Posted on August 3, 2018 by staff

FinTech Crypto Briefing: Buying crypto in UK just got easier


Crypto enthusiasts rejoice: it just became a whole lot easier to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in the UK thanks to Coinbase.

The “world’s most popular crypto exchange” has now introduced faster payments – meaning that people in the UK will be able to make payments and withdraw funds directly in British pounds to and from their bank accounts.

It definitely beats the old system, where the process of converting Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum and Litecoin first into Europe and then into pound sterling took several days.

It also meant that users were at the mercy of their bank’s exchange rate.

“Customers will now be able to transfer pound sterling and use it to directly buy and sell these cryptocurrencies,” Coinbase CEO Zeeshan Feroz proudly wrote in a blog post.

Feroz said the company has also taken “major strides” to make Coinbase the most compliant and trusted brand in this space – like obtaining an e-money licence from the Financial Conduct Authority and becoming the first crypto trading platform to obtain an account with a major UK bank.

Mastercard CEO trashes cryptocurrencies

When the boss of one of the world’s largest financial services giants describes cryptocurrencies as “junk”, the press tends to have a field day.

During a 6th New India lecture in New York, Ajay Banga condemned the volatile nature of digital currencies and said they go against what a legal exchange should be.

He said: “I think cryptocurrency is junk. The idea of an anonymised currency produced by people who have to mine it, the value of which can fluctuate wildly – that to me is not the way that any medium of exchange deserves to be considered as a medium of exchange.”

Those returns are Revolutionary

Some of digital banking unicorn Revolut’s early backers have now made a 19x return on their original investments.

In July 2016 the company raised just over £1 million through a Crowdcube campaign, back when it had a measley £42 million valuation.

In April this year Revolut secured a whopping $250 million investment, valuing the business at around £1.2 billion.

After that funding round, crowd investors were offered the opportunity to either sell their shares back to Revolut, or retain them. Those who chose to sell have now received payment into their bank accounts.

You do the math!

Crypto speaker doesn’t fit the Bill

If we were playing a word association game, would Bill Clinton be the first name that pops in your head when you think of the cryptocurrency Ripple?

No, me neither.

But clearly that didn’t stop the blockchain start-up from inviting the former US president to speak at its annual Swell conference.

The keynote has been advertised as “a conversation with Bill Clinton” and will take place on 1 October in San Francisco.

I must admit, the link between Clinton and one of the world’s most popular cryptocurrencies is still unclear to me – and it’s safe to say that the crypto community wasn’t all that impressed.

But I’ve got to hand it to them, they reacted beautifully (see herehere and here for examples).

Crypto millionaire goes social

A successful trader, entrepreneur and crypto millionaire has launched his own social networking platform for both traditional and cryptocurrency traders.

Samuel Leach is the founder and CEO of Samuel & Co. Trading, a business he set up in 2012 using £200,000 of his own money earned trading on the markets.

The 27-year-old is behind Yield Coin, the world’s first multi-purpose backed cryptocurrency token, and has now launched Yield Owl to create stronger relationships within the community.

But it’s not all about crypto. The platform will also bring together traditional traders and investors and empower them to become more financially literate.