MicroStrategy Bets Another $1B on Bitcoin
MicroStrategy announced the purchase of another $1.026 billion in bitcoin Wednesday. CEO Michael Saylor’s business intelligence firm bought the 19,452 BTC at an average price of $52,765 per coin. It now holds 90,531 BTC worth $4.78 billion at press time. MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor said the firm’s focus was now twofold: grow its analytics software enterprise, and buy more Bitcoin. The value of MicroStrategy’s purchase exceeded the figures previously floated by the firm, which announced it would raise $900 million to buy more Bitcoin on Feb. 17. Phong Le, president and chief financial officer of MicroStrategy, said the Bitcoin purchases would help enhance awareness of its brand as a software business while also acting as a sign of faith in the Bitcoin network.
Indian banks put crypto traders' accounts under the microscope
Cryptocurrency traders and investors in India are among the latest casualties in an increasing trend of personal account closures by global banking operations. India’s parliament is currently contemplating a nation-wide crypto ban which local industry critics, such as former Coinbase CTO Balaji Srinivasan have compared to “banning the internet for five years.” The Economic Times reports that customers of private banks in India, such as HDFC, HSBC and Citi, have been receiving notices this year asking them to clarify crypto-related transactions, often requiring them to visit their local bank branch in person. In 2020, India’s Supreme Court reversed an order from the Reserve Bank of India in which banks were asked to discontinue provision of services to cryptocurrency traders. Banks are also preemptively closing customer accounts deemed to be associated with funds moving in or out of cryptocurrency exchanges in a number of countries.
Coinbase Valuation Climbs $100+ Billion in Secondary Share Sale
Last Friday, Coinbase sold its recent batch of 127,000 shares at $373 putting the company’s valuation above $100 billion. As per the latest report from Axios Capital, Coinbase valuation stood above $100 billion ahead of its direct listing. As per the publication, the most recent batch of Coinbase shares attracted a price of $373 per share. The world’s biggest crypto exchange sold its initial batch of 75,000 shares on January 29, at $200 per share. The next two batches of shares released by Coinbase sold at $301 and $303 respectively. Last Friday, Coinbase sold its recent batch of 127,000 shares at $373 putting the company valuations above $100 billion. Commanding just $8 billion valuations in late 2018, Coinbase has registered significant growth in the last 36 months. As Axios reports, in the full year ending 2019, Coinbase reported a net loss of $30 million with $530 million in revenue. However, during the last year of 2020, Coinbase generated $141 million in net income with its reported revenue of $691 million.
Ripple now registered as a Wyoming business
Blockchain-based payments firm Ripple Labs has now registered a business in Wyoming. According to records from the Wyoming Secretary of State, Ripple Markets WY LLC’s status as a local business is listed as "active" after an initial filing in February 2020. As a limited liability company in Wyoming, Ripple’s registered agent will be based in Cheyenne. More crypto companies are realizing Wyoming is a better domicile than Delaware due to our crypto-friendly laws. Wyoming is becoming one of the most attractive U.S. states for crypto and blockchain firms.
Binance Coin hits all-time highs
Binance Coin (BNB), the in-house token of cryptocurrency exchange Binance, saw its price hit a new all-time high this week, passing Bitcoin Cash (BCH) by market capitalization. Data from TradingView confirmed that BNB "flippened" BCH to become the ninth-largest cryptocurrency on Feb. 4. One of a number of altcoins to reach record highs this week, BNB/USD briefly hit $55 on Thursday before correcting to circle levels just below $54. BNB, meanwhile, forms one of the cryptocurrencies supported by Binance Pay, Binance's latest product, which launched as a beta version this week.