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Bitcoin network tags new record - Crypto weekly update

Published: 14. 10. 2021 · Author: Daniel Mitrovsky

This week, the total market capitalization exceeded 2.04 trillion EUR. Increase at the 7-day interval is 3.03 %. Bitcoin increased by 3.76 % during the week to a current value of over 49 500 EUR. Bitcoin dominance is 45.6 %.

Source: Coinmarketcap

Bitcoin network tags new record

The strongest and most popular cryptocurrency Bitcoin has been trading mostly in green numbers in recent weeks. Positive sentiment in the cryptocurrency market and the impact of bulls have caused the price of bitcoin to rise by more than 22% in the last 30 days to a current value of $55,000 (€47,500).

The surge in the Bitcoin price and the growing interest of retail and institutional investors in bitcoin have caught the attention of the entire crypto community. As a result, a new record was recorded on bitcoin last Wednesday, with $31 billion (€26.7 billion) worth of transactions being settled on-chain using the Bitcoin network.

The record high marks an increase in the network’s daily settlement volume of approximately 40 times since the beginning of 2020.

On-chain analyst Willy Woo commented on the uptick in activity and settlement value over the weekend, tweeting that the volume of money moving on Bitcoin’s blockchain currently dwarfs that of major centralized payments networks Visa and Mastercard in the United States. According to his tweet, bitcoin's network “presently doing ~$190k per second. Compare this to $130k per second by Visa for US customers and $55k per second for Mastercard.”

Ethereum’s daily transfer value is currently $5.3 billion (€4.56 billion) according to Coin Metrics. Ethereum had briefly flipped Bitcoin’s daily settlement volume in early September, but Bitcoin regained its lead within a couple of weeks. Source

El Salvador and bitcoin profits

El Salvador President Nayib Bukele will use part of the country’s $4 million (€3.44 million) profit from its Bitcoin investment to build a huge pet hospital.

Bukele announced the news via social network Twitter, where he posted a video visualizing of what the hospital would look like, clarifying that he was not selling any of the 700 BTC acquired for a national trust created to facilitate the immediate conversion between BTC and USD for Chivo Wallet users.

In one of his other tweets, Bukele elaborated further on his idea. According to Bukele, The hospital will be pretty big and it will include modern medical facilities, including consulting rooms, operating rooms and animal rehabilitation centers.

All this is possible because the rise of Bitcoin left the country with a $4 million surplus in the Bitcoin Fund —without affecting the amount of BTC available. Source

George Soros and Bitcoin

Soros Fund Management, a private U.S. investment management firm founded by billionaire investor and philanthropist George Soros, has revealed that it owns some bitcoins.

Soros Fund Management LCC CEO and chief investment officer Dawn Fitzpatrick confirmed at the Bloomberg Invest Global Conference that their firm “own some coins, not a lot."

Fitzpatrick also noted that cryptocurrencies “crossed the chasm to mainstream but the coins themselves are less interesting than the use cases of DeFi and things like that.

Fizpatrick thus indirectly indicated that the Soros Fund is more interested in the decentralized finance ecosystem.

For many, this revelation was a surprise. When he addressed the World Economic Forum in Davos in January 2018, Soros described Bitcoin as a "typical bubble." He compared the cryptocurrency industry to the tulipmania that gripped The Netherlands in the 1600s. However, he also saw the potential in blockchain technology, which he labeled as "innovative“. Source

Google partners with crypto marketplace Bakkt

Bakkt, a Bitcoin and crypto marketplace and custodian, announced a partnership with Google to extend the “reach and usability of digital assets to meet rapidly evolving consumer demand.”

Bakkt users will now be able to add their virtual Visa Debit cards into Google Pay to purchase goods and services in-store and online, wherever Google Pay is accepted. Bitcoin payments will be converted into fiat to make these purchases.

“This partnership is a testament to Bakkt’s strong position in the digital asset marketplace, to empower consumers to enjoy their digital assets in a real-time, secure, reliable manner,” commented Gavin Michael, Bakkt CEO.

In addition, Bakkt will use Google Cloud to help the company build a best-in-class, innovative platform that can undoubtedly scale to meet the needs of millions of users.

While this partnership may not be the ideal payments solution Bitcoiners are looking for, as they will have to liquidate their Bitcoin for fiat before making transactions, it is very interesting to watch growing demand for Bitcoin by the world's largest companies. Source

Crypto companies with record funding

The third quarter of 2021 marked another huge milestone for the crypto industry as companies raised an unprecedented sum through venture funding.

Venture funding for blockchain companies between July and September 2021 hit an all-time high of $6.5 billion (€5.59 billion) in 339 rounds–and that’s in disclosed deals only, according to recent research from Blockdata.

This is the third consecutive record this year, with $3.83 billion (€3.29 billion) and $5.13 (€4.42 billion) billion raised in Q1 and Q2, respectively.

Notably, the latest numbers are almost double the total amount raised throughout all of 2020, when Venture capital funds invested $3.8 billion (€3.27 billion) in crypto companies.

Among the most successful companies during each funding rounds were:

  • FTX – Helmed by 29-year-old billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried, crypto exchange FTX closed a whopping $900 million Series B funding round in July, which brought the company’s valuation to $18 billion. Over 60 investors, including Sequoia Capital, Paradigm, and Coinbase Ventures, participated in the biggest round in the industry’s history.

  • Sorare - Sorare, a fast-growing fantasy soccer game based on Ethereum NFT cards, raised $680 million in September at a valuation of $4.3 billion. The Series B round was led by Japanese investment conglomerate SoftBank, which previously funded several other crypto companies as well.

  • Genesis Digital Assets - an American Bitcoin mining firm–closed a $431 million funding round led by Paradigm, with participation from New York Digital Investment Group (NYDIG), and FTX among others.

  • Fireblocks – New York-based company that provides digital asset custody, transfer, and settlement infrastructure for clients including banks and exchanges, raised $310 million in July. The Series D funding was co-led by Sequoia Capital, Stripes, Spark Capital, Coatue, DRW VC and SCB 10X, and brought the firm’s valuation to $2 billion.

As for the most active investors that participated in funding rounds in Q3 2021, the report points to Coinbase Ventures, which was involved in a total of 18 deals. Source

Curiosity : Investors Preferring Bitcoin Over Gold

Investment firm JP Morgan Chase, in a recent note to investors, said that institutes are looking at Bitcoin as a better hedge against inflation than gold.

Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou from JPMorgan Panigirtzoglou pointed to “the failure of gold to respond in recent weeks to heightened concerns over inflation” as a possible driver of the return to bitcoin.

Gold is often seen by investors as a hedge against inflation due to the perception it protects purchasing power and the ability to provide defense during market turmoils. Gold prices are actually hovering below $1,800 (€1,550) per ounce despite rising inflation, falling 7% year-on-year. This may be one of the main reasons why many investors are looking for an “alternative” hedge asset. Source

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