Silvergate-IPO: Californian bank wants to expand business with customers from crypto space

Banks do not necessarily have to be crypto-hostile. On the contrary, more and more banks are seeing the positive implications of blockchain technology, including for the tokenization of assets. This includes the Californian Silvergate Bank. According to a report on the Xconomy news site, the bank is planning a US$ 50 million IPO. Silvergate intends to use the capital increase to expand its services for customers in the crypto ecosystem.

Californian bank Silvergate is rapidly transforming itself from a traditional credit institution into a global pioneer in the institutional management of crypto assets. Although the official SEC application for the IPO does not provide any details on the exact use of the new capital, Silvergate only talks about investments in „organic growth and basic corporate purposes“. In view of the bank’s explicit crypto affinity, however, an expansion of crypto services is more than likely.

Silvergate has been in the middle of the Bitcoin revolution sector since 2013

As Xconomy reports, CEO Alan Lane contracted the Bitcoin revolution virus at the time and has kept the bank on course ever since. In 2014 Silvergate was able to win the Digital Currency Group (DCG), an important holding company from the crypto ecosystem. DCG invests in crypto start-ups and holds shares in the news site CoinDesk. The fact that the bank has been focusing on customers from the crypto ecosystem for so long gives it an enormous competitive advantage:

„Our ability to define these markets as a target group over the last five years provides us with an enormous first mover advantage in the area of digital currencies. Crypto currencies have therefore become the cornerstone of our business“.

Financial infrastructure increasingly important for Bitcoin loophole

Obviously, the bank has hit a nerve with its focus on companies from the Bitcoin loophole crypto sector, because despite the bear market, the number of its customers is growing rapidly. Read more about it: Is Bitcoin Loophole a Scam? Read This Review Before You Sign Up! Silvergate has a total of 483 customers (as of 30 September) in its crypto sector. Compared to the previous year, the bank recorded an increase of 323 per cent in this area. This is stated in the IPO document. All crypto customers together deposited approximately USD 1.7 billion with Silvergate.

Silvergate’s core business differs from traditionally oriented financial service providers in that it does not focus on traditional lending. Instead, the bank concentrates on the deposit of non-interest-bearing investments, which it then invests with other financial institutions.

The majority of traditional credit institutions are passive to hostile to crypto-space, to say the least. Meanwhile, however, more and more institutions are seeking to escape to the front.

The most important example in this country is probably Bitwala. As reported by BTC-ECHO, Bitwala will probably open Germany’s first BaFin-compliant blockchain account in November.

The wind turns: Bitcoin share price again above 380 euros

Over the past week, Bitcoin’s price has risen sharply thanks to a renewed rise in public opinion.

On 19th February Bitcoin was traded for 387 Euros, an increase of 11% compared to the price on 12th February.

This development contrasts sharply with the development between 4 and 11 February, when Bitcoin roughly fluctuated between 335 and 350 euros. On 12th February the price rose from 334 to 342 euros, a trend that led the next day to an average price of 346 euros. After that there was a slight loss, but the Bitcoin price recovered for the rest of the week.

According to data from Bitcoinity, a total volume of 15.2 million Bitcoins was traded during this period. OKCoin was responsible for 47.45% and Huobi for 44.92% of this transaction volume.

Price also rose due to the news spy

In parallel with the news spy, banks in both the Euro-Zone and China announced that they would take a closer look at blockchain technology. The European Central Bank announced on 17th February that it will investigate to what extent this infrastructure technology could be useful for payment and insurance operations. On the other side of the world, Zhou Xiaochuan, president of the Chinese Volksbank, said in an interview with Caixin Weekly that the central bank is investigating various technologies, including the blockchain, to build and manage an electronic cash network.

Finally, the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) has made speeches and announced plans for a technology program in which the blockchain would be a part of it.

These developments are certainly positive, but they do not change Bitcoin’s current challenges such as the Blocksize debate. These technical problems continue to create some uncertainty in global markets. However, if the community behind Bitcoin overcomes these difficulties, the attitude towards Bitcoin could continue to improve. Tim Enneking, Chairman of the Crypto Currency Fund, a hedge fund focused on digital currencies, predicts that Bitcoin will see a massive jump in prices.

New confidence in Bitcoin secret

The price of Bitcoin secret has risen worldwide thanks to a better opinion of traders again. In addition, the market has received a tailwind from the increasing adoption of Bitcoin and Blockchain technology. This is what onlinebetrug found out about the Bitcoin secret.

The negative impact of Mike Hearn’s farewell, which led to a 15% price drop, seems to be slowly fading with this week.

Hearn, who was one of the developers behind Bitcoin for more than five years, said that the Bitcoin experiment had failed, a statement passed on by many major media companies. One of Hearn’s main arguments was that the small block size led to an extremely unstable network. This extremely pessimistic view is contrasted with other statements which see in the current difficulties only the normal insanity of an emerging technology.

„The biggest challenge for Bitcoin is its own success,“ says Enneking, „If the number of transactions continues to grow so strongly, Bitcoin will hardly be able to keep up. ”

Enneking predicts that the Bitcoin community will take its time with decisions, but says that it is „better to make a suboptimal decision than no decision at all“.

Despite the lack of a solution to the blocksize problem, Bitcoin’s price has recovered from its low of below 340 Euros.

„Bitcoin-ETF comes by itself“ – Roger Ver exclusively interviewed

Roger Ver is regarded as an early adopter, he was part of the Bitcoin network right from the start. BTC-ECHO met him personally on the Blockchain Cruise for an interview. The Bitcoin Cash advocate about Bitcoin, the Lightning Network, Bitcoin Cash, ETF, individual freedom and the scaling debate.

Bobby Lee confirmed in his keynote speech that he believes Bitcoin Cash is closer to Satoshi’s original vision of Bitcoin. You’ve been trying to bring this closer to the community for a year now. Why don’t you explain your reasons to our readers?

This is also a Bitcoin loophole for institutional investors

From my point of view, it’s not only the version [Bitcoin Cash] that is closer to the Bitcoin loophole, but it’s also the version of Bitcoin that has made it so popular. And if you change the economic reasons that led to the success of Bitcoin loophole, I don’t think that will contribute to this version of Bitcoin having a similar success in the future.

In my presentation, I compared the key features that made up Bitcoin at the time with today’s versions of BTC and Bitcoin Cash. BTC now has none of these features, whereas Bitcoin Cash has all of them. If I had advertised Bitcoin in 2011 with the slogan „slow transactions“, nobody would have been interested in Bitcoin. With Bitcoin Cash I can now advertise the same thing I advertised with Bitcoin in 2011.

100 BTC is not enough for the news spy

The scaling debate is controversial. Some believe in the news spy solutions like the Lightning Network instead of working on the base layer as you recommend. Do you think there will be a possibility in the future that both solutions can coexist independently?

The Bitcoin cash community believes in the news spy both basic layer and second layer technologies. The BTC community, on the other hand, only believes in the second-layer solution. At the moment, Layer One solutions exist. Layer two solutions will hopefully also exist in the future, but not yet at the moment. The Lightning Network does not yet work in real trading. In total, only 100 Bitcoin circulate in the Lightning Network. That’s not enough for people to pay with it.

You are known for your critical attitude towards the role of the state in the economy and promote crypto currencies as a means to reduce state control. Are you still convinced that crypto currencies have the power to enable individual freedom?

Of course. For this reason I am involved in the further development of the community on a daily basis. Crypto currencies give individuals the power to control their own money. This gives the individual more economic freedom and leads to a freer world.

„We should focus more on adaptation.“
At the moment, the debate about a Bitcoin ETF also keeps coming up again and again. The SEC has put a stop to this for now. Would you like to see a Bitcoin Cash ETF one day?

I think if more and more people use Bitcoin cash or other crypto currencies as a means of payment, the SEC will have no option but to allow a Bitcoin ETF. But it is the use as a means of payment that motivates people to invest in an ETF. So we should focus more on the adaptation of crypto currencies, the ETF will then come by itself as a result of the adaptation.

Everything depends on the use case

But it all depends on the use case behind it. However, everything depends on the underlying use case. Crypto currencies must be useful so that people can use them. Bitcoin Cash is a very useful means of payment, whereas BTC no longer has the useful features that it once had.

So don’t you think Bitcoin can optimize its functionality, especially scaling, to be closer to the original version again?

Oh, I hope so. But I honestly don’t believe in it. As long as the people behind it say they don’t want it and pop champagne corks when transaction fees go up to $50 per transaction. These people are still behind the protocols and will certainly not help return BTC to its old usefulness.

Regulation in the weekly review KW#16 – The air in Asia becomes thinner

In the past week, a lot has happened around the globe in terms of regulation. In the series „Regulation in the Week in Review“ we look back at the end of the week and summarize what was said, thought or decided where, when and by whom.

Taiwan: Bitcoin Miner shot down

According to a report in the Taiwanese news source Liberty Times, a Bitcoin miner was shot down by two other parties on Saturday evening. They had wanted to meet the Miner to make a significant investment with him. Both business partners had previously made 10 million Chinese yuan (about 1.7 million US dollars) available to the miner. Due to the tightened Chinese rules, however, he could not exchange the profits back into fiat currencies – the dispute escalated.

Vietnam: Crypto ban in online trade
The Ministry of Industry and Commerce in Hanoi has banned the use of Bitcoin and other crypto currencies in online commerce in the city. A document issued on April 13 states that „the issuance, delivery, use of Bitcoin and similar virtual currencies is prohibited in Vietnam“. Violations are subject to a fine of up to 200 million Vietnamese Dong (8,810 US dollars) for individuals and organizations.

Hong Kong: Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) on ICOs

Julia Leung, Deputy Head of the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), warned the public in a speech about fundraising activities related to blockchain technology. „While we recognize that innovative technologies like blockchain have the potential to improve efficiency and financial inclusion, this does not entitle anyone to fundraise in violation of securities laws,“ Leung said.

Malta: When do tokens become securities?
The island state of Malta is about to introduce a test to determine whether assets resulting from ICOs are securities. The test involves a three-step process that would first examine whether a crypto asset falls into the category of utility tokens or whether it can be traded on the secondary market and thus falls under MiFID supervision.

Japan: No national crypto currency planned
The Bank of Japan (BoJ) currently has no plans to issue a digital central bank currency. At a conference with the International Monetary Fund and Japan’s Financial Services Agency, BoJ Deputy Governor Masayoshi Amamiya said that issuing a digital currency could undermine the existing two-tier system. However, BOJ has already begun to address the underlying blockchain technology. However, it is currently only intended for business applications.