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Is Africa Becoming the New Frontier for Bitcoin Startups?

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A while back I was having a conversation with a friend regarding the future of cryptocurrencies in Africa. We agreed that more people are becoming aware of digital currencies such as bitcoin, and its potential to solve some of the problems that plague the continent’s financial ecosystem. However, we had different opinions on how long this momentum can continue and whether it will penetrate the mainstream.

A major hurdle, of course, would be the prevailing regulatory climate which has seen bitcoin effectively banned in a number of countries. His view was until African governments changed their position on bitcoin, the adoption of the currency will be a very slow process. I, on the other hand, saw things differently. It was my belief that what will fuel the continent’s great leap to a bitcoin economy, will be crypto-solutions from startups leveraging blockchain technology.

Bitspark’s new venture in Nigeria

A prime example would be the launch of Bitspark’s new money remittance service to Nigeria. The Hong Kong-based company announced the new venture this week as part of a wider strategy to gain a foothold in the continent. Nigeria currently receives an annual $21 billion in remittances from around the world making it a top market for money remittance services.

The cryptocurrency service provider has created an end-to-end remittance platform that uses blockchain technology to facilitate transactions.According to Bitspark’s blog, their new remittance channel into Nigeria will be 14.4% cheaper than its competitors.  The new payment service will, therefore, reduce the cost of transactions. This, in turn, will help to save Nigerians receiving remittances hundreds of dollars over the course of the year.

Bitcoin as a Safezone

With inflation being a persistent problem in Africa, as is being witnessed in Kenya and Nigeria, bitcoin can be a medium that protects user’s wealth. Interestingly, the CEO of Africa Digital Marketplace, Hermann Djoumessi expressed something similar in an interview with CoinTelegraph.

He said,

“Bitcoin should be the “fly to safety” currency for all. However, one needs to remain careful and needs to start to understand that paper money as we know it is about to disappear. Therefore, one needs to have and carry a mix of cryptocurrencies and should always play one against another when times changes.”

But while commercial application of bitcoin technology may convince people of the financial sense, the support of regulators is still needed. Remember, the success of any bitcoin startup also depends on factors such as energy, data centers, financing, education, infrastructure, etc. This cannot happen without the support of local governments.

What next for Bitcoin startups?

Bitspark will join other startups like BitwalaBitPesa, and Remitano that are carving out their niche in the African payments space. According to a research report, there is significant interest for crypto-solutions in three countries, namely, Nigeria, Ghana, and South Africa. Most of this stems from using bitcoin for payments but also using bitcoin as an investment due to the price rally we have witnessed in the last twelve months.

It should be interesting to see how the convergence of bitcoin and businesses will shape the African financial and regulatory system in the coming year.

Bitcoin

Crypto.com Introduces Crypto Earn and Crypto Credit

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Cryptocurrency platform Crypto.com has introduced Crypto Earn and Crypto Credit to enable users to earn interest on their coins and borrow by using digital currency as collateral.

Crypto Earn And Crypto Credit

Crypto Earn is a financial product that allows users to earn as much as eight percent per annum in interest on their cryptoasset holdings.

Crypto.comTo do this, users deposit digital assets into Crypto Earn through the Crypto.com app and then begin accumulating interest each day through their preferred cryptocurrency. To get started with Crypto Earn, users will have bitcoin, Paxos, and TrueUSD to choose from, according to a company press release.

Crypto.com is offering users two fixed periods namely one-month and three-month terms to earn interest on digital assets. The company will soon provide users with a flexible holding term. With Crypto Earn, you can also withdraw and deposit coins at no fees and spend what you earn.

Crypto Credit gives users instant loans with bitcoin as collateral. Users are free from fixed repayment schedules, monthly fees, payment deadlines, and late fees which financial institutions such as banks often impose. Users, therefore, enjoy a flexible repayment schedule in the twelve months from the beginning of the credit term.

Furthermore, users owning MCO tokens staked in the app receive a special rate of eight percent per annum. Users can use their loans to buy more cryptocurrencies on the app or they can spend it on the MCO Visa Card with cash back of up to five percent.

Other benefits of using Crypto Credit are that you do not require credit checks and that you can get the credit limit you want.

“Crypto Earn offers the most attractive interest rates in the market today. With the MCO Visa Card and Crypto Credit, we are uniquely positioned to do it while maintaining sustainable unit economics. MCO Visa Card, Crypto Earn, and Crypto Credit together form a powerful product suite that nobody else in the industry has today. We have never been more excited about the potential of our platform and look forward to continue scaling it globally later this year,” said Kris Marszalek, co-founder and CEO of Crypto.com.

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Different Kinds of Bitcoin Trading Strategies You Should Know About

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Bitcoin has been around for over 10 years now. There are a lot of things that have evolved with it over the years, including how easy and secure it is to buy, the different ways we can buy it, and the various bitcoin trading strategies that people use now.

There are a lot of bitcoin trading strategies now that it could intimidate a lot of newbies trying to get into bitcoin. The truth is, each strategy caters to a specific kind of trader so if you’re new, these strategies might be worth looking into before you invest any kind of money.

Different Strategies

To help get you started on choosing the kind of strategy you’re looking for, here are the two most common strategies that bitcoin traders use:

HODLing

You may have seen this slang around while doing your research. “HODL” refers to holding your position. It was created in 2013 when bitcoin’s price was dropping but a certain user decided not to sell his shares. He meant to write “HOLDing” but ended up making a typo instead: “HODLing”. It eventually caught on and people decided to give it a new meaning: “Holding On for Dear Life.”

The HODLing strategy refers to the holding of your bitcoins in hopes that your investment will grow over time. To start HODLing, buy bitcoins in bulk when the price is low and then keep it close while watching the crypto market. People can hold their positions from weeks to months to even more than a year. It’s the easiest and one of the more common trading strategies.

Day-trading

BTCDay-trading is another very common form of trading in the bitcoin world. The strategy refers to closing all your positions before the day ends. It involves executing long and short trades to capitalize on the market price of that day. Basically, this prevents having open positions overnight by finishing all your trades within the day.

It’s a more technical form of trading and it requires your full attention and a lot of your time. You’ll need to keep a close eye on all your positions and possibly watch multiple screens to do so. It requires a high degree of focus as well as a good knowledge of how the crypto industry works.

Just getting started

These two trading strategies are literally the most common forms of trading. There are so many more strategies such as swing trading and alt-coin filipping that you’ll need to learn but these two should get you started on your bitcoin journey.

Now, all you’ll have to do is decide on which of the two suits you more. Be sure to figure out your game plan before getting into bitcoin at all and your style should follow.

This guest post was contributed by cryptocurrency education and news platform WeAreCryptos. 

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Ghana’s Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) Warns Public About Investing in Crypto

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In a recent statement, the SEC of Ghana has warned the populace against investing in cryptocurrency and crypto-related investment schemes. This warning comes amidst a growing concern of the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) about how Ghanaians are diving head first into the cryptocurrency market.

SEC Warns About Crypto

The Director General of the SEC, Rev. Daniel Ogbarmey Tetteh, signed an official statement released by the Commission that cautions the general public about cryptocurrency trading and all crypto-related activities as these are not regulated by the Securities Exchange Commission reports News Ghana

“[Cryptocurrency investments] offered by unregistered and unlicensed entities on digital online trading platforms with promises of high returns on investment are not sanctioned nor registered by the SEC”, the statement read.

The Commission’s statement further read:

Ghana SEC“The SEC wishes to inform the general and investing public that none of these cryptocurrencies is recognised as currency or legal tender in Ghana. The platform on which they are traded are not also licensed nor regulated by the SEC. The SEC would like to make it clear that it does not currently regulate these types of products offerings and their accompanying online trading platforms or Exchanges. Members of the general public who are investing or intend to invest in such currencies or assets may be doing so at their own risk and can in no way be protected under the Securities law regime in Ghana.”

Currently, digital asset trading remains a regulatory and legal grey area in the West African nation. Whereas the SEC has stated that it is presently not in support of or regulating cryptocurrencies, it also has not stated that cryptocurrency trading is illegal.

The regulator only mentions that they are “unregistered, unlicensed, and unregulated under the Securities Law of Ghana“. Thus, this can be very much regarded as a “disclaimer” on the part of the regulatory body to the public to sensitise them that trading in cryptocurrencies in the country presently is only done at one’s own risk.

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