Blockchain technology is the power center behind the growing cryptocurrency market, which has reached a total market cap of over $741 billion and continues to thrive. Blockchain has aided Bitcoin, the digital currency that grew from around $1,000 at the beginning of 2017 to nearly hitting $20,000 in December 2017. Blockchain is also the backbone of Ethereum and several other digital currencies, but the capacity of blockchain does not end with cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrency has shown that blockchain technology is about disrupting the norm and encouraging innovation. Blockchain is a continuously growing list of records, or blocks, that are linked together and secured using cryptography. That means that the technology powering blockchain can be applied to virtually anything, including tracking ownership of documents and digital assets, storing a complete and uninterrupted database of transactions, aiding in the implementation of smart contracts, and wherever else the imagination might lead. Many companies are taking the innovation that blockchain is creating and using that innovation to grow and develop, to invest in other blockchain companies, and to thus create a network of change around the world. Such companies include Victory Square Technologies, Inc. (CSE:VST) (OTC:VSQTF) (FWB:6F6) (VSQTF Profile), HIVE Blockchain Technologies (TSX.V:HIVE) (OTCPK:PRELF), Long Blockchain Corp. (NASDAQCM:LBCC), Cboe Global Markets Inc. (NASDAQ:CBOE), and CME Group Inc. (NASDAQ:CME).
Victory Square Technologies Inc. (CSE:VST) (OTC:VSQTF) (FWB:6F6) is a venture builder focused on discovering and supporting up-and-coming entrepreneurs working with disruptive technologies. Victory Square recognized the potential of blockchain technology to encourage innovation and create change. As a result, Victory Square has focused many investments into blockchain companies. However, Victory Square also invests in companies involved in virtual reality, artificial intelligence, personalized health, gaming, and film. In all forms, Victory Square will help entrepreneurs grow internationally through distribution partners, mentorship networks, and creative workspaces.
Victory Square is always on the lookout for more ways to become involved with the encouragement and creation of innovation as a way of changing the world through blockchain. That is why the opportunity provided by d10e was one that Victory Square readily accepted.
Victory Square will be partnering with d10e, the preeminent decentralization conference, by sponsoring an investment prize of $100,000 to the selected top three companies from the conference pitch competition. D10e is a numeronym for decentralization. The d10e conference has held 13 events around the world previously, focusing on decentralization and the technologies behind it, since the conference began in 2014. Each event consists of a selection of the world’s best companies, 20 in total, that are innovating the world of decentralized technology. These 20 companies participate in a startup pitch competition to be judged by a panel of blockchain and cryptocurrency leaders. The top three companies are selected from the group as the winners, to be awarded the investment prize by Victory Square.
Victory Square’s investment prize will be split equally between the three winning companies as either an equity investment or a token allocation.
Victory Square’s participation in the d10e conference comes partly as a result of VST’s newly-formed partnership with the Blockchain Investors Consortium (BIC). The BIC, an elite investment group spearheading professional investment activities into digital assets around the world, accepted Victory Square as a member in the beginning of December 2017. Since then, Victory Square has continued to focus on blockchain investments, with the $100,000 investment prize for the d10e conference being the next step in achieving VST’s goal of incubating the tech giants of the next century.
“By partnering with the BIC and d10e to provide an investment prize, we gain early access to a wide array of the most promising blockchain and cryptocurrency companies in the world, as selected by established thought leaders in the industry,” said Shafin Diamond Tejani, CEO of Victory Square. “Over the next year, we expect to expand our blockchain portfolio and have investments in approximately 60 of the most disruptive companies.”
Victory Square has already invested in and supported many disruptive companies. One of the most prominent of these investments was in BTL Group (TSXV:BTL) (OTC:BTLLF), a blockchain solutions driver for multiple industries, with a main focus on finance, energy, and gaming. BTL Group initially launched as the first public blockchain technology company and, over time, has grown into a $250 million operation. The co-founder of BTL Group, Guy Halford-Thompson, now sits on Victory Square’s advisory board, further cementing the symbiotic relationship between Victory Square and BTL Group. Halford-Thompson will be instrumental in growing and scaling Victory Square’s companies and in making future progress in VST’s partnership with the Blockchain Investment Consortium.
In another smart investment opportunity, Victory Square acquired FansUnite Media, Inc., which is now a wholly-owned subsidiary. FansUnite has developed a social sports betting platform that uses blockchain technology to innovate the sports betting experience for users. Users can discuss, collaborate, and predict the winners of sporting events on the platform, all by using a free virtual currency that is sponsored by the company. By integrating blockchain technology into the FansUnite platform, FansUnite will be able to initiate further blockchain innovations by other Victory Square divisions, putting Victory Square at an even greater advantage in the blockchain industry.
Co-founder and CEO of FansUnite, Darius Eghdami, commented on the advancements: “Blockchain technology and the inherent security it provides will enable us to push every envelope we can to build the most dynamic and responsive social sports betting platform. The opportunity to secure data through Blockchain certainly appeals to the accountant in me and we are confident it will become the gold standard among sports betting sites around the world.”
Victory Square is constantly working to stay on top of the curve of blockchain technology, by adding experts in the field as members of the team, as VST did when welcoming the blockchain and cryptocurrency expertise of Pavel Bains, the CEO of Bluzelle Platform Pte. Ltd. Bluzelle is a decentralized database service that allows users to rent their computer storage space in exchange for a cryptocurrency token. Bains has come on as a Strategic Advisor to Victory Square.
“Victory Square exists to enable the next generation of entrepreneurs to experiment, iterate and reinvent both themselves and their businesses to provide innovative solutions to problems with a global reach,” said Victory Square’s Shafin Diamond Tejani. “Pavel is an exemplary individual who has a wealth of experience to impart on other entrepreneurs and we look forward to having him help shape the trajectory of many of the companies in our blockchain portfolio.”
HIVE Blockchain Technologies (TSX.V:HIVE) (OTCPK:PRELF) is another company that has used the advantages of blockchain to thrive. HIVE was the first publicly listed blockchain infrastructure company to connect traditional capital markets with blockchain and cryptocurrencies. By using traditional capital markets, HIVE is able to further the development of the blockchain sector. HIVE is a strong contender in the field of cryptocurrency mining with a state-of-the-art GPU-based cryptocurrency mining facility in Iceland. Iceland is the ideal environment for this business as there are low energy costs and low working capital requirements, which means that HIVE does not need to sell the mined coins immediately but can instead strategically sell the coins in order to maximize profit. HIVE also has an exclusive partnership with Genesis Mining Ltd., the world’s leading cryptocurrency mining hashpower provider. This partnership allows HIVE to work towards creating the next generation of blockchain infrastructure and to develop new facilities and businesses.
Long Blockchain Corp. (NASDAQCM:LBCC) did not start as a blockchain company. The original name was the Long Island Iced Tea Corp., operating primarily as a non-alcoholic drinks producer. As the new name suggests, Long Blockchain is now fully immersed in the blockchain industry, with the primary focus being to develop and invest in globally scalable blockchain technology solutions. Long Blockchain is looking to create long-term value for shareholders by investing in and developing businesses that are “on-chain”. Long Blockchain has begun discussions involving a partnership with a blockchain software developer that builds blockchain infrastructure for the financial services industry; a partnership with an FCA-regulated institutional provider of FX services that provides blockchain and cryptocurrency technology solutions to global financial markets; and a new smart contract platform that will allow better scalability than is currently available for building decentralized applications. The results of these discussions have yet to be finalized.
Cboe Global Markets Inc. (NASDAQ:CBOE) is one of the largest exchange holding companies in the world. With a focus on innovation, cutting-edge technology, and seamless solutions, Cboe offers trading in a diverse range of products across the global market, including options, futures, U.S. and European equities, global foreign exchange (FX), exchange-traded products (ETPs), and multi-asset volatility products. Cboe is the second-largest stock exchange operator in the U.S. and is a leader in the global market for ETP trading. Recently, Cboe launched a bitcoin futures contract and was the first exchange to do so.
CME Group Inc. (NASDAQ:CME) is a U.S. financial market company with operations in options and futures exchange. CME Group is made up of the exchanges CME, CBOT, NYMEX, and COMEX that come together to offer the widest range of benchmark products across the globe, including futures and options based on interest rates, foreign exchange, equity indexes, agricultural commodities, energy, weather, metals, and real estate. CME Group is focused on providing risk management for companies and institutions and handles 3 billion contracts annually that are worth approximately $1 quadrillion total. CME Group launched a bitcoin futures contract shortly after Cboe launched its own bitcoin futures contract.
Blockchain technology is not just about powering cryptocurrencies. Blockchain technology is about disrupting the norm and encouraging innovation and can help to create a network of change across the globe. The companies above are all doing so through strategic investments, rewarding entrepreneurial spirit, and focusing on the decentralized. The companies are each well positioned to benefit from and facilitate the growth and implementation of blockchain technologies in a wide variety of industries spanning from sports betting to venture capitalism and beyond.
For a more in-depth look into Victory Square (CSE:VST) (OTC:VSQTF) (FWB:6F6) you can view the full report on Microsmallcap.com.
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