It’s Bitcoin Pizza Day! The Most Delicious Holiday of the Year 118

If you had 10,000 BTC what would you spend it on? A mansion? The oh-so-typical ‘Lambo’? Two Papa John’s pizzas? Well eight years ago an early Bitcoiner opted for the latter and on the anniversary of the now-legendary deal, he’s absolutely no regrets!

An Expensive Slice of History?

Eight years ago, on this very day, history was made. As far as we know, for the first time ever, Bitcoin was traded for something outside of the realms of software developers. Sure, the world’s most popular digital currency had previously been gifted to folks, or a coin or two swapped for lines of code on various cryptography forums, but the anniversary we celebrate today marks Bitcoin entering the real world – traded for something visible, something tangible, something delicious!

We are, of course, talking about Bitcoin Pizza Day. If you’re not familiar with the story, I’ll recap. Back in 2010, early cryptocurrency miner Laszlo Hanyecz signed onto a forum and made what has since become a legendary post:

“I’ll pay 10,000 bitcoins for a couple of pizzas… Like maybe 2 large ones so I have some left over for the next day. I like having left over pizza to nibble on later.”

The post continued, stating that the hungry cryptographer wasn’t fussy about the origins of said slices – he would happily accept takeaway or homemade – the important clauses of the deal were a) the transaction had to happen in Bitcoin b) the food had to arrive at Hanyecz’s home, and c) he didn’t want to have to order or prepare the food himself.

It was a few days later when Jeremy Sturdivant replied to the post. He agreed to accept the deal and proceeded to place an order from his London apartment across the Atlantic Ocean to arrive at Florida-based Hanyecz’s place. That was it. Bitcoin had just successfully proven itself as the permissionless, cross-border payment method it was intended to be.

Of course, back in 2010 the 10,000 Bitcoin were worth a fraction of what they are today. In fact, according to the irreverent Twitter account ‘Bitcoin Pizza,’ the long-devoured disks of deliciousness were bought for over $83 million.

The #Bitcoin pizza is worth $83,131,600 today. (-2% from yesterday) Today is Bitcoin pizza day!

— Bitcoin Pizza 🍕 (@bitcoin_pizza) May 22, 2018

Hanyecz isn’t phased by the vast appreciation of his payment, however. For him, mining was a hobby and he did get free pizza after all. The now 36-year-old told the U.K.’s Telegraph:

“I don’t think it was a mistake. It’s like if you could go back in time and buy Google stocks when they were $1 or something…  At the time it wasn’t worth much and I feel like if I hadn’t done it, someone else would have. I wouldn’t have spent $100m on pizza, right? But if I hadn’t done that, maybe it wouldn’t have become popular.”

In fact, Hanyecz enjoyed his entry into the Bitcoin history books so much that he repeated his order this year. This time, he used the Lightning Network to order his munchies – again two pizzas. He personally feels that the software upgrade is what’s missing from Bitcoin becoming a truly global payment network rather than a speculative investment that people are hoping will make them rich.

Even though people love to make a big deal about the supposed value of the legendary Bitcoin pizzas being in the tens of millions today, it’s not like Sturdivant ended up retiring in his twenties thanks to the deal. He was able to trade the coins in for a significant (although certainly not life-changing) profit to take a trip to the U.S. with his girlfriend. Eight years on from the purchase, Sturdivant still sees the necessity of a commodity like Bitcoin though:

“I believe the overall power of cryptocurrency is for good… empowering individuals and companies alike to handle local and international trade in a fair and traceable manner, and that’s exactly what I see it bringing to the future, as a component in an era of economic freedom.”

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Huobi Tech’s Subsidiary Huobi Asset Management Got the Approval to Launch 100% Virtual Asset Funds and Plans to Launch 3 Virtual Asset Funds 4229

Huobi Technology Holdings Limited (“Huobi Tech” or the “Company”, stock code: 1611), is pleased to announce that Huobi Asset Management (Hong Kong) Limited (the “Huobi Asset Management”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Company, has obtained the Securities and Futures Commission’s (the “SFC”) approval to manage and distribute 100% virtual asset funds with effect from 3 March 2021. Huobi Asset is the second licensed virtual asset manager in Hong Kong to fall under the SFC’s “Proforma Terms and Conditions for Licensed Corporations which Manage Portfolios that Invest in Virtual Assets” (“T&C”) since October 2019.

As the first licensed virtual asset fund manager approved by the SFC to issue virtual asset funds with an active investment strategy, it is the first virtual asset fund manager in the Hong Kong market to accept fiat currency or virtual asset subscription channels. Huobi Asset Management plans to launch three virtual asset funds: BTC tracker fund, ETH tracker fund, and multi-strategy virtual asset fund. Besides, Huobi Asset Management is launching its multi-asset fund with 10% allocation to virtual assets whilst 90% into traditional assets such as equities and fixed income.

A senior investment team will manage Huobi Asset Management’s virtual asset funds. The main business partners include Sidley Austin, Mourant, DBS, Fidelity Digital, and other world-renowned institutions. Ms. Gillian Wu, CEO of Huobi Asset Management, said, “We aim to provide various choices to investors with different risk appetites. We have covered comprehensive perspectives through in-depth dialogues with SFC and made full preparations on corresponding solutions. We are confident that our funds could offer one of the most secure and reliable channels for Professional Investors to access this novel asset class conveniently.”

The management of Huobi Tech said, “We are delighted that Huobi Asset Management team has secured such a breakthrough. The approval’s timing is perfect, coinciding with the mainstream institutional adoption of virtual assets starting from this year. We will continue to explore the possibility of diversifying our businesses in relevant areas to enhance our growth prospects and bring long-term sustainable returns to our shareholders.”

Max Dilendorf Serves as a Bitcoin Expert Witness in USCIS EB-5 Green Card Adjudication Proceedings 4650

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has frequently denied EB-5 applications that list Bitcoin exchange-traded-funds as a legitimate “source of funds”. Yet, in an unprecedented approach that included forensic reporting analysis, attorney Max Dilendorf provided an expert legal opinion and due diligence report proving that a green card applicants’ source of funds met the standards to be qualified under this program.

Because USCIS only requires a “preponderance of evidence” showing the legal acquisition of investment funds in EB-5 petitions and offers little guidance for applicants whose funds originated in cryptocurrency, Dilendorf’s confirming evidence was a significant achievement.

The Dilendorf Law Firm, NYC’s top law firm for the digital age, represented several clients in EB-5 matters with the USCIS concerning the clients’ EB-5 investments funded with cryptocurrencies. By submitting blockchain and cryptocurrency expert reports in these cases, the firm has provided evidence to support the legitimate “source of funds”.

The firm’s clients were software engineers and early cryptocurrency adopters who, in the opinion of the crypto compliance law firm, are legally qualified for obtaining EB-5 investor green-cards, as there was little doubt on the legality of the source of the clients’ cryptocurrency funds.

Dilendorf’s legal opinions and blockchain forensic reports, as submitted to the USCIS, included an expert assessment of the following:

  • legality of the specific digital assets and regulatory framework for the involved financial institutions dealing with cryptocurrencies;
  • origin and flow of cryptocurrencies funding the EB-5 investments;
  • mechanism and sufficiency of digital wallets, private cryptographic keys, crypto trading platforms and accounts establishing ownership of the clients’ cryptocurrency funds;
  • KYC/AML compliance measures taken at each point of the funds’ journey by clients and third parties, including crypto exchanges and OTC traders.

Max Dilendorf, Esq. is also a top forensic Bitcoin and crypto expert witness. His expertise has also made him one of the top cryptocurrency consultants for Fortune 500 companies.  Mr. Dilendorf’s recent speaking engagements have included the Thailand SEC, IBM, Berkshire Hathaway, and New York University, to name a few.

The9 Appointed Cai ZhiFang as the CEO of NBTC Limited to Lead the Development of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Business 4566

The9 Limited (Nasdaq: NCTY) (“The9”), an established Internet company, today announced the appointment of Cai Zhifang as the Chief Executive Officer of NBTC Limited (hereinafter referred to as “NBTC”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of The9, to lead the development of blockchain and cryptocurrency business in NBTC. Mr. Cai has been on board.

Mr. Cai is an early pioneer in the blockchain industry. In 2013, Mr. Cai co-founded YiBit Digital Technology Company Limited, one of the earliest integrated platforms in blockchain industry in China. In 2015, Mr. Cai served as the general manager of WeiTui Technology Limited Company, which self-operated Bitcoin mining by the purchase of AvalonMiners from Canaan. The peak hash rate managed by Mr. Cai at that time accounted for nearly 4% of the global hash rate of Bitcoin. Afterwards Mr. Cai established a strategic partnership with Canaan, responsible for assisting its customers in establishing, operating and maintaining AvalonMiners. At that time Mr. Cai managed and operated more than 300,000 AvalonMiners, with an accumulative hash rate exceeding 5,000 PH/S, accounted for nearly 5% of the global hash rate of Bitcoin at that time.

After joining the NBTC team, Mr. Cai will be responsible for leading the expansion of NBTC blockchain and cryptocurrency business, making full use of his industry experience and resources to formulate and execute NBTC’s business strategy, and to implement the cooperation between NBTC and worldwide cryptocurrency ecosystem partners with the goal to accelerate the establishment of The9’s global leadership in the cryptocurrency industry.

In January this year, The9 announced the establishment of the wholly-owned subsidiary NBTC to engage in blockchain and cryptocurrency related businesses. Immediately within two months, Bitcoin and Filecoin mining machines had been acquired as the first step to build The9’s cryptocurrencies mining business.

About The9 Limited

The9 Limited (The9) is an Internet company based in China listed on Nasdaq in 2004. The9 aims to become a diversified high-tech Internet company.

Online Blockchain plc: Umbria DeFi Platform Announces First Airdrop of its UMBR Token 4944

Decentralised Finance (DeFi) protocol Umbria is airdropping 100,000 of its governance utility tokens to its users. Umbria, an opensource project on a mission to demystify and simplify DeFi and get people earning income on their crypto, will be rewarding eligible crypto enthusiasts with its tokens. Holders of UMBR tokens – available on Uniswap – or UMBR-ETH Liquidity Pool tokens (tokens issued for adding liquidity to the UMBR-ETH pool on decentralized cryptocurrency exchange Uniswap) on March 1st, 2021 will be able to participate in the airdrop. They will need to have a Metamask wallet.

UMBR and UMBR-ETH LP holders (minimum 100 UMBR or 2 UMBR-ETH LP) simply have to visit airdrop.umbria.network and press the “Claim Airdrop” button to get their share of the airdrop. The tokens will then be distributed directly into their Metamask wallets on April 2nd, 2021. The airdrop will be on chain facilitated by Ethereum Smart Contracts.

Users of the Umbria platform will soon be able to swap tokens and earn interest on their cryptocurrency positions on the Umbria website with other facilities coming online which will utilise the Umbria protocol and its utility token. UMBR tokens will give holders the ability to shape the future of the Umbria ecosystem itself.

“The Umbria project is a collective effort, which is already gaining good traction and seeing a lot of interest,” said Oscar Chambers, Co-Lead Developer at Umbria. “This first airdrop is a great way to reward existing participants and encourage more early adoption of Umbria, which will hopefully be a steppingstone to unlocking the mass adoption of DeFi.”

Margex Launches Globally and Announces $1,000,000 Bonus Giveaway Campaign Making Cryptocurrency Derivatives Trading More Accessible 6255

Margex announces its global launch. Along with the launch, every new client will be able to try Margex for free, with an included $100 bonus to settle trading commissions and funding fees on the platform. During the promotional campaign, Margex plans to distribute up to $1,000,000 in bonuses for a total of 10,000 users.

  • 100X scalable leverage for all of its trading pairs such as BTC, ETH, XRP, EOS, LTC, and YFI;
  • Combined liquidity of multiple liquidity aggregators, allowing for the best possible entry and exit prices;
  • AI-based Price Manipulation Protection systems, monitoring for irregularities across all trading pairs and mitigating the risk of accidental liquidations and short-squeezes;
  • Bank-grade security;
  • Scale-on-demand infrastructure, capable of handling up to 100,000 transactions per second;
  • High-Class User Interface.

Margex’s goal is to provide traders with a world-class user experience, a fair, secure, and easy-to-use trading platform with the highest class of financial technologies in the world. The platform has received a lot of positive feedback from various trading communities for the deep liquidity achieved through the combination of multiple liquidity providers, extremely fast order execution speeds, and an MP-Shield system that uses artificial intelligence to automatically detect irregularities in the trade feed submitted by liquidity pools, eliminating the risk of accidental liquidations.

ZK International Subsidiary, xSigma Corporation, Announces Dwight Howard from the Philadelphia 76ers to Join its DeFi Protocol as an Early LP 6499

ZK International Group Co., Ltd. (Nasdaq: ZKIN) (“ZKIN”, “ZK International” or the “Company”), a designer, engineer, manufacturer, and supplier of patented high-performance stainless steel and carbon steel pipe products primarily used for water and gas supplies, is pleased to announce that xSigma Corporation, a subsidiary of the Company, that is a blockchain R&D lab, is pleased to announce that Dwight Howard, a professional basketball player and NBA champion with the Los Angeles Lakers, has committed to joining the xSigma DeFi Protocol as an early liquidity provider (LP).

Mr. Howard committed to providing cryptocurrency for xSigma’s DeFi Protocol upon its launch. In addition, Mr. Howard has partnered with xSigma to advertise the project. Thus, it makes xSigma Protocol the first project of its kind to get a global sports influencer to the list of LPs. By doing this partnership, xSigma expects to bring more LPs and customers for its project.

xSigma Corporation is a blockchain R&D lab owned by ZK International Group Co., Ltd. xSigma’s team includes former Facebook, Google, Ripple, and Amazon engineers. xSigma’s DeFi Protocol is one of the first projects in the DeFi space backed by a public company. The DeFi industry keeps growing and now has over $36 billion of funds locked in the major DeFi protocols, according to defipulse.com.

Mr. Jiancong Huang, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of ZK International, stated, “We are honored that Dwight Howard decided to participate in our decentralized finance platform. This is a huge step in mass-adoption of blockchain products. xSigma looks forward to bringing more opinion leaders onboard.”