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Cryptocurrency

  • ‘Luno making progress to get users’ money back from Malaysian account’ [Updated]

    Just over five months since Malaysia's tax authority took the decision to unfreeze SA bitcoin exchange Luno's Malaysian bank account, the startup says it is making progress in helping customers to get their money back. The tax authority in January froze the startup’s Malaysia bank account with Maybank, after it launched a probe into the cryptocurrency company’s activities in Malaysia. It unfroze the account in February. "We are making progress in Malaysia, but these things take time as you can understand," Vijay Ayyar, who leads the Luno's global countries team told Ventureburn in an email today. "Our immediate priority was to help customers get their money back which is...

  • ICOs may have frizzled but SA startups are closer to meeting targeted raises

    With the steady fall in the price of Bitcoin and Ethereum since the beginning of this year fewer local startups may be opting to run an initial coin offering (ICO). Yet it seems SA startups are getting more successful at running ICOs -- at least if reaching their targeted raise is anything to go by. While startups last year struggled to raise more than four percent of the capital they sought to raise through ICOs, SA startup Gron Digital claims to have already allocated 84% or over 50.4 million of its 60 million GRO tokens. The startup aims to -- through its blockchain platform -- become an industry standard in making...

  • Identity.com a ‘first-of-kind’ for secure identity verification says Vinny Lingham

    South African entrepreneur and Civic founder Vinny Lingham has announced the name of his new decentralised identity ecosystem – Identity.com. In a blog post yesterday East London born Lingham, who is based in Silicon Valley, said Identity.com will be a "first-of-its-kind" decentralised platform that will open up access to on-demand, secure identity verification. "Identity.com is designed to connect users, requesters, and validators around the world to enable reusable identity verification, powered by Civic tokens (CVCs). "This ecosystem allows individuals, companies, and other entities to interact easily and safely in the digital world," he said. SA entrepreneur and Civic founder Vinny Lingham says Identity.com will be a 'first-of-its-kind' decentralised platform for...

  • SA platform Bitfund claims hundreds of signups since yesterday’s launch

    SA cryptocurrency investment platform Bitfund has had "hundreds" of investors sign up since its launch yesterday claims one of its founders, Josh Miltz. The founders of the Joburg-based startup claim that the new platform gives investors exposure to index portfolios of more than 20 of the largest cryptocurrencies. "We think a lot of people are excited by the technology," Miltz told Ventureburn today. However, Miltz -- a software engineer, who founded the startup with three former school friends last year -- declined to say how much the platform was able to raise in funding from three local entrepreneurs last year. He could say only that the platform received a "significant" amount in seed...

  • Joburg hub Blockstarters on hunt for $450k to assist blockchain startups

    Newly launched Joburg hub Blockstarters is looking to raise $450 000 to help fund business support services for at least eight blockchain startups, the hub's CEO Kreaan Singh revealed today. The hub officially launched on 5 June and is currently assisting seven blockchain startups, including Zimbabwean crypto exchange Golix -- which last month told Zimbabwean customers that they would not be able to use the exchange to draw currency like US dollars or Euros (see the story here). Speaking to Ventureburn today, Singh confirmed that corporate companies are among those the hub has so far approached to raise the funding which would cover mentorship as well as technical...

  • SA man’s UK-based fintech nets ‘good interest’ in £15m pre-sale – BVNK official [Updated]

    A UK-based fintech -- that allows consumers to buy, store and use cryptocurrency and which was founded by South African Kyle Redelinghuys -- received "good" initial interest from users in a pre-sale that kicked off in May, says a top official at startup BVNK. The pre-sale aims to raise £15-million*. "We haven’t raised any significant amounts through these users as (we) have been focusing on private deals to lead the pre-sale. Once these deals are concluded we will focus on the public sale," BVNK head of business development, Kyle Hauptfleisch, told Ventureburn in an email last Friday (8 June). The platform -- founded by Redelinghuys (pictured above), a former...

  • Swarm Fund aims to raise raise $35m in loans for African farmers with FarmCoin

    Blockchain for private equity the Swarm Fund is likely to raise $35-million in revenue for 87 500 African farmers in the initiative's first year by helping sell their surplus crops, says the co-chairman and founder of commodities exchange platform FinComEco, Hirander Misra. Misra's company is partnering in with the US-based Swarm Fund in a joint venture together with Block Commodities, (formerly African Potash), which is a vertically integrated platform for the mining, production, and distribution of fertiliser. In an email to Ventureburn following the announcement of the initiative last week, Misra said he based the estimates off his organisation's experience in investing $10-million for smallholder farmers in Malawi using traditional...

  • Ekasi Bucks to launch ‘world’s first crypto-mall, bitcoin taxis for townships’

    Just months after a failed initial coin offering (ICO), South African blockchain consultancy Ekasi Bucks plans to launch what it calls "the world's first crypto-mall and on-demand transport service for townships". The two services will be unveiled this Monday (21 May) by the startup in three launches in Gauteng, namely in Mabopane, Soshanguve and Soweto. The launch comes after the Gauteng based startup last year sought to raise R50-million in an ICO to fund a blockchain-based rewards programme for township residents that buy from certain affiliated township businesses. But the ICO raised just R500 000, most of which was returned to investors. Read more: SA’s Ekasi Bucks ICO falls short of R50m target,...

  • You won’t be able to draw dollars – crypto exchange Golix tells Zim customers

    Five days since the Zimbabwe central bank issued a circular prohibiting banks from processing transactions linked to cryptocurrencies, crypto exchange Golix today informed Zimbabwean customers that they would not be able to use the exchange to draw currency like US dollars or Euros. In a blog post addressed to its customers today, Golix said "unless the central bank changes its position prior to the expiry of the 60-day window, you will not be able to send or receive fiat currencies for cryptocurrency trades". It follows the launch last month by the Harare-based exchange launched of the country's first Bitcoin ATM. As of Q4 2017, the...

  • The Sun Exchange in $25m ICO to allow investors to earn income off solar projects

    SA startup The Sun Exchange, a blockchain-based solar micro-leasing marketplace, will launch an initial coin offering (ICO) next week to allow investors to earn an income off small solar projects. It aims to raise $25-million in the ICO. The ICO will also help seed, what the startup calls "the world’s first crowd-sourced default insurance fund for clean energy projects in emerging markets". The Sun Exchange Solar Project Insurance Fund (SPIF) will be established shortly after the close of the token sale. The SPIF will help safeguard Sun Exchange solar cell owners against costs associated with potential solar project defaults. In a press release today the startup said...