Another week and another stalwart institution is buying up Bitcoin. You know it’s big news when the institution doing the buying is more than 150 years old! On top of Bitcoin buying we’ve got lots of other great news for you this week.
Speaking of old, classic game maker Atari is back and it turns out they're big into blockchain, the EOS network is expanding their horizon, and stocks can now be traded with Crypto 24 hrs a day.
Crypto exchange Bittrex has announced that they’re going to allow their customers to purchase stock shares with crypto. For example, ares. According to Bittrex they’ll begin by supporting shares from big tech companies like Facebook, Tesla, Apple and Google to name a few. This is pretty big news since until now there’s never really been a way to buy stocks with Bitcoin.
Although, to be fair these aren’t really traditional stocks from the traditional markets. What Bittrex is actually offering are tokenized stocks. There are a few advantages that these tokenized stocks have over the traditional stock market. Firstly, tokenized stocks can trade 24/7. They don’t stop trading because business hours have ended or a holiday has shut down the markets. Second, tokenized stocks offer fractional ownership. Just like you can buy a fraction of a Bitcoin, you can buy a fraction of a Tesla or Apple share if it’s a token. So this is all pretty cool since it marks the beginning of the tokenization revolution.
Although nobody can predict the future, it’s probably fairly uncontroversial to say that within 5 or 10 years, all company shares will trade as tokens versus traditional stocks. There are just so many benefits to this a tokenization system that it’s hard to imagine it won’t get universally implemented at some point.
The Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company, or commonly known as MassMutual for short, has announced that they’ve bought $100 million worth of Bitcoin for their investment account. At this point the news isn’t as surprising as it would have been a few months ago. Here in the crypto community we’re getting used to large institutions buying Bitcoin as a store of value. That being said, there are still a couple of interesting things about this particular purchase, we think are worth covering. First off, podcast host and Bitcoin investor Chris Dark pointed out that $100 million is just 0.04% of MassMutual’s Assets Under Management. In order to even reach a 1% Bitcoin allocation, MassMutual would have had to buy $2.5 billion worth of Bitcoin!
This just goes to show how much institutional money there is out there, and how much BTC institutions could potentially buy once they really start entering the crypto market. Travis Kling, the founder of the crypto fund Ikigai, had this to say about the purchase.
Imagine being a macro hedge fund not involved in BTC and you get beat to the trade by a firm that's older than the lightbulb.
MassMutual was founded in 1851, almost 160 years before Bitcoin was invented, and yet they’re now invested in BTC. If Travis Kling is right, this could really be the extra push needed to get other institutional buyers into the space. If MassMutual can do it, anyone can!
The Canadian dollar stablecoin QCAD has announced that the crypto will be moving to the Algorand platform. According to the Algorand team, this will enable QCAD to be used for micropayments as well as regular purchases, since Algorand has significantly faster confirmation speeds than decentralized platforms like Bitcoin and Ethereum. In fact we actually talked about this possibility not too long ago in an article on the Exodus blog. “Similar to Bitcoin or Monero, Algorand is designed to be used as a payment cryptocurrency. As a decentralized network with fast settlement speeds, Algorand could potentially be a good crypto to buy the proverbial cup of coffee with.” So this prediction is playing out pretty well. Because Algorand is a very fast blockchain you can actually have transactions that are fast enough to enable real time payments.
For example, if a grocery store in Canada started accepting the QCAD stablecoin, you could pay with it and the transaction would clear in just a few seconds. The same thing for using QCAD to make an online purchase, the transaction would confirm in seconds just like a credit card payment does. It will be interesting to track the progress of the QCAD stablecoin, especially whether merchants start accepting it. In addition to QCAD, USDT and USDC also recently began operating on the Algorand chain.
You’ve probably already heard of wrapped Bitcoin, or WBTC. WBTC has gained a lot of popularity in the DeFi ecosystem and now the EOS network is attempting something similar except that instead of wrapping Bitcoin, EOSFinex is going to be wrapping ERC20 tokens.
First off, EOSFinex is a non-custodial exchange built on top of EOS with the support of Bitfinex. The exchange is going to bring 15 wrapped tokens to EOS, most of them governance tokens from some of the most popular DeFi protocols on Ethereum. Some examples include Uniswap, Maker, DAI, Link, Aave and about ten other tokens as well. What this shows is how dominant Ethereum’s DeFi ecosystem is. EOS is supposedly an Ethereum killer, yet an EOS based exchange is integrating Ethereum assets onto it’s own blockchain. The hope is that by having these wrapped tokens, EOSFinex can increase its liquidity and get more traders to use the platform.
Just because a company has been around for a while doesn’t mean it can’t adopt new technologies. Atari, the classic games developer, recently launched the Atari token which is designed to be used as an in-game currency. The Atari token uses the ERC20 standard and runs on top of the Ethereum blockchain, which means that it will be interoperable with DeFi protocols like Uniswap and Compound.
The hope is that gamers will use the currency in some of the games that Atari is currently building. For example, the token will be integrated into Karma the Game of Destiny, as well as a few betting games. The key piece of technology behind the token is the Atari VCS console. This new gaming console is designed with native support for the token to make the experience of using the new currency as easy as possible.
As a bonus for you collectors, Atari is also interested in non-fungible tokens. The company has plans to launch NFT collectible art pieces that are derived from some of their popular games. Then there’s a partnership with the blockchain gaming protocol Enjin. This partnership will let developers create classic Atari branded games like Pong and Asteroid that can be played on the VCS console.
This is a really cool story of a classic company recognizing the benefits of blockchain and using it to create a better experience for their users. In a way it’s not that much different than MassMutual, which is hoping that Bitcoin will help the company to protect its balance sheet against inflation and other shocks to the traditional financial system.
Nic Carter has called the widespread adoption of crypto a, “most peaceful revolution.” That’s what we’re seeing this week, as legacy institutions step into crypto and the community welcomes them to the party.