Each day, DailyAlts tracks major developments across the alternative investment world. Our content is procured from primary contacts in the industry and secondary sources across the web. Our goal is to give readers the most up-to-date news and engaging experience to open new doors and areas of knowledge. Our stories cover nine separate verticals of the alternative investment industry.

Top Story

Artificial Intelligence: A Molecule For Alzheimer’s Created By Exscientia’s AI Enters Clinical Trials

May 14, 2021

Oxford, UK-based Exscientia uses AI to design and create drug candidate molecules satisfying complex therapeutic requirements with revolutionary efficiency. Joint research by Exscientia with Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co., Ltd. (TYO: 4506) resulted in the creation of the molecule DSP-0038, a dual-targeted 5-HT1A agonist and 5-HT2A antagonist to be assessed for treatment of Alzheimer’s disease psychosis. Sumitomo will now initiate a Phase 1 clinical study of DSP-0038 in the United States.


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Venture Capital: Vinted, The Marketplace For Previously Owned Clothing, Raises $303M

May 13, 2021

Vinted, a European startup that runs a marketplace for used clothing and home goods, announced its raise of $303 million at a valuation of $4.5 billion, post-money. That valuation is substantially up from $1 billion when Vinted raised money end-2019.

FinTech: German Regulator BaFin Hauls Up N26 On Money Laundering Lapses

May 13, 2021

On Wednesday, Germany’s Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) ordered challenger bank N26 to implement appropriate internal controls and safeguards and comply with general due diligence requirements to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing. It also appointed audit firm Mazars as a special supervisor to monitor N26.

Liquid Alternatives: Advisors Need Creative (Liquid) Alternatives – Aspiriant

May 13, 2021

The traditional [60:40] portfolio may no longer work over the long term. Sandi Bragar, managing director at Aspiriant, a wealth management firm based in Los Angeles with $14 billion in assets under management recommends advisors look for alternatives to the [60:40] portfolio. Reason: Expensive stocks and low returns on bonds. (Financial Advisor) The [60:40] is…

Digital Assets: Musk To Bitcoin – It’s Not Me, It’s You

May 13, 2021

Elon Musk has suddenly got religion on bitcoin. He announced in a tweet on Wednesday that Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) will no longer sell its cars for bitcoin due to the leading cryptocurrency’s carbon footprint and consequently adverse effect on the environment.

Artificial Intelligence: Volkswagen’s Electric Version Of Its Iconic Microbus In Self-Driving Trials This Summer

May 13, 2021

VW will use hardware and software developed by Argo AI. Volkswagen (ETR: VOW3), which is targeting the launch of autonomous commercial delivery and micro-transit service in Germany by 2025, announced plans to trial new self-driving vehicles this summer in Germany. (The Verge) On Wednesday, the German automaker, which is collaborating with Argo AI for the…

Digital Assets: Palantir Accepts Bitcoin Payments; Mulls Adding Cryptos To Balance Sheet

May 12, 2021

Secretive data analytics company Palantir (NYSE: PLTR) revealed on its first-quarter earnings call that it had already begun accepting bitcoin as payment from its customers and that it was also considering holding bitcoin, as well as other cryptos, on its balance sheet.

FinTech: eBay UK To Offer Finance To Pandemic-Hit Sellers On Its Platform

May 12, 2021

In a bid to help out sellers and small businesses that have launched on its platform, eBay UK will offer them financing through a tie-up with YouLend. As part of the CEBS, YouLend will offer eBay business sellers funding in the range of £500 to £1m.

FinTech: Brazilian Payments Network CloudWalk Reels In $190M Series B Funding

May 12, 2021

CloudWalk, the Brazilian payments processor, announced Tuesday its Series B funding of $190 million. The round brought up the firm’s aggregate capital raised to $206 million. Coatue led the round, with participation from DST Global and existing investors such as FIS, The Hive Brazil, and Valor Capital.

Alternative Investments/Digital: Ninepoint’s Bitcoin ETF To Offset Carbon Footprint Of Bitcoin Holdings

May 12, 2021

Bitcoin has been getting a lot of flak recently for the impact that its mining has on the environment. As verification computations get more complex, bitcoin mining rigs consume more and more energy for generating mining rewards. This process becomes a vicious circle when bitcoin prices are on a rally because it becomes more profitable to mine and sell the cryptocurrency. ETFs and other funds holding bitcoin are becoming increasingly concerned about the carbon footprint inherent in their holdings.

Artificial Intelligence: IBM Launches Slew Of Products For The Hybrid Cloud And AI

May 12, 2021

IBM Announces Breakthrough Hybrid Cloud and AI Capabilities to Accelerate Digital Transformation at its 2021 Think Conference. These innovations around its hybrid cloud and AI platform are aimed at helping businesses manage their digital transformation, particularly after the pandemic.

Alternative Investments/Digital: Mark Yusko Sees Bitcoin At $250K In Five Years

May 11, 2021

Mark Yusko’s Morgan Creek Capital Management has assets under management of about $2 billion. Assuming his usually bullish stance on bitcoin in an interview on Friday, Yusko said the leading crypto could scale a price of $100,000 in 2021 or 2022. He went further and said it could go up to $250,000 in five years.

Venture Capital: Mubadala Invested $29B In 2020

May 11, 2021

Pandemic or not, famed sovereign wealth fund Mubadala Investment Company kept a stream of investments flowing into technology, life sciences, consumer goods, and other growth sectors during 2020. In fact, as a strategy, the fund stepped up its investment to $29 billion from $18.5 billion in 2019.

Digital Assets: UBS Considering Cryptos For Rich Clients

May 11, 2021

A Bloomberg report said Monday that UBS Group AG (SWX: UBSG) was mulling avenues for investing in digital assets for its wealthy clients. It would follow banks across the pond such as Citigroup (NYSE: C) and Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS).

Digital Assets: Fairfax County Pension Fund Does Well On Crypto Fund Investment

May 11, 2021

The $1.4 billion Fairfax County Police Officers Retirement System did well last year on its investments in Morgan Creek Digital Fund III. The move paid off, allowing the pension fund to report good gains last year. Unsurprisingly, in April, the fund approved additional investments in the crypto and blockchain space.

Artificial Intelligence: IBM Study Finds The Pandemic Accelerated AI’s Rollout

May 11, 2021

IBM’s Global AI Adoption Index 2021 found that nearly a third of the IT professionals surveyed confirmed their businesses had commenced the use of AI. Further, 43% said the COVID-19 pandemic had catalyzed a faster rollout of AI at their companies. On the flip side, challenges to the adoption of the technology included scarcity of skills and complexity of data.

Venture Capital: Indonesian Super App Nabs $300M From Telkomsel

May 10, 2021

Telkomsel, Indonesia’s largest telecom operator, has written yet another check, this time for $300 million, in favor of ride-hailing firm and super app Gojek. Gojek is one app for ordering food, commuting, digital payments, shopping, hyper-local delivery, getting a massage, and two dozen services. It is Indonesia’s first and fastest-growing unicorn building an on-demand business across Southeast Asia.

Digital Assets: Colonial Pipeline Shut Down By Ransomware Attack

May 10, 2021

On Friday, Colonial Pipeline, the largest refined products pipeline in the United States, transporting more than 100 million gallons of fuel daily for consumers from Houston, Texas to the New York Harbor across 8,500 km, was shut down by a ransomware attack.

FinTech: ByteDance Muscling In On Alibaba’s E-Commerce Turf; Hires Thousands

May 10, 2021

A Bloomberg report says Zhang Yiming, the AI genius who built ByteDance into a global behemoth via apps such as TikTok, is already flexing his muscles for the next battle. Not content with queering the pitch for media rivals such as Facebook (NASDAQ: FB), Zhang this time has e-commerce, and Alibaba (NYSE: BABA), in his sights.

Artificial Intelligence: An AI-Enabled Ship With A Chatbot But No Captain Will Cross The Atlantic

May 10, 2021

The craft pictured above looks remarkably fragile but a team of researchers from the marine research non-profit organization ProMare in technology collaboration with IBM will attempt to sail the Mayflower 400 across the Atlantic on May 15, 2021.

Digital Assets: Citigroup Heeds Clients; Mulling Cryptos

May 7, 2021

An FT Exclusive says Citigroup is weighing an entry into the cryptocurrency markets. Itay Tuchman, Citi’s (NYSE: C) global head of foreign exchange has told the FT that the bank is considering a foray into the cryptocurrency markets after seeing rising interest among its clients. “There are different options from our perspective and we are…

Venture Capital: Swedish Self-Driving And Electric Truck Maker Einride Scores $110M Funding

May 7, 2021

Einride, the Swedish developer and provider of electric and autonomous freight mobility technology, announced Thursday it had raised $110 million Series B funding from existing investors EQT Ventures, Plum Alley Investments, Norrsken VC, Ericsson, and NordicNinja VC; new investors Temasek, Soros Fund Management LLC, Northzone, Maersk Growth and Build Capital also participated in the round.

Digital Assets: Goldman Sachs’ Crypto Trading Desk Is Up And Running

May 7, 2021

An internal memo at Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) issued Thursday announced that its all-new crypto trading team had successfully traded certain bitcoin derivatives. According to CNBC, which saw the memo issued by Goldman partner Rajesh Venkataramani, the team is a part of the bank’s global currencies and emerging markets trading division and reports to him, though it is also a constituent of the digital assets unit led by Mathew McDermott.

Liquid Alternatives: Ninepoint Launches A Liquid Alternative Bond Fund

May 7, 2021

Canadian alternative asset manager Ninepoint Partners LP announced Thursday the launch of the Ninepoint Alternative Credit Opportunities Fund, a new liquid alternative mutual fund that will invest in Canadian, U.S., and international fixed income securities for short-term and long-term gains.

Artificial Intelligence: AI Can Cut Buildings’ Energy Consumption By 20-25%

May 7, 2021

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems account for 45% of all energy consumed in commercial buildings. Tragically, as much as 30% of this is usually wasted. BrainBox AI, which is based in Montreal, Canada, uses artificial intelligence to learn a building’s energy “equations” and then to control them for maximizing energy savings without compromising on residents’ comfort.