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FTX launches $2 billion venture fund, hires Lightspeed exec to lead

Sam Bankman-Fried’s FTX has launched a new venture capital unit, adding billions of dollars in fresh capital to the already bloated private market for crypto investing.  FTX — which has long made investments alongside its sister company Alameda — said in a press release that FTX Ventures aims to “advance global blockchain and web3 adoption, with a broad investment mandate across social, gaming, fintech, software, and healthcare.” FTX has set aside $2 billion for the venture fund. It has also …

Former CFTC chair joins board of crypto investment firm

Crypto investment firm CoinFund has onboarded a former leader in the U.S. regulation space to its advisory board. Per a January 13 announcement shared with The Block, former Commodity Futures Trading Commission chair J. Christopher Giancarlo will join CoinFund as a strategic advisor.  “It’s pretty high-level strategy,” Giancarlo tells The Block, explaining that he hopes he “can help them peer into the future a bit.” In particular, Giancarlo emphasized his work with brokerage firm GFI Group, and especially its 2005 …

Visa and ConsenSys team up on CBDC tech

Quick Take Visa and ConsenSys have been consulting with central banks around the world on new tech for central bank digital currencies.  The pair are now looking into pilot cases to test usability. Visa has teamed up with blockchain tech provider ConsenSys in order to develop new infrastructure that will support the rollout of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). Catharine Gu, head of CBDC at Visa, told The Block that the pair has been consulting with central banks around the world …

Gearbox: Composable Leverage and Capital Efficiency

January 12, 2022, 12:50PM EST • 5 min read Quick take Over-collateralized loans on platforms like Maker, Compound, and Aave have seen significant growth in recent years.  Undercollateralized lending improves capital efficiency and unlocks powerful financial mechanisms but remains largely unexplored in DeFi. Gearbox is a generalized leverage protocol that offers undercollateralized loans using a new DeFi primitive called credit accounts. Join The Block Research for exclusive research like this Gain access to this research piece and 100s of others, …

Despite COIN’s slump, Wall Street is rallying behind the stock

Coinbase is feeling the pain of the broader slump in cryptocurrency coin prices, but Wall Street analysts are rallying behind the company despite a months-long decline in the exchange’s share price.  Coinbase Global Inc’s shares have fallen nearly 35% since November 9. And the price has fallen even more sharply this week, in line with the broader market for crypto public equities and tokens, which have been upended in part by anxieties that the Federal Reserve will more quickly hike …

The Block Research’s Analysts: 2022 Predictions

Larry Cermak, VP of Research Arbitrum, Optimism, Starknet, and zkSync all release their tokens in H1 2022, and they will outperform similarly to Layer-1s (L1s) in 2021. Token incentives will cause the Layer-2 (L2) ecosystems to amass a large TVL, and cross-L2 liquidity bridges will make the disadvantages over more centralized L1s more manageable. Optimistic rollups will be adopted much faster initially due to EVM compatibility. Still, eventually, composable ZK-rollups spearheaded by Starkware will be the winner due to better …

‘Critical’ Polygon bug put $24 billion in tokens at risk until recent hard fork

Ethereum scaling project Polygon was at risk of losing nearly all of its MATIC tokens until it upgraded its network earlier this month. The problem was a “critical” vulnerability in Polygon’s proof-of-stake genesis contract, which could have allowed attackers to steal over 9.2 billion MATIC tokens (currently worth over $24 billion). The total supply of MATIC tokens is 10 billion. The vulnerability was reported on the bug bounty platform Immunefi by a whitehat hacker known as Leon Spacewalker. According to …

What made Sam Bankman-Fried launch FTX — and what he now thinks about the world (Part 2)

Episode 86 of Season 3 of The Scoop was recorded remotely with The Block’s Frank Chaparro and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried of FTX. Listen below, and subscribe to The Scoop on Apple, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Stitcher or wherever you listen to podcasts. Email feedback and revision requests to [email protected] This episode is brought to you by our sponsors Bakkt, Kraken and Kava Bakkt® unlocks the $1.2+ trillion of digital assets that is currently held in cryptocurrencies, rewards and loyalty points, gaming …

What made Sam Bankman-Fried launch FTX — and what he now thinks about the world (Part 1)

Episode 85 of Season 3 of The Scoop was recorded remotely with The Block’s Frank Chaparro and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried of FTX. Listen below, and subscribe to The Scoop on Apple, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Stitcher or wherever you listen to podcasts. Email feedback and revision requests to [email protected] This episode is brought to you by our sponsors Bakkt, Kraken and Kava Bakkt® unlocks the $1.2+ trillion of digital assets that is currently held in cryptocurrencies, rewards and loyalty points, gaming assets and merchant stored value. We began in …

The Block’s VP of Research Larry Cermak on what to expect in 2022

Episode 84 of Season 3 of The Scoop was recorded remotely with The Block’s Frank Chaparro and Larry Cermak, VP of Research at The Block. Listen below, and subscribe to The Scoop on Apple, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Stitcher or wherever you listen to podcasts. Email feedback and revision requests to [email protected] This episode is brought to you by our sponsors Bakkt, Kraken and Kava Bakkt® unlocks the $1.2+ trillion of digital assets that is currently held in cryptocurrencies, rewards and loyalty points, gaming assets and merchant stored value. …