Sunday Newsletter

Explore the latest trends, gain valuable insights, and stay informed in the dynamic cryptocurrency ecosystem.

16 June 2024

Riot Platforms Escalates Stake in Bitfarms Amid Corporate Dispute

The corporate showdown between crypto mining powerhouses Riot Platforms and Bitfarms has reached new heights. On June 11, Riot Platforms announced a significant increase in its stake in Bitfarms, acquiring approximately six million shares valued at over $111 million, raising its total holding from 9.25% to 13.1%.

This move closely followed Bitfarms’ adoption of a “poison pill” defense strategy intended to prevent Riot from increasing its stake to 15% or more. This strategy aims to dilute share value and obstruct Riot’s takeover attempts.

In April, Riot made a bid to acquire Bitfarms, offering a substantial premium over the current market price, which Bitfarms’ board promptly rejected. The backdrop of this dispute includes significant internal friction within Bitfarms, which has been dealing with the fallout from firing its CEO Geoffrey Morphy in May. Morphy has since sued the company for breach of contract, wrongful dismissal, and damages, demanding $27 million. The ongoing conflict between Riot and Bitfarms remains unresolved.

Tether to Invest $1 Billion in Emerging Technologies

Stablecoin giant Tether has unveiled plans to invest up to $1 billion over the next year in emerging markets, artificial intelligence (AI), and biotechnology. According to CEO Paolo Ardoino, Tether’s venture capital arm will lead these investments, with a growing team of 15 professionals evaluating hundreds of pitches monthly. Over the past two years, Tether has already invested around $2 billion in AI and alternative financial infrastructure technologies.

Ripple Labs Completes Standard Custody Acquisition

Ripple Labs has finalized its acquisition of the digital asset custodian Standard Custody. This strategic move supports Ripple’s plans to launch a USD stablecoin and advance its broader goals of tokenizing real-world assets. As part of the acquisition, Standard Custody CEO Jack McDonald will become Ripple’s Senior Vice President of Stablecoins while continuing as CEO of Standard Custody. Ripple emphasized Standard Custody’s regulatory approval from the New York Department of Financial Services as a key asset.

Circle Introduces Solana Programmable Wallets and Gas Stations

Circle has announced the integration of the Solana blockchain into its Web3 services, including programmable wallets and gas stations. According to a June 12 announcement, the integration will occur in two phases. The first phase focuses on programmable wallets and sponsored transaction fees, while the second phase includes support for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and program interactions through the Smart Contract Platform. This integration aligns Solana with other blockchains supported by Circle, such as Ethereum, Polygon, and Avalanche.

Fireblocks Partners with Coinbase for Expanded Trading Services

Fireblocks has teamed up with Coinbase to enhance its trading services by introducing perpetual futures and spot trading via Coinbase International Exchange. This partnership targets institutional investors, offering new trading options under strict security and governance protocols. These capabilities are available to users in select jurisdictions outside the United States, though specific countries served are not detailed on Coinbase International’s website.

Indiana Aims to Become a Crypto Mining Hub

The state of Indiana is positioning itself as a prime location for data centers and crypto mining by offering uninterrupted, low-cost energy.