Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson on mission to deploy crypto for global economy revolution

In recent weeks, plenty has been said about the possibilities of reshaping the economic system using innovation and technology. In the latest episode of #FinancialFox, we caught up with Charles Hoskinson, founder of IOHK and Cardano, to hear his thoughts on the current concerning socio-economic situation brought about by the pandemic, and his plans for Cardano moving forward.

Charles is not just the co-founder of cryptocurrency Ethereum and the founder of Cardano; he is a charismatic figure, highly influential in the crypto community, not to mention a natural visionary when it comes to the power of technology to build a better world. Speaking of the pandemic’s dramatic economic impact, especially for small and medium businesses and in developing countries where debt is increasing dramatically, Charles criticises the current financial and economic system, particularly measures like quantitative easing, which he thinks are unsustainable and harmful to the global economy.

Watch the full interview with Charles Hoskinson here:

The impact will be even stronger on smaller businesses. As Charles sees it, there is an ‘asymmetrical economic depression’ ahead because larger businesses will continue to make profits and have access to credit lines and financial resources. However, a stronger and fairer economy can be built by leveraging the potential of blockchain and decentralisation, in what he calls monetary innovation, given that cryptocurrencies offer an alternative credit system.

He also believes that there will be a significant push for crypto technology in the developing world in the near future, as we see that their economic structures tend to be more fragile and vulnerable to crisis and debt. New technologies are leapfrogging to quickly bridge this gap.

Endorsing Charles’ philosophy, there have been moves from IOHK and the Cardano Foundation to spur research and development in blockchain and technology innovation. IOHK has recently donated $500m, in ADA, for the University of Wyoming for blockchain research and development in academia, one of the core values of IOHK. The state of Wyoming is known for its progressive approach to crypto legislation, as reported by CoinTelegraph.

The research lab activities are focused on three main elements: software development, pilots, and research on a new crypto-native microchip. The greater purpose of the grant is to look at ways of optimising supply chain systems with more transparency and efficiency.

Cardano expands its presence in Africa

For years, IOHK and Cardano have pushed for innovation in Africa and have established key partnerships on the continent. Currently, Cardano reaches 54 countries in Africa, committed to building blockchain governance to future-proof the region’s sustainable growth and development.

In November last year, the Cardano foundation announced it has joined forces with various leading institutions such as the African Leadership College, the University of Mauritius and the Swiss Blockchain Federation, among others, to lay the groundwork to future-proof the blockchain industry in Mauritius.

Charles believes Africa is an exciting and promising place to do business and employ technology solutions. The African population is young, keen on embracing technology tools and open to a change in the system that will give them better future prospects and economic opportunities.

Charles Hoskinson and Cardano have been working with Ethiopia government

In other African countries like Ethiopia, Cardano has engaged in financial inclusion programmes, particularly for small farmers and businesses, where blockchain technology and digital currencies can streamline transactions, increase production and facilitate trade.

More recently, Cardano has identified South Africa as a key market for the cryptocurrency to build a network of governments, institutions and enterprises using Cardano on the African continent. The newly established South African National Blockchain Alliance (SANBA) is an ally of the Cardano Foundation and was created to push innovation and employ blockchain in its efforts to boost socio-economic growth. SANBA, supported by the South African government, is a partnership between the state, business community, academia and civil society to fast-track the use of blockchain in South Africa.

Among the possible applications of Cardano technology are tools for developing greater transparency to reduce fraud, building digital identities for municipal services and bolstering developing economies with virtual currencies. “The potential collaboration with SANBA is the first step in delivering game-changing technology to enhance Africa’s dynamic and diverse economies,” reads the official statement from the Foundation.

Beyond government initiatives and partnerships, Cardano has very active communities in Nigeria and Rwanda.

Nathan Kaiser, Chairperson of the Cardano Foundation, says: “Legislation is key to adoption and real use cases of blockchain. The Cardano Foundation is proud to be at the forefront of shaping blockchain-enabled sustainable growth in Africa. We are open to working with the continent’s countries to establish robust governance policies and assess existing laws and policies.

“Our aim is to help African nations to shape legislative and commercial standards while ensuring accountability, which in turn will create new jobs and ensure sustainable growth. Blockchain will afford African countries to diversify their economies and help the continent to increase its innovation and investment attractiveness.”

IOHK and Cardano Foundation are not alone in the mission to bring crypto to Africa. Binance, the largest cryptocurrency trading exchange, is also targeting African countries for cryptocurrency adoption. Emanuel Babalola, Binance’s Business Manager in Nigeria, says that most crypto users in the country are school students, showing the appeal of digital currencies for younger generations.

“People use cryptocurrency as a remittance gateway as well as a hedge against any devaluations of local currency, plus speculative trading,” said Yele Bademosi, co-founder of the Binance-backed social payments startup Bundle.

Sustainability is key for future growth

Just as important as building a resilient economic system is ensuring sustainable practices, both financially and environmentally. Charles believes that projects need to be sustainable to last and nurture the economy. Change requires a shift from the current heavily centralised order into more autonomy and decentralisation.

“I think it is a great life lesson to grow stuff, even if it is a small plant on your desk. It changes your perspective,” says Charles, making an analogy with his own farming. “When you grow things, it takes months and months for you to see the result. You can do things that will damage your soil if you are not clever about it. I think this is a great analogy for sustainable protocol design and company design.”

Be sure to follow us on social media @cassiopeia_ltd to keep up with more news and updates in this exciting sector, and don’t forget to subscribe to our channel for further upcoming interviews on FinancialFox.

OBC’s Brazio undergoes first halving as Brazilians take more interest in crypto

Just as the crypto world was talking about the recent Bitcoin halving, Online Blockchain’s (OBC) Brazil coin cryptocurrency underwent its first halving on May 13th. According to London’s’ Blockchain guru, Clem Chambers, CEO of OBC, miners of Brazio will see their block reward reduced from 200 BRAZ to 100 BRAZ.

Chambers said, “This is a coming of age moment for Brazio and we are excited by both the currency’s development and popularity, Brazio’s excellent security, fast transactions and decentralised governance is a compelling proposition in Latin America, a region which is seeing a continued rise in cryptocurrency adoption.”

There are currently 83 million Brazio coins in existence. Allocation is tightly capped at 210 million BRAZ. It is also expected that the lower supply, along with a growing demand, will boost the coin’s value. Brazio’s next halving is expected to happen in approximately two years.

The coin is a secure digital currency developed by London listed Online Blockchain (LON:OBC) in partnership with ADVFN Brazil to provide the people of Brazil a doorway into the cryptocurrency revolution. Brazio trades on the SouthXchange.

Users can also get Brazio for free from FreeFaucet.io, OBC’s hub for cryptocurrencies faucets where users can mine and cash cryptocurrencies for free.

Brazil has the largest internet market in Latin America, accounting for nearly 140 million users in 2016. Digital adoption along with an interest in crypto currencies has been growing steadily over the last few years. Binance, the largest crypto exchange in the world, saw an increase of 16% from Brazilian users in Q1 2020 than in Q4 2019.

Mayra Siqueira, from Binance Brazil added that because of political instability in Brazil, cryptocurrencies pose an opportunity: “We’re not seeing international investment coming to Brazil any time soon because we’re politically unstable. We’re going to see more crypto adoption because of that.”

There are around 60 crypto exchanges now operating in Brazil today.

Crypto currencies provide an attractive option for financially excluded Brazilians. They offer innovative alternatives for banking services, which are highly concentrated. Around 78% of all deposits in Brazil are made to five financial conglomerates. Digital currencies challenge the hegemony of the major banks, providing users with quicker transactions, lower costs and more accessibility. Alternative payment methods also mean more freedom and control over personal finances.

Brazio offers the robust features of a secure blockchain and can be mined by anyone with a computer.

A report from the World Bank on financial inclusion shows that by 2014, only 54 percent of the adult population in Latin America had an account at a financial institution. In developed economies, 94 percent of adults have an account at a financial institution.

Online Blockchain (LSE: OBC) has also developed Buenos, a cryptocurrency ecosystem targeted at the people of neighbouring Argentina. The company sees huge opportunity for digital currencies in developing countries where the financial system is less stable and people, particularly the young population, are more open to adopt digital financial services.

“Emerging markets have always had a problem with their financial infrastructure. Cryptocurrencies and the Blockchain give emerging economies a chance to leapfrog the legacy issues and opportunity to steal a march on G7 countries forever hijacked by their bankers,” says Clem Chambers.

Brazil is one of the largest markets for ADVFN, OBC’s sister company, and has an exciting audience keen and eager to seek alternative financial services and investment tools.

Online Blockchain plc (LSE: OBC) is a UK-based incubator and developer of businesses in internet and information-based technologies, including developers, administrators, as well as custodians of blockchains and crypto currencies. Focusing operations on building ‘the new generation of blockchain’. OBC continues to consider new related opportunities, particularly crypto currencies, and blockchain-based opportunities. Led by a CEO and team with over two decades of pioneering in tech. Online Blockchain focuses on innovation in crypto currency and decentralised ecosystems via various applications of blockchain: incubating crypto currency start-ups and developing technical innovation in the blockchain space.

CONTACTS

If you have any media enquiries or require further information on the coin please contact us at: info@cassiopeia-ltd.com

BRAZIO:
WEBSITE: https://braz.io/
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/BrazioCoin/
INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/braziocoin/
TELEGRAM: https://t.me/BrazioCoin
TWITTER:
https://twitter.com/BrazioCoin_

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Time for cryptocurrencies to take over the stock market?

While the events of the past few months have shaken up pretty much every aspect of our lives, the truth is that even before the pandemic was in sight, the financial market had been struggling. Talks about another crisis had been brewing for some time.

The arrival of Covid-19 was indeed the last straw in revealing widespread discontentment with a system that is increasingly considered unfit for purpose. Amid a near total shutdown of the air travel industry, the price of oil — which had already been heading down — reached negative figures, worsening the turmoil in the financial market.

Beyond the wreckage in the stock market, the impacts can also be seen in the global economy, which will experience negative growth this year. In the US alone, 30 million people have filed initial unemployment claims since mid-March. As a way to recover the economy, the US FEd and the European Central Bank are resorting to quantitative easing, a method criticised by many as potentially causing inflation and returning very low interest rates on investments.

The virus has shown itself not only to be a threat to people’s lives and healthcare systems; it has also highlighted how our economic and political structures are ill-prepared to protect people’s assets and jobs, calling into question how much governments and authorities can be trusted to provide sound and effective solutions at a time like this.

In a research report published on April 30th, Phil Bonello from Grayscale Investments noted: “Today’s macroeconomic environment continues to reinforce that a scarce, digital, non-sovereign form of money may be an attractive place to store value and may serve as a hedge against unrestrained money printing.”

Cryptocurrency to the rescue?

Talk of alternative finance has always been brewing within the crypto community, which has long advocated for a shift to a new financial and economic system, one that is less centralised and more user-centric.

Cryptocurrencies leverage on the features of blockchain technology, allowing money to be transferred in a safe and quick manner. Praise for blockchain and cryptocurrencies had been growing over the last few years as the ‘crypto revolution’ was fuelled by frustration with the old highly centralised system which operates slowly and concentrates power into the hands of a few elite organisations.

Just as stock markets were struggling at the start of April, Revolut, one of the largest fintechs in Europe, announced its decision to make cryptocurrency trading available to all its seven million customers.

Revolut was no stranger to digital assets, having offered support for Bitcoin, Ether and Litecoin to its Premium users since 2017. The London-based fintech referred to crypto’s origins as an “alternative to real money during the times of quantitative easing and currency devaluation following the 2008 financial crisis,” which is “happening again right now” following the COVID-19 economic upset.

Investors have been seeking safer havens for their money, and cryptocurrencies — particularly Bitcoin — are regarded as one of these alternatives. “Aside from gold, the list of alternative assets to consider as a hedge against uncertainty in the global markets are few and far between,” said Fred Schebesta, co-founder of Finder, to the Economic Times. ”To me, Bitcoin remains one of the most attractive assets in helping diversify a portfolio looking to hedge against risk in the coming years.”

Crypto market heats up anticipating Bitcoin halving

This May, crypto enthusiasts are looking forward to the next Bitcoin halving, a rare event that will mark the fall in the number of bitcoins unlocked for mining one block, from the current 12.5 bitcoins to 6.25 bitcoins. This mechanism exists to ensure the limited supply of Bitcoins and to control the value of the cryptocurrency. It also works as a market regulator, indicating it could lead to a price increase. Crypto advocates see the halving mechanism as a way to control inflation.

Clem Chambers — serial investor, CEO of global leading financial news platform ADVFN and CEO of blockchain application developer Online Blockchain — who predicted the market collapse in earlier in January 2020, warns investors to be very careful about equities as he looks favourably at crypto as a sound alternative investment for long- term rewards in these times of market volatility and anticipated recession: “If you think the future is hyperinflation, you need to buy Bitcoin.”

In anticipation of the halving, in the last week of April the entire market capitalisation or value of cryptocurrencies jumped $35.3 billion in 24 hours. Bitcoin reached $9,388.30, representing an 18.57% increase in one day.

In the last 24 hours, Bitcoin price went back above $9,000, just as as the U.S. government announced it plans to borrow further $3 trillion to revive the economy.

While Bitcoin can be considered as a form of ‘digital gold’, the true value of cryptocurrencies lies in the fact that they are designed as more than an alternative finance method. Digital assets have high use-case value because they provide a range of services and products that in the traditional system would require a middleman such as a bank, in addition to going through a lengthy, expensive and bureaucratic process.

Ethereum, the second-highest valued crypto in the market, for example, is a smart contract platform that enables developers to build decentralised applications (dapps). On the blockchain, smart contracts run without any possibility of downtime, censorship, fraud or third-party interference; facilitating the exchange of money, content, property, shares, or any valuable asset.

Be sure to follow us on social media @cassiopeia_ltd to keep up with more news and updates in this exciting sector, and don’t forget to subscribe to our channel to hear about further upcoming interviews on FinancialFox.

Crypto in coronavirus times: Opportunity or doom?

Crypto in coronavirus times: Opportunity or Pitfall?

With the escalation of the COVID-19 outbreak in Europe and the Americas, we have seen increasing disruption in the financial markets and political spheres. Tensions have been building as more cases and deaths are reported by the day and countries take ever more drastic measures such as closing borders and locking down cities.

The impact on the stock market has left investors flocking to bonds and yields in search of safer investment options in this critical situation. The US 10-year yield fell below 1% on Monday after the Federal Reserve cut interest rates to near zero, as well as announcing it would start quantitative easing in order to pump $700 billion into the economy.

The crypto market has also felt the effects of the global pandemic. Last Thursday, bitcoin suffered its worst one-day drop in years, falling from $7,600 to $5,300. On Friday March 13, bitcoin fell to a year low of $3,867..

Chart from 17/03/20 https://www.coindesk.com/price/bitcoin

The bitcoin price drop was a surprise for some crypto advocates, who had argued that cryptocurrencies were the new ‘safe-haven’ assets and flight capital of choice due to their limited supply, lack of transportation issues and because they can be bought and turned into fiat very easily regardless of geographical location. In previous stock market declines, the crypto market was indeed boosted, and prices rose. However, this time, the trend does not seem to follow.

Even traditional safe-haven assets such as gold and silver are seeing a decrease in prices. The price of silver reached an 11-year low this week, while gold dropped to a multi-month low, as reported by Kitco News.

Some in the industry have said this bear run could pose an opportunity to buy cryptocurrencies.

Clem Chambers, CEO of ADVFN (which owns InvestorsHub in the US) and Online Blockchain plc comments: “Crypto is a victim of liquidity issues caused by the collapse of other markets. People are selling BTC for dollars to make margin with their banks and brokers or even pay wage bills.”

“As liquidity from central banks flood the markets, this should reverse, but the situation is very fragile with a guarantee of many outrageous situations to come.”

Next Bitcoin halving is close

Despite the sharp price drops, the crypto community is looking forward to the upcoming bitcoin halving.

With the next occurrence expected in May 2020, bitcoin halving sees the reward for mining new blocks of the cryptocurrency halved. On this occasion, miners will be rewarded 6.25 BTC, instead of the current 12.5 BTC. Halvings are scheduled once every 210,000 blocks, until the network reaches the maximum supply of 21 million bitcoins generated.

This mechanism exists to stop inflation by limiting the supply of coins: an important price and market regulator which could also indicate a price increase.

The first halving in November 2012 saw the initial reward of 50 BTC halved to 25. Since the second halving in 2016, miners have been receiving 12.5 bitcoins for each block successfully processed.

However, other crypto experts argue that the circumstances are different in 2020, and that the two previous halvings should not be taken as an indication of price surges.

"The bitcoin ecosystem today is arguably very different from previous halvings: four years ago, crypto derivatives markets were in their infancy, institutional involvement was slim and valuation frameworks were practically non-existent. It’s not unreasonable for investors to believe that this time it’s different," wrote Noelle Acheson, Director of Research at CoinDesk.

Blockchain to rescue the global economy?

The global pandemics and the ensuing stock market plunge have thrown the current economic model into question by showing it is not fool proof, nor does it protect individuals in times of need.

So, can new technology step in? Many of us think so.

Cryptocurrencies, by their very nature, challenged the economic model and were designed as a decentralised, borderless alternative to traditional currencies. The foundation of the cryptosystem is to democratise access to money and financial services. Even in their infancy, before the price booms and institutional investment, cryptocurrencies attracted advocates who believed a new finance model was possible and necessary, an idea we have recently been sharply reminded of.

The criticism of the current system comes from some of the most acclaimed names in the crypto industry, such as IOHK and Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson. In times of a drastic crisis like the COVID-19, we can see how fragile economic and market systems are. Through a pragmatic view, we see that the current economic and financial system works on the basis of artificial sums of money coming from trade and debt, being kept afloat by interest rate cuts and weekly cash injections from central banks.

Hoskinson believes in the potential of cryptocurrencies like Cardano and even believes that blockchain technology could benefit from the current crisis, offering better future prospects and a healthier financial system.

“They are probably going to want financial freedom and our industry as a whole is the only one that can offer that so the worse this pandemic gets, the better it’s going to be for our industry and for people’s perception of the need for new systems to solve complicated problems,” Hoskinson commented.

On his Twitter, Hoskinson said that the $700 billion ‘quantitative easing’ announced by the US government — what he called ‘dumpster economics’ — would not happen in the crypto sphere.

While there seem to be no right answers in this unprecedented scenario, it feels crucial to ask the right questions about building more resilient and fairer solutions.

Be sure to follow us on social media @cassiopeia_ltd to keep up with more news and updates in this exciting sector, and don’t forget to subscribe to our channel to hear about further upcoming interviews on FinancialFox.

Discover the future of enterprise technology with the Blockchain Expo Global 2020

Returning to Olympia London, UK for its fifth year on the 17–18th March 2020. Uncover the latest Blockchain innovations, next-generation technologies and strategies from the world of Blockchain to drive your business forward in 2020 and beyond.

Join 9,000 attendees from across the world including CTO’s, Heads of Innovation and Technology, IT Directors, Developers, Start-Up’s, OEM’s, Government, Automotive, Operators, Technology Providers, Investors, VCs and many more.

Over the two days the event will also showcase the most cutting-edge technologies from more than 300 exhibitors and provide insight from over 500 speakers sharing their unparalleled industry knowledge and real-life experiences.

Use the code CASSIOPEIA20​ for a discount on your ticket!

Here’s an overview of why you need to attend the Blockchain Expo in London!

1) Five collaborated events covering Blockchain, Ai, Big Data, Cyber Security, IoT and the brand new 5G Expo.

With 5 events under one roof this is THE event to explore the future of enterprise technology. The Blockchain Expo is co-located with The brand new 5G Conference and Exhibition, IoT Tech Expo, Cybersecurity & Cloud Expo, Blockchain Expo, and Ai & Big Data Expo.

Make sure to purchase an all-access Ultimate Pass to attend all 21 conference tracks over the 5 events. More information about ticket options here.

2) Hear industry experts delve into Blockchain for Enterprise

Purchase a Blockchain Gold or Ultimate Ticket to hear the latest user cases from lading brands. This conference track includes several top-level talks, interactive panel discussions and workshops focusing on:

— Supply Chain & Logistics

— Blockchain for Business, from Proof of Concepts to Unicorns

— Smart Contracts

— Proving Blockchain ROI

— Energy transformation

— Enabling digital transformation in the real world?

We have some fantastic speakers already confirmed from principal companies including Unilever, FedEx, Rolls Royce, GE Power, PwC, Boston Consulting group and many more!

View the full conference track here.

3) Free admission to the exhibition floor and explore future technologies

The free to attend exhibition hall is the ideal place for all attendees to uncover the latest technologies and innovations live in action. A variety of over 300 exhibitors across the entire enterprise technology ecosystem will showcase their technology advancements including leading companies such as TCS, Kaspersky Labs, BCG, Bitmain, Coreledger to name a few. View all exhibitors here.

4) New AI-Powered Matchmaking Tool networking app

The new Matchmaking Tool is the official AI-powered networking app designed for the entire co-located event. It enables users to plan their two days with ease; view the agenda, speakers, exhibitors and floorplan. You can also connect with and organise meetings with other attendees, speakers, sponsors and exhibitors.

Our Matchmaking Tool is available to download by all attendees, but to gain access to our Matchmaking Features you must have an Expo Plus, Gold or Ultimate ticket. Don’t miss the chance to meet like-minded tech enthusiasts with over 56% of attendees being director level and above!

Click here to find out more.

5) Official networking party at the stunning Pergola Olympia

Join us on Day 1 of the event (17th March) for an exclusive evening of networking and drinks. Share your experiences from the day and meet with existing and potentially new business partners in a more relaxed setting.

The party will take place at the stunning Pergola Olympia from 6–10pm. All speakers, sponsors, press and exhibitors are invited. Attendees who hold an Ultimate, Gold or Expo Plus ticket will also have access. Find out more here.

6) Brand new Convergent Technologies Stage and conference track

We’ve added a brand-new stage to our Global event this year. The Convergent Technologies track is dedicated to the convergence of emerging technology solutions and how it is changing the corporate landscape.

The topics will explore regulations, standards and collaborations including:

— How Ai & 5G enable real-time optimisations

— How to implement the technologies of now

— Methodologies and process of DataOps

— Secure systems

— How to successfully compete in the Ai, Blockchain, Cyber, IoT & 5G space and so much more.

View all sessions within the Convergent Technologies conference track.

7) Save up to £350 on your ticket with the Early Bird offer!

Purchase your ticket before 1st February 2020 and save up to £350 with the Early Bird offer! There are a range of ticket types available from Free Expo Passes to all-access Ultimate Passes.

Ultimate Pass

— Full access to the 5 co-located events: IoT, 5G, Blockchain, AI & Big Data, Cyber Security & Cloud

— All conference tracks over the two days

— All networking opportunities including VIP lounge, official party on day 1 and networking app

— Conference materials from the co-located events post show

Blockchain Gold Pass

— Access to all Blockchain conference tracks over the two days

— All networking opportunities including VIP lounge, official party on day 1 and networking app

— Conference materials from the Blockchain tracks post-event

FREE Expo Pass

— Access to the co-located exhibition and free sessions on the expo floor stages

Find out more about the range of tickets available and register here: https://www.blockchain-expo.com/global

If you have any questions or would like to get involved please contact enquiries@blockchain-expo.com . We look forward to welcoming you to the event. #BlockchainExpo

IBM’s contribution to a more transparent future: blockchain for supply chains, trade, logistics…

IBM’s contribution to a more transparent future: blockchain for supply chains, trade, logistics and digital identity.

In the latest episode of #FinancialFox, technology and PR entrepreneur Stefania Barbaglio talked to Pietro Lanza, Blockchain Director at IBM and General Manager for IBM’s Intesa. IBM, already an established name in the IT space, was one of the first companies to push forward with new technologies’ adoption, working with Artificial Intelligence — in the development of their world-famous IBM Watson system.

Today, IBM takes the lead once more in its advancement of cutting-edge technologies such as 5G, quantum computing and blockchain. It has recently set up significant partnerships and strategic collaborations with organisations like the Bank of America and Samsung.

Italy forging ahead with technology.

Intesa is a special division within the IBM group, working with digital innovation in Italy, where IBM is a leading technology solutions provider for enterprises and public bodies. IBM’s applications benefit a variety of sectors by offering innovative solutions to improve performance and streamline transactions.

The focus is on blockchain: IBM has around 50 initiatives in Italy along with over 1,000 projects globally, all deploying blockchain-based projects which are disrupting various sectors such as financial services, trade, supply chains such as fashion and food industry, digital identity and logistics.

“At IBM we are focused on enterprise use of blockchain. The most relevant industries for our projects at the moments are financial service, food traceability and ‘made in Italy’ food, furniture and fashion. On the other side we are also working with logistics and supply chain applications of blockchain. We are still at an initial phase, but more and more we are moving towards maturity of these platforms, technology and business paradigm.”

The giant is working with the Italian government to focus on implementing blockchain into the food and fashion sectors, supporting the world-famous ‘Made in Italy’ quality. IBM has indeed established a global platform for this cause — IBM Food trust — and has teamed up with leading global food suppliers including Walmart, Carrefour France, and Nestle. Other projects and conversations with big companies are on going. Through the platform,an ecosystem of producers, suppliers, manufacturers, and retailers is formed, to create a smarter, safer and more sustainable food system for all. Organic produce and homegrown origin-certified products are hallmarks of Italian culture: cheeses, olive oil , sauces, dairy products, pasta and pizza.

Recently, CHO, a Tunisian olive oil producer, announced it will use IBM blockchain to create a provenance record that traces Terra Delyssa from the retailer back to the tree. This follows the salmon farming company Cermaq and smoked salmon producer Labeyrie’s use of IBM’s cloud blockchain technology to trace their product supply chains.

Another prominent area of development is digital identity. IBM is working on creating the next level of digital identity by introducing IBM Blockchain-based sovereign identities, through which people can gain even tighter control over their identities and data, as well simplifying numerous transactions that require identification. Digital identity is a core business for IBM as it is the certification authority, and manage the Digital ID for over 50 million Italian & other European citizens. As part of a global, public permissioned blockchain ledger, IBM Verify Credentials makes it possible for known, trusted issuing organisations to issue credentials to individuals.

For financial services and trading, IBM has been working on the use of blockchain and digitalisation to streamline traditional paper-based trade finance practices.

Looking into the newest technologies, IBM has already taken steps into the 5G and quantum computing spaces. At the end of October, Samsung Electronics and IBM announced a new joint platform leveraging IBM Cloud and AI capabilities and Samsung’s mobile offering, and this year has already seen discussions about 5G arising.

As a pioneering tech company, IBM started working on quantum computing several decades ago and the technology is now in a relatively stable phase ready for testing and utilisation. @IBM Research has developed a publicly available Q problem which deploys quantum power through @IBM Cloud and can be tested by anyone. IBM also recently signed a multi-million agreement with Germany for joint development of this technology.

IBM has been ranked #1 for patents deposited for the 27th year in a row, such an achievement has been possible due to large investments and fundings to the company’s R&D, which is being made available to its teams throughout the19 research centres globally.

Watch the interview:

Be sure to follow us on social media @cassiopeia_ltd to keep up with more news and updates in this exciting sector. And don’t forget to subscribe to our channel to get notifications about further upcoming interviews on FinancialFox.

IBM’s contribution to a more transparent future: blockchain for supply chains, trade, logistics…

IBM’s contribution to a more transparent future: blockchain for supply chains, trade, logistics and digital identity.

In the latest episode of #FinancialFox, technology and PR entrepreneur Stefania Barbaglio talked to Pietro Lanza, Blockchain Director at IBM and General Manager for IBM’s Intesa. IBM, already an established name in the IT space, was one of the first companies to push forward with new technologies’ adoption, working with Artificial Intelligence — in the development of their world-famous IBM Watson system.

Today, IBM takes the lead once more in its advancement of cutting-edge technologies such as 5G, quantum computing and blockchain. It has recently set up significant partnerships and strategic collaborations with organisations like the Bank of America and Samsung.

Italy forging ahead with technology.

Intesa is a special division within the IBM group, working with digital innovation in Italy, where IBM is a leading technology solutions provider for enterprises and public bodies. IBM’s applications benefit a variety of sectors by offering innovative solutions to improve performance and streamline transactions.

The focus is on blockchain: IBM has around 50 initiatives in Italy along with over 1,000 projects globally, all deploying blockchain-based projects which are disrupting various sectors such as financial services, trade, supply chains such as fashion and food industry, digital identity and logistics.

“At IBM we are focused on enterprise use of blockchain. The most relevant industries for our projects at the moments are financial service, food traceability and ‘made in Italy’ food, furniture and fashion. On the other side we are also working with logistics and supply chain applications of blockchain. We are still at an initial phase, but more and more we are moving towards maturity of these platforms, technology and business paradigm.”

The giant is working with the Italian government to focus on implementing blockchain into the food and fashion sectors, supporting the world-famous ‘Made in Italy’ quality. IBM has indeed established a global platform for this cause — IBM Food trust — and has teamed up with leading global food suppliers including Walmart, Carrefour France, and Nestle. Other projects and conversations with big companies are on going. Through the platform,an ecosystem of producers, suppliers, manufacturers, and retailers is formed, to create a smarter, safer and more sustainable food system for all. Organic produce and homegrown origin-certified products are hallmarks of Italian culture: cheeses, olive oil , sauces, dairy products, pasta and pizza.

Recently, CHO, a Tunisian olive oil producer, announced it will use IBM blockchain to create a provenance record that traces Terra Delyssa from the retailer back to the tree. This follows the salmon farming company Cermaq and smoked salmon producer Labeyrie’s use of IBM’s cloud blockchain technology to trace their product supply chains.

Another prominent area of development is digital identity. IBM is working on creating the next level of digital identity by introducing IBM Blockchain-based sovereign identities, through which people can gain even tighter control over their identities and data, as well simplifying numerous transactions that require identification. Digital identity is a core business for IBM as it is the certification authority, and manage the Digital ID for over 50 million Italian & other European citizens. As part of a global, public permissioned blockchain ledger, IBM Verify Credentials makes it possible for known, trusted issuing organisations to issue credentials to individuals.

For financial services and trading, IBM has been working on the use of blockchain and digitalisation to streamline traditional paper-based trade finance practices.

Looking into the newest technologies, IBM has already taken steps into the 5G and quantum computing spaces. At the end of October, Samsung Electronics and IBM announced a new joint platform leveraging IBM Cloud and AI capabilities and Samsung’s mobile offering, and this year has already seen discussions about 5G arising.

As a pioneering tech company, IBM started working on quantum computing several decades ago and the technology is now in a relatively stable phase ready for testing and utilisation. @IBM Research has developed a publicly available Q problem which deploys quantum power through @IBM Cloud and can be tested by anyone. IBM also recently signed a multi-million agreement with Germany for joint development of this technology.

IBM has been ranked #1 for patents deposited for the 27th year in a row, such an achievement has been possible due to large investments and fundings to the company’s R&D, which is being made available to its teams throughout the19 research centres globally.

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Crypto Faucets: An easy way to earn crypto

There are many routes into the crypto market for investors: purchasing a coin, trading on an exchange, or even mining directly. Yet, making an informed decision between these alternatives requires a certain degree of technical expertise.

Recently, cryptocurrency companies have tried to fill this potential knowledge gap and spur growth in cryptocurrency adoption by setting up crypto faucets.

Faucets are applications that allow users to distribute and access cryptocurrencies without need for mining. As this model aims to address the technical difficulties of mining cryptocurrencies, it includes those users who are not familiar with the mining process but still want to obtain their share of cryptocurrencies.

These sites reward users with small amounts of Bitcoin when they complete a task on their platform, such as visiting ads, completing a captcha or playing games. Faucets then pay participants in Satoshis, the smallest available unit of BTC: a hundred million Satoshis equal one Bitcoin.

The faucet makes revenue by sharing its advertisement proceedings with users, as advertisers pay per click and by impression rates. This encourages users to return and spend as much time as possible interacting with the content, ensuring ad exposure.

One of the most recent faucets to arrive on the market has been launched by the Tezos Foundation and is targeted at developers. The Tezos mainnet allows developers and users to request XTZ tokens for development and testing purposes.

Because the service is free of charge, users may be sceptical of its legitimacy. If you are considering using faucets, be sure to do your research about the various services, weigh up the pros and cons of signing up, and always take precautions online such as never entering your addresses, public keys, or private keys on websites and forums.

Online Blockchain’s FreeFaucet: The ‘Yahoo of Crypto’

In 2019, Online Blockchain (OBC) launched its faucet product, the FreeFaucet, an easy service intended to make cryptocurrencies available to more people. So far, it has proven very popular: in eight months, OBC’s FreeFaucet has gathered more than 40,000 registered users, increasing its userbase by approximately 150 a day.

“With crypto faucets, we take that technical difficulty away. People can get a little Bitcoin, a little Ethereum, a little Brazio ̶ they can just get it on the website. If they want to get more, they can subscribe,” said the CEO of OBC, Clem Chambers.

OBC’s FreeFaucet, claimed to be have some of the highest paying faucets on the net, offers many popular cryptocurrencies including: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Monero, alongside OBC-owned cryptocurrencies such as PlusOneCoin, Buenos and Brazio. Free registered users can make three claims per day.

In addition to conventional faucets, FreeFaucet.io offers its free users a number of ways to net cryptocurrencies:

External webfaucets — cryptocurrency can be earnt by performing actions on other websites

Email faucet — users can claim cryptocurrency by accessing faucets sent to them via email

Impression faucets — an advertising disruptor; anyone registered can claim free cryptocurrency simply by checking out interesting featured projects on the site

Geofaucets — QR codes at set locations, which when scanned reward the scanner with cryptocurrency. Additionally, anyone can set up their own Geofaucet and make a passive income

Bitferno — a powerful cryptocurrency miner used to mine brand new cryptocurrencies. Approximately once a month, these cryptocurrencies are distributed — ‘airdropped’ — to all Freefaucet.io users

The innovative aspect of crypto faucets lies in their business model that allows users to earn without paying: FreeFaucet’s revenue comes from subscriptions and advertisements placed on the website. Cryptocurrency companies will purchase ad space on the FreeFaucet page to attract more coin holders

“It is not just about the money, it is about community and education, enabling people to enter the crypto world. FreeFaucet.io will help unlock the value of the crypto sector,” says Clem Chambers, CEO of Online Blockchain.

FreeFaucet “reverses the economic chain: money comes back to consumers rather than them paying the middlemen involved in purchasing a product or service,” he adds.

You can access the free faucet website here https://freefaucet.io

Follow Frefaucet.io on Twitter https://twitter.com/freefaucetio

Online Blockchain is a UK-based incubator and developer of businesses in internet and information-based technologies, including developers, administrators and custodians of blockchains and cryptocurrencies. Online Blockchain explores new opportunities in the tech space, particularly cryptocurrencies and blockchain-based opportunities including incubating cryptocurrency start-ups and developing technical innovation in the blockchain space. Led by a team with over two decades of pioneering in tech, Online Blockchain focuses on innovation in cryptocurrency and decentralised ecosystems via various applications of blockchain: incubating cryptocurrency start-ups and developing technical innovation in the blockchain space.

Other faucets available:

FreeBitcoin offers a range of casino-style games that allow you to multiply the Bitcoins you earn. For instance, the basic Hi-Lo game allows users to win up to 1 mBTC every time they play. The site also runs free weekly lotteries for which users get free tickets for playing the Bitcoin games. Visit freebitcoin.io

Cointiply is one of the newest Bitcoin faucets on the block, Cointiply gives users the chance to win up to 100,000 Satoshis per hour just by playing games and completing tasks such as watching videos and visiting webpages. Users may receive loyalty bonuses for playing daily and earn additional Bitcoins for completing short surveys, installing mobile apps and the unique Cointiply Mining Game. Payouts can be made directly to a Bitcoin Wallet and Doge Wallet. Visit cointiply.com

Moon Bitcoin was founded in 2015 and is one of the most widely used faucet services. Unlike most crypto faucets, Moon Bitcoin does not restrict how many times or the amount that users can cash out. Visit moonbit.co.in

Bonus Bitcoin is a faucet paying out up to 5,000 Satoshis every 15 minutes, with a variety of ways to boost earnings via its Bonus schemes and frequent special promotions and competitions. The current bonus scheme pays a daily 5% bonus of the total of all faucet claims and referral commission earned over the previous 3 days — providing that users have made at least one faucet claim during the previous day. Visit bonusbitcoin.co

Tokenisation of the real estate market: Swiss BrickMark makes largest ever property purchase in…

Tokenisation of the real estate market: Swiss BrickMark makes largest ever property purchase in tokens

2020 has started with a bang.

Swiss real estate investment firm BrickMark announced that it has signed an agreement to make the largest property purchase ever made using tokens. The building has a prime location ̶ Zurich’s Bahnhofstrasse ̶ with the total transaction valued at CHF 130 million.

In the latest episode of #FinancialFox, crypto guru Stefania Barbaglio talked to Stephan Rind, CEO of BrickMark, about this pioneering transaction and the impact of such a deal on the blockchain industry.

Founded 18 months ago, BrickMark is now a member of EPRA (European Public Real Estate Association) and has already earned the position of leading blockchain real estate investment firm. The company is combining the asset value and profitability of this asset class with the technological possibilities of smart contracts in blockchain and tokenisation to create a more efficient “form of capital designed specifically for the needs of today’s global institutional investor,” said BrickMark on the announcement.

BrickMark sees this transaction as the first of a planned large-scale international real estate portfolio . The tokens will be built on the Ethereum blockchain and will make use of smart contracts to establish rights and entitlements of the token holders. “The market was waiting for a transaction of this size,” says Stephen.

CEO Stephan Rind

As for the high value of the purchase, Stephen says that ‘it is about trust, long-lasting relationships and track record’ and that the seller company RFR was a idealgreat international transaction partner.

Dr. Alexander Koblischek, Managing Director of RFR Management GmbH, said: “We gladly accepted the BrickMark tokens as part of the purchase price. We assume that digital financial instruments will also significantly gain in importance in the real state sector in the future.”

The BrickMark team has long-term experience in investment and real estate management. Two years ago, they realised the potential of blockchain in the industry.

“Real estate is the biggest asset class in the world and only 5% of all real estate investment is available for public investment through shares, bonds or fund units. The rest is locked in the hands of private investors. BrickMark tokens or other tokens that follow our concept are able to unlock this value and give access to these properties and wealth to people who haven’t had the chance to invest in prime properties in top locations around the world.”

Stephen believes this transaction is the first stage of BrickMark’s growth trajectory towards building a portfolio of high-quality properties.

Beyond tokens and smart contracts, blockchain technology can have other positive impacts on the real estate industry, especially in the developing world where land registry remains an issue to be solved. In many developing countries, property records are vulnerable to inconsistencies, as well as issues like tampering, damage, and loss, mainly due to the lack of a suitably secure system for land governance. These issues lead to vast areas of land ending up locked and unproductive.

The use of distributed ledger technology can streamline land and property records, reducing expropriation risks, facilitating market transactions, and unlocking access to finance, says the World Bank.

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Cassiopeia Services partners with Picante Tech Conference Europe

Focus on Innovation, Crypto and FashionTech

Cassiopeia Services, the award-winning London-based boutique PR firm focused on innovation in the investment space, is pleased to announce its new key partnership with the global news and publishing service portal PICANTE Media and Events for its 2020 Tech Conferences in Europe, which will discuss how innovation is shaping our economy and society, as well as raise awareness of valuable projects in Europe.

Launched in 2019, PICANTE TECH Conference Europe is a series of annual events designed to bring together innovation with compliance via several panel discussion and exclusive keynote presentations. The events are regularly attended by the top leading and emerging European startups, SMEs and large enterprises. The conferences aim to target businesses in Central-Eastern Europe, the Baltics, Scandinavia and Southern Europe.

Our goals are to help companies connect with the right partners in order to further develop their offerings in the ever-growing business community of the Baltic and Nordic regions. There are many opportunities in mobility, fintech, blockchain, edtech, and several other industries which haven’t yet been fully researched and implemented,” says Zoltán Tűndik, Co-Founder and Head of Business at PICANTE Media and Events.

Cassiopeia Services boasts a solid, global marketing platform with focus on social media, as well as a wide following in the investment, innovation and technology space, particularly on cryptocurrencies and blockchain. From a growth and PR perspective, these networks and channels represent a valuable alliance for Picante’s events.

Commenting on the partnership, Alex Marginean, Marketing Specialist at PICANTE Media and Events said: “Cassiopeia Services is a respected boutique PR firm and we value their commitment as a media partner of the TCE series. As we continue to strengthen our position in the tech conference events calendar of Europe, while also planning our expansion into North America and Asia, they are among the most dedicated partners. Stefania and the team has built a great network and we look forward to welcoming them this year in Tallinn and Prague.

The event gathers entrepreneurs, company representatives, investors and enthusiasts in the B2B sector of Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, Fintech, NanoTechnology, Quantum Technology, 5G, IoT, AR/VR and more innovative tech. In 2020, Tech Conference will host two editions: Spring, taking place in Tallinn in May; and Autumn, taking place in Prague in October.

Among the confirmed speakers for the spring edition are Vytautas Kubilius (Google’s Country Manager for Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania) Clément Delbouys (Sales Manager for EasyMile Northern Europe), Marek Kopanicky (Consultant at Slovak Investment and Trade Development Agency), Alex White(Co-Founder of crypto media group Coinstelegram), Märt Aro (Co-Founder at DreamApply and European EdTech Alliance), Gerard Martret (Co-Founder & CCO at Shotl), Jovita Gabnienė (Dispute Resolution & Entertainment Attorney), Magith Noohukhan (Customer Engagement Evangelist at Braze) and more.

Cassiopeia founder and director Stefania Barbaglio will be moderating the panel session ‘Welcome to Crypto Paradise: Why the Baltic States are at the forefront of the Blockchain Industry in the EU’, when experts will highlight the potential of the Baltic nations in the context of crypto economy and blockchain technology.

She will also speak at the ‘FashionTech’ session on the r/evolution of fashion.

Cassiopeia’s TV channel FinancialFox , a fast-growing video platform for tech enthusiasts, innovators and alternative investment seekers, will host a series of special episodes dedicated to insights from industry speakers at this event.

“Our partnership with Picante Tech Conference represents all Cassiopeia stands for: promoting innovation, understanding the power of technology and making the right connections. Exploring the possibilities unlocked by new technologies is at the core of Cassiopeia’s work and for that reason, these events are the right fit for us. We are excited to be part of the 2020 conferences and we look forward to the discussions we will have in Tallinn,” comments Stefania Barbaglio.

Technology has the power to reinvent society and leave a positive impact in the world. Over recent years, there have been numerous projects harnessing technology to bring about increased sustainability, security and inclusion. While the fast-paced evolution in the tech space is indeed exciting and promising, it can also be overwhelming due to the sheer number of projects emerging in the sector, and doubts over the future of over-hyped products.

The key to a successful business is a strong use-case that can add real value to both customers and economic activity. It is also important for governments and institutions to be open to embracing new technologies that make systems safer and more efficient. The Baltic region has been rising as one of the new tech business and entrepreneurship hubs, supported by an agreement made by the three Baltic states to support the use of technology, especially in capital market innovations.

Nordic Countries: The hub of FashionTech

Known for her entrepreneurial spirit and boundless creativity, as well as her keen eye for opportunity, Stefania is an international businesswoman with vast experience in innovation strategies. Her expertise has placed Cassiopeia as one of the leading PR agencies in the tech space.

Beyond this, Stefania Barbaglio is a fashionista and fashion innovation expert. She has recently launched her own fashion innovation platform Steffy B. During the ‘FashionTech” session, she will talk about how new technologies are shaping the future of the fashion industry.

Sustainability, transparency and ethical practices are the hallmarks of the new fashion age. Through her platform, Stefania has been analysing how technologies play a key role in the evolution of industry, offering new shopping experiences, improved community engagement, better supply chain management, and social empowerment.

“The fashion industry and all the luxury markets are evolving fast thanks to the implementation of new technologies. But it is not just about new materials and better customer shopping experiences and new marketing practices; there is a lot of innovation to come that will disrupt the supply chain cycle, bringing more transparency, efficiency and empowerment to communities and creators. The considerable problems of counterfeits and the second-hand black market can now be fought against,” says Stefania

The Nordic and Baltic region is indeed the right setting for such discussion. The Nordic countries have established a tradition of sustainability and innovation in fashion, with the Copenhagen Fashion Week (CPHFW) earlier this year setting up a sustainability advisory board of international fashion industry representatives, banning single-use plastic bottles and developing a guide to more responsible fashion shows.

“We wish to use our role and our voice to make sustainability more attractive and are dedicated to speeding up the industry’s transition,” said CPHFW CEO Cecilie Thorsmark to Vogue.

The Nordic countries have also started a cooperation platform, promoted as part of the Nordic Fashion Association, NICE: Nordic Initiative Clean & Ethical. “We are trying to move away from the very old-school, ugly-looking, chunking tech stuff happening now to a more fun, clean, fashion-tech scene that is more into emotional values, communication and solutions to everyday problems,” said Elin Fredberg, CEO of Swedish Fashion Council. The Swedish Fashion Council works with companies like H&M to develop tools to reduce faults in the fashion supply chain using technologies such as machine learning.

Be sure to follow us on social media @cassiopeia_ltd to keep up with more news and updates in this exciting sector. And don’t forget to subscribe to our channel to get notifications about further upcoming interviews on FinancialFox.

Register for the Tech Conference with the code ‘CASSIO10’ and get 10% off your ticket on: https://techconference.eu