April 6, 2022       /       Unchained Daily       /       Laura Shin

Daily Bits ✍️✍️✍️

  • Block (formerly Square) says a former worker accessed US customer data, including full names and brokerage account numbers, without approval.

  • PwC released a report on stablecoins and CBDCs.

  • OpenZeppelin uncovered and resolved a $15 billion bug in Convex Finance without any funds being stolen.

  • FTX made a strategic investment with IEX Group, operator of a US-regulated national stock exchange.

  • OFAC sanctioned 100 BTC associated with Hydra Market, a Russian darknet platform, after Germany announced the shutdown of Hydra and the seizure of 543 BTC.

  • Dogecoin is pumping in the wake of Twitter announcing Elon Musk as the newest member of its board of directors.

  • Marathon Digital is moving its coal-powered mining facility from Montana to a number of ‘more sustainable,’ undisclosed locations.

  • Prosecutors in Florida seized $34 million worth of crypto tied to darknet activities.

  • Ledger wallet launched enhanced NFT support.

  • Bitcoin held on exchanges is at a multi-year low.

Today in Crypto Adoption…

  • The UK recognized stablecoins as a valid form of payment.

  • “Decentralized finance and blockchain are real, new technologies that can be deployed in both public and private fashion, permissioned or not,” wrote JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon in his 2022 investor letter.

  • MicroStrategy purchased an additional 4,167 bitcoins via its subsidiary MacroStrategy.

  • On Thursday, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will deliverher first speech on crypto in the US economy.

  • A majority of financial advisors have discussed crypto with their clients.

The $$$ Corner…

  • Boba Network, an Ethereum scaling solution, announced a $45 million Series A at a $1.5 billion valuation.

  • Hivemapper, a decentralized map solution, raised $18 million in a Series A.

  • GOALS, a blockchain soccer game, raised $15 million in seed funding.

  • Logan Paul’s NFT platform Liquid Marketplace has raised$8 million.

What Do You Meme?

What’s Poppin’?

Lightning Labs Looks to Enable Stablecoin Payments on Bitcoin

By Mark Murdock


Lightning Labs, the Bitcoin and Lightning Network developer, announced a $70 million Series B funding round yesterday. The funding round was led by Valor Equity Partners (a Peter Thiel-led firm) and asset manager Baillie Gifford, among others. Lightning Labs did not disclose its valuation.

The influx of funds will go towards the development of a new product called Taro, which aims to “bitcoinize the dollar,” as Lightning Labs CEO Elizabeth Stark described in a blog post.

As noted in Stark’s blog, Taro was only just made technically possible in November of 2021 when Bitcoin’s Taproot upgrade went live, making it easier to program contracts on top of Bitcoin, along with enhancing privacy and efficiency benefits on the chain.

“With Taro, developers will be able to issue assets on the bitcoin blockchain, and then move them onto Lightning for speed and scalability, making use of BTC liquidity to ensure interoperability between assets,” wrote Stark. “Assets like stablecoins will route through the bitcoin monetary network using Lightning. This new protocol cements bitcoin in its place as the internet’s native digital money and protocol for value transfer,” she added.

The end result, hopes Stark, is that Taro will unlock Bitcoin’s potential to bank the unbank — something that has been a dream in crypto for years but has yet to come to fruition on a large scale. “​​Instead of a bank account, people only need access to a mobile phone to tap into the native monetary network of the internet. And we can enable them to leapfrog the legacy financial system for something that is far superior — open, global, and interoperable,” she explained.

Notably, the launch of Taro comes on April 5th, aka Satoshi’s birthday – the same day that Roosevelt ordered US citizens to return gold worth more than $100 for fiat in 1933.

Recommended Reads

  1. New York Times’ Nathaniel Popper on NFT use cases:

  1. Galaxy Digital’s Alex Thorn on Bitcoin fees:

  1. @tracheopteryx on DAOs:

On The Pod…

Why TBD’s Mike Brock Is Skeptical That Decentralized Applications Will Become Popular

Mike Brock, general manager of TBD at Block, discusses how TBD’s yet-to-be-released DEX is structured, explains why he thinks decentralized solutions do not necessarily need blockchains, and tells the humorous story about how Jack Dorsey convinced him to start working on a Bitcoin project. Show highlights:

  • what TBD is and what its relation to Block (formerly Square) is
  • how TBD differs from Spiral, another Block-based Bitcoin firm
  • how tbDEX works and why building on-ramps and off-ramps to crypto is so important
  • who will be supplying the liquidity for tbDEX
  • why Mike is passionate about creating digital identity infrastructure
  • how tbDEX will incorporate digital identity tooling into its protocol
  • what Mike thinks about Vitalik Buterin’s misgivings concerning tbDEX’s design
  • why Mike fell down the rabbit hole (thanks Jack Dorsey)
  • what lessons Mike learned at Cash App that he is using at TBD
  • which stablecoin TBD will be working with
  • why Mike is not a believer in DeFi
  • why tbDEX (or, seemingly, other TBD products) will not utilize tokens

Book Update

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