“Meditation makes the entire nervous system go into a field of coherence.”
- Deepak Chopra
It's been awhile. So nice to see you again, weekend! Folks, the grind this week has been well... a real grind. So go forth and enjoy your much deserved weekend break! 👍 But first, don't forget to read today's newsletter!
Today in history (1975), the first episode of the one of the longest-running sitcoms in history, "The Jeffersons" was aired. 📺 It went on to last 11 seasons that spanned 10 years (1975 - 1985), and had a total of 253 episodes.
In today's newsletter, we will be covering Coinbase's 11th acquisition, crypto exchange OKCoin possibly seeking a reverse IPOand South Africa's central bank proposing rules for crypto exchanges and wallet providers. In this week's deep dive, we will also be covering Omisego (OMG). So be sure not to miss that down below as well!
Please don't forget to answer the polls down below too! It's a great way for us to interact with you all and hear what you have to say. 💭 Happy reading! 📚
First hurdle 👊
We didn't see much market activity in the past 24 hours. 😴 Total market capitalization traded within a tight range of ~$120.7 billion and ~$122.9 billion, and volume stayed consistent with that of the rest of the week's at ~$16 billion. Most coins are seeing either gains or losses in the ~1-3% range.
BTC has seen a slight uptick of ~0.7%, steadily rising throughout the day from ~$3,620 to ~$3,670. RSI levels on the daily chart continue to remain in the ~44 levels, indicative of some market indecisiveness/ consolidation at the high ~$3,600 low ~$3,700 levels. Since early Jan, BTC has been forming lower highs and lower lows. On a more macro level, BTC's most immediate challenge is to clear its 50-day EMA line on the weekly chart - It broke down from that level on 19 Nov and that line has been acting as strong resistance ever since. 😣
Building an army 💪
Coinbase has acquired Blockspring, a startup that creates tools for collecting and managing data from APIs. Blockspring, backed by Y Combinator, Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and SV Angel, makes it easy to pull data from various APIs into Excel and Google Sheets. 💰
According to an official announcement by Blockspring, “joining Coinbase was a no-brainer for a number [of] reasons including its commitment to establishing an open financial system and the strength of its engineering team.” It will will "continue to operate as an independent company" and their products will "continue to operate for current and new customers." 😊
According to data from Crunchbase, this deal marks Coinbase's 11th acquisition. 🤯 No financial terms of the deal were disclosed.
Many ways to skin a cat 🙃
The founder of crypto exchange OKCoin, Star Xu, could be seeking a possible backdoor IPO for his firm. 🤔
On 10 Jan, Xu filed with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEX) for approval to buy a 60% stake in a construction engineering firm called LEAP Holdings Group Ltd through his company, OKC Holdings Corp. Xu is seeking to purchase approximately 3.2 billion shares of the company for HK$0.15 (around $0.02) per share which would come out to approximately $60 million. 💰
HKEX has yet to approve the purchase, but if successful could provide a route for OKCoin to become a public company in Hong Kong via a back-door listing. LEAP Holdings has since suspended trading on the HKEX to avoid price swings from the news.
South Africa's central bank, the South African Reserve Bank (SARB), has proposed rules for crypto exchanges and wallet providers. 📝
In a recently published paper in collaboration with the Intergovernmental Fintech Working Group (IFWG), the SARB proposed a level of oversight it describes as "limited regulation". At this level, "an official body places specific requirements on providers of certain services in respect of crypto assets, without setting predefined conditions for formal authorisation to provide crypto assets-related products or services”. 🤔
SARB believes that a "useful starting point" to regulate the space could begin by registering crypto asset service providers such as exchanges and wallet providers, coupled with a review of existing rules and how they can be applied to crypto assets. It believes that the registration scheme "could lead to formal authorization and designation of registered/licensed providers for crypto asset services operating in South Africa at a later stage".
A detailed process for registration is expected to be issued and implemented by Q1 of 2019.
Blockchain term of the day🤓 - Reverse IPO
The acquisition of a public company (purchasing majority equity) of a public company by a private company so that the private company can bypass the lengthy and complex process of going public through an IPO. It is also commonly referred to as a "reverse takeover" or a "reverse merger". A typical reverse IPO, on average, can take up to 4 months to process and complete, whereas an IPO process usually takes anywhere from 6 to 12 months, and can be considerably more expensive to execute.
Crypto deep dive: OmiseGO
Market Capitalization Rank: 31th (~$182 million)
Consensus: Proof of Stake (PoS)
The gist of it ⚙️
OmiseGO is building a decentralized exchange, liquidity provider mechanism, clearinghouse messaging network, and asset-backed blockchain gateway.
It seeks to act as a P2P, decentralized exchange blockchain that ports into other blockchains to allow for interoperable trading.
Why people love it 😘
OMG is being developed by its parent company, Omise. Omise is an experienced payment processor with a strong South-East Asia presence and is already equipped with a large customer base.
OMG is supported by some prominent figures in the blockchain space like Vitalik Buterin (founder of Ethereum), Joseph Poon (founder of Lightning Network), Gavin Wood (co-founder of Ethereum) and Roger Ver.
Omisego recently released the highly anticipated blockchain scaling solution known as 'Plasma', which is also the brainchild of Vitalik Buterin and Joseph Poon.
Why people doubt it 🤔
Omisego's success is heavily dependent on its technology, which remains highly speculative at this point. It needs to scale well in order for its business model to become profitable.
Omisego's vision is one that is grand. It plans to challenge and overthrow financial institutions ("Unbank the Banked with Ethereum") . It goes without saying that they will meet with a great deal of resistance.
Tying in to the previous point, Omisego will likely face more intense regulation as it continues to grow.
Other news 📰
U.S.-based crypto payments processor BitPay announced that it processed over $1 billion-worth of transactions in 2018. 🤯
According to auditing firm Grant Thornton, Circle’s USDC stablecoin was fully backed with fiat reserves at the close of 2018. 👌
Distributed Technologies Research (DTR), a non-profit organization based in Switzerland that comprises of researchers from 7 major U.S. universities such as Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University and the University of California, Berkeley, have announced the launch of “Unit-e”, a globally scalable decentralized payments network. They seek to launch Unit-e within the second half of 2019. 👀
What are your plans for the weekend? Share with me in the polls! 😆
What you said
How much do you agree with this statement: "I believe that one day, I will be paid in crypto"
The average vote was 7.4. Oooo, I expected a lower number. A good 30% of y'all even voted a '10'!
"Would you want to receive a fraction (of your choosing) of your monthly salary in crypto?"
89.5% voted "Yes".
10.5% voted "No".
"Why or why not?"
You guys said:
As long as the tax implications are super annoying, might as well go for it! It's the future. - Taxes sure are a bummer. Tax season is fast approaching too. 🤦♂️ I don't mind receiving payment in crypto.. as i see in coming time crypto will become more easy to spend & a lot of guys will don't mind getting paid in crypto. Totally would have a % taken out of my check for crypto, I just switched payroll companies somehow it got a little screwed up 90% went into money market, and 10%. To my checking account, wish I didn’t have to switch it - I think a significantly larger percentage of people will start to accept part (if not all) of their paycheck in crypto in the distant future. It'll take some time though. As for your payroll situation, I hope you were able to sort it out! Hopefully, it didn't cause you too much stress. 😊 I want all the salary in crypto. - Fortune favors the bold. 😀 I believe in this vision - Glad to have you aboard this train! 💪 A way for my money to grow - Definitely! I think its a good way to diversify your assets. 💲 That save me the unnecessary conversion salary-->Bitcoin before start buying, trading, paying, etc etc... - Sounds like you've been accumulating (: The ease of capturing bitcoin via a dollar cost averaging method. - True. It's a fast, efficient way to help you diversify your monthly paycheck. If the US$ would one day collapse, then a crypto option would be fantastic. Otherwise the status quo is just fine. - Hard to imagine a scenario where it will collapse. I believe crypto will instead co-exist with fiat. Both will have their place. 👌 "I believe that one day, I will be paid in crypto" - yes, one day... Would you want to receive a fraction (of your choosing) of your monthly salary in crypto? - yes, worth the risk 🙂 - Hell yeah! Welcome to the crew. 🙌 I would like to receive around 10%-15%. It's kinda painful and slow to buy crypto nowadays so it would be nice to skip this process. - Yeah there still isn't enough fiat-crypto ramps, which allows existing ramps to charge high fees. This should all change in due time! 👍 A mix is good for some balance - ☯️ Because I will save some of the taxes which I pay to buy crypto for investments. - Hmm, while true, you also have to consider capital gains from future profits from crypto. 🤔
Thank you all for reading! Catch you back here again next week for your daily dose of crypto news! 💙
See you again on Monday! 😍 our newsletter? Share with a friend! 😡 our newsletter? Spam your enemy!