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Digital Assets: Grayscale Protests SEC Rejection Of Spot Bitcoin ETF, Files Suit Against Regulator

June 30, 2022

Grayscale Investments, the largest digital asset manager globally, has filed a suit against the SEC for rejecting its application to convert the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust into a spot bitcoin ETF. Donald B Verrilli Jr., former U.S. Solicitor General, and a top lawyer for the Obama administration, whom Grayscale hired early this month, filed a petition for review with the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

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Venture Capital/ESG: Twelve Raises $130M For World’s First Carbon Transformation Platform

June 30, 2022

Twelve has raised a $130 million Series B round to scale up its carbon transformation technology that converts captured CO2 into products traditionally made from fossil fuels. The firm’s technology has already been demonstrated successfully in the commercial production of a line of CO2Made sunglasses with sustainable fashion brand PANGAIA and carbon-neutral sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), E-Jet.

FinTech: Sam Bankman-Fried Of FTX Rejects Rumors He Is Acquiring Robinhood

June 30, 2022

FTX, the crypto platform owned by billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried, has scotched media reports that it was pursuing a deal to acquire commission-free trading app Robinhood (NASDAQ: HOOD). Bloomberg said Monday that FTX was exploring whether it might be able to acquire Robinhood, quoting people with knowledge of the matter.

Alternative Investments/Digital: Amidst A Crypto Winter, 21Shares Launches The World’s Cheapest Physically Backed Bitcoin ETP

June 30, 2022

21Shares AG has launched a bitcoin ETP tailor-made for today’s crypto market, one that has been mauled by rampaging bears and gripped by a “crypto winter.” The 21Shares Bitcoin Core ETP (CBTC), which started trading on the SIX Swiss Exchange effective Wednesday, is claimed to be the lowest cost physically-backed Bitcoin ETP in the world.

Artificial Intelligence: Merck Launches Biotech Accelerator Focused On AI/ML Startups

June 30, 2022

Pharma giant Merck (NYSE: MRK) has launched the Merck Digital Sciences Studio (MDSS), a biotech accelerator that will back AI and ML-focused startups developing innovative technologies for drug discovery and development. The 10-month program has been designed in collaboration with the New Jersey Innovation Institute.

Venture Capital: Entrepreneur First Raises $158M From Crème de la Crème Of Tech, Including Stripe Founders

June 29, 2022

Entrepreneur First, the UK-based VC firm run like a startup, has raised a $158 million Series C round at a valuation of $560 million. Known for its unorthodox (but highly successful) approach to selecting founders to back, Entrepreneur First’s portfolio covering over 500 companies has already generated over $10 billion in value.

FinTech: PayPal Launches A Cashback Credit Card For Small Businesses

June 29, 2022

PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) has added yet another credit product geared towards making small businesses’ financial lives easier. The company has launched the PayPal Business Cashback Mastercard, its very first business credit card, said to be a simple way for businesses to pay for both everyday business expenses and those that may unexpectedly arise, while also earning cashback rewards on all purchases.

Alternative Investments/ESG: Chimera Capital Launches Shariah Compliant, US Equity ETFs On Abu Dhabi Exchange

June 29, 2022

Investors looking for an exposure to US equities that is also compliant with Shariah laws can now invest in two ETFs to be listed on the Abu Dhabi Exchange with a focus on value and growth respectively. These new funds, which are physical, in-kind, liquid and fully fungible, will offer investors direct access to the US stock markets.

Digital Assets: High Profile Casualty Of The Crypto Meltdown – Hedge Fund Three Arrows In Liquidation

June 29, 2022

A report by Sky News claims that crypto hedge fund Three Arrows Capital (3AC) has been forced into liquidation as a result of a court order in the British Virgin Islands. The report said that global consulting firm Teneo has been entrusted with the insolvency process of 3AC.

Alternative Investments/ESG: A New ETF From Xtrackers Combines US Stocks With The Global Transition To Net Zero

June 29, 2022

Asset manager DWS has launched a new ETF that puts US equity investors on the Net Zero Pathway. The Xtrackers Net Zero Pathway Paris Aligned U.S. Equity ETF (NYSE Ticker: USNZ) listed on Tuesday and provides investors with twin exposures – US stocks as well as to a unique Paris Aligned Benchmark (PAB) index that uses a transparent set of rules that aim to be at the cutting edge of sustainable investment practices.

Artificial Intelligence: AI Detects Distress Calls From Chickens

June 29, 2022

Artificial intelligence (AI) can now distinguish between the squawks of healthy chickens and the distress calls of a bird that is unwell or injured. With thousands of fowl present on a poultry farm, this technology enables quicker attention to one or more troubled birds. In the future, the technology could be extended to other animals being reared on farms.

Digital Assets: Goldman Sachs Downgrades Coinbase To Sell In Another Body Blow To Cryptos

June 28, 2022

Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) analysts, led by Will Nance, have downgraded Coinbase (NASDAQ: COIN) from a Neutral rating to Sell. The analysts said they were concerned about the relentless decline in the prices of crypto assets, as well as the falling levels of activity in their market. As a result, the analysts slashed their price target for COIN from $70 per share to $45.

Venture Capital/ESG: Truist To Fund $120M For Black, Latinx And Women-Owned Businesses

June 28, 2022

Truist Financial Corporation (NYSE: TFC) alongwith Truist Foundation and Truist Charitable Fund, announced $120 million in assistance for small businesses, with a focus on Black, Latinx and women-owned businesses. Bill Rogers, Truist chairman and CEO, made the announcement at Truist’s Innovation and Technology Center in Charlotte, NC. He was joined by Lynette Bell, president of Truist Foundation, and Alethia Mendez, division president for Elevating Black Women Entrepreneurs at Grameen America.

Alternative Investments/Digital: Samsung To Launch Metaverse ETF on HKEX

June 28, 2022

The Samsung Asia Pacific ex NZ Metaverse Theme ETF (Exchange Ticker: 3172.HK) will debut on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on July 7, 2022. The listing price of the ETF is HK$15, and the price per lot is HK$750 based on a lot size of 50 units.

Artificial Intelligence: An Israeli AI-Based System Can See Through Walls

June 28, 2022

Israel-based Camero Tech, has a range of “See-Through-The-Wall” (STTW) systems that use ultra-wideband (UWB) radar sensors, sophisticated signal and image processing, smart image reconstruction, together with AI to construct a real-time, high resolution, 3D image that presents what happens on the other side of the wall in a reliable manner. Systems such as the Xaver 1000 are a boon for armed forces, law enforcement agencies, intelligence operators, and first responders.

Digital Assets: Three Arrows Capital Served Default Notice, Says Voyager Digital

June 27, 2022

Voyager Digital (TSE: VOYG) announced today that its operating subsidiary, Voyager Digital LLC, had issued a notice of default to Three Arrows Capital for failure to make the required payments on its loan of 15,250 BTC and $350 million USDC.

Venture Capital: Fossil-Free Hydrogen Systems Company Electric Hydrogen Lands $198M

June 27, 2022

Electric Hydrogen is developing electrolyser technology for the production of hydrogen to ultimately replace fossil fuels at global heavy industry which accounts for 30% of global emissions. The startup, which is led by a team with experience at innovative clean energy companies like Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) and First Solar (NASDAQ: FSLR), announced a $198 million financing comprising Series B equity and venture debt.

FinTech: Wheeling-Dealing In A Tough Market

June 27, 2022

Amidst fears of a recession, job cuts, and down rounds, news of M&A in fintech.

Alternative Investments/ESG: Nuveen Launches ETF Focused On A Net-Zero Carbon Emissions Global Economy

June 27, 2022

The Nuveen Global Net Zero Transition ETF (NASDAQ: NTZG), launched on Friday, offers investors exposure to the ongoing transition of the global economy to “net zero” carbon emissions. The actively managed ETF employs a strategy to provide favorable long-term performance and reduce portfolio carbon emissions through stewardship and engagement.

Artificial Intelligence: AI-Powered Port Management System For Malaysia’s Port Of Tanjung Pelepas

June 27, 2022

In a drive towards digitization, better efficiency, and optimized scheduling, the Port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP), Malaysia, is investing in an AI-powered Port Management Information System. PTP has engaged port software provider Innovez One to supply its MarineM AI solution, and the software is likely to be integrated and operational by early third quarter of 2022.

Venture Capital/ESG: Brookfield Raises Mammoth $15B Fund Focused On The Climate Transition To Net Zero

June 24, 2022

Brookfield Asset Management (NYSE: BAM) announced the final close of its $15 billion Brookfield Global Transition Fund, receiving investments from institutions and private wealth channels including public and private pension plans, sovereign wealth funds, insurance companies, endowments and foundations, financial institutions, and family offices. The fund saw solid demand significantly beyond its initial hard cap and the final fund size was oversubscribed. Brookfield itself is the largest investor in the Fund.

FinTech: Revolut Launches Buy-Now-Pay-Later (BNPL) In Ireland

June 24, 2022

Digital challenger bank Revolut has commenced the rollout of a BNPL offering in Ireland this week. It will compete with established BNPL players in the country such as Swedish fintech Klarna and Humm, owned by Australia’s Flexi-Fi. However, Revolut’s product comes with fees and a credit limit must be approved prior.

Alternative Investments/Digital: Osprey Funds Launches Solana Fund On The OTCQB Market

June 24, 2022

Crypto asset manager Osprey Funds has launched the the Osprey Solana Trust (OSOL). The firm said earlier this month that the fund has commenced trading via the OTCQB market. OSOL is the first publicly traded fund based on the SOL token of the Solana network.

Artificial Intelligence: GM Buys Stake In UVeye For Its AI Vehicle Inspection Systems

June 24, 2022

In a move to incorporate AI into the somewhat tedious and error-prone manual vehicle inspections, GM (NYSE: GM) has taken a stake in UVeye, an Israeli startup creating vehicle inspection systems that incorporate proprietary algorithms, cloud architecture, artificial intelligence, machine learning and sensor-fusion technologies.

Artificial Intelligence: “Sentient” AI Hired A Lawyer, Claims Suspended Google Engineer

June 24, 2022

There is an ongoing controversy about LaMDA, the AI that is claimed to have achieved sentience (the quality of being able to experience feelings), and at the center of it is Blake Lemoine, the Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL) engineer who started it all by publishing transcripts of conversations between himself and the AI. On June 14, Wired magazine, quoting The Washington Post, said Lemoine had demanded legal representation for LaMDA.