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Crypto Data Startup BitKan Raises $10 Million in New Funding

Shenzhen-based cryptocurrency data startup BitKan has raised $10 million in a Series B funding round.

Leading the round is a Chinese financing firm called Zhongyunhui Capital, with IDG Capital and bitcoin mining giant Bitmain also contributing funds, the company announced Wednesday. Bitmain is an existing investor in BitKan, having invested $1.6 million in the startup in 2016.

BitKan said it will use the new funds to expand its business and build a platform dubbed “K site” within its existing application, which is expected to go into open beta on April 20. The company is also planning to open offices in Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo as part of its expansion plans.

The new service is envisioned as a paid platform that shares user-generated content, with users paying to access this material with the startup’s planned KAN token.

BitKan touted the new platform as a push for higher quality content, such as investment strategies for the Chinese cryptocurrency market, as a response to an environment that the startup said is fueled by “fake ICO whitepapers and scams.”

“Free content can only attract page views, but putting up a paywall can improve content quality considerably,” CEO Yu Fang explained.

Founded in 2012, the firm originally started as a platform for over-the-counter (OTC) trading that also provided cryptocurrency price and mining data, as well as wallet services.

The funding marks the firm’s latest effort to look for new revenue following the closure of its OTC platform after the Chinese government’s clampdown on initial coin offerings and domestic trading services last year.

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First Ever Bitcoin Documentary in China Released at Shape the Future Summit

China is a Bitcoin powerhouse. An Article by Willie Tan in Cointelegraph recently concluded that 70 percent of Bitcoin mining is located in China. The Chinese have taken to Bitcoin like fish to water and there is no reason why they shouldn’t. China and Bitcoin are like a match made in heaven. Cheap computer hardware, ample hydroelectric power and cool environs all make China the right place for a Bitcoin mine to be located. Recently the 2017 Shape the Future Summit was held at the Hong Kong Grand Hyatt Hotel between Sep. 20, 2017 and Sep. 21, 2017. The event had invitees from 80 enterprises in the Bitcoin industry but the main highlight of the event was the release of the first ever Bitcoin Documentary in China.

Shape the Future

2017 – Shape the Future is a documentary that charts the course of the world’s first digital currency, Bitcoin. The documentary produced by BitKan is supported by Bitmain, Huobi, Bixin and ViaBTC. It begins the story with how Bitcoin came into being and discusses the mysterious inventor of Bitcoin Satoshi Nakamoto. Just who was this man? Was he even a man or was it a group of men?

Shape the Future takes a uniquely Chinese perspective on the creator and the creation of the digital asset. Still, the question of who is Satoshi Nakamoto will perhaps forever remain a mystery. The film does explore the various possibilities and comes up with the usual suspects including Craig Wright. Xiaoxiao Sun, Bixin Operations Manager alludes in the documentary that the decision of Wikileaks to accept Bitcoin was what prompted Satoshi to evaporate into thin air.

Perhaps the most interesting comment on Satoshi in the documentary comes from BTC123 Founder Bill Mo who says, “Only when he (Satoshi Nakamoto) erased himself can BTC achieve the full decentralization.”

Following the evolution of Bitcoin

The film takes a course that follows the evolution of Bitcoin from its nascent era into becoming a mainstream tradeable asset. The coming of the age of exchanges, where everyone could buy Bitcoin also brought with it the shady speculator, for who profit was the only motive and technology was something on the sidelines. Shape the Future tries to capture that spirit by presenting a real-life speculator who has chosen to keep his identity hidden.

The synthesized voice of the bearded, bespectacled man lends an aura of mystique as he says, “I earned my first barrel of gold by Bitcoins.” We are led through the frenzy of Spring 2014 when Mt.Gox, the largest Bitcoin exchange of that time collapsed in Japan. It is not only trading they touch upon but also mining and how it evolved from being something that anyone could do at home with a single CPU to requiring complex and expensive mining farms.

Shape the Future strikes the right balance

Watching Shape the Future, it feels that the documentary has been able to strike the right balance. There is nothing that has been brushed under the carpet. Whether it is collapsing exchanges or the Silk Road fiasco or the people who lost money in virulent and volatile Bitcoin trading, everything has been put out for the viewers to think about and evaluate for themselves. The film captures the bleakness and the exuberance of the people of Bitcoin from users to CEOs in all sincerity. There are moments of joy and despair for everyone involved. Jihan Wu, CEO of Bitmain talking about the now missing Fried Co-founder of ASICMINER was particularly a touching part of the documentary.

The shape of our future

After going through the challenges facing Bitcoin with to scalability, etc. the documentary explores with a sense of optimism, where Bitcoin is headed in the future. Huobi Founder Leon Li thinks Bitcoin would be a global asset like gold. Others express their opinions about the fact that it would usher in true financial independence and that it cannot be suppressed. Edward Liu, founder of BitKan says that Bitcoin will give “whole human society an inspiration.”

Shape the Future is certainly an interesting watch to get an alternate perspective from the country that has most enthusiastically adopted Bitcoin. BitKan have certainly outdone themselves and if there is one thing that the crypto community needs to watch this fall, it is this documentary.

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China Halts 60 ICOs As Companies Cancel Sales Awaiting Legislation

ICOs are delaying or cancelling sales in China as regulators warn of impending legislative moves to formalize – or ban – the market.

Documents seen by Cointelegraph show up to 60 planned token distributions will now remain on the drawing board, as operators await regulatory responses.

According to local news outlet Caixin, several government commissions have “studied” ICOs over the previous month, the most recent of which has heightened rhetoric, suggesting a full ban was “not impossible.”

“90 percent of ICO projects are suspected of illegal fund-raising and intentional fraud,” a source told the publication.

Meetups cancelled

As a direct result of the uncertainty facing the legal situation in China, some conferences are currently either postponed or cancelled.

Among them, the DACA International Blockchain Summit Beijing which was due to run last weekend, and the 2017 Global Blockchain Summit, organised by Huobi and set for September 23.

The prospect of a heavy-handed response from Chinese authorities has appeared to make markets nervous. Bitcoin’s price has fallen around $600 since Saturday, and the majority of altcoin markets have repeated the trend.

Major player

China has accounted for a major percentage of total ICO revenue since the phenomenon began in earnest this year, with around 40 percent of the $1 bln funding stemming from Chinese startups and other projects.

Last week, the US Securities and Exchanges Commission added further cautionary warnings to its perspective on token sales, having itself banned several for not adhering to relevant securities legislation.

At the same time, a delegation of Chinese regulators visited US Blockchain businesses including Coinbase and Ripple as part of a study of international regulatory practices.