central Bank of Brazil, the Securities and Exchange Commission (CVM), the Superintendence of Private Insurance (SUSEP), and the Ministry of Economy’s Special Secretariat for Finance in order to adapt to the digital transformation affecting the financial, capital and insurance sectors in Brazil. Revealed by the CVM, the project implies that emerging technologies such as blockchain,…

CEO of Major American VC Firm Digital Currency Group: Crypto Winter Is Ending

The crypto winter is likely to be ending, a senior executive at major American blockchain venture capital firm Digital Currency Group (DCG) said in an interview with Bloomberg Technology on June 11. Barry Silbert, DGG founder and CEO, outlined the cyclical nature of the ups and downs of major cryptocurrency bitcoin (BTC), which allegedly means that the recent surge of crypto prices would only continue. Silbert, who is known as a serial crypto investor, specifically pointed out that bitcoin’s price dynamics have been “quite a roller coaster,” with its price…

Digital Asset Security Startup Fireblocks Leaves Stealth Mode With $16 Million in Funding

Digital asset cybersecurity startup Fireblocks announced its launch out of stealth mode with $16 million in funding, according to a press release shared with Cointelegraph on June 11. Per the release, Fireblocks obtained the capital during its Series A funding round from Cyberstarts, Tenaya Capital, EightRoads (Fidelity INTL), Swisscom Ventures and MState. The startup reportedly counts crypto merchant bank Galaxy Digital, over-the-counter digital trading platform Genesis Global Trading and others among its customers, with the company declaring: “Currently, Fireblocks is integrated with 15 digital asset exchanges and offers support for…

Japan’s LINE Pay and Visa Partner on New Blockchain, Digital Payments Solutions

LINE Pay Corporation, the operator of fintech services on major Japanese messaging app LINE, is partnering with American payment services firm Visa on new blockchain and digital payments solutions. The news was revealed in a press release shared with Cointelegraph on June 6. As of Q4 2018, there were an estimated 1.66 billion Visa debit cards and 781 million credit cards in circulation worldwide. According to today’s press release, LINE counts 187 million global users monthly, with an estimated 50 million users registered its mobile payment service, Line Pay. The…