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Ripple launches new fund to drive blockchain innovation in Japan and South Korea

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Blockchain firm Ripple has launched a Japan and Korea fund to foster innovation on the XRP Ledger as it expands its presence in the Asia-Pacific region.

XRP, a cryptocurrency powered by the XRP Ledger, is an open-source, public blockchain designed for corporate use. Ripple leverages blockchain and XRP to enable real-time, cross-border payments.

The funds will support corporate partnerships, developer grants, startup investments, and community growth, Ripple stated on Tuesday. The XRPL Japan and Korea Fund is part of Ripple’s commitment of 1 billion XRP, announced in March 2022, to provide financial, technical, and business support for developers.

“The launch of this fund is a testament to Ripple’s strong belief in the potential of Japan and Korea as pivotal regional hubs for blockchain innovation,” said Emi Yoshikawa, vice president of strategic initiatives at Ripple.

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The expansion comes as the crypto industry in the U.S. faces a “hostile regulatory environment,” Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse told CNBC earlier this month.

Ripple noted last year that Asia-Pacific is “one of its fastest-growing regions” and will continue to “prioritize the region for adoption of its crypto payment services.”

In April, Ripple partnered with Tokyo-based HashKey DX to introduce XRPL-powered supply chain finance solutions to Japan. Additionally, it launched SBI Ripple Asia in 2016, a joint venture with Japanese financial services company SBI Holdings, to promote Ripple payment solutions in the region.

Ripple announced that the XRP Ledger will be used to issue official Expo NFTs for millions of attendees at the World Expo 2025 in Osaka, Japan. Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are unique digital assets, such as artwork, audio, or videos, stored and verified on blockchain technology.

Ripple secured a full license to operate in Singapore in October, having established the city-state as its Asia-Pacific headquarters in 2017.

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In April, Ripple revealed plans to launch a U.S. dollar stablecoin, which its president Monica Long indicated would “likely” happen this year.

In October, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) dropped claims against Garlinghouse and co-founder Chris Larsen from its December 2020 lawsuit, which alleged that Ripple had violated laws by selling XRP without registering the token with the SEC.

Source: cnbc.com

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Blockchain

New seed-stage VC fund from Finland secures €6 million in initial close for €30 million blockchain fund

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Helsinki-based Equilibrium Ventures (EQV), a new seed-stage venture capital fund focused on the crypto sector, has successfully closed the first round of its €30 million fund, raising €6 million from limited partners (LPs). This milestone highlights growing interest in blockchain startups and a promising future for the European crypto ecosystem.

The fund is led by an experienced team of partners: Mika Honkasalo, Henrik Sundvik (formerly of Bain & Company), and Christopher Ahn (ex-Molten Ventures investor). Equilibrium Ventures aims to attract and support founders with deep technical expertise in blockchain technologies, covering areas such as zero-knowledge proofs and smart contracts, essential for developing advanced blockchain solutions.

Equilibrium Ventures has attracted a diverse group of backers, including strategic investors, family offices, and notable LPs like Sebastien Borget, co-founder of the metaverse platform The Sandbox. This support underscores the fund’s credibility and signals growing confidence in crypto investments despite recent market challenges.

Dedicated to crypto infrastructure, Equilibrium Ventures emphasizes rigorous technical due diligence and value addition for pre-seed and seed engineering firms. With a network of about 70 blockchain engineers, mainly based in Europe, the fund is well-positioned to help startups develop robust blockchain technologies.

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The renewed interest in venture capital investment in blockchain, bolstered by evolving regulatory landscapes in the US and Europe, is expected to increase investor confidence in the crypto sector. Equilibrium Ventures, with its technical expertise and strategic support, is poised to become a significant player in Europe’s crypto venture scene.

Looking ahead, Equilibrium Ventures aims for a second close by the end of this summer, targeting 80% of the total fund. This progress indicates strong momentum and the potential for significant contributions to the European blockchain ecosystem.

Source: arcticstartup.com

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Blockchain

Riot Platforms Acquires 14% Stake in Bitfarms Ltd.

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Riot Platforms, Inc. has announced its acquisition of a 14% stake in Bitfarms Ltd., as detailed in a recent press release by Riot Platforms. This move aligns with Riot’s strategy to influence corporate governance within Bitfarms.

Acquisition Details

On June 13, 2024, Riot Platforms purchased 1,432,063 common shares of Bitfarms Ltd., representing about 0.35% of Bitfarms’ issued and outstanding common shares. The shares were bought on the Nasdaq Stock Market and other open markets at an average price of approximately $2.70 per share, totaling $3,870,293.46.

Before this acquisition, Riot held 56,194,973 common shares of Bitfarms, equating to 13.65% ownership. With the new shares, Riot now holds 57,627,036 common shares, resulting in a 14% stake in Bitfarms.

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Strategic Intentions

Riot Platforms intends to call a special meeting of Bitfarms’ shareholders to nominate several independent directors to the board, citing concerns over Bitfarms’ corporate governance. Riot seeks to influence Bitfarms’ strategic direction and enhance its governance standards.

Riot is continuously reviewing its investment in Bitfarms and may adjust its position based on factors such as market conditions and the company’s financial status. Potential actions include increasing or decreasing its stake, entering into hedging transactions, or proposing additional strategic measures.

Forward-Looking Statements

The press release includes forward-looking statements subject to risks and uncertainties, reflecting Riot’s current expectations and assumptions. Riot cautions investors to consider these risks before making investment decisions.

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Riot’s vision is to become the leading Bitcoin-driven infrastructure platform, focusing on a vertically integrated strategy with Bitcoin mining operations in Texas and electrical switchgear engineering in Colorado.

Source: blockchain.news

The post Riot Platforms Acquires 14% Stake in Bitfarms Ltd. appeared first on HIPTHER Alerts.

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Blockchain

Manta Foundation Unveils $50M EcoFund to Foster Blockchain Innovation

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The Manta Foundation has launched its $50 million EcoFund to build a robust ecosystem for leading blockchain projects, as per Manta Network. This initiative demonstrates the foundation’s commitment to funding opportunities and developer support for innovative blockchain ventures.

Funding and Support Opportunities
Starting June 15th, the one-year EcoFund will offer significant financial support through its Ecosystem Grant Program, which provides early-stage projects with grants of up to $50,000. This initial funding is crucial for bringing innovative ideas to life.

Additionally, the EcoFund dedicates $35 million for direct investments in promising projects on the Manta Network. These strategic investments aim to foster high-growth ventures that align with Manta Network’s long-term objectives, promoting a collaborative and mutually beneficial environment.

Diverse Project Focus
The Manta Foundation supports a broad range of projects across sectors such as DeFi, Gaming, NFTs, and more. These initiatives are chosen for their potential to drive consumer adoption and significantly enhance the Manta Network ecosystem.

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Applications for the EcoFund are accepted on a rolling basis, ensuring ongoing funding and support opportunities. The foundation prioritizes projects with robust business models and scalability, aiming to ensure the ecosystem’s financial health and sustainability.

Specialized Funding Categories

In addition to general grants, the EcoFund targets specific high-growth areas:

– AI/DePIN: Focused on using AI and Decentralized Physical Infrastructure Networks for sustainable solutions.
– Zero-Knowledge: Investments in zero-knowledge technology to boost privacy and security in the blockchain space.
– Memecoins: The Moon Mission Grant supports the development and growth of meme projects on Manta Pacific, fostering a vibrant memecoin culture.

Events and Hackathons
To further enrich the ecosystem, the Manta Foundation has allocated $5 million for online and offline events and hackathons. These events aim to attract new developers and users, fostering a culture of innovation and collaboration within the Manta Network community.

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Source: blockchain.news

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