bookmark_borderEthereum-based DeFi platform DeversiFi raises $5M in strategic investments

The investment round was led by ParaFi Capital alongside Defiance Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Blockchain Ventures, Fenbushi Capital, OKEx, StarkWare and Longhsh Ventures. Angel investors from Synthetix, Aave and Enzyme also participated.

DeversiFi, an Ethereum-based layer-2 DeFi platform, has secured $5 million in strategic investments from some of crypto’s biggest venture capital firms, sending a strong signal that demand for decentralized finance opportunities remains strong. 

DeversiFi intends to make DeFi trading more accessible, allowing users to invest, trade and send tokens without having to pay gas fees. The platform announced its DVF governance token on Ma. 25 with a fixed supply of 100 million. The decentralized exchange relaunched as DeversiFi 2.0 in June 2020, incorporating the Starkware kSTARK layer-2 scaling technology.

Will Harborne, DeversiFi’s co-founder, described the importance of layer-2 scaling for Ethereum:

“Layer 2 scaling is essential to Ethereum’s roadmap. We are creating a hub to invest, swap, send, and lend tokens without the friction and cost of Layer 1. As more users onboard we see integrations with centralised exchanges as being important to lower the barriers to accessing L2 DeFi.”

“DeversiFi brings to life a high performance DeFi trading experience without paying high gas fees,” said Santiago R. Santos, partner at ParaFi Capital. “Ethereum and DeFi are graduating from dial-up to broadband with L2s this year and DeversiFi is at the forefront of this transition that, ultimately, realizes the promise of why DeFi will eat CeFi: faster, better, and cheaper.”

DeFi continues to attract large investment flows and users from around the world. The industry peaked earlier this month as the total value locked, or TVL, in DeFi protocols exceeded $163 billion, according to industry sources. At the time of publication, DeFi’s TVL was $143.5 billion.

The DeFi boom has continued even as major crypto markets sold off over the weekend. At the time of writing, most major DeFi tokens had reported gains over the past 24 hours. 

bookmark_borderStreet art NFT exhibition to launch in physical showroom in Riga

A brick-and-mortar showroom in the Latvian city will host an exhibition of nonfungible tokens.

A physical showroom for nonfungible tokens is set to open in Riga, Latvia, where NFTs of street art from around the globe will be put on display. The gallery is being launched by Kiwie 1001, an NFT project born from the Latvian street art collective of the same name.

Submissions are open to anyone who wishes to enter, and pieces can be submitted via the project’s Discord channel. Winning pieces will be voted on by the Kiwie 1001 community and will be presented in the Riga gallery when it opens in June.

Street art and NFTs might seem like a strange pairing, particularly given the reluctance by street artists to engage with the commercial side of the art industry. Yet displaying it as NFTs actually solves one problem that accompanies the presentation of street art — namely, how do you show it to someone without breaking down the wall it’s spray-painted on?

Minting the pieces as NFTs on a blockchain might seem like a lot of work when a photograph would suffice, but the lead business strategist at Kiwie 1001, Kristaps Vaivods, said hosting the tokens in a physical location would also help spread awareness of NFTs while allowing artists to get noticed.

“While NFTs have quickly jumped into the mainstream, there is still a lot more work left to be done to inform the public on their benefits and applications,” said Vaivods.

“We’ve launched the NFT showroom to help other artists get noticed and spread awareness of this new artistic revolution. NFTs open many doors in terms of creative ways of defining ownership where it used to be impractical, and they allow smaller artists to make a living without necessarily catering to large collectors,” Vaivods added.

bookmark_borderChinese trade associations sound crypto investment warning

Three associations outlined four issues related to crypto investment, beginning with a call for their members to understand the nature of digital currencies.

The China Internet Finance Association has signed a joint statement with the China Banking Association and China Payment and Clearing Association, warning the public about the risks of investing in cryptocurrencies.

According to a report by Shanghai Securities News on Tuesday, the aforementioned trade association under the People’s Bank of China issued a communique titled “Preventing the risk of virtual currency transaction speculation.”

The joint statement is reportedly an extension of previous releases from the PBoC about Bitcoin (BTC) and crypto risks.

As part of the communique, the three associations outlined four issues related to crypto investment, beginning with a call for their members to understand the nature of digital currencies.

According to the release, cryptocurrencies are not “real currency” and should not be used as a medium of exchange for goods and services.

Back in July, the Beijing Arbitration Commission issued a ruling declaring Bitcoin to be a virtual commodity.

For its second point, the trade associations warned financial institutions and other member organizations not to engage in crypto business transactions. An excerpt of the document specifically addressing internet platforms reads:

“Internet platform corporate member units shall not provide services such as online business premises, commercial displays, marketing promotion, paid diversion, etc. for virtual currency-related business activities. If clues or related problems are found, they shall promptly report to relevant departments and provide technical support for related investigations and assistance.”

The trade associations also warned retail traders to be wary of the risks involved in crypto investments while also calling on member institutions to abide by existing regulatory provisions regarding digital currencies.

China banned token issuance and crypto trading back in 2017, forcing major exchanges to move their operations out of the country. This action has been followed by a host of often conflicting statements on crypto, with the government seeming to favor the “blockchain, not Bitcoin” narrative.

bookmark_borderMATIC says ‘no’ to crypto bears with new all-time highs, weekly gains near 120%

MATIC is now the 17th-biggest cryptocurrency by market cap as an exchange listing sees it reject the bearish mood afflicting major tokens.

Ethereum infrastructure development platform Polygon’s MATIC token hit new all-time highs on May 18 to become the best-performing cryptocurrency on the day.

MATIC/USD 1-hour candle chart (Coinbase). Source: TradingView

MATIC hits fresh record high

Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView showed MATIC/USD reaching $2.18 during trading on May 18 in firm defiance of the broader market downtrend.

After being listed on major exchange Kraken on May 17, MATIC surged, continuing a dramatic uptick that had begun when Kraken released the news earlier this month.

VORTECS™ data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro began to detect a bullish outlook for MATIC on May 12, prior to the recent price rise. The VORTECS™ Score, exclusive to Cointelegraph, is an algorithmic comparison of historic and current market conditions derived from a combination of data points including market sentiment, trading volume, recent price movements and Twitter activity.

VORTECS™ recorded unprecedented high scores for MATIC beginning May 15. At 99, the token gained the highest score ever seen on the platform, which was followed by multiple price spikes culminating in May 18’s highs.

MATIC/USD with VORTECS™ Score chart and Kraken listing alert. Source: Cointelegraph Markets Pro

As such, the 17th-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization thus outperformed all others in terms of daily and weekly gains. At the time of writing, these totaled 22% and 118%, respectively.

The timing was a blessing to many traders who had spent recent days watching the value of their holdings decrease in line with selling pressure on Bitcoin (BTC).

“MATIC is singlehandedly trying to save my portfolio,” popular trader Scott Melker told Twitter followers.

Close behind MATIC was Synthetix  Network Token (SNX) with 21% returns in the past 24-hours, followed by Telcoin (TEL) with 17%.

Traders keep the faith in “alt season 2.0”

By contrast, the top 10 cryptocurrencies by market cap were all in the red, with the exception of XRP, which was up 6% at $1.61.

For longtime market participants, however, it remained “business as usual” — recent events were no cause to reevaluate what is still a nascent ecosystem.

“Many Altcoins have been developing multi-year market structures,” trader Rekt Capital tweeted on May 18.

“Any short-term fear or uncertainty over the next few days or even week or two are unlikely to change these long-term formations and structures.”

Bitcoin bounced at $42,000 — the site of its all-time highs from February — to regain some lost ground amid warnings that the bottom may be yet to come.

bookmark_borderBitcoin’s drop from $64K comparable to Black Thursday, but Coinbase outflows hint at accumulation

The ongoing Bitcoin price correction draws a comparison with the March 2020 crash with one big difference.

Elon Musk and coronavirus have something in common: they have both panicked investors — at least once — into dumping their Bitcoin (BTC) holdings.

The similarities notched up higher in the previous six days as Musk doubled down on his chaos-inducing perspective toward Bitcoin. The billionaire entrepreneur engaged in Twitter spat with top cryptocurrency advocates over the weekend, including podcaster Peter McCormick, as he projected his favorite token, Dogecoin, as superior to Bitcoin.

Obnoxious threads like this make me want to go all in on Doge

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 16, 2021

At one point in time, Musk almost admitted that he would have Tesla unload the $1.5 billion investment that it had made in Bitcoin in February. Meanwhile, the bids for the flagship cryptocurrency kept on declining with each of Musk’s tweets. First, they went to $50,000, then sub-$45,000, eventually to bottom-out near $42,000.

Musk later clarified that Tesla has not dumped its bitcoin holdings.

To clarify speculation, Tesla has not sold any Bitcoin

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 17, 2021

But his clarification did little in offsetting Bitcoin’s downside bias. The cryptocurrency eventually extended its bearish correction to more than 35% when measured from its all-time high of nearly $65,000.

That also marked one of the quickest and deepest top-to-bottom retracement moves in the cryptocurrency’s recent history, with on-chain indicators showing that its impact on the market bias was as bad as the one caused by the Black Thursday crash in March 2020 in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Meanwhile, Blockchain analytics platform Glassnode reported a decline in the profits of Bitcoin’s circulating supply via its proprietary metric.

The “BTC Percent Supply in Profit (7d MA)” showed readings near 81.122 as of London morning on Tuesday, its lowest level since October 2020. The readings were also weak during the March 2020 crash, wherein Bitcoin declined by more than 50%.

Percentage of circulating supply in profit on a 7-day average timeframe. Source: Glassnode

More on-chain indicators point out similar readings between the current, Musk-led bitcoin price crash and the one that appeared amid the coronavirus panic in March 2020.

For instance, the Bitcoin transfer volume tracker at Glassnode showed a spike in BTC inflow across all the exchanges. Its scale was comparable to the inflows seen during the March 2020 sell-off and the distribution by the PlusToken Ponzi scheme in 2019.

Bitcoin Net Transfer Volume from/to crypto exchanges. Source: Glassnode

A higher BTC inflow indicates a higher probability of traders selling those tokens for other assets, including fiat and altcoins. Conversely, a higher outflow shows traders’ willingness to hold BTC for longer periods.

Institutional versus retail sentiment

Glassnode’s Bitcoin transfer volume data meanwhile provided two stark investment perspectives between retail and institutions. In its weekly newsletter,  the analytics platform broke down its observation based on the inflow/outflow data collected from two of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges: Binance and Coinbase.

Binance is a non-US entity that attracts mostly retail traders and investors around the world. Meanwhile, Coinbase’s standing is higher among US-based institutional investors. Glassnode noted that Binance was the biggest receiver of the Bitcoin inflows during the Musk-led market crash.

“This provides further indication that the recent inflows are likely to be driven by both new market entrants (panic sellers) and potentially due to capital rotation into other crypto-assets,” wrote Glassnode in a weekly note.

Ki-Young Ju, the chief executive of CryptoQuant — a South Korea-based blockchain analytics platform, also noted that most BTC inflows went to Binance, adding that it is not necessarily a bearish signal.

“I’m going to wait until the inflow signal cools off,” he added, nonetheless.

Bitcoin Net Transfer Volumes from/to Binance. Source: Glassnode

On the other hand, Coinbase logged higher new Bitcoin outflows ever since the cryptocurrency broke above the $20,000-price milestone last year. The trend continued even in the current week, showing that institutional investors were absorbing the retail market’s selling pressure.

Bitcoin balance on all exchanges vs. Coinbase vs. Binance. Source:

Still bullish

In other words, rich investors purchased bitcoin tokens at local lows as average ones sold them under the influence of Musk. 

“Don’t listen to what they say,” said early-stage investor Anthony Pompliano in his note to clients on Monday. He added:

“Just watch what they do with their money. Elon Musk and Tesla understand that they are going to be dependent on bitcoin moving forward. It wouldn’t surprise me if they are actually buying more bitcoin now at depressed prices or at least plan to purchase more in the future.”

Pompliano added that Bitcoin remains the best-performing macro asset, an “apex predator” with vastly outperformed stocks, bonds, real estate, and commodities. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, whose payment company Square added bitcoin to its balance sheet to beat inflation fears, also noted last Friday that his team would “forever work” to make Bitcoin better.

The comments came in contrast to Elon Musk’s support for Dogecoin. Veteran investor Paul Santos wrote in his Seeking Alpha piece that the Tesla CEO might want to make money out of thin air by exploiting the so-called cryptocurrency euphoria. 

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