Santander InnoVentures Chief on Blockchain's 'Bigger Picture'

Crypto Forensics Firm Elliptic Raises $23 Million, Plans to Track Facebook Libra Coin

Elliptic, a London-based firm that tracks currencies like Bitcoin for financial clients, announced on Tuesday it has raised a $23 million Series B funding round led by Tokyo-based SBI Group.
The funding will help Elliptic expand its offerings in Asia, where it is opening offices in Singapore and Japan, and develop new products to help customers trace Libra—Facebook’s forthcoming cryptocurrency—as well as digital currencies that might be issued by central banks.
Elliptic, which was founded in 2013 by three Oxford University PhDs, is one of a handful of firms that specialize in analyzing the distributed computer ledgers known as blockchains to determine who is using Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Unlike rival Chainalysis, which raised $30 million earlier this year, Elliptic doesn’t focus on the law enforcement market. Instead, its 100 or so clients are primarily banks, investment funds and crypto exchanges like Coinbase.
“We want to enable businesses to feel safe and know who they are transacting with,” Elliptic CEO James Smith tells Fortune. “In the long term, crypto is going to be part of the global financial system.”
Elliptic is able to provide its services by using software to analyze blockchains, which provide a public ledger of transactions. While some newer cryptocurrencies such as ZCash and Monero—dubbed privacy coins—make tracing transactions nearly impossible, Smith says they are only a tiny portion of the crypto landscape.
“The majority of activity, including the majority of criminal activity, is still in Bitcoin,” he says.
While expanding its operations in business, where Smith says the company’s revenue grew 11-fold over the last two years, Elliptic will also focus on developing tools to help clients understand new corporate and government cryptocurrencies.
This includes Facebook’s Libra, which was announced with considerable fanfare in June, but has faced a backlash from regulators that could slow or even halt the new cryptocurrency’s launch. According to Smith, such a development would not change the overall crypto landscape.
“Even if Facebook gets shut down in some form, there are so many other companies looking to put their own currency out,” Smith says.
In addition to Libra, Elliptic is currently studying the messaging app Line’s proposed cryptocurrency called LINK, as well as digital currency experiments of various central banks.
Smith did not disclose specific revenue figures for Elliptic, but did say the company has yet to be profitable. For its Series B, Elliptic also received new investment from AlbionVC, as well as contributions from existing investors including SignalFire, Octopus Ventures, and Santander Innoventures.

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The Future Of Blockchain: Fintech 50 2019

The Future Of Blockchain: Fintech 50 2019
As the price of bitcoin collapsed last year from a high of $19,000 to less than $4,000, skepticism fell over many other applications of blockchain, the technology that powers most cryptocurrencies by recording transactions without a central authority.
Much of the hype surrounding promises that sounded too good to be true is dissipating as reality and regulations set in. What remains however, are proven teams, flush with cash from mainstream investors, and increasingly, actual revenue.
Going forward, the blockchain selections from this year’s Forbes Fintech 50 2019 picks will undoubtedly form some unusual alliances as they evolve past competing against other blockchain startups, to competing in mainstream finance against long-established players.
Axoni co-fonders Greg and Jeff Schvey.AXONI
New York City
Using blockchain-based smart contracts to overhaul the back office of the world’s biggest derivative markets. Its distributed ledger will allow counterparties to see payments, calculations and other vital trade information in real time, improving efficiency and lowering risk. Already partnering with world’s biggest banks and financial intermediaries.
Funding: $59 million from Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan and others
Bona fides: It is currently putting the $10 trillion credit derivative market onto smart contracts working with DTCC and a steering committee of 15 of world’s biggest banks. It’s already settling foreign exchange trades using the blockchain.
Cofounders: CEO Greg Schvey, 32 and CTO Jeff Schvey, 33. The brothers also cofounded TradeBlock, which provides institutional trading tools for cryptocurrency

Bitfury CEO Valery VavilovBITFURY
This full-service blockchain firm expanded from its roots providing bitcoin mining hardware to launch its own blockchain, plus software designed to help U.S. law-enforcement and others investigate illicit activity using bitcoin.
Funding: More than $150 million from Korelya Capital, Macquarie Capital, Dentsu & others.
Latest valuation: $1 billion plus
Bona fides: $500 million in revenue in 2018
Cofounder & CEO: Valery Vavilov, 39, a Latvian-trained computer scientist.

Circle co-founders Sean Neville and Jeremy AllaireCIRCLE INTERNET FINANCIAL
Crypto finance giant Circle last year entered the exchange business with the purchase of Poloniex and now offers services for cryptocurrency trading, investing and payments. Last October partnered with Coinbase to launch USDC stablecoin — a crypto asset using the Ethereum blockchain and backed by U.S. dollars.
Funding: $246 million from IDG Capital, Bitmain, Breyer Capital, Goldman Sachs and others.
Latest valuation: $3 billion
Bona fides: 8 million customers from more than 100 countries; USDC has a $335 million in recent market value, making it recently among the 20 most valuable cryptos..
Cofounder & CEO: Jeremy Allaire, 47, previously founded publicly traded Brightcove online video platform

Coinbase CEO Brian ArmstrongCOINBASE
San Francisco
Expanding beyond its roots as a bitcoin wallet and retail exchange, Coinbase now offers cryptocurrency custody, professional and institutional trading platforms, and an institutional trading platform. Last year bought, a service where users pay in bitcoin to contact experts via email, for a reported $100 million.
Funding: $525 million from Tiger Global Management, Andreessen Horowitz, YC Continuity & others. Latest valuation: $8 billion
Bona fides: The most heavily funded startup in crypto; has opened 25 million wallets for customers.
Cofounder & CEO: Brian Armstrong, 36, whose Coinbase holdings make him a billionaire.

Tyler Winklevoss, chief financial officer and co-founder of Gemini Trust Company LLC, right, and Cameron Winklevoss, chief executive officer and co-founder.© 2016 BLOOMBERG FINANCE LP
New York City
Founded by twin brothers Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, the Gemini cryptocurrency exchange is licensed as a New York trust company, making it a qualified custodian and a fiduciary under New York Law. Now licensed to do business in 49 states, Gemini is leading the fight for an SEC approved bitcoin ETF, and launched the Virtual Commodities Association to promote cryptocurrency industry self-regulation.
Funding: Winklevoss Capital Management, wholly owned by Tyler and Cameron
Bona fides: Employs 200 people and just moved to a new 50,000 square foot office
Cofounder & CEO: Tyler Winklevoss, 37, a former Olympic rower

Brad Garlinghouse, chief executive officer of Ripple Labs Inc.© 2018 BLOOMBERG FINANCE LP
San Francisco
Its blockchain based global settlements network aims to replace SWIFT, the interbank messaging platform that has long connected nearly every bank in the world. Ripple has also launched a service that lets companies make cross-border payments in XRP, the cryptocurrency created by its founders, which was recently second to Bitcoin in value.
Funding: $94 million from IDG Capital, SBI Investment, Santander InnoVentures & others.
Latest valuation: $5 billion
Bona fides: 200 RippleNet customers, including Bank of America and American Express
Cofounders: Jed McCaleb, Chris Larsen and Arthur Britto
CEO: Brad Garlinghouse, 48, former president of AOL
For full Forbes Fintech 50 2019 coverage, see:
Full list of the Fintech 50 2019
The Future Of Personal Finance: Fintech 50 2019
The Future Of Lending: Fintech 50 2019
The Future Of Real Estate: Fintech 50 2019
The Future Of Investing: Fintech 50 2019
The Future Of Payments: Fintech 50 2019
The Future Of Wall Street: Fintech 50 2019
Fintech 50 2019: The Newcomers
The 10 Biggest Fintech Companies In America 2019
Ryan Williams, 30, Started A Revolutionary $800M Fintech. But Can He Escape His Kushner-Trump Connection?
A 29-Year-Old Dominican Immigrant Is Teaching Fintech Startups How Real People Relate To Money
This Startup Is Creating A Real-Time Data Map Of The Global Economy. BlackRock And PayPal Are Buying It
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Bitcoin Price Jumps, Massive Power Grab, Binance In China, Ripple + Santander & Games On Tezos 2016 CNN y BanSantander opinan Blockchain y Bitcoin Interview with the head of Santander InnoVentures Mariano Belinky How blockchain is disrupting digital identity at K(NO)W Identity 2017 Interview Pascal Bouvier Santander Innoventures at European FinTech Awards & Conference 2016

Blockchain tech could reduce banks' infrastructural costs by $15-20 billion a year by 2022, says a new report by Santander InnoVentures. Santander, one of Spain’s largest banks to date, has created Santander InnoVentures, which controls a US$100m fund. The main goal of this venture is to keep an eye out for new and innovative technologies to support Santander’s customer base and expand the bank’s reach beyond the borders of Spain. Anything closely related to blockchain ... Blockchain News, Opinion, TV and Jobs – Santander InnoVentures, the $100 million fintech venture capital fund of Santander Group, and Onevest, a leader in the startup ecosystem operating The Santander app is powered by the blockchain technology implementation developed by Ripple, a company in which Santander Innoventures, the $100 million fintech venture capital fund of Santander Group, has invested. Working with Ripple builds on Santander’s philosophy of collaborating with the most innovative companies to consistently provide better services to customers. In June 2015 ... Mariano Belinky, managing director of Santander InnoVentures, discusses how bitcoin and the blockchain could potentially disrupt the banking industry.

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Bitcoin Price Jumps, Massive Power Grab, Binance In China, Ripple + Santander & Games On Tezos

Bitcoin Price Jumps, Massive Power Grab, Binance In China, Ripple + Santander & Games On Tezos The Modern Investor . Loading... Unsubscribe from The Modern Investor? Cancel Unsubscribe. Working ... John Kennedy chats with Mariano Belinky, head of Santander InnoVentures. Santander InnoVentures is the $100 million fintech VC fund of Santander Bank – inves... Interview with Pascal Bouvier - Partner at Santander Innoventures - after the Blockchain panel discussion at the European FinTech Awards & Conference 2016 in Amsterdam past April 14. Pascal ... In this panel, Marc Hochstein (American Banker), Andre Boysen (SecureKey), Stuart Lacey (Trunomi), Pascal Bouvier (Santander InnoVentures) and Matthew Thompson (Capital One) discuss the merits and ... Today at MoneyConf in Madrid, Santander InnoVentures, the fintech venture capital fund of Santander Group, announced its strategic investment in Socure – an industry leader focused on real-time ...