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Revolut Bank Posts Losses Worth £106.5 million in 2019

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Revolut bank, Europe’s top digital bank recorded a loss of £106.5 million in 2019. The firm is confidence in turning a profit with its current performance.

Revolut Bank renowned as one of Europe’s top challenger banks said its losses in the 2019 fiscal year stood at £106.5 million. This significant loss is triple-fold compared to the ones recorded in 2018 (£32.9 million), putting the company in a worrisome state pre-COVID-19.

The company increased both its revenue and its customer base in 2019, but these performances were negated by the reported loss. Revolut attributed its losses to the international expansion drive, a move that has seen it enter the US, Singapore, and Australian markets.

The growth tick by Revolut has been seen by the firm’s management to be a step in the right direction. Nik Storonsky, Revolut founder and CEO, said in a statement on Tuesday:

“While we still have some way to go, we are pleased with our progress in 2019, We increased daily active customers by 231% and the number of paying customers grew by 139%.”

Revolut Bank Rise to Dominance

British based Revolut Bank was founded on 1 July 2015, and has since, grown to be one of the formidable challenger banks in Europe.

Revolut offers banking services including GBP and EUR bank accounts, debit cards, fee-free currency exchange, stock trading, cryptocurrency exchange, and peer-to-peer payments. Its mobile app supports spending and ATM withdrawals in 120 currencies and sending in 29 currencies directly from the app.

This bank is one of the first startups to embrace the capabilities of cryptocurrencies in the payment service system. It also provides customers through its app with access to cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, and XRP by exchanging with about 25 fiat currencies.

Its drive to push greater values to its customers has stirred Revolut bank to seek licenses to offer lending services. While one of such licenses has been granted by the Bank of Lithuania, the company aspires to drive this offering mainstream through approvals in other countries it operates in.

The payment giant has attracted investors around the world and it secures a $500 million fund injection earlier this year. Nik Storonsky attributed the firm’s attractiveness to investors to its business model. He noted:

“We are on a mission to build a global financial platform on a single mobile app where our customers can manage their daily finances, and this investment demonstrates investors’ confidence in our model”.

Recent Growth Review

In a competitive and highly innovative business ecosystem, Revolut has carved a niche for itself. The company tripled its user base in 2019 to 10 million from 3.5 million about a year earlier. Valued at $5.5 billion, the company was able to wedge through the difficult times the coronavirus pandemic plunged the world into.

Martin Gilbert, Revolut’s Asset manager said in a statement:

“Both 2019 and the first months of 2020 have been periods of significant achievement and expansion for Revolut, putting the company on a clear path to long-term sustainable growth. Our continued growth and expansion during the pandemic has shown the resilience of our strategic plans and we are pleased that these plans are further endorsed by new investors”.

While Revolut Bank has never recorded a significant profit in a fiscal year since its inception in comparison to its competitor TransferWise which reported profits in 2017, it looks to turn in a profit despite the stressed state of the global economy this year. This is enough to boost the Revolut investors’ confidence to look beyond the losses reported and hope for better days ahead.

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Benjamin Godfrey is a blockchain enthusiast and journalists who relish writing about the real life applications of blockchain technology and innovations to drive general acceptance and worldwide integration of the emerging technology. His desires to educate people about cryptocurrencies inspires his contributions to renowned blockchain based media and sites. Benjamin Godfrey is a lover of sports and agriculture.



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How Lightening Network Is Using Binance Smart Chain to Secure Privacy for DeFi Users

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Lightening Cash is a project that uses zero-knowledge proofs to provide users with an assurance of privacy in their blockchain-based transactions.

Even by the standards of the fast-moving cryptocurrency markets, the rise of decentralized finance has been remarkable. Only one year after hitting the $1 billion milestone, the total value locked in DeFi exceeded $40 million in February this year.

While other platforms are now making headway in propagating their own DeFi ecosystems, the vast majority of that growth has taken place on the Ethereum blockchain. Ethereum often comes under fire for its lack of scalability and high transaction fees, and rightly so.

However, there’s another issue with Ethereum-based DeFi that’s less frequently discussed – privacy. Every single transaction that takes place on Ethereum is recorded publicly. If you give someone your public wallet address, they can find out how much crypto you’re holding.

In the context of DeFi, the issue comes with even bigger problems. Ethereum’s transparency promotes front-running in DeFi. Front-running generally occurs in arbitrage transactions where traders attempt to profit from price differentials across exchanges.

The problem is that once a DEX transaction is broadcast to the network, even before it’s included in a block, it’s possible that another user, or more commonly, a bot, will see the same opportunity. They swoop in, bid a higher gas price so that a miner will include their transaction in a block first, and take the profit away from the trader. The practice is rife, as demonstrated in an August 2020 blog post from programmer Dan Robinson, who told of how his team ended up losing out on $12k worth of profit to a front-running bot.

Therefore, it’s evident that the privacy issue on Ethereum isn’t a trivial problem. Thankfully, at this point in DeFi, crypto innovators are beginning to emerge with solutions, and one such example is Lightening Cash, developed on the fast-growing Binance Smart Chain.

What Is Lightening Cash?

Lightening Cash is a project that uses zero-knowledge proofs to provide users with an assurance of privacy in their blockchain-based transactions. Zero-knowledge proofs, or ZKPs, protect user privacy with a layer of encryption that allows data to be shared between parties without disclosing the actual data itself. This means that the validating nodes on a network can verify a transaction but without having to see or publicly record all of the details of the transaction. It’s the same technology that Zcash uses to ensure privacy.

Lightening Cash is based on the same protocol as Zcash but operates on the Binance Smart Chain (BSC). BSC launched in September 2020 as a means of overcoming the lack of smart contract capabilities on the original Binance Chain. It offers several benefits for applications, including low fees, fast throughput, and compatibility with the Ethereum Virtual Machine.

Lightening Cash operates as a layer through which users can funnel transactions into DeFi protocols running on the BSC via the Lightening Cash user interface. Users pay a small fee in the native LIC token, which is forwarded into the project’s Treasury. The Treasury fund is used as a mechanism to help manage the price of LIC tokens, which is designed with long-term sustainability in mind.

LIC Token

A core challenge with many farmed tokens is that they end up being highly inflationary, which is ultimately not a sustainable source of value. Holders will simply dump the tokens once they reach a high enough value, forcing prices down. Lightening Cash aims to overcome this with a buy-back program.

Fees accrued in the Treasury will be used to buy LIC tokens from Pancake Swap, helping to provide a deflationary effect. This will offset the inflationary pressure that comes with offering LIC as rewards for farming and staking. The project aims for LIC tokens to provide a high APY but ensuring a price level that doesn’t incentivize dumping.

The LIC token will be issued under a fair launch model. Fifty million tokens will be released, with 35% allocated for farming, 33% going towards operations, development, team, and advisers, 12% to a community program, 15% held in reserve, and 5% to providing liquidity on PancakeSwap. Much of the token supply is also subject to an unlocking period, with the reserve supply subject to community governance for release.

The LIC token will be set at an initial listing price of $0.038 on PancakeSwap, meaning the initial market cap is $203,300.

Conclusion

As the first privacy protocol on the Binance Smart Chain, Lightening Cash stands a good chance of gaining adoption by BSC-based applications. However, the project aims to become a blockchain-agnostic protocol, which will provide significant scope for further growth. Given the privacy challenges faced by DeFi users, it seems likely that we can expect to see more from Lightening Cash and other privacy-preserving technologies in the future.

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Having obtained a diploma in Intercultural Communication, Julia continued her studies taking a Master’s degree in Economics and Management. Becoming captured by innovative technologies, Julia turned passionate about exploring emerging techs believing in their ability to transform all spheres of our life.



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Dogecoin Developers Add New Features

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Dogecoin leveraged on the crypto bull run of earlier this year as its price-performance pushed it into the top 10 ranking of crypto assets by market cap and its price peaked at new all-time highs.

Dogecoin (DOGE) might have been in the news lately for its incredible price performance and the new level of publicity it is enjoying amongst crypto enthusiasts, however, emerging new details of the features appear to show that the developers of the coin are working towards making the hype surrounding the asset as true as it comes. According to an announcement made yesterday, a new version of the protocol’s core has been developed which would lead to the improvements of its “synchronization speed and reduced default mempool expiry time.”

This means that Dogecoin would have a significantly improved speed when it comes to uploading new blocks as the integrity checks that were hitherto performed previously have been removed. Previously, when a new block is uploaded on DOGE, an expensive integrity check is carried out on the block whenever it is being sent to a new node. Not only that, but the new development would also see to the reduction of time that transactions are cached in the mempool from 336 hours to 24 hours.

The recently improved exposure and the rise in the price of the asset encouraged the developers to work on improving its core functionalities. According to Ross Nicoll, who is the lead maintainer of the asset, noted that “people say it’s a joke coin but we’re very careful to take care of the code. When it took off there was a resurgence in attention and we want to keep the currency operational.” Since its creation in 2013, the crypto coin has been the butt of many jokes in the industry, however, the attention of Elon Musk plus other notable elite artists like Snoop Dogg has brought it into the limelight.

Interestingly, Dogecoin leveraged on the crypto bull run of earlier this year as its price-performance pushed it into the top 10 ranking of crypto assets by market cap and its price peaked at new all-time highs. The digital coin has however corrected but its market cap is still well over $6 billion and it is still in the reckoning of crypto enthusiasts.

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Oluwapelumi is a believer in the transformative power Bitcoin and Blockchain industry holds. He is interested in sharing knowledge and ideas. When he is not writing, he is looking to meet new people and trying out new things.



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Tether Claims to Receive 500 BTC Ransom Note, They Will Not Pay

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Tether alleges it has received a ransom note for 500 BTC. The extortionists have threatened to make documents that are harmful to the Bitcoin ecosystem public.

On Sunday, Tether shared on its Twitter account that it was been extorted. In a thread, Tether stated that they had received a ransom note asking for 500 BTC – worth around $22 million. Tether further noted that the extortionist had threatened to release documents that would be “harmful to the Bitcoin ecosystem.” Tether has been clear that it will not pay. This comes just days after the stablecoin settled a case with the New York attorney general regarding the $850 million loan to Bitfinex.

The team also disputed the circulating documents purported to be personnel emails between Tether and Deltec Bank & Trust and others. Some have purported that these documents are proof that the stablecoin is not fully backed by dollars in reserves as it has long claimed. So far the emails have not been confirmed and Deltec Bank is yet to comment. After receiving the ransom note, Tether wrote:

“Today we also received a ransom demand for 500 BTC to be sent to bc1qa9f60pved3w3w0p7snpxlnh5t4uj95vxn797a7. The sender said that, unless they receive the BTC by tomorrow, they will leak documents to the public in an effort to “harm the bitcoin ecosystem.” We are not paying.”

Undermining Tether

The team has argued that the threat could be a simple extortion scheme or a way to undermine it. Basic extortions are popular in the crypto community, at the same time, the Tether project is surrounded by controversy. This has made the case complicated. Some in the community have long suspected that Tether is not fully backed by dollars in reserve. Additionally, academics have argued that Tether manipulated Bitcoin prices in 2017. Coincidentally as Bitcoin surged to reach $20K, Tether’s market cap climbed from $2 billion to $34 billion.

Tether has been key in the crypto market as a stablecoin. Stablecoins allow investors and exchanges to enter and exit cryptocurrencies in times of extreme volatility with ease. Despite such coins being popular, the largest has been Tether. At the time of press, the coin ranks 5th with a market cap of $35 billion. Interestingly, because of this the stablecoins use of entering and exiting from other cryptocurrencies, Tether records the highest daily trading volume on the crypto market. At the time of press, this stands at over $95 billion.

With the team clear that it will not pay, many will be watching closely if there are any controversial documents released that potentially harm the ecosystem. If not, it will be obvious that this was just a way to undermine the project and spread FUD in the market.

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Kiguru is a fine writer with a preference for innovation, finance, and the convergence of the two. A firm adherent to the groundbreaking capability of cryptographic forms of money and the blockchain. When not in his office, he is tuned in to Nas, Eminem, and The Beatles.





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