Bitcoin Investment Trust Shares Are Rising

Bitcoin Investment Trust Shares Are Rising

Bitcoin Investment Trust shares have recently grown compared to the time of their public debut several months ago.   Shares of Bitcoin Investment Trust (OTCMKTS:GBTC) are trading at their highest premiums relative to their underlying Bitcoin value since shortly after their public debut in May 2015. In a short-term trading on Bitcoin Black Friday the shares closed higher by 11.96% at $47.00, catching up Bitcoin’s huge gains of skyrocketing 16% to $370 on Bitstamp from the day before. At the moment, each share represents approximately 0.0959 BTC. Bitcoin Black Friday’s closing price implies an underlying bitcoin value of $490, which is a 36% premium to the actual Bitcoin price of $359. Shares hit an intraday peak point of $51.50, their highest level since hitting $57.00 during Bitcoin’s jump to $500 earlier in the month. Premiums have been growing by implication of that jump, possibly a result of renewed investor appetite for one of the only regulated Bitcoin instruments available to the public. When the shares became publicly available in May 2015, investors initially paid premiums in excess of 100% to procure them. Afterwards, the shares quickly shed 80% of their premium, which has since typically hovered between 10% and 25%. When the Bitcoin recovery started to gain momentum in late October, GBTC failed to hold on. At various points, the shares actually traded below par for the first time in their publicly traded history. Subsequently, premiums reversed higher to well above typical levels, approaching 50% two weeks ago, and holding in the 35% to 40% range. Some of the notable movements in the GBTC premium value were in fact a result of delayed reactions by the shares to the...
Krowdster Debuts New Crowdfunding Features For Investors

Krowdster Debuts New Crowdfunding Features For Investors

Krowdster, a data powered web app for crowdfunding campaign optimization and promotion, announced the addition of two new features to make it easier for crowdfunders to find targeted influencers and trending content in their industries. Josef Holm, the founder of Krowdster, stated: “Building a targeted, engaged audience on social media and identifying the right influencers and outlets to pitch to, are at the core of every successful crowdfunding marketing strategy. This used to be a tedious and expensive process, but fortunately something that Krowdster now provides a data driven solution for.” Krowdster is again using data powered technology to solve some of the biggest hurdles crowdfunders are facing today. These new features are the following: Influencer Search: A  keyword search to discover influencers, journalists, and bloggers in any niche, who have a following and who can help to get exposure for your crowdfunding campaign. This tool is best used long before launch to build rapport with the people in your space who can get the word out and propel your campaign forward. Trending Content: An easy way to discover blogs and news sites with trending content in any crowdfunding niche. Input search terms relevant to your campaign and discover content that is going viral on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google. This information can be used to build targeted media lists of the blogs and news sites that are writing about similar topics. The company noted that both of the new features work for all donations or rewards crowdfunding campaigns as well as the newly approved equity crowdfunding types Regulation A+ and Title III of the JOBS...
Will Crowdfunding’s Empowerment of the "New 98%" Change the Economy?

Will Crowdfunding’s Empowerment of the "New 98%" Change the Economy?

There are many people who have their hopes pinned to equity crowdfunding—not the least of which are the entrepreneurs hoping to fund their startups. There is a cottage industry of those that see the bigger picture promised by crowdfunding. The NextGen Crowdfunding Conference held November 19th in Santa Monica was a place for the big thinkers to come together to talk about the possibilities and to hopefully create new realities. Can equity crowdfunding fulfill its promise? The democratization of capital—the new 98% Like most things these days, equity crowdfunding is political. You poke around for a few minutes and you’ll find plenty of blogs dedicated to bashing the capital markets and the 2% that make up the accredited investor pool. I have no interest in bashing the 2% or discouraging them from using their capital in established ways to fuel entrepreneurship. Having said that, what could happen if the liquid resources of the other 98%—I’ll call them the ‘new 98%’—could be unleashed on all the promise of our entrepreneurs? Successful entrepreneurs are the inspiration for the next generation Aubrey Chernick, someone you probably haven’t been reading about in this season of billionaires in the limelight, is the founder of NextGen Crowdfunding and one of the ‘Top 50 People in Los Angeles’ according to The Los Angeles Business Journal. Like most billionaires will tell you, he got where he is the hard way—he built his business. In 1976 he founded Candle, a software company that served the Fortune 500. The company eventually created a foundation and decades later you’ll see the words philanthropist associated with Chernick as much as entrepreneur....

Akamai partners with startup ClearSky Data in $27M investment round

Above: The ClearSky Data booth at the VMworld conference in San Francisco in August 2015. Image Credit: ClearSky Data Facebook page ClearSky Data, a startup with a cloud service for storing companies’ data in various tiers based on customers’ needs, is announcing today a $27 million round of funding, with content distribution network Akamai participating. ClearSky Data’s service keeps companies’ primary, important data offsite in block storage on hardware that the startup maintains. ClearSky sticks less frequently accessed data in a public cloud — specifically with the Amazon Web Services S3 object storage service. “We’re figuring out on an ongoing basis using our own algorithms which of the data within the workload are actually hot and warm and cold, and making sure that data is sitting where it needs to be sitting in our service,” cofounder and chief executive Ellen Rubin told VentureBeat in an interview. Because it provides a cloud service, ClearSky Data could be mistaken for a competitor to existing public cloud storage services available from Google and Microsoft, as well as Amazon S3. Not so, said Rubin. The real competitors, she said, are enterprise-focused storage vendors like EMC and NetApp. That’s bold and hopeful, but perhaps will prove to be true, at least to some degree, if the startup can persuade several big companies to try its service. It helps that there aren’t a ton of companies doing what ClearSky Data is doing. ClearSky Data calls itself a “global storage network.” That’s misleading, as the startup only maintains hardware to provide its service in three U.S locations — Boston, Las Vegas, and Philadelphia. ClearSky will set...

Major Payment Player, Worldpay, is Quietly Supporting Bitcoin

Does Worldpay support bitcoin and the blockchain?     The answer, according to senior vice president Chester Ritchie, depends on how you frame the question. Today, the £3.6bn payment processor isn’t doing anything internally with digital currency or the blockchain, he says, but like many payment services companies, it is interfacing with the industry in an effort to best serve merchant clients. “I don’t know how public it is,” Ritchie tells CoinDesk at Money20/20 in Las Vegas. “We do have partners that are doing something in their solution for bitcoin.” Ritchie said that bitcoin startups such as BitPay and Coinbase already plug into Worldpay’s payment gateways, through which small and large businesses can accept a variety of payment methods, from credit cards to boleto payments to bitcoin. As for his personal feelings toward the technology, Ritchie believes it “remains to be seen” whether bitcoin and the blockchain, the digital currency’s distributed ledger, can be leveraged to foster changes in Worldpay’s business model or the wider payments industry. For one, Ritchie acknowledges that the technology is becoming more widely thought of as a database or asset management innovation. Also, he believes that the industry has gradually moved toward these use cases as others, like payments, have proved problematic. “Is bitcoin the actual cryptocurrency that we think could impact payments?” he asks. “I’m still skeptical because of the limited number of bitcoins. People would rather hang on to them rather than spend, so I’m not sure it’s the perfect fit for a currency.” Industry observation Still, Ritchie is enthusiastic about the development space, even if it’s clear he views the technology as a...

What Should Firms Disclose to Investors?

Finance chiefs are preparing for changes in one of their most fundamental tasks: figuring out what’s important enough to tell shareholders. (Illustration:Jon Krause) Regulators in the U.S. and abroad are tinkering with the concept of “materiality,” or how to determine what information is necessary for companies to disclose publicly. For companies, the sorting process is costly and complex, partly because what’s considered “material” varies from regulator to regulator. Congress and the Supreme Court also have their own ideas. “A lot of [companies] find it difficult to work with the concept of materiality,” said Hans Hoogervorst, chairman of the London-based International Accounting Standards Board. Last week the board proposed allowing corporate executives to exercise more of their own judgment on what’s crucial to include in public filings. At least a half-dozen standard setters, including accounting rule makers, the Securities and Exchange Commission and various stock exchanges, have guidelines on the subject. Some of them want companies to sharpen their focus to avoid overwhelming investors with useless information. The U.S. Financial Accounting Standards Board announced plans in September to do away with its own standard and instead defer to one set by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1976. The board said it wanted to clarify that “materiality is a legal concept.” The SEC is also working on its own project to improve the usefulness of corporate disclosures and is seeking input from the public through the end of November. Business groups including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce say they plan to press the issue this year because of the growing complexity of deciding what information is crucial to keeping shareholders in...