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LUNO EYES GHANA AND KENYA AFTER HITTING THE FOUR MILLION USER MARK

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Just recently in  May, Luno, Nigeria and South Africa’s largest trade platform, hit the four million user mark and in an interview with Luno’s General Manager for Africa, Marius Reitz, he revealed that Luno plans to go live in the Kenyan and Ghanaian markets in the nearest future. 

Source: pulse.ng

With new kinds of challenges rearing their heads in these unprecedented times, Africa and the world over, have had to embrace novel methods of handling their finances. This has influenced why people are increasingly looking outside the conventional ways of banking, investing and managing their money. This new trend positively impacted Luno which hit a 25% rise in new users from 2019 to 2020, in Africa alone.

A vast majority of Luno users are in fact from Nigeria, South Africa, Zambia and Uganda. This is a cue to why there is a 100% upsurge in trade levels during this pandemic.

According to Marius Reitz:

“We’re living in unprecedented times and with the uncertainty caused by the pandemic, an entirely new audience is looking at cryptocurrencies for the first time. They’re beginning to think beyond the tried and tested way of managing money that yields no return and that’s been reflected in the growth trends we’ve seen since the start of the pandemic.”

Reitz observed that a robust proportion of Luno customers are made up of individuals based in Africa. He stated that:

“Africa is responsible for a strong proportion of users on Luno. Traffic insights from Alexa show that 37.8 percent and 37 percent of Luno visitors are from Nigeria and South Africa.”

Outside of Africa, Luno enjoys a continuous increase in customers from South East Asia, especially from Singapore and Malaysia. 

In a given day, Luno records about $4.5 million in trade volume, making it the largest non-peer to peer platform in Africa when looking at trade volumes. South Africa happens to be a major contributory factor to Luno’s rising trade volumes. 

Recent trends as regards the use of Luno in Africa show that Africans are increasingly embracing the use of Cryptocurrencies. The statistics show that among the cryptocurrency owners in the world wide web, South Africa topped the chart in Africa although ranking third highest in the world with 13%. 

Source: BizNews

Also, 16% of South Africans online have used or own cyptocurrency; positioning her behind Turkey Brazil and Columbia. Nigeria follows her heels, ranking 5th  worldwide with 11%.

LUNO INTENDS TO GO LIVE IN KENYA AND GHANA

Even though Ghana formerly led Nigeria as per countries with the most searches for the “bitcoin”, they have been marginalized by the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. Thanks to Luno, this narrative is about to change. Reitz revealed that seeing that Kenya and Ghana are one of the biggest hotspots for cryptocurrency interest and trading, Luno plans to enter both markets in the “near future.” 

He continued that:

“We’re planning to expand to both countries in the near future, however, the global pandemic has made it difficult to travel and speak to key stakeholders… Once we officially set up operations, our mission will remain the same – to upgrade the financial system of every country that we’re based in.”

Moreover, Google Trend has revealed that Kenya graced the top five hot locations for cryptocurrency trading and interest. Kenya directly follows Nigeria in terms of trade volume on major peer to peer exchanges like Paxful

Paxful Weekly Volume (Sub-Saharan Africa)

 Nigeria – $5.9M

 Kenya – $1.21M

 Ghana – $1.15M

 South Africa – $396K

Central African Franc – $58K

{Source: UsefulTullips}

P2p platforms, escrow groups on WhatsApp and other chat Apps, local broker websites all fuel trades in both Kenya and Ghana.

Recently, both countries are plunging into an increased use of cryptocurrencies and digital payment systems with notable interest in the use of mobile cryptocurrency wallets; especially seeing that cryptocurrencies are a cheaper alternative to other kinds of mobile money services.

Source: TechEconomy.ng

Luno’s General Manager for Africa revealed that the pandemic impacted on their plans to take Kenya and Ghana, as there were high interests to launch in both countries before the rise of the corona virus and its attendant lockdowns and travel bans. 

According to Marius Reitz, Luno plans to differentiate itself in both countries by offering a more user-friendly alternative which targets the mass market.

SHOULD WE BE EXPECTING STABLECOINS ON LUNO?

Stablecoins have become more attractive to the African Cryptocurrency market for indigenous transactions because it offers a relatively lesser volatility in comparison to preceding cryptocurrencies. New and existing trade platforms have been quick to list stablecoins, take for example in Nigeria, a good number of indigenous trade platforms have introduced stablecoins backed by the Naira. Although, not so long ago, Luno listed Ripple (XRP) and Litecoin (XRP), it is yet to launch stablecoins on its exchange.

Reitz categorically said that the listing of stablecoins on LUNO are “definitely on our radar.”

He continued:

“Before we introduce new coins on our platform, we always evaluate their merits for our consumers and stablecoins definitely hold a lot of benefits. Given they’re easier to trust and understand, they’re effectively a way for people to learn about crypto ‘slowly’ until they are ready to go into other coins like Bitcoin. Stablecoins could play a major role in mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies so they’re definitely on our radar.”

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Dapper Labs raises $12M from Blockchain firms and NBA players

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Dapper Labs Says it has raised $12 million from its latest investors for its flow blockchain. Dapper Labs are the masterminds behind the CryptoKitties and the NBA Top Shot project. Pro NBA players as well as notable blockchain companies were part of the investors that raised the $12 million fund.

The NBA players Andre Iguodala of Miami Heat, Spencer Dinwiddlie and Garrett Temple of the Brooklyn nets, JaVale McGee of Los Angeles Lakers, and Aaron Gordon of the Orlando magic were one of the new investors. Coinbase ventures and BlackTower capital were as well part of the investors.


Dapper Labs has now raised an approximate of $38 million dollars all together. Roham Gharegozlou, Dapper’s founder and Chief Executive officer has said that the funds secured will be monitored to make “sure Flow can scale to the size of projects appealing to fan bases as big as NBA.”

$1.2M in token sales
Dapper also stated that it has sold crypto-collectibles worth $1.2 million dollars to a number of early users on the two-month old experimental version of its NBA Top Shot platform. Top Shot players can buy non-fungible tokens (NFTs) used to depict certain moments in basketball history. Over 22,000 packs of these NFTs worth $1.2 million dollars have been sold on the beta platform.


Each NFT token represent a significant moment and they offer players an experience to see data and videos that each token depicts in multimedia form.


The CEO, Roham noted Flow blockchain can host tokens that feature 3DI animation. He stated it was built to ensure any of the token (NFT) has access to topnotch environments wile talking to Cointelegraph – “to make sure that any NFT has a chance to be able to access a high-throughput environment, have people build applications for them, [and] scale to billions of users”.

Notable raise in Blockchain gaming firms
Blockchaingamer.biz data together with the recent fund raise of Dapper, a total whooping sum of $550 million dollars have been raised by Crypto gaming firms. This total comes from $336 million in sale of tokens, Initial Coin offerings (ICOs), $189 million from stocks and capital offerings in form of traditional investments and other fundraising techniques.


Last month, about $18 million was raised in total. Sorare, a fantansy soccer game raised $4 million in seed fund raise and Animoca Brands got $4.1 million from specific investors. DMarket was able to raise $6.5 million in June. Other companies like Horizen Blockchain Games and SuperTree raised $5 million and $2.5 million respectively in the first quarter of the year.


However, CEO of Animoca, Yat Siu has said the $550 million mark is just the inception as it is quite small compared to the current worth of gaming which is a $150 billion industry. He said while speaking to cointelegraph – “Gaming today is a $150 million industry and $500 million invested today is still a small amount, given both the potential in games as well as, we belive, the most viable path to mass adoption of blockchain, we think this will only grow more significantly”.

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Japan’s FSA Commissioner advises to develop Digital currency

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One of the Japan’s high-ranked financial regulators, Ryozo Himino, advised the nation to develop a Central Bank Digital Currency according to Reuters report. The pandemic might make states of the world adopt digital currency economy. Himino noted that Japan should have a plan to create a digital currency first before worrying about challenges that a digital currency might encounter.

He stated that Japan should weigh the benefits and demerits of a digital currency issued by the government and make sure all essentials for building a CBDC are available when it’s time to develop one-


“in the end, Japan must think really hard about whether to issue CBDCs because there are merits and demerits in doing so”.


It was said that Coinfomania reported last year that research on digital currency has started in Japan. A group of researchers from Apex bank were said to have released a paper on the benefits and shortcomings of issuing a CBDC according to the report.


The commissioner stated that the country’s stance on making cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) illegal might backfire on technical innovation –


“Deregulating bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies may not necessarily promote technical innovation. If doing so simply increases speculative trading, we are not taking special steps to promote cryptocurrencies”.


The effect of the Covid-19 pandemic has seen to financial institutions globally finding solutions to ease the economic wreck. Research are being made also to cushion any economic problems that might arise in the future.


Himino has a track record of heading different notable financial organizations globally including the Basel Community on Banking Supervision and Japan’s Financial Service Agency. He is currently the Japan’s Financial Service Agency Commissioner. He was also the secretary-General of the Basel committee on Banking Supervision.

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FEATURED

Japan’s FSA Commissioner advises to develop Digital currency

Published

on


One of the Japan’s high-ranked financial regulators, Ryozo Himino, advised the nation to develop a Central Bank Digital Currency according to Reuters report. The pandemic might make states of the world adopt digital currency economy. Himino noted that Japan should have a plan to create a digital currency first before worrying about challenges that a digital currency might encounter.

He stated that Japan should weigh the benefits and demerits of a digital currency issued by the government and make sure all essentials for building a CBDC are available when it’s time to develop one-


“in the end, Japan must think really hard about whether to issue CBDCs because there are merits and demerits in doing so”.


It was said that Coinfomania reported last year that research on digital currency has started in Japan. A group of researchers from Apex bank were said to have released a paper on the benefits and shortcomings of issuing a CBDC according to the report.


The commissioner stated that the country’s stance on making cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) illegal might backfire on technical innovation –


“Deregulating bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies may not necessarily promote technical innovation. If doing so simply increases speculative trading, we are not taking special steps to promote cryptocurrencies”.


The effect of the Covid-19 pandemic has seen to financial institutions globally finding solutions to ease the economic wreck. Research are being made also to cushion any economic problems that might arise in the future.


Himino has a track record of heading different notable financial organizations globally including the Basel Community on Banking Supervision and Japan’s Financial Service Agency. He is currently the Japan’s Financial Service Agency Commissioner. He was also the secretary-General of the Basel committee on Banking Supervision.

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Millennials Opt for Tech Securities while Generation X Investors Go for Gold

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JPMorgan Chase & Co. discovered interesting distinctions in trading patterns between two markedly different generations. It appears that the older generation X Investors would rather go for less volatile securities like bonds while millennials or the generation Y explore tech securities like Bitcoin, Ethereum and other digital assets.

The pandemic induced lockdown revealed the behavioral pattern of investors across different generations and age groups although leaving a few exceptions. The lockdown showed that investors are seeing the need for substitute securities. A team of strategists led by Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou discovered that while the younger investors are exploring the world of Bitcoin and other Altcoins,the older generations are purchasing gold.

It appears that the Generation Y is crazy about tech shares by buying into testnets and what have you, whereas the older investors are still very much on selling traditional equities.

The strategists stressed in an Investment Analysis Report on August 4 that:

“The older cohorts continued to deploy their excess liquidity into bond funds, the buying of which remained strong during both June and July,” 

A 46% global surge in stocks shows an increased retail investor demand this year. This is a sharp contrast against March’s lows. 

The global gold-backed exchange-traded funds is experiencing a positive turn of events. The Blockchain space is also undergoing  augmented rallies in cryptocurrencies due to the activities of enthusiastic Millennial investors. Many of these investors understandably show amateurish moves in trading which is obvious in their smoothed trading choices and increasingly volatile  options.

Nevertheless,  Bitcoin has been compared and contrasted with gold. The team of strategists made a point of highlighting that both the older and younger generation understand that there’s a gradual shift to alternative “currency” and this has impacted positively in investments in Gold and Bitcoin Exchange Traded Fund over the last 5 months. Meanwhile the Dollar appears to be going south as the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index has plunged by approximately 1.7% over the same 5 months. This has instigated controversies as to whether the Dollar is going to experience a continual downturn.

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