Animoca Brands doubles valuation to $5B, OpenSea tops $3.5B in January volume, Microsoft eyes Metaverse gaming: Hodler’s Digest, Jan. 16-22

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Coming each Saturday, Hodler’s Digest volition assistance you way each azygous important quality communicative that happened this week. The champion (and worst) quotes, adoption and regularisation highlights, starring coins, predictions and overmuch much — a week connected Cointelegraph successful 1 link.

Top Stories This Week

NFT-focused Animoca Brands valued astatine $5B pursuing $358M raise

NFT and virtual property-focused steadfast Animoca Brands secured $358 cardinal worthy of backing earlier this week astatine a valuation of $5 billion. 

The institution said the caller funds volition spell towards financing strategical acquisitions and investments, merchandise development, and IP accumulation. The steadfast has gone from spot to spot implicit the past 12 months, raising much than $216 cardinal successful 2021, portion its valuation has much than doubled since its erstwhile superior rise successful October.  

A cardinal country of absorption for Animoca is GameFi, with the steadfast pointing to probe suggesting that the video gaming assemblage volition turn to astir $829 cardinal by 2028. The steadfast is besides invested heavy successful the virtual spot and Metaverse space, with The Sandbox metaverse being 1 of its premier jewels.

Bitcoin dumps to deed six-month lows adjacent $38K

Bitcoin’s terms dropped a hefty 7.5% successful the abstraction of 12 hours to concisely beryllium astir $38,000 successful the aboriginal hours of Friday greeting (UTC). During the depths of the selloff connected Tuesday, BTC’s terms fell beneath $35,000.

It is unclear what sparked the crisp terms dip and whether it is purely crypto-related oregon a grounds of a larger inclination crossed the accepted fiscal market. However, it is rather definite that, portion BTC and different assets are down, crypto influencers volition beryllium flocking to Twitter to cheesily inquire their followers if they person “bought the dip yet?” similar they bash each azygous clip the markets are successful the red. 

One imaginable crushed for Bitcoin’s downfall could beryllium that bears are trying to vessel the terms truthful that they deed their targets earlier their futures contracts expire. The InvesetAnswers Twitter account, which has implicit 85,000 followers, suggested that bears “need #Bitcoin nether $41,000 to pouch $132 cardinal successful gains” by Friday.

OpenSea surpasses $3.5B successful monthly Ether trading measurement mounting caller ATH

While the crypto marketplace whitethorn person cooled successful January, it appears that the NFT assemblage is booming with countless investors who are aping into tokenized collectibles, among different things.  

It was reported connected Monday that apical NFT marketplace OpenSea had reached a caller all-time precocious successful presumption of monthly measurement aft it topped $3.5 billion. At the clip of writing, the fig stands astatine a whopping $4.3 billion, suggesting an mean regular measurement of astir $204 cardinal successful January truthful far. 

The surge successful NFT commercialized measurement appears to beryllium led by the terms increases of respective Yuga Labs projects specified arsenic the Bored Ape Yacht Club, the Mutant Ape Yacht Club and the Bored Ape Kennel Club.

An Indonesian 22-year-old makes $1M by selling NFT selfies connected OpenSea

Reports surfaced astatine the commencement of this week regarding a crafty 22-year-old assemblage pupil from Indonesia who made astir $1 cardinal selling NFTs depicting 5 years’ worthy of selfies. 

Semarang-based machine subject pupil Sultan Gustaf Al Ghozali converted and sold astir 1,000 selfie images arsenic NFTs connected OpenSea. According to Ghozali, helium took photos of himself, either lasting oregon sitting successful beforehand of his PC for 5 years, arsenic a mode to look backmost connected his travel to graduation. 

He acceptable the archetypal terms for each NFT selfie astatine $3 without expecting involvement from superior buyers, but the task exploded successful popularity connected the backmost of enactment from salient members of Crypto Twitter.

Microsoft’s monolithic Metaverse move: Buying Activision for $69B

Microsoft announced connected Tuesday that it is acquiring gaming elephantine Activision Blizzard for $95 per stock astatine a valuation of $68.7 billion, with the woody slated to adjacent successful the 2023 fiscal year. 

Activision Blizzard boasts a beardown database of iconic gaming bid specified arsenic Call of Duty, Overwatch and World of Warcraft. Activision titles volition beryllium added to Microsoft’s Xbox and PC Game Pass service. 

Microsoft noted that the acquisition volition assistance the institution supply the “building blocks for the Metaverse.” CEO and president Satya Nadella explained:

“Gaming is the astir dynamic and breathtaking class successful amusement crossed each platforms contiguous and volition play a cardinal relation successful the improvement of metaverse platforms.”

Winners and Losers

At the extremity of the week connected Friday, Bitcoin (BTC) is astatine $38,651, Ether (ETH) astatine $2,807 and XRP astatine $0.68. The full marketplace headdress is astatine $1.80 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the apical 2 altcoin gainers of the week are Perpetual Protocol (PERP) astatine 3.62% and BitTorrent (BTT) astatine 2.04%.  

The apical 3 altcoin losers of the week are Harmony (ONE) astatine -35.08%, Loopring (LRC) astatine -34.25% and Kadena (KDA) astatine -32.04%.

For much info connected crypto prices, marque definite to work Cointelegraph’s marketplace analysis.

Most Memorable Quotations

“Most crypto assets presently usage distributed ledger exertion (DLT), it mightiness beryllium that this changes arsenic the exertion and manufacture evolve. Therefore, the authorities proposes to region the notation to DLT from the explanation of qualifying crypto assets.”

Her Majesty’s Treasury (United Kingdom) report

“After doing a batch of probe connected Bitcoin, I truly judge it is the aboriginal of money, man. Bitcoin is valuable, secure, and nary 1 tin messiness with it.”

Francis Ngannou, UFC heavyweight champion

“Bitcoin 90-day correlation to the S&P 500 is presently astatine its highest since October 2020.”

Arcane Research report

“Bitcoin is successful a unsocial phase, I think, of transitioning from a risk-on to risk-off planetary integer store of value, replacing golden and becoming planetary collateral. So, I deliberation that’s going to beryllium happening this year.”

Mike McGlone, elder commodity strategist astatine Bloomberg

“To date, the DeFi abstraction has been utilized chiefly for speculative activities. Users invest, get and commercialized crypto assets successful a mostly unregulated environment. The lack of controls specified arsenic Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering rules, mightiness good beryllium 1 important origin successful DeFi’s growth.”

Agustín Carstens, wide manager of the Bank of International Settlements (BIS)

“We made the determination to the firm equilibrium expanse connected a Bitcoin-standard backmost successful August of 2020, and since then, we’re up much than 300 percent connected our archetypal investment. […] It’s truly done its occupation of protecting america against ostentation and it worked arsenic we intended it to.”

Aly Hamam, co-owner of Tahini’s edifice chain

“While astir thin to absorption connected high-profile ransomware attacks against large corporations and authorities agencies, cybercriminals are utilizing little blase types of malware to bargain millions successful cryptocurrency from idiosyncratic holders.”

Chainalysis

“We’re not sellers. […] We’re lone acquiring and holding Bitcoin, right? That’s our strategy.”

Michael Saylor, CEO of MicroStrategy

“The crushed wherefore regulators person to bounds advertizing is astir apt due to the fact that of specified precocious demand. Most of our  users travel from connection of rima anyway. […] So, I don’t deliberation it’s going to person a immense impact.”

Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Binance

Prediction of the Week 

Nations to follow Bitcoin, crypto users to scope 1B by 2023: Report

After trading sideways for astir of the week, Bitcoin’s terms nosedived connected Thursday and continued little connected Friday. BTC dropped from $43,596 down to $38,251 wrong of Thursday, according to Cointelegraph’s BTC terms index, earlier reaching caller six-month lows connected Saturday. January has mostly been a downward and sideways period for Bitcoin’s terms action, which is not dissimilar its humanities terms show during the month. 

One study Cointelegraph covered this week, however, sees imaginable for further crypto adoption successful 2022. Digital currency speech Crypto.com produced a study showing a ample uptick successful crypto manufacture participants successful 2021. According to the firm, determination were 295 cardinal crypto owners astatine the extremity of 2021, up from 106 cardinal successful the archetypal period of the year. Crypto.com believes crypto ownership could surpass 1 cardinal this year. 

“Nations tin nary longer spend to disregard the increasing propulsion towards crypto by the public,” the study said.

FUD of the Week 

Crypto.com shares details connected information breach: 483 accounts compromised

Crypto.com revealed details astir its information breach that resulted successful the loss of astir $33.8 million worthy of integer assets connected Monday. The steadfast initially halted withdrawals connected the level and revoked each lawsuit two-factor authentication (2FA) tokens aft spotting “unauthorized enactment connected a tiny fig of idiosyncratic accounts.”

In a connection connected Thursday, Crypto.com said that 483 accounts had been compromised, with “4,836.26 ETH, 443.93 BTC and astir US$66,200 successful different currencies” stolen from clients.

The steadfast stated that it has present implemented an further furniture of extortion successful which a caller whitelisted withdrawal code indispensable beryllium registered wrong 24 hours earlier the archetypal withdrawal. It is unclear if that solution volition soothe the users who had their funds drained already.

Singapore bars crypto work providers from advertizing successful nationalist spaces

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) issued a caller acceptable of guidelines connected Monday for integer outgo token (DPT) providers, barring them from selling their services successful nationalist places, specified arsenic connected nationalist transportation, societal media platforms and broadcast and people media.

MAS besides warned the nationalist of the high-risk quality of crypto assets arsenic it introduced caller guidelines that volition use to each registered crypto work providers arsenic good arsenic those that are successful a transitional period. The guidelines stipulated:

“MAS stresses that DPT work providers should behaviour themselves with the knowing that trading of DPTs is not suitable for the wide public. These Guidelines acceptable retired MAS’ anticipation that DPT work providers should not beforehand their DPT services to the wide nationalist successful Singapore.”

EU securities regulator calls for proof-of-work crypto mining ban

In a caller interview, European Securities and Markets Authority vice seat Erik Thedéen raised concerns implicit the increasing usage of renewable vigor successful Bitcoin mining.

Thedéen asserted that Bitcoin mining has go a “national issue” and sounded the alarm implicit crypto perchance undermining clime alteration goals. He specifically took purpose astatine proof-of-work (PoW) mining, which is chiefly utilized by Bitcoin and a fewer different forked altcoins.

He advocated for proof-of-stake (PoS) arsenic a better, energy-efficient alternative, with immoderate commentators suggesting that helium could beryllium a concealed Ether bull waiting for the rollout of Eth2 aboriginal this year. (As a refresh: Eth2 volition modulation the Ethereum web from PoW to PoS.)

“We request to person a treatment astir shifting the manufacture to a much businesslike technology,” helium said.

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MiamiCoin has present raised $24.7 million… but who volition benefit?

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