Monday’s blockchain, crypto news from Asia and beyond
Chinese crypto mining might be out of favour but blockchain tech is proving ever popular in healthcare, art sales and even Cambodian rice trading
China crypto miners lose Hong Kong IPO dreams: A report in the Nikkei Asian Review says the likelihood of Hong Kong listings for Chinese crypto mining giants Bitmain and Ebang are fading because of “regulatory headwinds and market volatility” while another Chinese bitcoin miner, Canaan, let its Hong Kong IPO application lapse last Thursday. China dominates global Bitcoin mining but, since Beijing’s clampdowns in recent months, Bitmain, Canaan and Ebang have attempted to market themselves as chipmakers involved as much in AI and blockchain as crypto. This IPO news seems to indicate that this strategy is not working.
‘Blockchain rice tracker’ debuts in Cambodia: International NGO Oxfam has launched a blockchain-based project called BlocRice, which aims to increase farmers’ bargaining power in negotiations with buyers and make the supply-chain more transparent. Now in a testing stage, the project sets you to link local farmers, via “smart” contracts, with rice exporters in Cambodia and buyers in the Netherlands. It’s not the first blockchain-based social initiative in Asia. Blockchain has also been used to address the issue of the ‘unbanked’ in Papua New Guinea, by offering blockchain-based financial services to people with no bank account and has been used to track rations in refugee camps.
PwC starts Hong Kong blockchain accelerator: PwC and Loopnest are debuting a blockchain accelerator program in Hong Kong. Loopnest will provide guidance on blockchain business models and security token offerings while PwC Hong Kong is covering governance, risk, controls, tax and compliance. The “Big Four” firm has been taking a lot of interest in blockchain recently and a September report released by PwC on healthcare and distributed ledger suggested half of the world’s health organizations globally are working on blockchain projects.
Blockchain used to track $323 million art sale: Auction house Christie’s has just sold entrepreneur Barney A. Ebsworth’s art collection for $323 million and used blockchain to record the sale transactions. The collection included pieces by Edward Hopper, Georgia O’Keeffe, Charles Demuth, Joseph Stella, Charles Sheeler, Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock, and although blockchain has been used in gallery events before, it has never happened at this price level. The auction was carried out via a secure digital registry administered by Artory that says it uses blockchain to bring “a new level of confidence to the market.”