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Aztec updates its Layer 2 network to introduce privacy-focused DeFi on Ethereum

Aztec Network will update its Layer 2 rollup solution on Ethereum to a new version called Connect. The new update, which focuses on smart contract data privacy, will go live Thursday.  Previously, Aztec has offered a private money protocol called zkmoney, that allowed users to shield data on Ethereum transactions. However, it worked as a standalone solution that didn’t allow Ethereum apps to integrate data privacy. With the release of Connect, the Aztec team is aiming to position Connect as …

Orderly bags $20 million raise in boost for DeFi protocol

Orderly Network, a decentralized exchange protocol, has announced a $20 million fundraise led by a group of DeFi heavyweights. Three Arrows Capital, Pantera Capital, Dragonfly Capital, Sequoia China, Jump Crypto, Alameda Research, GSR Ventures and MetaWeb.VC all invested in the round, alongside other unnamed strategic partners, according to a press release on Thursday. Orderly runs on Near Protocol, the blockchain backed by Tiger Global. Near helped incubate Orderly, which was only founded as recently as April this year. Woo Network, …

Attacker snipes 20 million OP tokens intended for Wintermute loan

Ethereum scaling startup Optimism said Wednesday that an attacker interfered in a token recovery process involving Wintermute, resulting in the loss of some 20 million OP governance tokens.  As previously reported, the OP token went live at the end of May as part of a plan by Optimism — a Layer 2 network — to decentralize how the protocol is governed. An airdrop was held on May 31, and some of the total OP tokens were set aside to provide …

NY DFS issues new guidance on dollar-backed stablecoins

The New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) today became the first financial regulator in the US to issue guidance outlining compliance requirements for dollar-backed stablecoins. The guidance builds on informal policies used by the DFS since 2018, setting “baseline requirements” for any stablecoin issuer currently subject to DFS oversight, and any firm that applies to be regulated in the future. It “creates clear criteria for virtual currency companies looking to issue USD-backed stablecoins in New York,” according to Adrienne …

Frax co-founders propose spending $20 million to buyback FXS token

Sam Kazemian and Travis Moore, co-founders of Frax Finance, have published a new governance proposal Wednesday for a $20 million buyback of the protocol’s Frax Shares (FXS) token. Frax Finance is a fractional algorithmic stablecoin protocol and its stable currency is called FRAX. The stablecoin maintains its US dollar peg via two mechanisms — partial collateral backing by USDC and an algorithm that trades FRAX and FXS. The proposal’s authors say the buyback is necessary to reverse the token’s price …

Skolem announces $20 million Series A round led by Galaxy Digital

Data and trade execution service provider Skolem Technologies announced Wednesday that it has closed a $20 million Series A round led by Galaxy Digital. Point72 Ventures, Jump Crypto, Fenwick and West, Morpheus Ventures and Dragonfly Capital also joined the round, according to a release.  Skolem aims to provide a safe and secure entry point for institutional investors wishing to access the constantly evolving decentralized finance (DeFi) markets, according to CEO and founder JP Smith. Proceeds from this round will go …

Solana sets up $100 million fund for Korean crypto startups

Blockchain operator Solana this morning announced a new $100 million fund for Korean web3 startups. Solana Ventures and Solana Foundation, the Switzerland-based entity that promotes the growth of the network, have jointly stumped up the funds. They will be used for investments and grants in a range of Korean crypto startups, but with a focus on those in gaming, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and DeFi. “We have been working with Korean developers and actively investing in the ecosystem for some time …

DeFi venture funding deal activity fell in May, data shows

Decentralized finance-focused venture deal activity slumped in May, according to data gathered by The Block Research. Funding in terms of a dollar amount came in at $176.30 million for the sector in May, its lowest amount since September 2021. Further, DeFi wasn’t one of the two most popular deal types, according to John Dantoni, an analyst at The Block Research. May represented the first time this has occurred since July 2020.     Funding hasn’t entirely dried up in the …

May Blockchain Funding Recap

June 7, 2022, 1:43PM EDT • 11 min read Quick Take Last month the digital assets sector received nearly $3.5 billion across 220 venture deals Data/Analytics/Information had its largest funding month in dollar terms in at least 27 months, receiving roughly $362 million across 18 deals For the first time in 21 months, dating back to July 2020, DeFi was not one of the two most popular deal types. NFTs/Gaming continues to be the most popular deal type by a …

Top Israeli VC Pitango launches investment DAO, to issue token

Pitango, one of Israel’s leading venture capital firms, has launched a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) to invest in web3 projects. Sharing the news exclusively with The Block on Tuesday, Pitango said this is Israel’s first investment DAO. Specifically, Pitango’s fund — called Pitango First — has launched First Labs, which has then created a DAO called First DAO. “We are breaking the traditional VC model and will issue a token,” Aviv Barzilay, head of First Labs at Pitango, told The …