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Huobi Opens First Russian Office in Partnership with State Bank’s Digital Tech Center

Huobi has launched its first branch in Russia in partnership with local state-owned VEB bank’s blockchain and crypto center.

Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange Huobi has officially launched its first branch in Russia on Thursday, Dec. 6, according to a press release shared with Cointelegraph today.

The Moscow-based exchange, dubbed Huobi Russia, is established in partnership with the state-owned Russian Development Bank’s (VEB) Digital Transformation Center and supported by Huobi’s regional exchange partnership program, Huobi Cloud.

The Center of Digital Transformation was created by VEB to promote blockchain and other crypto-related technologies, as its website states.

Back in September of this year, Huobi first joined Russia’s VEB Innovation Fund and became a resident of the Digital Transformation Center to share experience on crypto regulation, with the fund’s CEO claiming that Huobi’s expertise will assist in building a “legal basis that could compete with current promising jurisdictions.”

Speaking at a private event on Thursday, Huobi senior business director David Chen claimed that the launch of Huobi Russia will help to promote the company’s “leading technology and trading expertise to Russian users,” including such skills as “unmatched safety, stability, and user experience.”

Huobi Russia CEO Andrei Grachev also noted the increasing volumes of crypto trading in Russia, claiming that the volumes have “recently exceeded US $20 million in a single day,” regardless of the current bear market.

Russia’s VEB Innovation Fund, created in 2011, is reportedly the “first” Russian specialized center for support and development of disruptive technologies in the fields of management and the functioning of enterprises and government corporations, according to the center’s website.

The innovation center is exploring and implementing various blockchain projects, and houses more than 20 branches of major blockchain and tech companies such as the Ethereum Foundation, Bitcoin (BTC) tech company Bitfury, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), and others.

Vladimir Demin, chairman of VEB’s Innovation Fund, claimed that Russia is “actively promoting the blockchain market,” with VEB willing to play an “important role as a leader in blockchain research and legislation,” as reported in the press release.

Founded in 1922, VEB bank, or “the state corporation Bank for Development and Foreign Economic Affairs,” is the first international bank of the Soviet Union, originally named Roskombank. The bank is responsible for developing the Russian economy, as well as managing Russia’s state debts and pension funds.

Other Russian banks have also shown an interest in blockchain technology.

Recently, major Russian state-backed bank Sberbank conducted an over-the-counter (OTC) monetary repurchase agreement based on blockchain technology. And earlier in November, the Russian branch of Raiffeisen Bank International teamed up with local state oil giant Gazprom Neft to issue a blockchain-enabled bank guarantee.

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Huobi Gains Gibraltar DLT License, Plans Global Exchange Rollout in 2019

World’s third largest crypto exchange Huobi is looking to cater to international traders from a European base.

Major Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange Huobi has gained a so-called Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) license in Gibraltar, a press release shared with Cointelegraph confirmed Dec. 5.

Huobi, which is leveraging the U.K. territory’s encouraging regulatory perspective on the cryptocurrency industry, will use its new status to launch an international platform geared to both retail and institutional traders, the release states, stating:

“The new license gives Huobi the authority to store and transmit digital assets on behalf of clients worldwide.”

In so doing, it will compete with fellow exchanges including Binance, Bittrex and Coinbase in serving traders in as many jurisdictions as possible as regulatory frameworks continue to evolve.

Last week saw Huobi launch a derivatives market in the U.S.

“It’s no secret that we think that well-designed regulatory regimes are a key part of the future for the cryptocurrency industry,” head of global international business Lester Haoda Li commented in the press release:

“Among other benefits, our [Distributed Ledger Technology] license will allow us to open doors to more institutional investors who were previously unable or unwilling to get involved in an unregulated sphere.”

Huobi hopes to debut its service in the first half of 2019.

“To kick things off, we are launching with [over the counter] services but we have no intentions of stopping there,” Li added.

Huobi is currently the world’s third largest exchange by daily trade volume, seeing about $466 million in trades over the past 24 hours.

Gibraltar is fast catching up with permissive European counterpart Malta in luring cryptocurrency businesses to its shores.

The blockchain platform from Gibraltar’s stock exchange also gained regulatory approval this month, while state-sponsored initiatives are also hoping to address the demand for blockchain-related skills.

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Confirmed: Crypto Exchange Huobi Acquires Publicly Listed Firm on HK Stock Exchange

Cryptocurrency exchange Huobi has acquired controlling stock interest in Hong Kong-based Pantronics Holdings Ltd., according to an official announcement from the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEx) dated August 29.

As Cointelegraph reported August 28, HKEx-listed Pantronics, an electronic products manufacturing firm, had halted trading of its shares on the Main Board of exchange on August 22, citing a “possible offer to be made under Rule 26 of the Hong Kong Codes on Takeovers and Mergers.”

Indications at the time suggested Huobi had acquired 73.73 percent of the firm. HKEx’s official announcement clarifies that Huobi, alongside blockchain services provider platform Fission Capital, acquired an overall stake of 71.67 percent in Pantronics — at a breakdown of 66.26 percent and 5.41 percent respectively.

While Huobi’s acquisition had the apparent hallmarks of being a reverse takeover  — or reverse Initial Public Offering (IPO) — Sandy Peng, a partner at Fission Capital, told Cointelegraph in a statement that “for the time being this is a straight forward acquisition […] as stated in the announcement Huobi intends to start new blockchain related businesses using this entity.” Peng added that:

“Fission [has] years of experience in the HK Capital market. We participated in this acquisition alongside Huobi [and] believe Huobi’s rich experience in this sector, the institutional and regulated international platform this new vehicle creates will be the ideal launchpad for any international and institution related businesses that Huobi may decide to explore in the future.”

Peng considered that the official HKex disclosure is “in a way an announcement from Huobi,” proposing that “the distinction is unimportant.” Huobi has however declined to comment on the disclosure in response to requests from Cointelegraph.

While Peng has refuted the deal’s characterization as a reverse takeover, the route can be expedient for privately held firms, allowing them to circumvent the lengthy and complex process of going public through direct acquisition of a publicly-held entity. Upon completion of the deal, the buyer gains automatic inclusion on a stock exchange.

Mike Novogratz is one high-profile example from the crypto space who opted for the route in order to secure a listing on Toronto’s TSX Venture Exchange for his crypto-focused merchant bank Galaxy Digital.

Huobi is currently ranked 4th largest crypto exchange in the world by daily trade volumes, seeing around $833.7 million in trades over the 24 hours before press time.

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Crypto Exchange Huobi Acquires Public Firm for $70 Million

Crypto exchange Huobi has completed an acquisition deal to become the largest shareholder of a public firm listed in Hong Kong, inching a step closer to a possible back-door listing.

Pantronics Holdings, the acquired firm, released a statement on Aug. 29 that Huobi Group completed the deal by having purchased about 199 million of its shares via two of the group’s subsidiaries – Huobi Capital and Huobi Universal.

With that amount, Li Lin, chairman of Huobi Group and controller of the two subsidiaries, now owns 66.26 percent of Pantronics and is effectively the largest individual substantial shareholder.

The deal could further give Huobi the opportunity of a back-door listing in the future – a process where a private firm enters the secondary financial market by purchasing a major number of shares of a public company.

Based on the announcement, the transactions were made at an average price of HK$2.72 (or $0.35) per share with a total amount close to $70 million. Yet, the number of shares acquired appear to fall short of what the exchange intended.

As CoinDesk previously reported, in a disclosure of interests filed by Pantronics on Aug. 21, Huobi was seeking to purchase 73.73% of the firm’s ordinary shares which would have cost a total of $77 million. Pantronics’ shareholding disclosures were further amended on Aug. 28 to reflect the change.

A spokesperson for Huobi Group declined to comment on the issue and said the firm is not authorized to disclose information other than what was in the announcement.

Further, the latest document on Wednesday offered a peek into Huobi’s corporate structure such as the ownership percentage by notable investors of Huobi including Sequoia Capital and Zhenfund.

Based on the document, while Huobi Capital is fully owned by Li himself, Huobi Universal’s largest owners include Techwealth (58.44 percent), Sequoia Capital CV IV (23.32 percent) and Zhen Partners Fund I (7.46 percent).

Among them, Techwealth is an investment company, of which Li owns 89.09 percent.

Meanwhile, Sequoia Capital CV IV is a fund that’s solely owned by Sequoia Capital China and Zhen Partners is a venture capital firm launched by Chinese entrepreneur Xu Xiaoping together with Sequoia Capital China.

Huobi image via Shutterstock

The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.

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South Korean eCommerce Startup Raises $32 Million to Create Crypto Stablecoin

South Korea e-commerce marketplace Ticket Monster (TMON) revealed it had closed a $32 million funding round for its new stablecoin Terra in a press release Wednesday, August 29.

TMON, which boasts a considerable $4 billion in total sales, is seeking to create an in-house cryptocurrency to compliment its existing token, Luna, which acts as collateral on its blockchain platform.

Contributing to the round are some of the cryptocurrency industry’s best-known names, including Binance Labs, OKEx and Huobi Capital, as well as funds including Polychain Capital.

“From experience, I know that faster, more secure transactions at a fraction of today’s fees could be a game-changer for many eCommerce platforms,” Terra co-founder Daniel Shin commented, describing the token’s potential as “immense”:

“We foresee [Terra] being used for all types and forms of financial products like loans and insurance.”

Stablecoins are currently gaining popularity across various sectors of the global economy. Even banks, the first of which being Lichtenstein’s Union Bank earlier this month, have opted to issue their own token, which is usually tied to a fiat currency.

The TMON move marks a further conspicuous investment for Binance meanwhile, the exchange giant’s investment arm having signalled plans to create a huge $1 billion fund in June.

Explaining the impetus behind its contribution, Binance Labs head Ella Zhang highlighted TMON’s existing partner network of companies already waiting to use the token.

“While we see many stablecoins coming out, Terra’s journey is especially meaningful as they are designing one of the few price-stable protocols with existing, working, and strong go-to-market strategy and usage,” she said.

Shin forecast beta testing of theTerra payment system to begin in Q4.

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Crypto Exchange Huobi Seeks to Acquire Public Firm in $77 Million Deal

Cryptocurrency exchange Huobi is quietly seeking to become the largest shareholder of a public firm listed in Hong Kong – a move that, if completed, could open the door for Huobi to go public via a reverse takeover.

According to shareholding disclosures filed by Pantronics Holdings on Aug. 21 to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, the public company is transferring more than 221 million of its ordinary shares to Li Lin, the chairman of Huobi Group, via several of the exchange’s subsidiaries.

With the disclosed amount, Li is poised to be the ultimate owner of 73.73 percent of Pantronics as the largest substantial shareholder. Based on the filing, the transaction is being priced at HK$2.72 (or $0.35) in average per share with a total amount nearing $77 million.

The deal, if approved, could give Huobi the opportunity to take over a public company and thus enter the secondary financial market – a process known as a reverse takeover.

Pantronics, an electronics manufacturing service provider established in 1990 and went public in 2016, has not yet made any official announcement regarding the completion of the deal, or any potential corporate restructure afterwards.

A representative for Huobi told CoinDesk that the crypto exchange is still waiting for confirmation and approval from the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. As such, the company can’t comment on the issue at the moment.

Following the initial notice, Pantronics has halted the trading of its shares on the exchange since Aug. 22, “pending the release of an announcement relating to a possible offer to be made … on Takeovers and Mergers, which is inside information in nature,” the firm said at the time.

Gelonghui, a Chinese media that covers the financial market, first reported around 18:00 UTC on Monday that Pantonics had transferred 73.73 percent of its ownership to Li.

Following the initial news, the price of Huobi Token, the exchange’s own crypto asset, immediately jumped by eight percent and is now seeing a six percent rise over the past 24 hours, according to data from CoinMarketCap.

Huobi’s move also comes at a time when several other Chinese private firms in the cryptocurrency space are applying for initial public offerings (IPOs) in Hong Kong, including bitcoin miner makers Canaan Creative and Ebang.

Another bitcoin mining giant Bitmain, is also reported to be weighing an $18 billion IPO in Hong Kong.

Li Lin image via CoinDesk

The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.

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Randi Zuckerberg Joins Huobi’s Public Blockchain Advisory Committee

Randi Zuckerberg, the elder sister of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, has joined the advisory board of cryptocurrency exchange Huobi to develop Huobi’s new public blockchain, according to a recent press release. Zuckerberg, who worked at Facebook for over six years, is also the founder and CEO of Zuckerberg Media.

Per the announcement, Zuckerberg, along with the CEO of Chinese mining giant Bitmain Jihan Wu, have been appointed to the Huobi Chain Expert Advisory Committee to provide expert opinions and advice for the Huobi public chain.

Experts on the committee provide guidance on topics ranging from the basic technology of blockchain to industrial applications, commercial modeling, as well as governance and development issues.

Huobi launched Huobi Chain Project (HCP) in June 2018 in order to build a next-generation self-regulating and decentralized financial platform. As the announcement then stated, the project aims to “provide both individuals and organizations with a reliable financial protocol for value exchange, fundraising, securitization and more.”

Founded in 2013, Huobi is the fourth largest crypto exchange in the world in terms of trade volume. At press time, Huobi has a 24 hour trade volume of around $582 million.

Facebook has made quiet inroads into the blockchain space. In May, the company formed a “small group to explore how to best leverage blockchain across Facebook, starting from scratch,” as the head of Facebook’s messaging app Messenger, David Marcus shared in a post on his personal page.

Later that month, news media outlet Cheddar reported that Facebook was “exploring” the creation of its own cryptocurrency to launch an in-app virtual coin. The information, though, was unconfirmed and came from an anonymous source “familiar with Facebook’s plans.”

In June, Facebook reversed its crypto advertising ban, which had been in effect since January of this year. The new policy requires advertisers of cryptocurrency products and services to submit an application to allow Facebook to assess their eligibility. Applicants must include “any licenses they have obtained, whether they are traded on a public stock exchange, and other relevant public background on their business.”

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Report: Huobi Acquires Controlling Share in Investment Company via Backdoor Listing

Chinese cryptocurrency exchange Huobi has reportedly acquired the controlling stock interest in Hong Kong-based Pantronics Holdings Ltd. through a backdoor listing deal, local news outlet JRJ.com reported August 27.

A backdoor listing, which is also known as a reverse takeover or reverse Initial Public Offering (IPO), allows a privately held company to purchase a publicly traded company avoiding the public offering process, regulatory issues, and due diligence. Upon completion of the deal, the buyer gains automatic inclusion on a stock exchange.

Huobi reportedly acquired 73.73 percent of Pantronics Holdings Ltd., which makes the crypto exchange the actual controller of the power-related electrical and electronic products manufacturer. Pantronics halted trading its shares on the Main Board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEx) on August, 22, 2018 due to a “possible offer to be made under Rule 26 of the Hong Kong Codes on Takeovers and Mergers.”

When asked whether the exchange intends to conduct a backdoor listing, Huobi CEO Li Lin reportedly said that “it is just a rumor.” Li stated the exchange business is currently not fully compliant on a global scale, so a backdoor listing would be very difficult to operate. Li added that he believes the “traditional financial market will embrace the blockchain economy in the future.”

On July 30, Caixin media reported that the HKEx was preparing a revision of rules to take stern measures towards backdoor listings within its efforts to clean up the market and improve the quality of listed companies. While the proposed measures are reportedly not aimed at blocking backdoor listings, they intend to ensure that companies do not skirt rules and undermine investor confidence. David Graham, HKEx’s chief regulatory officer and head of listing commented:

“We essentially allow a backdoor listing. But what [we want] to ensure is that when this happens, the quality of the assets and the ultimate combined company to be listed on our exchange have been through an appropriate due diligence and vetting process.”

Houbi Token is currently trading at $2.35 according to Coinmarketcap, having gained almost 8 percent over 24 hour period, while some media attribute the token’s price surge to the recent acquisition. Pantronics Holdings Ltd.’s market capitalization is currently over HKD 926 million ($118 million).

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Chinese Crypto Bans on WeChat Accounts, Events, and Exchanges: What Happened and Why

This week, the government of China has cracked down on crypto-related WeChat accounts, blockchain events and digital asset exchanges, solidifying its negative stance on cryptocurrency trading and the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) market.

WeChat ban and PBoC’s warning against ICOs

On Aug. 22, Cointelegraph reported that WeChat, China’s biggest messaging app that has over 1 billion active monthly users, banned the accounts of cryptocurrency investors, users and businesses.

At the time, Lanjinger, a local financial media outlet, reported that the accounts of Deepchain, Huobi News, Node Capital-backed Jinse and CoinDaily were suspended or taken down permanently, as they violated its policy entitled “Interim Provisions on the Development of Public Information Services for Instant Messaging Tools” by promoting ICOs and cryptocurrency trading.

While CoinDaily confirmed that its WeChat channel with more than 100,000 subscribers was suspended by WeChat, Leonhard Weese, the president of the Bitcoin Association of Hong Kong, said to Cointelegraph that many accounts — destined to have been temporarily or permanently suspended — were actually taken down due to other sensitive subjects outside of crypto:

“They got blocked for talking about the vaccination scandal, not because of crypto. We find this counterintuitive, but reporting on scandals like that is far more sensitive than talking about crypto or doing crypto. I expect them to have their accounts reinstated in a week or a month.”

Expert argues WeChat ban is unrelated to crypto

In late July, the Chinese medical industry was involved in a major scandal after the country’s main drug industry watchdog released its findings that accused two pharmaceutical firms of developing inferior vaccines and deceiving local regulators.

Specifically, Changsheng Biotechnology was said to have released falsified data on the sale of more than a quarter million ineffective diphtheria, whooping cough and tetanus vaccinations, as Fortune reported.

Weese argued that, given the magnitude of the scandal in China and the global medicine sector, it is more likely that apart from the case of large-scale cryptocurrency accounts like CoinDaily, Deepchain, and Huobi News, most of the accounts that were banned by WeChat were involved in spreading misinformation about the scandal.

But, as one WeChat official confirmed to Lanjinger, the Chinese government vowed to take a stricter approach in cracking down on ICOs and token sales, and Chinese social media platforms will continue to shut down the accounts of individuals and businesses that are utilized to promote and advertise ICOs in the Chinese market, which were banned by the government in late 2017.

“[Accounts were permanently shut down for being] suspected of publishing information related to ICOs [initial coin offerings] and speculations on cryptocurrency trading,” the official said.

In a statement obtained by South China Morning Post (SCMP), the Huobi team denied that the ban of its account was related to the government’s restriction of cryptocurrency, but rather by the “broad action targeting industrial media” by WeChat.

Facebook blockchain initiative to affect China relationship?

In July 2018, Facebook, which was banned in China in 2008obtained a license to operate an office in China. The social media conglomerate has opened a $30 million subsidiary called Facebook Technology in Hangzhou to finance emerging startups and technology-related initiatives.

“We are interested in setting up an innovation hub in Zhejiang to support Chinese developers, innovators and start-ups,” Facebook told Verge in a statement.

Given the rumors around Facebook wanting to introduce its own cryptocurrency to the global market, it remains unclear whether Facebook’s supposed idea of integrating cryptocurrencies or launching its own blockchain platform could impact its current relationship with the Chinese government.

Chinese social media platforms like Baidu and WeChat have not seen any rumors in both domestic and international cryptocurrency communities regarding cryptocurrency and blockchain-related initiatives, possibly to avoid any conflict with local financial regulators.

PBoC issues warning against ICOs

On Aug. 25, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), the central bank of the country, issued a warning against ICOs, firmly declaring that raising funds through token sales is illegal in the country. The PBoC and local financial authorities added in an official announcement that it was difficult to track and monitor transactions made through ICOs, even if the token sales are done domestically.

“The funds for these illegal activities are mostly overseas, and supervision and tracking are very difficult.”  

The PBoC further emphasized that, while the country has encouraged the development and commercialization of blockchain technology, ICOs cannot be considered to be legitimate operations or developments on the blockchain. The document reads:

“Such activities are not really based on blockchain technology, but rather the practice of speculative blockchain concepts for illegal fundraising, pyramid schemes and fraud. The main features are as follows:

  1. Risk of illegal activities, unregulated overseas markets and inability to track or monitor transactions made in ICOs.
  2. Deceptive, opaque and concealed fundraising methods, relying on celebrities and influencers to manufacture hype around investments to tempt investors.
  3. Illegal operations like profit-generating pyramid schemes and creating Ponzi schemes by describing them as ‘financial innovations.’”

Sheng Songcheng, an adviser to the People’s Bank of China, also confirmed to state-owned publication ce.cn that the government has decided to strengthen its ban on ICOs, banning public accounts, channels and communication platforms utilized to spread information about token sales.

Rise of OTC trading, Alipay takes notice

In December of last year, during the peak of the cryptocurrency market, when the combined valuation of all of the digital assets in the market totaled at $900 billion, China’s National Committee of Experts on Internet Financial Security — a government-backed research group — reported that the volume of the over-the-counter (OTC) Bitcoin market was rapidly increasing.

“Over-the-counter trading is booming. This warrants further attention,” the researchers said.

At the time, speaking to South China Morning Post, biggest mainstream publication in Hong Kong, Weese said that Telegram has been the go-to platform for large OTC trades due to the connections between local financial authorities and the operators of WeChat, but that a small portion of investors were still using the Chinese messaging platform. Weese explained:

“Telegram is very popular for large, over-the-counter trades. While WeChat is used by the less paranoid.”

Operators of various cryptocurrency exchanges and OTC platforms — including Tidebit — confirmed the rise in activity in the Bitcoin OTC market, stating that investors who could no longer trade within the Chinese market have started to explore peer-to-peer alternatives to invest in the asset class.

This week, Alipay — the most widely utilized fintech platform in China, with a 90 percent market share and a $150 billion market valuation — formally banned OTC trading on the Alipay network, preventing users of the Alipay mobile app to initiate transactions for Bitcoin or digital asset purchases.

Red Li, a cryptocurrency researcher and the founder of Chinese cryptocurrency community 8BTC, revealed that Alipay has begun the process of shutting down accounts involved in OTC Bitcoin trading, most likely due to the government’s request for banks and financial networks to shut down all possible payment channels that could be used to send funds to cryptocurrency trading platforms.

A rough translation of the statement released by Alipay disclosed the intention of the company to permanently ban any account that is reasonably suspected of funding Bitcoin exchanges to invest in the cryptocurrency space.

With the prohibition of OTC cryptocurrency trading by Alipay, the only channel that is left for local investors to allocate funds into the cryptocurrency market is the Hong Kong cryptocurrency exchange market.

Given that investors in China still send millions of dollars to Hong Kong shell companies’ bank accounts to purchase multi-million dollar properties on the Hong Kong real estate market, the possibility of investing through Hong Kong digital asset trading platforms with local bank accounts still exists.

But, due to the country’s strict capital controls and the government’s newly implemented initiative to track down savings and brokerage accounts utilized to evade taxes, it could become even more difficult to send money out of China to overseas markets.

Ban of crypto events

This week, Binance — the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by daily trading volume — had to cancel a cryptocurrency-related event in Beijing on August 23, as the government announced a ban on commercial blockchain conferences and meetups.

The local government of the Chaoyang District in Beijing revealed that it has informed hotels and other large-scale venues in the country that they are not allowed to host events that are related to cryptocurrency and blockchain, as part of its larger initiative to completely crackdown on ICOs and distributed fundraising.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, a Binance spokeswoman said that she was not aware of the closure of the event because the exchange hosts many events across the world.

“We have so many meetups around the world, and [they] may be canceled due to any reason.”

The People’s Daily, the publication operated by the Communist Party, reported that so-called venture capital-backed media outlets in China have made a significant fortune by creating hype around ICOs, but it is unsure whether the publications will be able to continue promoting ICOs in the long term. The publication could lead investors to believe that local authorities may target independent media outlets that promote ICOs in the months to come.

“These ‘media’ outlets have made huge fortunes in the speculative waves of cryptocurrencies, but due to their nature, it’s doubtful how long their barbaric growth can keep on going.”

Conclusively, in the past two months, the government of China has allocated the majority of its resources to strengthening its ban on cryptocurrency trading and the ICO market.

Given the censorship practiced by WeChat, Alipay and other platforms, along with Beijing’s ban on crypto events, it is likely that the country will see a decline in the adoption of blockchain technology and cryptocurrency development, which is ironic, as China has spent more than $3 billion in funding blockchain projects this year.

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Huobi Launches New Service to Streamline Token Listing Application Process

Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange Huobi Group has launched a new product designed to streamline the token listing application process.

According to a statement shared with Cointelegraph, the new service, which Huobi developed to provide a more transparent listing process, is called the Huobi Automated Listing Platform.

Per the announcement, projects that want to list on Huobi Global or an autonomous digital asset exchange Huobi HADAX, will have to register and submit specific documentation about the project. The announcement states that the Huobi Automated Listing Platform “will not automatically list any token or coin that applies.”

Upon passing the verification process, applicants will receive a unique login account, which provides access to submit, edit, amend, and review documents and status of the token listing.

Projects that fail to pass the verification will be provided with a reminder notification of re-application to HADAX 2.0 and assistance in registering on the newly launched platform. Projects that decide to re-apply will have to follow specific application and listing rules.

The announcement also states that later this year, Huobi is looking to launch the Huobi Blockchain Project Show Center within the Huobi Automated Listing Platform, which will provide users access to reports, videos, and live broadcasts.

In July, Houbi Group launched Huobi Cloud, which allows users to build over-the-counter (OTC) and digital asset exchanges on top of Huobi’s existing platform. Partners will also be able to use the order integration and wallet systems, as well as the asset management and clearing system of the Huobi Global platform.

That same month, HBUS, the U.S. “strategic partner” of Huobi, confirmed the release of its API for “experienced traders” in some U.S. states. The product was geared to high-volume users who required live pricing data and other tools. In addition to price tracking, the API also offers historical price data, support for margin trade customization support, setting buy and sell limits, and retrieving trade history.