Category Archives: Peter Smith

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Blockchain.com $125 Million XLM Airdrop Comes With Verification Catch

Blockchain.com, a popular online Bitcoin wallet provider with over 30 million wallets, is conducting the largest cryptocurrency airdrop in history but will require full identification information from participants.

USD 125 million of Stellar Lumens (XLM), the #6 cryptocurrency with a market cap near USD 5 billion, will be distributed starting 6 November 2018 to 5 million Blockchain.com wallet users. Each person who signs up for the airdrop will receive USD 25 (almost XLM 100).

The airdrop does not occur automatically; users must sign up and then claim the airdrop through their email. This is to prevent XLM from being airdropped to inactive wallets since Blockchain.com users often have numerous accounts and throw them away over time.

Claiming to prevent people from gaming the system and getting more XLM than they are entitled to, Blockchain.com is requiring users to provide full identification information including name, address, date of birth, verified phone number, and a picture or video of themselves. These details were previously not required to use Blockchain.com wallets; in general, Bitcoin wallets allow users to maintain privacy.

The co-founder of Stellar, who is also co-founder of Ripple, Jed McCaleb, says, “Giving away lumens for free is an invitation to communities to design the services they need. By working with Blockchain to increase the availability and active use of lumens on the network, leveraging their almost 30 million wallets, we will increase the network’s utility by many orders of magnitude.”

This concept is thoroughly explained in the Blockchain.com airdrop white paper. This is the first in a series of airdrops to wallet users to increase decentralization, popularity, and user base for the cryptocurrencies that decide to get involved in this program. Further, airdrops are the easiest way for new users to enter the crypto space. Indeed, Blockchain.com is letting people create a wallet for the airdrop, and being a pre-existing user is not a requirement.

Blockchain.com CEO Peter Smith says, “Looking back at the last five years of crypto, one of my favorite things has been giving users their first USD 20 of crypto and watching them realize the power of a new financial system in their hand as they saw their first transaction. But you can only do this for so many people in that fashion. The genesis of this project was; how do we help millions of people make their first transaction?”

Many of the early Bitcoiners got their first coins from faucets. Faucets are similar to airdrops, and the first Bitcoin faucet gave out up to 5 Bitcoins per day, which at the time was actually worth much less than the USD 25 of XLM Blockchain.com is giving out. Today, those 5 Bitcoins are worth USD 32,000.

 

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Goldman Sachs Exec Joins Blockchain Crypto Wallet

Cryptocurrency wallet service Blockchain announced on Tuesday that top Goldman Sachs executive Breanne Madigan would be joining the firm as head of institutional sales and strategy.

Blockchain has positioned Madigan in this role in a bid to appeal to the growing number of institutional investors choosing to begin exchanging cryptocurrencies. The market for this type of client is seen as particularly lucrative but is yet to have fully taken off.

The move by Blockchain could have been influenced by the recent news of George Soros and the Rothschilds beginning their venture into the cryptocurrency market. Powerful players such as these will be looking to invest and store their funds with the best-staffed teams.

Analysts have predicted 2018to be the year institutions will enter the market, as did former portfolio manager at the University of Chicago Ari Paul. He recently spoke to CNBC on the subject, saying: ”I do think it’s inevitable from a few angles”.

There are many institutional investors, however, that still view investment into digital currencies as particularly risky. While Bitcoin may be the most popular currency to purchase, the volatile fluctuations that have seen it drop to less than half its valued worth in December 2017. The unstable market conditions continue to deter high-investment traders.

Breanne Madigan

Madigan most recently headed the department of institutional wealth services at Goldman Sachs. Under her leadership, the division saw the total amount of assets managed at a record of USD 1.49 trillion in 2017, as reported by Blockchain.

CEO of Blockchain Peter Smith commented on her move to the firm, noting, ”Breanne has a proven track record of adding value to her teams and her clients, and as Blockchain continues to grow its institutional presence, I can think of no one better to help scale our business”.

Blockchain currently has 24 million active wallets registered on the platform. It offers a cryptocurrency wallet service similar to Coinbase.

 

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