July 1, 2022 / Unchained Daily / Laura Shin
- The New York Department of Environmental Conservation denied bitcoin miner Greenidge’s air permit renewal.
- Ethereum’s Gray Glacier hard fork, which will push the difficulty bomb to September, was successfully launched.
- Three Arrows Capital reprimanded by the Monetary Authority of Singapore for providing false information.
- STEPN’s DEX becomes the largest decentralized exchange on the Solana blockchain.
- Mirror Trading International, a bitcoin pool operator, charged by the CFTC for a $1.7 billion fraud.
- Ruja Ignatova, founder of OneCoin, was added to the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list.
- CoinFLEX cancels withdrawals resumption plan.
- A new Ethereum token standard will enable “rentable” NFTs.
Today in Crypto Adoption…
- Stablecoin regulation might come by the end of this year in the United States.
The $$$ Corner…
- MoHash, a DeFi protocol, raised $6 million led by Sequoia and Quona.
- OP Crypto, a venture capital firm, launched a new fund to invest in early-stage crypto fund managers.
What Do You Meme?
FTX to Buy BlockFi for $25 Million?
According to CNBC, FTX is very close to signing a deal to buy crypto lender BlockFi for $25 million.
On June 7th (yes, three weeks ago) BlockFi was able to raise $350 million at a valuation of $1 billion. And in July last year, the company was valued at $4.75 billion. If the firm is sold at $25 million, it would account for more than a 99% loss from its peak valuation.
BlockFi has been struggling financially since the start of this bear market. Just last week, FTX provided BlockFi a $250 million credit line that was supposed to strengthen BlockFi’s balance sheet and “navigate the market from a position of strength,” according to Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO of FTX.
Also, only a few days ago, Morgan Creek Digital, one of BlockFi’s major investors, was looking to raise $250 million to buy a majority stake in BlockFi. They believed that due to the terms of the credit line, FTX could buy BlockFi for very little money, which would in turn wipe out BlockFi’s equity shareholders such as Morgan Creek.
Responding to the reports and the comments on social media, CEO Zac Prince tweeted, “Lots of market rumors out there – I can 100% confirm that we aren’t being sold for $25M.”
“Will this be like that famous Mashinksy tweet one day before Celsius paused withdrawals?,” asked Laura Shin, host of Unchained, referring to the Celsius CEO calling rumors of difficulty withdrawing from Celsius “FUD” just a day before the company had to halt withdrawals.
BlockFi’s fallout is just one of many that have been happening in the past few weeks. It was previously reported that Goldman Sachs wants to acquire Celsius’s distressed assets. CoinFLEX has still not resumed withdrawals from its platform. Voyager Digital is in a very weak situation due to over exposure to Three Arrows Capital, which was ordered to liquidate their assets this week.
1) Ari Paul on GBTC and the Bitcoin spot ETF:
2) Ethereum Pools on the staking rewards after the Merge:
3) Vitalik on capping the validator set size:
On The Pod…
Badiucao, Chinese artist and activist, talks about the importance of NFTs for political activism, the role of China in his career as an artist, the significance of blockchain technologies to resist censorship, and much more. Show highlights:
- why Badiucao became an artist and how the censorship in China brought him to NFTs
- how Badiucao only learned about Tiananmen Square when he was 22 years old
- why Badiucao took up work as a preschool teacher in Australia
- how anonymity is important for Chinese activists for their family’s safety
- the intention of Badiucao’s art and what is he trying to express
- the repercussions of Badiucao’s activism
- why Badicuao eventually gave up his anonymity
- why Badiucao decided to issue art as NFTs and what possibilities he sees in NFTs
- how Badiucao enabled people to write a message of protest in the blockchain with the launch of his NFT and how this represented the first large mass protest written into the blockchain
- whether the Beijing Winter Olympics is an outrage and a disgrace for the international community and how this inspired Badiucao’s NFT collection Beijing 2022
- how Niki approached the issue of the possibility of having the art taken down
- how Badiucao used NFTs to help Ukraine due to the war
- the reasons political art has so much value, and how NFTs enable possibilities for all political artists around the world
- whether NFTs are much more than just some apes, and how learning about art is important
- how to get started as a political artist and the importance to remain truthful
- the significance of using power as an artist
My book, The Cryptopians: Idealism, Greed, Lies, and the Making of the First Big Cryptocurrency Craze, which is all about Ethereum and the 2017 ICO mania, is now available!
You can purchase it here: http://bit.ly/cryptopians