We ask the buidlers in the blockchain and cryptocurrency sector for their thoughts on the industry… and throw in a few random zingers to keep them on their toes!
This week, our 6 Questions go to Alyssa Tsai, founder and CEO of Panony — an incubator, investor and adviser for blockchain and Web3 business.
My name is Alyssa Tsai, and I’m the founder and CEO of Panony. There are three pillars of businesses under our group umbrella. PANews is one of the earliest crypto media outlets in Greater China and South Korea. It has published over 20,000 articles, with an average of over 5 million page views per month. At Panony, we invest in blockchain projects worldwide and consult Fortune 500 companies for integration and expansion into the industry, spanning the entire spectrum of the blockchain industry from solution providers and exchanges to public chains, protocols and DApps. I’m also a limited partner of NGC Ventures, the Animoca Metaverse Fund and the Delta Fund.
Before falling down the rabbit hole of crypto, my prior work experience included Condé Nast, Isentia, Ogilvy and a high-tech law firm. I also actively speak at and moderate global blockchain conferences.
1 — What is the main hurdle in the way of the mass adoption of blockchain technology?
The industry is still in its infancy. We should be aware of the many challenges, though it’s already a buzzword in the tech world. The scalability problem is directly related to adoption and blockchain implementation. This question is about whether the system can operate smoothly as demand increases, which inevitably determines mass integration.
It’s also important to address that the complexity of blockchain technology limits mass markets’ ability to appreciate the benefits. The entry barrier is high, so people need to make an effort to understand, not to mention having to keep up with the rapid changes and disruptions. Now they might as well use an adequately good solution for their needs, like regular financial services.
That’s why I feel like I’m doing a meaningful job every day. It’s early for blockchain and never too early for us. There are so many things to do and so many people we can support through education. The future is now.
2 — Which countries are doing the most to support blockchain, and which ones will be left behind?
Since I’m based out of Greater China, I can share what’s happening here from my perspective.
Chinese President Xi Jinping once stated that the country needs to “seize the opportunities” given by blockchain technology. Following that principle, China has been developing a platform, known as the Blockchain-based Service Network, aimed at making blockchain technology implementation easier for businesses. Many governments are experimenting with a CBDC — a central bank digital currency, which has blockchain at its core — and China is piloting its digital yuan.
In recent years, the nation has issued statements supporting the development of blockchain tech across several sectors, with an ambition to consolidate the technology into its financial and growth strategies. We also appreciate its intention to build up industrial norms, or tariff incentives to support blockchain-based businesses.
Hong Kong has a robust system that has given birth to Animoca Brands, Crypto.com, BitMEX and many other exceptional companies in the industry. And on a global scale, Switzerland has SEBA Bank, the first regulated crypto bank in the country. In 2016, Zug’s local government became the first municipality in the world to accept taxes in Bitcoin; and in 2020, the Swiss authorities allowed citizens and companies based in Zug to pay their taxes in either Bitcoin or Ether.
Other countries such as the United States, Singapore, Japan, South Korea and South Africa also play significant parts in the blockchain ecosystem.
3 — What would you like to see tokenized? When, if ever, do you expect this to happen?
The history of art in museums, like the Dunhuang Murals. I visited years ago and learned that many experts and scientists are working tirelessly to discover a solution to slow down the oxidation of wall paintings caused by light and air exposure. Tokenizing these could help bring in more money for research and democratize art investment by making art pieces accessible to the general public. It could happen at any time.
In addition, charity work and support for research would be great to see tokenized, especially under the shadow of COVID-19.
4 — What makes sense to you, and what makes no sense whatsoever?
Gender equality. As a young female entrepreneur who originates from the East and connects to the West, I plead for more investment and education around women. I have met so many powerful women of diverse backgrounds, and they are just as smart and hard-working as men. In reality, challenges remain: There is discriminatory legislation, societal practices persist, and women continue to be underrepresented in leadership at all levels.
Speaking of education, children being taught to learn for the sake of their parents’ pride does not make sense to me. We should pay attention to personal growth.
5 — Which alternate movie universe would you most like to live in, and why?
Marvel’s. It dawned on me at the very beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic that we really could have a mighty superhero who could save thousands of lives. Furthermore, the films are about incredible, exciting voyages through time and space. I’d love to discover new worlds. For the time being, I’ll have to settle on crypto as my wild new world to explore.
6 — Think of a favorite poem or musical lyric. What is it, and why does it speak to you?
From “Bring in the Wine” by Li Bai of the Tang Dynasty: “When hopes are won, oh, drink your fill in high delight; And never leave your wine cup empty in the moonlight! Heaven has made us talents; we’re not made in vain. A thousand gold coins spent; more will turn up again.” For people who might be interested in the original version — 李白《将进酒》：“人生得意须尽欢，莫使金樽空对月。天生我材必有用，千金散尽还复来。”
I learned this classical Chinese poem during middle school, and it was eye-opening for me at the time how people living thousands of years ago could live their life to the fullest even when excluded from a position working for the emperor. I guess that’s how I learned about resilience and not being afraid of challenges.
Even today, I still remember every single word of this poem that inspires and empowers me — it’s like I’m encouraged to be someone like Li Bai, who continues to push forward despite the difficulties and stay truthful. I just keep on doing things I believe in, even when feeling down.
A wish for the young, ambitious blockchain community:
Be aggressive and inclusive. Get to know your community, and listen to your community. Lift and add value to one another through collaboration and fair competition.
Bitcoin (BTC) Nearly Taps $25,000 Level For the First Time Since June
Bitcoin (BTC) is showing several bullish signs in the daily time frame but has yet to break out from a short-term corrective pattern.
Bitcoin has been moving upwards since reaching a long-term low of $17,622 on June 18. On July 19, it broke out from a long-term descending resistance line, which had been in place since the end of March.
On Aug. 11, BTC reached a local high of $24,918, which was the highest since June 12. However, it failed to sustain this increase and created a long upper wick in its daily candlestick (red icon).
If the upward movement continues, the closest resistance area would be found at $29,370. This target is the 0.382 Fib retracement resistance level.
An interesting reading comes from the daily RSI, which moved above 50 at the same time which the price broke out from the descending resistance line.
Since then, the RSI has created an ascending triangle (dashed), which is often considered a bullish pattern. The indicator is currently at 61, right at the resistance line of this pattern.
Therefore, a breakout above it would likely also cause the price to accelerate upwards.
Short-term BTC pattern
Despite the relative bullishness from the daily time frame, the six-hour chart shows that BTC has been trading inside an ascending parallel channel since the June 18 bottom. Such channels usually contain corrective patterns, meaning that an eventual breakdown from it would be expected.
Moreover, the price has created what resembles an even shorter-term double top (red icons), which is considered a bearish pattern made at the resistance line of the channel.
On Aug. 9 (green circle), the price rebounded from the midline of this channel and at a short-term ascending support line.
So, whether BTC breaks out from the channel or breaks down from the support line will likely determine the direction of the future trend.
Wave count analysis
The main wave count indicates that BTC is likely in wave three of a five-wave upward move (black). The sub-wave count is shown in yellow, and also suggests that the price is in wave three. So, this seems to be a 1-2/1-2 wave formation. If correct, it would mean that the upward move will accelerate in the near future.
In order for the count to remain correct, Bitcoin has to hold on above the slope of the original 1-2 (black).
The most likely long-term wave count is also bullish, aligning with the proposed short-term count.
For Be[in]Crypto’s previous Bitcoin (BTC) analysis, click here
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Binance recovers the majority of funds stolen from Curve Finance
Binance recovered and froze around $450,000 worth of the stolen assets, which is around 80 percent of the stolen funds.
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Crypto exchange Binance has recovered a big part of the funds from the recent hack that targeted the decentralized finance (DeFi) protocol Curve Finance.
In a tweet, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao announced that the exchange has frozen and recovered $450,000 of the stolen assets, which is more than 80 percent of the stolen funds. According to Zhao, the hacker tried to send the funds to the exchange in various ways but was detected by Binance. The exchange is currently working to return the funds to their rightful owners.
The Curve Finance team detected the hack on Tuesday and alerted their users to refrain from using their website. An hour after the warning, the team announced that it was able to find and resolve the issue. However, the attackers were still able to hijack around $537,000 worth of USD Coin (USDC) before the issue was resolved.
According to experts from the blockchain analytics firm Elliptic, a hacker compromised the domain name system (DNS) of Curve Finance, which ended with malicious transactions getting signed. The experts told Cointelegraph that the funds were then sent to various exchanges and crypto mixers in an attempt to hide the trail. In the end, the funds were sent to Binance and were caught by its team.
This is not the first time this week that the good actors in the crypto community have worked to return stolen funds. On Monday, whitehat hackers and researchers returned an estimated $32.6 million worth of USDC, Tether (USDT) and other altcoins to Nomad, following the recent $190 million exploit.
The Curve Finance exploit is only one of the many attacks that happened in 2022. According to analytics firm Chainalysis, $2 billion worth of funds were drained because of cross-chain bridge hacks. This is 69% of the overall stolen amount in the year.
Institutional staking won’t take off unless asset lock-up solved: Coinbase CFO
Coinbase’s new institutional-focused staking product won’t be a “near-term phenomenon” while liquid staking is still being worked out.
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Institutional staking of crypto assets, including the post-Merge Ethereum, could become a “phenomenon” in the future, but not while their assets still need to be “locked up.”
Speaking during a Q2 earnings call on Tuesday, chief financial officer Alesia Haas noted that she didn’t expect their new exclusive institutional staking service, rolled out in Q2, to be a “near-term phenomenon” until a “truly liquid staking option” is available:
“This is the first time we had the products available. Previously, the way that institutions could have access to staking is via Coinbase Cloud […] But offering it as the delegated staking service similar to what we have for retail customers.”
However, Haas said it was still “early days” for their new staking service, adding they’ll likely only see a “real material impact” when they have created a liquid staking option for post-Merge Ethereum, also known as Eth2.
Liquid staking is the process of locking up funds to earn staking rewards, while still having access to the funds.
Haas explained that many financial institutions “don’t want their assets held indefinitely:”
“So when you stake ETH2 you are locking in your assets into Ethereum until the Merge and then some period after. For some institutions, that liquidity lock-up is not palatable to them. And so, while they may be interested in staking, they want to have staking on a liquid asset.”
Haas reaffirmed this issue is “something we are looking to solve,” and added that once this liquid staking is available for financial institutions that can pool in funds at higher proportions, “we’ll see the real material impact of institutional revenue.”
Investors and institutions have been able to access Coinbase’s delegated staking service through Coinbase Prime, which was first launched in Sep. 2021. The platform also offers other integrated services, such as access to a custody wallet with enhanced security, real-time crypto market data and analytics, and other crypto-native features like decentralized governance.
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