In recent French news, Goldman Sachs CEO, David Solomon, revealed that the company is looking into developing its own cryptocurrency, like JP Morgan Chase. Also, the company is researching asset tokenization and stablecoins as such.
Recently a French news source Les Echos
did an interview with the CEO of Goldman Sachs, asking him about
cryptocurrencies and the companies plans regards them. He revealed
that they are working on and researching asset tokenization and
stablecoins in general. They are looking at JP Morgan Chase’s version
of a cryptocurrency and they “absolutely” would follow in
launching a similar cryptocurrency.
“Assume that all major financial institutions around the world are looking at the potential of tokenization, stablecoins and frictionless payments,” he commented.
He believes that that is the direction in which the payment system will go, hence stablecoins and asset tokenization. With an emphasis on “he believes”. Solomon commented this while he was asked to comment on the Facebook Libra project, which he refused, but answered: “I find the principle interesting.”
Crypto Regulation Is Coming
When asked about cryptocurrency regulation, he said that “a change is coming for sure”. What does he mean by that, we can only guess. It’s been already known for quite a while that multiple G-20 meetings have discussed the regulation of cryptocurrencies, but with no outcome. Possibly, this time they want to put a final decision on this issue.
“I think regulators around the world are watching what’s going on. They wonder how it will work and are very attentive to payment flows,” Solomon explained.
It is funny how companies quickly
change their mindsets. Just recently in January, JPMorgan Chase said
that crypto would only have value in a dystopian economy. Now they
are in the works of launching their JPM Coin. It will run on Quorum
which is a private version of Ethereum. The bank developed it in
conjunction with EthLab. The main intent for this bank-like crypto is
to settle portion of transactions between clients of its wholesale
payments business. JPMorgan revealed that they are beginning tests
with clients earlier this week.
Well not much for the banks, but this rather shows more about the great and interesting future we have ahead of us. Banks with these moves have acknowledged cryptocurrencies as such in the eyes of people who are not familiar with this matter. Payment systems will change, banks will try to offer something similar to cryptocurrencies, but eventually, people will realize – why do we need third parties, if we can do everything peer-to-peer?
Just recently, Riga held the biggest networking event in the Baltics, the 21stInternational Business Networking Event. Organized by the IBNC (International Business and Networking Consortium) it gathered participants from more than 30 countries. The main theme for the speakers was “The Modern World”. Participants’ subjects were ranging from such humane topics like civilization and cancer to trendy ones like virtual reality and digitalization of governments.
When speaking about a such topic as The Modern World, digitalization is the first thing that pops in our minds. Coincidentally, this theme was widely overlooked by the presenters. A representative from Indonesia, Mrs. Tanti Widyastuti, mentioned that Indonesia is pushing the digitalization of their governments and government related instances. However, the overall statistics, presented by the speaker, showed that Indonesia still has a long way to go. Such small European countries like Latvia and Estonia were ahead of Indonesia in terms of digital growth.
Moreover, Mr. Toufic Kawar touched the subject of communication in the digital world. He highlighted that never in the human history we have been more closer to each other, but at the same time, we have never been more lonely than we are now. We no longer speak to each other, we text or chat. He stressed it as a generally significant problem that needs solving.
Interestingly enough, nobody spoke about money in terms of digitalization. Our payment methods are changing and most of the cryptocurrency enthusiasts anticipate a change in our monetary system.
Money, money, money…
However, there were a couple of guys, Mr. Arturs Boss and Mr. Kristaps Strelis from Amber Capital Holdings, who talked about the money topic, but in a different way. They presented their new payment Service, Willow&Birch, which would differ from the conventional banking that we know today. Arturs and Kristaps spoke about the problems that the conventional banking faces today and the ways how they offer to change that.
Both guys stressed that nowadays niche market customers are not welcome to open a bank account. Banks today have lost their touch in terms of philosophy and communication with the customer. Willow&Birch will offer a completely new way how a bank will communicate with its customers. They will put customer as the number one priority and promises to look into every case individually. A different approach into KYC applications. Both guys highlighted that nowadays operating with conventional banks might seem very distant and people simply haven’t got an option to talk to somebody in person. With all the chat-bots and automatic algorithmic replies, banks have lost the personal touch with their clients. And that is what Willow&Birch is offering – a different approach in customer service.
However, their PSP license in Lithuania is still pending.
Along with digitalization and money comes another very important aspect – technology. It is constantly evolving and being developed. Of course “The Modern World” featured topics related to this phenomena. A representative from Bite Latvia, Mr. Gatis Ruluks, shared their company’s views on the development of telecommunication. Bite Latvia is the fastest growing mobile operator in Latvia and it provides innovative mobile services to their customers. Gatis talked about the advantages that a private branch exchange (PBX) can offer to companies. An interesting fact that he shared was that U.K. companies loose around 30 billion pounds each year from unanswered telephone calls.
Another interesting concept came from the CTO and co-founder of Exonicus Inc, Anatomy Next, Mr. Janis Kondrats. They have figured out a way how to link virtual reality with healthcare. Exonicus have developed a tool for medical students, a virtual reality emergency medicine training simulator – Trauma Simulator. With this device, medical students in various environments can practice before becoming an expert. Students are put in critical emergency environments that allows them to develop their skills with real/virtual tools. Also, they have a partnership with the U.S. Army Medical Research team which means that they are offering their services to military instances as well.
The shape of the Modern World
The extensiveness of the term – Modern World, gathered a wide range of different topics. The Modern World speaks about globalization, growth, economy, technology, banking, but all these areas of expertise have one thing in common. Interaction. How we interact with banks, with technology, medicine and more importantly – with each other. It sure seems like the future, where we live now, brings so many advantages, but fails in certain very important areas like communication. This statement should be wrong in so many ways since we have Facebook, WhatsApp and every other social platform which actually brings the whole world together, but at the same time distances us. The Modern World is all about bringing back the communication that we had before we had all these new social, digital features.
Overall, this was a very comprehensive event, it overlooked many important social topics and ideas. As always, since it is a networking event, not a conference, the time for communicating, or networking with others, was significantly longer than you see in similar events. The combined time that was reserved for getting to know various business environments was around two and a half hours.
Topic – cryptocurrency
It seems like this event is slowly forming its way to do a cryptocurrency related event some time in the future. Although nobody mentioned cryptocurrencies this year, it sure feels like some time in the future it will be one of the core elements of this event. To be honest, the development of cryptocurrencies is the key factor when it could get widely covered in this event. At the moment, the popularity of cryptocurrency related areas are very small in the region of Eastern Europe. I believe that is the main factor why businesses come to Latvia to talk about more general topics. Once cryptocurrencies are more widely accepted in business environments around European or Asian governments, I believe the IBNC (International Business and Networking Consortium) will integrate it as one of the core topics of their events.
Of course, as a cryptocurrency news outlet, we wanted to hear more about what cryptocurrencies can bring to the concept of modern world. Since cryptocurrency threatens our current monetary system and offers so many advantages in almost any business area, we believe that the topics covered ties together with the growth of crypto and blockchain in general. It is only a matter of time.
The Global World
Additionally, at the end of the event, they presented the next theme for the forthcoming 22ndInternational Business and Networking event which will take place on 18thof October, 2019. Next time the participants will be covering topics revolving around the concept of “The Global World”. This sounds like a more general topic and can contain almost anything. I believe the emphasis will be put on topics regards globalization and the environment. Also, human interaction with technology and how it will evolve in the near future. It could overlook basic universal income and a borderless society principles, but this is just a guess.
If you want to reserve a ticket for the next event, head over to this address (https://sfk.lv/index.php/en/apply) and get yours for only 140 Euros. That way you will support the organizers and help them in making the largest networking event in Eastern Europe.
If you want to read about the topics that were covered in the previous event, click HERE.
Best Coin Investments are proud to be a part of this event and thankful for the opportunity to attend it. Talivaldis Kreislers and Mara Kreislere are doing a great job in bringing such events to Latvia for more than 10 years. Best of luck to them!
Also, we managed to interview Kristaps Strelis about their new payment and bank service – Willow&Birch. We asked him about how would they differ from a conventional bank and what was his opinion on cryptocurrencies and bitcoin. We will publish the interview soon!
In this article we will look over the 7 ways how to report a scam exchange.
So you have been scammed by a shady exchange. This is nothing new in the cryptocurrency field, and many of us have been there. Precedents like BiteBTC, Coinsmarkets.com, Bitconnect, Bitpetite and many more have “exit-scammed” and stole their users’ funds. Although previous practice shows that there is not much you can do about this situation, we stress it’s not all that black and white. Here’s what you can do if your exchange of choice exit-scammed, locked you out of your funds, doesn’t let you withdraw your funds, closes their website and etc.
1. Contact your local authorities
The first thing you can do is to contact your local authorities. You go to your local police station and file a complaint about an internet fraud. From that point on, it is up to them if they want to get in touch with their international colleagues and address the situation. It’s almost the same practice what you would do if your bike got stolen or any other everyday theft. Of course, it is up to you if you want to help the investigation by actively getting involved.
2. Let everyone know of your situation publicly
Next, you can do a series of posts, blog posts, twitter threads about your particular case online. Use social media like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Reddit, Bitcointalk or any others. Make sure you tag in the subject which scammed you. Also, tag in your local authorities pages or profiles. Use hashtags like #scam #fraud and similar to raise more awareness of your situation. Also, make sure to attach any visual material you have. Try to find similar cases to yours and engage with other people who are in the same position as you are. Maybe somebody got further in the case than you and knows something you don’t.
3. Contact your bank
If you sent your funds to the exchange with the help of your local bank account, and these funds are 100% legal and you can prove it, you can contact your local bank. Contact them by explaining your situation and providing bank accounts or addresses where the money was sent. You can raise awareness by letting the bank know that this particular bank account defrauded you. This is done so that the bank can identify these bank accounts and probably interfere their future operations. Maybe they’ll even black-list this account.
4. File a complaint at the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission
While the previous three options were related to your local authorities, this is where international authorities come in. CFTC is an international establishment and their mission is to protect users from internet scams. You can report a scam on their website. Their mission reads:
“The mission of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) is to foster open, transparent, competitive, and financially sound markets. By working to avoid systemic risk, the Commission aims to protect market users and their funds, consumers, and the public from fraud, manipulation, and abusive practices related to derivatives and other products that are subject to the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA)”
In this link you can report your scam exchange by describing the situation, telling about the firm/individual you are complaining about, telling about yourself, and the instruments that you used. Also, you can upload additional files which would help the investigation.
5. Federal Bureau of Investigation: Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3)
Another international option is to file your complaint to the FBI special Internet Crime Complaint Center. Their mission is to ensure positiveness and safety environment in online advertising, freeware, mobile apps, and even virtual currency. In the past couple of years, the FBI IC3 Center has received thousands of complaints about more than $15 million stolen in crypto scams combined. You can file your complaint by filling out the complaint form.
Previously their primary focus was on Telephone, online advertising, phishing e-mails, and pop-up messages, but now they have involved cryptocurrency-related scams as well.
6. Better Business Bureau
BBB is a trust marketplace where buyers and sellers trust each other. Although this company is mainly focused on U.S., Canada, and Mexico, it handles international companies and is willing to guide a scam victim through the process of filing a complaint. Also, they have their own database where you can search whether the company have any other complaints.
Just visit theirwebpage and follow the instructions.
7. USA.GOV’s Online Safety
Although you might not be from the United States, you can contact them to find out which exact agency you should contact for your specific case. The page consists of a few links of government authorities which could handle your case. They mention government authorities such as the FBI, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), EConsumer.gov and the Department of Justice (DOJ). In addition, they have put out some pointers on how to protect yourself on the internet.
We contacted many lawyers and people who are connected with law and finance. They all say that you should better forget about your money/investment which you lost because there is literally nothing you can do. The main reason being that these companies have a hidden true beneficiary and they choose specific countries where to register. Mostly those are countries with high risk jurisdictions which aren’t cooperating with international organizations. In addition, it is relatively easy to become a licensed registered agent within these countries. The competition has grown fierce, costs have gone down, and it’s easy to start a reselling business and still offer attractive pricing while raking in a nice margin.
You can check the list of some of these countries here and here.
In this article we kind of proved the opposite. Actually, there is so much you can do. You can report a scam to these authorities. Those are your funds. Nobody likes to lose money. These cryptocurrency scam exchanges always seem legit judging by their UI and special offers they provide. That is a clear consumer deception, and the authorities should properly address these cases. Hey, at least it is better to sit around and do nothing about your money. Even if you will not get your funds back, you will have the feeling that you did everything you could.
On November 12, 2018, Bitcoin Group SE has acquired 100% of Tremmel Wertpapierhandelsbank GmbH shares. That is an essential accomplishment of Bitcoin Group SE as they are expanding, even more, this year.
“The acquisition will significantly expand the range of services offered by Bitcoin Group SE, which operates Bitcoin.de, Germany’s only regulated trading platform for digital currencies,” says in the official announcement.
A huge benefit for Germany’s crypto-scene
That will allow Bitcoin Group SE to issue their cryptocurrency-related products, conduct proprietary trading and produce ATMs for cryptocurrencies. All this, thanks to the banking license of Tremmel. So far, the Bitcoin.de strategy of becoming a multilateral cryptocurrency exchange is succeeding. This acquisition will bring significant advantages like the possibility to maintain an order book and even quote prices.
“We are very pleased that in Tremmel Wertpapierhandelsbank GmbH and in particular Mr. Rainer Bergmann we have been able to gain an excellently positioned partner with in-depth knowledge of the market. This will enable us to take the corporate development of Bitcoin Group SE to a new level,” says Marco Bodewein, Managing Director of Bitcoin Group SE.
Moreover, the purchase price hasn’t yet been disclosed. However, it is known that it is in the lower seven-digit euro range.
Who are they?
Tremmel Wertpapierhandelsbank GmbH is a German investment bank which handles securities, bonds, and stock exchange trading services to institutional clients. It was created in 1983 and is licensed by the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority, or BaFin, Germany’s financial watchdog, as an investment service provider.
Bitcoin Group SE is a holding company focusing on innovative and disruptive business models and technologies in the areas of Cryptocurrency and Blockchain. The company holds 100% of the shares in Bitcoin Deutschland AG, which operates Germany’s only regulated marketplace for the digital currency Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH) and Ethereum (ETH) under Bitcoin.de, as well as a 50% holding in Sineus Financial Services GmbH, a financial services provider supervised by BaFin.
This reminds me of the good old saying I saw on Twitter one day, it went something like this: “I once thought that banks are going to buy out cryptocurrency companies, but now Crypto companies are buying banks!”
So far, this has been a well-known praxis, since more and more crypto-related companies are acquiring traditional banks and their licenses. Bitcoin Group SE bought a 50% share in financial investment broker Sineus Financial Services Gmbh, to diversify risk. “In the future, this will enable the group to offer additional financial services in the cryptocurrency sector,” the company explained.
It looks like Germany has a bright future for cryptocurrency development coming up. Bitcoin Group SE now can put a Bitcoin ATM on every corner of every street in Germany. Besides that, the company now has acquired all the necessary licenses to fulfill their corporate business strategy.
Belarus is known as one of the friendliest crypto countries in the world. Residents of Belarus can freely operate with cryptocurrencies. They can buy, sell and exchange currencies with no additional fees or monitoring.
During March 2018, The President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, issued a document called “Order Nr.8, The development of the digital economy”. The document went live on March 28. It anticipated the development of “Hi-Tech Park” which will be the base for Belarus digital economy.
Since then, many Tech and Crypto enthusiasts anticipated that this is a turning point for Belarus to become a cryptocurrency and blockchain capital of Europe. They thought that this order would attract many new cryptocurrency companies, hundreds of blockchain developers and investments worth millions of dollars.
The harsh reality after the order nr.8
However, in reality, during the first four months, only two mining companies got official licenses with one of them being a cloud mining company.
Our friends at Kripto.Media got in touch with Valery Yevdoshenko while visiting Belarus. Valeriy is the director of a mining company called Cryptocode. He expressed concern as their company’s applications hadn’t yet been confirmed after three months of reviewing. He said that “..practically all legal mining in Belarus has stopped for legal persons,” quoting Kripto.Media.
In general, Belarus opened the cryptocurrency world to its residents, but not companies that are willing to work within their country. It looked like plans to make Belarus a similar state to Malta had failed because of the lack of legislation. A regular resident could use and operate with cryptocurrencies with ease, but if he decided to open up an exchange or a blockchain company, he faced problems with the inadequate legislation.
It looks like Belarus has worked on the legislation on cryptocurrency and blockchain companies, and with the help of Kripto.Media, we can share insights on how to open up a bank account for a company in Belarus. In this specific example, Kripto.Media visited BSB Bank of Belarus in Minsk.
First, to become a legal person in Belarus, you have to show the following documents:
1. The copy of the company’s statutes in which the legal person is doing business.
2. The copy of the company’s registration papers.
3. For individuals who are operating in the name of the company also have to hand in:
3.1. Proof of approval that he is authorized to represent the company when engaging to a bank (the company’s protocols or decisions about taking a position, the contract of employment).
3.2. Passport copy and a declaration of residence place certificate.
3.3. A copy of the power of attorney document, which points out that the individual can perform activities with the company’s bank account (open up, make payments and also close it).
4. The company’s stamp
A legal person has to submit answers to various questions and has to form an application for opening a bank account on location in Belarus. Also, the samples of signatures have to be submitted for review, but if the company has multiple individuals with signature rights, then notarized samples need to be provided. The text needs to be translated and approved by Apostille.
Also, various questionnaires need to be filled out. It is advised to answer honestly to all the questions since nowadays information can be easily verified.
At first, these documents need to be submitted electronically. You can visit the bank in person after three working days when the answer will be sent.
There is one, generally odd peculiarity. New foreign customers, for the first two to three months, will have to operate their bank account transactions within the physical bank, in Minsk, Belarus. That looks awful a lot like the 90’ties. Only after the period as mentioned above the bank will grant access to the i-bank. However, there is a positive aspect of this as well – the Belarusian banks generally approve their services to foreign companies which are related to cryptocurrencies. Also, an important fact is that individuals who travel by air and stays only for 30 days, don’t need a visa for traveling to Belarus.
We very much thank our partners – Kripto.Media, for testing foreign grounds on cryptocurrency operations. This information helps us to spread the knowledge to other crypto-related companies or individuals who now are struggling with legislation of their business.