Meta/crypto

Crypto Biz: Ripple takes the main street from January 20th to 26th

Blockchain payments company Ripple made it absolutely clear this week that its feud with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will not hold back its business plans. On Wednesday, the company said it had repurchased all of its Series C shares it had already issued to retail investors in December 2019 — although a 2021 court ruling said it wasn’t required.

This week’s Crypto Biz examines Ripple’s share buyback and provides a rundown of the week’s biggest funding stories. We are also considering a new exchange-traded fund (ETF) from Valkyrie that aims to gain exposure to Bitcoin (Bitcoin) mining arena. Sign up for the Crypto Biz newsletter below for a more comprehensive discussion of this week’s economic news.

Ripple announces $200 million share buyback

More than two years after raising $200 million in a Series C funding round, Ripple announced this week that it had done so all outstanding shares repurchased that were spent in the deal. Ripple said the share buyback reflected the company’s “extremely strong position in the market” and “strong balance sheet.” The buyback also gave the company a valuation of a whopping $15 billion — all while it continued to fight a $1.38 billion lawsuit filed by the SEC. As Cointelegraph previously reported, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse expects the lawsuit to be settled sometime in 2022.

RippleNet is much more than cross-border payments — it brings crypto-native services like liquidity to businesses. Today, the network has a volume run rate of >$10 billion. Huge props to the team for continually improving their game and embracing new skills every year. 3/4

— Brad Garlinghouse (@bgarlinghouse) January 26, 2022

Valkyrie submits proposal for new Bitcoin mining ETF

In the absence of a full-fledged bitcoin spot ETF, investors may be looking for alternative ways to get exposure to the digital flagship. Crypto asset manager Valkyrie recently filed an application Bitcoin Miner ETF with the SEC to provide diversified exposure to companies involved in bitcoin mining. Valkyrie’s proposed fund would invest at least 80% of its net assets in companies that derive at least 50% of their revenue or profits from BTC mining.

Related: SEC Denies Application for Fidelity’s Wise Origin Bitcoin Trust Spot ETF

FTX US valued at $8bn after major funding round

It wouldn’t be a Crypto Biz round-up without documenting another major funding announcement from the world of blockchain. Crypto exchange operator FTX US announced this week that this was the case closed a $400 million round of funding, bringing its overall valuation to $8 billion. The funding round is not dissimilar to that $420 million raised by FTX global exchange in October 2021. FTX US clearly has big plans for expansion in the United States, a country that dominates bitcoin trading volume, according to Arcane Research.

FTX US is pleased to announce that we have completed our Series A raise!

Thank you to our partners, many of whom have invested in FTX from the start; to @ramnikarora for managing the round; and to @SBF_FTX because it’s why we’re all here. https://t.co/5rza97DVUY

— Brett Harrison (@Brett_FTXUS) January 26, 2022

Related: Crypto infrastructure company Fireblocks is valued at $8 billion after a $550 million capital raise

BFF II invests US$75 million in P2E and Web3 projects

Speaking of major funding news, the Blockchain Founders Fund has launched a new venture portfolio aimed at investing in projects at the intersection of crypto, Web3 and the Metaverse. the Blockchain Start-up Fund II, also known as BFF II, raised $75 million from various investors including Sebastien Borget, Chief Operating Officer of The Sandbox. The venture fund has already invested in 11 projects, including a layer 2 derivatives exchange, play-to-earn games, and even a DeFi protocol. In other words, smart money is still investing in the big trends that you probably heard about for the first time in 2021.

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