Fintech Monthly: Funding Circle’s $150m, top financial Apple Watch apps …

This week we filmed at the Seven Hills Future of Growth Summit where we caught up with Russ Shaw, Tech London Advocates and Matt Novak of Invesdor. All this and more in your monthly round up of fintech news. In the news This month Funding Circle raised a whopping $150m and we saw Seedrs’ second largest campaign to date, $3m for Assetz Capital. The Apple Watch has gone live with a plethora of fintech apps, already including banking, payments and stocks. Plus, we catch up with Richard Goold of  Wragge, Lawrence, Graham co to get his views on the upcoming election. For More… Follow us on Twitter at @FintechMonthly to stay up-to-date in 2015. Originally appeared at: http://techcitynews.com/2015/04/30/fintech-monthly-funding-circle-raises-150m-apple-watch-apps-bitcoin-atm/Fintech Monthly: Funding Circle’s $150m, top financial Apple Watch apps … is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

Fintech Monthly: Funding Circle’s $150m, top financial Apple Watch apps … is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

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NeuCoin – The Most Successful Presale Since Ethereum

Dan Kaufman, co-founder at NeuCoin advises that the figure of 100 million NeuCoins (NEU) available for the presale at the price of 25,000 NEU per BTC was chosen with two objectives in mind; 100 million NEU was enough to provide access to a variety of buyers, and the low price would encourage more demand than supply.

“The presale price is less than 2 times the price paid by angels over the past year, when the service was much less developed – but all the angel (and founder) coins have sales restrictions on them for 5 years.”

– Dan Kaufman, NeuCoin Co-Founder

Previous funding of US$2.25 million came from the founders, and a long list of strategic angels. The list of angels includes the Co-Founder of Candy Crush, the Senior Vice-President of Uber, the President of Hotwire, and the Head of Growth at Facebook. However, the current presale isn’t primarily about raising money. “It’s about building community and raising awareness within the crypto community,” said Kaufman.

NeuCoin recently released a comprehensive Strategic Plan and 39-page Whitepaper to explain their vision in detail.  “We’ve been trying to get our message out there,” says Kaufman. “We’ve been very engaged, tried to be responsive and transparent.” NeuCoin openly encouraged the community to contribute their ideas and opinions upon the release of each document.

“Most digital currencies haven’t done the job of making themselves useful or even understandable to mainstream consumers. We think it’s one of our main differentiators: our ability to bring digital currencies to non-tech users, by making it easy to use and useful to them,”

– Kaufman

As a result community involvement has become a main focus for NeuCoin, and can be seen in the companies communications on various forums, “We’ve spent a lot of time answering questions and talking to people, [and] tried to build a strong community.” Since the public announcement of the project in February, the NeuCoin community has steadily grown.

“So, it’s really been a grassroots thing. A community slowly but surely growing and gaining momentum.”

– Kaufman

Spreading the word on forums presented challenges, due to the disruptive nature of NeuCoin. Kaufman explains, “[NeuCoin] makes a lot of high power people uncomfortable, so it’s definitely an underdog David vs Goliath thing, lots of attacks and untrue rumors that we’ve been trying to address.” However, the positive response to the Presale has seen the negative efforts against NeuCoin dissipate. “Some of the reluctant or even hostile members are starting to come around, some even joining,” reports Kaufman

NeuCoin have made an effort to protect the growing NeuCoin community, and their investments, by the implementing measures designed to level the playing field. These measures were implemented merely days before the presale, due to advanced interest from larger buyers. In an effort to include smaller buyers a limit per purchase was set at 200BTC, for the first half of the presale. “This first half only took 8 hours to sell out. Then we lowered the cap to 40 BTC per buy, to slow things down and give more time for smaller buyers to get a chance to participate,” said Kaufman.

Despite their success, Kaufman believes that there are still many aspects that could have been done differently. “We wish we had done a better job at reaching out to the communities of other coins,” said Kaufman. “We believe in collaboration and trying to move crypto forward and into the mainstream and that there are a lot of common denominators between different coins, technologies and communities.”

If one digital currency can gain mainstream traction, Kaufman thinks others will benefit too. “A technical advance in one place will benefit someone else in another place. It’s open source, it’s about pushing boundaries and breaking new ground.”

“Crypto is still niche in the grand scheme of things and we hope to collaborate with others. We wish we had done a better job at trying to reach out to those communities, and we wish we could have been able to get them to see that we’re a potential partner and collaborator and not an enemy.”

– Kaufman

The NeuCoin team are amazed that their presale is the most successful since Ethereum. “We think it’s because so many people support our vision to bring an easy to use cryptocurrency to the masses through micropayments and freemium distribution,” said Kaufman

Inside The Q1 GDP Report——Consumers Are Dropping, Not Shopping

Both Keynesians and monetarists are almost entirely focused on demand, aiming squarely at spending as the means to economic growth. Since 2008, and really 2007, the amount of “stimulus” recorded in that attempt to beckon “aggregate demand” is unlike anything ever seen before. Trillions and trillions of QE-drawn magic have been unleashed as well as government deficits as large as anything in our history (combined) year after year. And for it all there is a shocking lack of “demand” left in their wake. I looked at final sales earlier today as one measure of private demand, but it really is consumers that seem to bearing the brunt of “whatever” adjustment is forcing retrenchment. While services spending (if the huge imputations could be called that) was lackluster, spending on total goods declined Q/Q for the first time since 2011, and was barely positive Y/Y at the lowest (by far) advance of the cycle. Both durable and nondurable subcomponents were negative Q/Q, as auto spending subtracted from GDP in Q1, but Y/Y spending on durables was much the same weak level as has been the case since 2012. The much larger nondurable segment, however, simply collapsed as there is clearly something very wrong here. I’m sure there will be attempts to dismiss this as gasoline and such, but even if that were the case the “gas savings” should be offset by at least some spending elsewhere (as we have heard ad nauseam since that 5% GDP was first threatened). To really grasp the scale here, Q1 2015 was the second worst quarter in the entire data series dating back to the 1940’s! Only the collapse during the height of financial panic in Q4 2008 was worse. That means consumer spending on non-durable goods, accounting for a fifth of total PCE (andOriginally appeared at: http://davidstockmanscontracorner.com/inside-the-q1-gdp-report-consumers-are-dropping-not-shopping/Inside The Q1 GDP Report——Consumers Are Dropping, Not Shopping is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

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Bitcoin Foundation Executive Director Bruce Fenton Outlines Plans for Improved …

Article by Kyle Torpey The Bitcoin Foundation has been wrapped up in controversy throughout its entire existence, but the non-profit organization could turn a new leaf with the appointment of Bruce Fenton as the new executive director. Fenton delivered a clear, concise presentation about the future of the Bitcoin Foundation at Inside Bitcoins NYC 2015, and he made some statements that could possibly grab the attention of even the most adamant haters of the foundation. Throughout his talk, Fenton brought up transparency as often as possible because it has been one of the most frequent complaints from foundation members over the past year. Also Read: Bitcoin Foundation Launches Blockchain Voting for Runoff Election Bitcoin doesn’t need a foundation, but it’s helpful One of the more shocking statements made by Fenton during his presentation was the idea that “we don’t need a bitcoin foundation.” He claimed, “We don’t need any centralized organizations [for bitcoin to succeed.]” While it’s clear that Fenton understands that the “honey badger of money” will always find a way to survive, he also added that centralized organizations, such as the Bitcoin Foundation, can be helpful. Just because a non-profit organization is not required for bitcoin to reach the masses doesn’t mean that such an organization cannot be helpful at all. My goal for @BTCFoundation is not to simply have a good image but to be a worldwide model for transparency and governance — Bruce Fenton (@brucefenton) April 16, 2015   Fenton’s push for transparency A large chunk of Fenton’s presentation was dedicated to the Bitcoin Foundation’s need for more transparency. Two slides from Fenton’s presentation listedOriginally appeared at: http://bitcoinist.net/bitcoin-foundation-executive-director-bruce-fenton-outlines-plans-improved-transparency-inside-bitcoins-nyc/Bitcoin Foundation Executive Director Bruce Fenton Outlines Plans for Improved … is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

Bitcoin Foundation Executive Director Bruce Fenton Outlines Plans for Improved … is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

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Inside Bitcoins New York Day 3: Morning and Noon

By Scott Fargo Apr 30, 2015 3:00 AM EDT <!––> News powered by Bitcoinist.net Article by Sergio Schout  Here is Bitcoinist’s day 3 coverage of the Inside Bitcoins NewOriginally appeared at: http://insidebitcoins.com/news/inside-bitcoins-new-york-day-3-morning-and-noon/32137Inside Bitcoins New York Day 3: Morning and Noon is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

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Jeremy Allaire’s Bitcoin Startup Circle Takes $50M From Goldman Sachs, IDG

Circle, the Bitcoin startup that veteran entrepreneur Jeremy Allaire started, just raised $50 million from Goldman Sachs and IDG Capital Partners. It’s another sign that the finance industry’s most powerful players are starting to take the crypto-currency and its ecosystem seriously. All of Circle’s existing investors including Breyer Capital, General Catalyst Partners, Accel Partners, Oak Investment Partners, Fenway Summer, Digital Currency Group and Pantera Capital participated. Rival Coinbase recently did a large growth round too that involved the New York Stock Exchange and USAA. With the round, Circle is letting customers send and receive U.S. dollars as well as Bitcoin. The key point about this feature is that it takes advantage of Bitcoin’s promise in settling transactions and reaching consensus much more cheaply than traditional online financial transactions. In its purest form, Bitcoin’s public ledger, the blockchain, allows multiple parties to transact with each other without a third-party mediator. But of course, lots of third-party and more centralized institutions have emerged over time to serve as wallets, exchanges and merchant processors. They merely take advantage of the currency’s less expensive settlement costs. Circle is betting that dollar-based transactions will also be attractive to customers who don’t want to deal with Bitcoin’s price swings against fiat currencies. “They can do this without knowing anything about Bitcoin and without exposing themselves to price volatility,” said Allaire, who previously took video company Brightcove public. “We really think of Bitcoin as a global interoperable payment network instead of a store of value.” The other interesting part of the round is that Circle took funding from IDG Capital Partners, which is a well-established East Asian firm. They could be a key partner in breaking into the Chinese market, which has an entirely different setOriginally appeared at: http://techcrunch.com/2015/04/30/circle-goldman-sachs/Jeremy Allaire’s Bitcoin Startup Circle Takes $50M From Goldman Sachs, IDG is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

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After Damascus Falls—–The Carnage Will Be On Senator McCain And His Neocon/R2P Cohorts

By Robert Parry at Consortium News If Syrian President Bashar al-Assad meets the same fate as Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi or Iraq’s Saddam Hussein, much of Official Washington would rush out to some chic watering hole to celebrate – one more “bad guy” down, one more “regime change” notch on the belt. But the day after Damascus falls could mark the beginning of the end for the American Republic. As Syria would descend into even bloodier chaos – with an Al-Qaeda affiliate or its more violent spin-off, the Islamic State, the only real powers left – the first instinct of American politicians and pundits would be to cast blame, most likely at President Barack Obama for not having intervened more aggressively earlier. A favorite myth of Official Washington is that Syrian “moderates” would have prevailed if only Obama had bombed the Syrian military and provided sophisticated weapons to the rebels. Though no such “moderate” rebel movement ever existed – at least not in any significant numbers – that reality is ignored by all the “smart people” of Washington. It is simply too good a talking point to surrender. The truth is that Obama was right when he told  New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman in August 2014 that the notion of a “moderate” rebel force that could achieve much was “always … a fantasy.” As much fun as the “who lost Syria” finger-pointing would be, it would soon give way to the horror of what would likely unfold in Syria with either Al-Qaeda’s Nusra Front or the spin-off Islamic State in charge – or possibly a coalition of the two with Al-Qaeda using its new base to plot terror attacks on the West while the Islamic State engaged in its favorite pastime, those YouTube decapitations of infidels – Alawites, Shiites, Christians, evenOriginally appeared at: http://davidstockmanscontracorner.com/50689/After Damascus Falls—–The Carnage Will Be On Senator McCain And His Neocon/R2P Cohorts is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

After Damascus Falls—–The Carnage Will Be On Senator McCain And His Neocon/R2P Cohorts is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

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Tech News: Bitstakes launches operation in Nigeria

A similar service called BitPesa was also launched in Nairobi-kenya last year. play Bitstakes (techcabal) Originally appeared at: http://pulse.ng/tech/tech-news-bitstakes-launches-operation-in-nigeria-id3712019.htmlTech News: Bitstakes launches operation in Nigeria is a story from: BitcoinWarrior.net

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