Ripple CEO: XRP More Decentralized Than Bitcoin

Hundreds gathered in San Francisco for Ripple’s Swell Conference this week, an effort by the crypto company to pitch to business partners and promote its strategy to offer a software for easy-to-use cross border payments.

“The more that any crypto ー any digital asset ー can demonstrate it is solving a real problem for real customers, that then creates a healthier ecosystem,” Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse told Cheddar Monday.

But the company still faces increased scrutiny by members of the crypto community over the relationship between Ripple ー the company ー and its XRP ー the native token the company created five years ago.

In recent weeks Ripple has been pushing the idea that the XRP protocol is completely decentralized, like Bitcoin’s, and that XRP is an independent digital asset that was gifted to the company by the developers that created it ー two of whom happen to be founders of the company.

“Ripple Labs did not create XRP. The XRP ledger was created before the company, now known as Ripple Labs, was created,” Garlinghouse said. “To the extent that we want to create a successful XRP ecosystem, having a company invested in that success made sense.”

XRP first came into existence in January 2013, according to transaction data on the XRP ledger, according to independent lawyer Preston Byrne. Ripple’s founders’ agreement, signed in September 2012, shows that on the day of Ripple’s inception, the company owned the decentralized and open source Ripple software and that there would be an XRP ledger built on top of that software in the future.

The agreement also shows the founders, one of whom was less involved in the company as it grew, owned 80 billion tokens, or 80 percent of the network, then called Ripple Credits, on launch date.

“Ripple was the recipient of a gift of 80 billion units of XRP. Today we only have 60 billion units, and we’ll continue to use that XRP to invest in the whole XRP ecosystem,” Garlinghouse said.

In the three week run-up to Ripple’s Swell conference, the price of XRP has doubled. But when asked about whether that impacts Ripple, Garlinghouse said he’s not focused on price.

“We own a lot of XRP. We want there to be a healthy XRP ecosystem, so it would be disingenuous not to acknowledge I care about the price of XRP, [but] the short term gyrations, those who are speculating and trading, that’s not something I think about,” he said.

Ripple has been pushing the “independent digital asset” narrative in recent months in which it has been hit with a handful of lawsuits alleging XRP is an unregistered security. In that time, the crypto environment evolved to focus more broadly on the token economy rather than blockchain technology or Bitcoin more narrowly, and it is becoming increasingly clear how challenging it can be to operate a commercial business with a token attached to it ー particularly one with an undefined regulatory status.

Until now, Ripple’s main customers were major banks, and its main mission was to have the Ripple Network compete with the SWIFT network, improving banks’ cross-border payments. On Monday, however, the company announced the launch of xRapid, a new product that marks the first XRP offering for those same bank customers specifically to execute their transactions for emerging markets.

The keynote speaker at Ripple Swell was Bill Clinton, whose economic adviser from 1997 to 2001, Gene Sperling, now serves on Ripple’s Board of Directors.

Clinton called the opportunity for blockchain “staggeringly great”, highlighting the opportunity for cross-border payments and warned the audience to not get carried away by immediate financial reward.

PR: genEOS – Blockchain 4.0 for Business Announced – Crowdsale Is Launched

PR: genEOS – Blockchain 4.0 for Business Announced – Crowdsale Is Launched

This is a paid press release, which contains forward looking statements, and should be treated as advertising or promotional material. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product/service. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the press release.

Blockchain technology promises to transform business processes, bringing automated record-keeping and turning entirely secure, distributed, decentralized, and scalable applications into a new norm in the business world.

Today, there are technical and commercial obstacles that prevent widespread adoption of decentralized applications (Dapps) in the business community. The genEOS project was created to eliminate the barriers to adoption and build a community of business and technology professionals to deliver on the power of blockchain technology.

Fostering the adoption of decentralized business applications

Introducing an operating system-like environment, genEOS facilitates the development of Dapps that rival traditional web apps for speed, versatility, and ease of use.

Project participants can not only develop, create and launch their own business outcome-driven solutions on the top of blockchain 4.0 technology but also monetize unconsumed bandwidth by renting it out to third parties. There is a strong and growing team of blockchain experts who are ready to build and maintain business-critical Dapps to order.

Key genEOS ecosystem features:

– Ready-to-go development environment for Dapps of the enterprise-grade performance.
– Transaction rates at least equivalent to real-time transaction processing of standard Web 2.0 applications.
– Real-world decentralization combined with scalability and security across the network.
– The requirement for mining is eliminated, making energy costs comparable to those of traditional web applications.
– Open-source code available on GitHub for developers to consult and use to develop their own Dapps.
– Investors from any country can participate in the project, as a US-based non-profit foundation conducts the Secured Token Offering (STO) for genEOS.

genEOS tokens and crowdsale

genEOS tokens give project participants access to the ecosystem and its specific resources such as computing features, storage features, monetization features, etc. The genEOS project has already launched the token crowdsale at [https://geneos.io/] that includes 176 distribution periods (‘windows’) and ends on December 23, 2018.

Allowing the purchase of genEOS tokens with Ethereum (ETH) and fiat currencies (USD, EUR, and CNY), they intend to generate $2 million USD as a soft cap through the STO event. All investors need to go through the KYC procedure before the token sale is over.

Project Partners

Those individuals and businesses share the genEOS’ vision and commitments towards creating a powerful, fast, and secure decentralized ecosystem that lets businesses design and deploy their own blockchain applications are always welcome to join the project.

genEOS’ advisory partner, OpenLedger ApS, has considerable experience of conducting successful ICOs and building successful blockchain-as-a-Service applications, including a decentralized trading platform. Ronny Boesing, the OpenLedger founder and CEO, is a serial technology entrepreneur who has been working with the thought leaders of blockchain technology since 2014.

Aetsoft is the project’s technology partner. The company has been on a mission of assisting businesses in developing custom blockchains as well as creating and implementing next-gen business applications on Ethereum, Graphene, and EOS blockchains.

NextGenOne llc, a non-profit organization registered in the United States of America, carries out STO as a SAFT type PPM for the genEOS project, ensuring transparency while using the latest guidance from the US SEC and US FINRA.

To learn more about genEOS or get involved in the project, please visit their website [https://geneos.io/] or read their White Paper [https://geneos.io/assets/files/geneos_white_paper.pdf].

Join the genEOS group on Telegram and subscribe to our Twitter updates.

Press Contact Email Address
mt@openledger.info
Supporting Link
https://geneos.io/

This is a paid press release. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the promoted company or any of its affiliates or services. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in the press release.

The post PR: genEOS – Blockchain 4.0 for Business Announced – Crowdsale Is Launched appeared first on BitcoinLinux.

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Why Litecoin’s Creator Is Buying Into A Bank (And How It Could Go Wrong)

One of the most unusual and potentially transformative deals in the cryptocurrency space started as an argument on social media.

Back in April, Charlie Lee, the creator of litecoin, was exchanging barbs on Twitter with Derek Capo, the CEO of payment processor TokenPay. But their fight quickly turned into a friendly exchange of direct messages, in which the two crypto enthusiasts realized they shared a common problem: In a word, banking.

Both the Litecoin Foundation, the non-profit that promotes the sixth-largest cryptocurrency and where Lee is a managing director, and Capo’s Virgin Islands-based startup had encountered difficulty securing bank accounts – a longstanding problem for the industry.

“We had lots of trouble” on that front, Lee told BitcoinLinux.

Capo elaborated: “Some banks, they close down bank accounts if they get a whiff of anything to do with crypto. We saw a lot of competitors with similar offerings get cut off because they didn’t own the bank and they didn’t have control.”

But Capo was working on a solution for TokenPay by trying to buy a bank. And he realized this plan, if successful, could address another problem for Lee.

“Why don’t we talk about having a litecoin debit card so that you’ll have a real solution?” Capo recalled telling him. “Because, you know, they had been trying very hard to have a litecoin debit card… I said, why don’t we talk?”

That is how the Singapore-based Litecoin Foundation ended up owning 9.9 percent of WEG Bank AG, an until-now obscure German financial institution, in a surprise transaction revealed this week.

But the foundation didn’t put money in; TokenPay previously acquired the stake and traded it to the non-profit in exchange for future technical support. TokenPay also acquired another 9.9 percent (the maximum allowed in Germany without prior regulatory approval) of WEG and is seeking the green light to buy up to 80 percent. (The price was not disclosed.)

If all goes according to plan, not only will TokenPay and the Litecoin Foundation have a reliable banking partner, they would also transform WEG into an on-ramp for consumers worldwide who want to trade fiat for cryptocurrency or pay for goods and services with crypto.

But owning a bank, by itself, won’t necessarily solve crypto’s banking problem, according to compliance experts who’ve worked in both fields. Even if the regulators bless the pending takeover, Capo and Lee may face new challenges operating in a heavily regulated industry where “coin” is frequently treated as a four-letter word.

The roadmap

Undaunted by regulatory hurdles, Capo and Lee have ambitious plans to usher in a new wave of crypto banking services.

Stepping back, while transacting in cryptocurrency may be frictionless, converting from dollars or euros to crypto and back is anything but. Buying crypto through an online exchange can mean registering a credit card with an exchange platform, then waiting days, sometimes longer, to complete the transaction.

Meanwhile, most of the merchants that accept crypto are wary of the price volatility and generally rely on a payment processor like BitPay to convert it to fiat. All these options incur processing fees along the way.

That’s why Capo wants to offer crypto debit cards and the ability to convert litecoin to euros directly through a traditional bank account, to make it a smoother experience for crypto users transacting in a fiat-dominated economy. He hopes to offer such services within nine months of receiving regulatory approval for the acquisition.

“Connecting cryptocurrency to fiat rails is very useful,” said Lee, who told BitcoinLinux he aims to join the WEG board as the Litecoin Foundation‘s representative (a move that would make him possibly the first person to simultaneously hold the titles of “cryptocurrency founder” and “bank director”).

“We will have a say in influencing the bank to work on crypto projects,” he said.

Eventually, after tackling debit cards and payment processing, Capo and Lee plan to integrate banking services directly with TokenPay’s decentralized exchange (DEX) platform, eFin, which offers peer-to-peer trading between cryptocurrencies.

If traders pass all the know-your-customer (KYC) and anti-money-laundering (AML) demands for a crypto bank account, they will be able to seamlessly cash out TokenPay’s own token, known as tpay, from the exchange as fiat, plus buy or sell cryptos like litecoin without delay.

“eFin will have LTC. We will help them with it technically,” Lee said. “And they will also airdrop [eFin] tokens to litecoin users.”

In addition to the promise of technical expertise and litecoin’s relatively stable popularity among cryptocurrency fans, Capo said he gave the nonprofit equity in the bank based on Lee’s massive online following, a marketing boon, and professional connections.

“Litecoin has a very influential leader, someone who’s been around for a very long time,” Capo said in describing Lee, an alumnus of the popular cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase.

Challenges ahead

Yet even if they obtain a banking license, Capo and Lee are not guaranteed unlimited liquidity.

Located in the town of Ottobrunn (population: 21,378), WEG was previously a property management bank that offered loans to housing associations. After TokenPay acquires a majority stake, the plan calls for the bank’s CEO, Matthias von Hauff, to stay involved as WEG transitions to a retail bank with more consumer-facing products and services.

But such a tiny institution likely would likely rely on outside organizations – larger global banks, the German central bank, or SWIFT – to be able to move large amounts of fiat around the world, according to Simon Taylor, a former Barclays banker and co-founder and director of the U.K. fintech advisory firm 11:FS. If those partners became squeamish about crypto in general, they could cut off WEG’s access to fiat, Taylor cautioned.

“The really, really big banks tend to be the ones that connect you through the global corridor to the U.S. dollar, they’re the ones that get the big KYC fines,” Taylor said, adding, with regard to the WEG acquisition plan:

“I don’t think it’s going to achieve what they want it to achieve. I get the temptation to buy a bank. But buying a bank doesn’t give you what you think it gives you.”

Joe Ciccolo, president of the compliance service provider BitAML Inc., said regulators would probably expect extra diligence on WEG’s part if it were to become a crypto-focused bank.

“On its own, running a bank and implementing AML anti-money laundering] across a broad range of products and services is difficult to begin with,” Ciccolo said. “This is going to be a much higher barrier to entry than one would associate with traditional AML.”

The idea of integrating a decentralized exchange into a bank gave Ciccolo the most pause. He described DEXs as “nails on a chalkboard for regulators,” who have taken years to wrap their heads around bitcoin. If Capo and Lee plan to pull this off, Ciccolo said, it will require significant investment in educating regulators on an ongoing basis and constant communication with larger banks.

Acknowledging the challenges, Capo said the first and most costly step of converting WEG into a crypto-savvy bank will be restructuring all of its KYC and AML processes to create a new crypto-centric model.

“We’re being conservative because we want to build this bank so it will be around for a long time,” he told BitcoinLinux, concluding:

“The infrastructure is there, we just might have to potentially modify it for crypto-based services.”

Cryptocurrencies Are ‘A Much Cheaper Way of Doing Business,’ Says Former Overstock Chair

Jonathan Johnson, ex-chairman of Overstock’s board of directors, touched on the benefits of cryptocurrencies and noted the tremendous potential of blockchain-based technology. Despite the currently hemorrhaging market, he still sees a lot of advantages in utilizing cryptocurrencies over traditional credit card payments.  


Better Than Credit Cards

Currently sitting on the Board of Directors of Overstock.com – a major online retailer accepting cryptocurrencies as a payment method — Jonathan Johnson shared his overtly positive sentiment towards virtual currencies and their underlying technology with Forbes.

According to Johnson, Overstock.com gets around 0.2 percent of its total revenue from cryptocurrencies. This percentage sums up to somewhere between $68,000 and $120,000 a week. The ex-chairman notes that this is a growing trend, despite the fact that the overall cryptocurrency market has been rapidly declining over the first half of 2018.

Overstock is partly known for being the first major online retailers to embrace bitcoin, and Johnson has frequently expressed his affinity towards the cryptocurrency. However, now that the market is correcting, one would expect to see signs of concern — if not negativity.

Yet, despite the volatility, Johnson remains entirely positive about cryptocurrencies as a form of payment.

For starters, he notes that accepting traditional credit card payments costs the company a pretty penny:

We pay a processing fee for credit cards, and we employ about 40 people in our fraud department. That’s a cost of doing business with credit cards.

At the same time, Johnson notes that cryptocurrencies don’t have any of the aforementioned issues — hence making it a whole lot cheaper to do business:

When we take cryptocurrency, we have a very small transaction fee with Coinbase, much smaller than our credit card processing fee, and we have no fraud prevention department. It’s like a cash transaction. For us, that is a much cheaper way of doing business.

A Call for Regulatory Clarity

Johnson also conceded that he’s “not a fan of regulation.” So much so, in fact, that he believes blockchain-based technology shouldn’t be regulated.

Referring to initial coin offerings (ICOs) as means to gain capital, Johnson also pointed out that the government’s uncertainty is constraining capital formation methods and the further development of blockchain-based technology.

Still, Johnson also admits that some use cases may need further governance:

We should not be regulating this technology. If there are uses of it that need regulation, maybe.

To that point, the US Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been quite active on the matter of ICOs, outlining that they are obviously considered as securities. What is more, the regulatory agency also launched its very own mock ICO called HoweyCoins in an attempt to educate investors on the risks of investing in fraudulent ICOs.

Johnson commented on the mock ICO, saying that it caused more confusion than clarity.

However, the SEC has recently appointed Valerie Szczepanik as an Associate Director of the Division for Corporation Finance and Senior Advisor for Digital Assets and Innovation — meaning more regulatory clarity is likely on the way.

Do you share Johnson’s positive attitude towards cryptocurrencies, despite the current correction? Let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Bitcoinist archives.

The post Cryptocurrencies Are ‘A Much Cheaper Way of Doing Business,’ Says Former Overstock Chair appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.

Neu-Ner: Bitcoin Not At Bottom (But Still a Great Long-Term Buy)

Bitcoin is going down, and one prominent cryptocurrency analyst believes it’s still got a ways to go. Nevertheless, the upside potential — in the grand scheme of things — is still massive.


‘We May See a Very Different Game in Mining’

Ran Neu-Ner, founder and CEO of Onchain Capital and host of CNBC Africa’s “Crypto Trader,” believes Bitcoin has not found its bottom.

Neu-Ner told CNBC’s “Fast Money” earlier this week:

We keep going down, and we’re testing new lows. Sixty-two-fifty is the next point- If it goes under that, we’re going to test 5,900.

According to Neu-Ner, $5,000 is the key level that everyone should be keeping a close eye on — and that could prove to be a turning point for those mining the first and foremost cryptocurrency:

That’s where the miners look at this and go, ‘Is it actually worth keeping the machine on?’ At about $5,000, if we don’t get a turn up, then we may see a very different game in mining.

‘One Day This Thing is Going to Have $20 Trillion’

The cryptocurrency host also noted that the cryptocurrency market is still immature and new, so price drops and extreme volatility simply comes with the territory. He told “Fast Money:”

We’re the internet before you had a real browser. And people are talking about a few exchange hacks. Those are to be expected from an industry that’s got a market capitalization of $300 billion; when we expect that one day this thing is going to have $20 trillion [in market cap].

While day traders might do well to stay away from this prolonged bear market, Neu-Ner believes that anyone who actually believes in Bitcoin and/or blockchain technology should consider buying the market leader at these prices. He explained:

If you believe in the long-term of blockchain […] It could go to 20, 30, 40, [or] 50,000. Then no one cares whether you bought it at 5 or 6.

Bitcoin (BTC) is currently trading at $6,600.76, down 3.93 percent over the last 24 hours. The market leader is down 13.37 percent over the last week.

Do you agree with Neu-Ner that Bitcoin is a good buy in the long-term? Where do you think the bottom is? Let us know in the comments below! 


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, CoinMarketCap.com.

The post Neu-Ner: Bitcoin Not At Bottom (But Still a Great Long-Term Buy) appeared first on Bitcoinist.com.