Business of Blockchain: February 26, 2019

Gil Amran
Gil Amran

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3 years ago

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This week in blockchain business: Facebook is definitely going to do something sometime soon, proof that blockchain is useful, a stablecoin that's not stable and the latest in VC funding.

Facebook and blockchain... again.

Blockchain's biggest teases, Facebook, are at it again. After previous reports about Facebook developing blockchain-based remittance for WhatsApp and its acquisition of Chainspace, Facebook is now trying to figure out how make blockchain-based logins work. The main idea of the decentralized login would be to remove tech giants like Facebook, Google and Apple as the intermediaries between users and developers. This actually sounds like a really good idea that would make developers less at the mercy of the tech monopolies.

Neer Varshney writes in TNW that Faebook's decentralized logins wouldn't help users in securing their identity, but it would help Facebook by removing some risk of a data breach and putting the onus on users to secure their own data. Orbs' Nate Simantov provides three reasons that Facebook's move is important:

Enterprises making the most out of blockchain

It's kind of funny how in blockchain, it's large enterprises that are the early adopters and not smaller, less risk-averse startups. Movistar, the very large South American subsidiary of Spanish telecom, Telefonica, has announced it will be trialing Wibson's blockchain-based data marketplace. The marketplace allows consumers to sell their verified data for a profit.

HSBC has some good news about it's blockchain usage. The bank told Reuters that blockchain has helped it save 25% on foreign exchange trade settlements. HSBCs FX Everywhere platform is one of the few examples of production-level blockchain running at scale. The platform processes 3,500 to 5,000 trades per day and over $250 billion worth of trades since last year. FX Everywhere is used to coordinated trades between HSBC's trading hubs in the Americas, Europe and Aisa Pacific.

Vakt, which is digitizing oil commodity deals with blockchain, has announced that is now services most North Sea groups after bringing on four new clients. Vakt is now in use by companies such as BP, Shell, Total, Gunvor and Mercuria. Vakt is a great example of making blockchain useful from day one and will hopefully continue to expand.

Buy your crypto phone ... with fiat

Phone giant HTC has announced that its blockchain phone, the Exodus 1, with US dollars. The phone, which costs $750, can also be purchased with Bitcoin, Ether, Binance Coin and Litecoin.

-90% draw down is almost stable, right?

Bloomberg's Matt Levine takes a look at Basis' refund to its investors after the $133 million ICO realized its project cannot overcome regulations. Basis gave investors 90% of their money back, which doesn't sound so bad as far as failed projects go. This was fine for those who invested dollars, but pretty bad for those who invested crypto, especially Ether. Not only did Basis keep 10% of the Ether, meaning investors got back 0.9 ETH for ever 1 ETH invested, but the value of the 0.9 ETH dropped 85% from the time invested until the refund, leaving investors with practically nothing.

Ether investors were even more annoyed that Basis was supposed to be a stablecoin.

Latest VC funding news

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