Tether’s Reserves, MoonPay Scores 60 Celebrities, Meta’s Cut + More News

Get your daily, bite-sized digest of cryptoasset and blockchain-related news – investigating the stories flying under the radar of today’s crypto news.

__________

Stablecoins news

  • Stablecoin issuer Tether (USDT) is planning to reduce its holdings of commercial debt in its reserves, CNBC reported, citing Paolo Ardoino, Chief Technology Officer of the company. In the fourth quarter of 2021, commercial paper made up just over 30% of Tether’s total reserves, down from more than 44% in the third quarter, and the number is set to decrease further.
  • Tether also announced that USDT tokens have launched on the Kusama (KSM) network, a Polkadot (DOT) parachain (other chains attached to Polkadot’s main chain).

Investments news

  • Crypto payments infrastructure provider MoonPay announced that it raised USD 87m in a recent funding round. Investors include more than 60 figures from the entertainment and sports industries, such as musicians Anthony Kiedis, Post Malone, Justin Bieber, Jason Derulo, and others, as well as actors Bruce Willis, Kate Hudson, Shailene Woodley, etc.
  • Ethereum (ETH) scaling platform Polygon (MATICannounced its commitment to go carbon negative in 2022, along with a USD 20m pledge to implement a sustainable development strategy for their future. Their first collaboration will be with the environmentalist collective KlimaDAO.
  • Major non-fungible token (NFT)-focused company Animoca Brands said that it will acquire Darewise Entertainment, a game studio currently developing the play-and-earn blockchain science-fiction MMO (massively multiplayer online game) Life Beyond. They added that this collaboration will facilitate planned growth, accelerate game development, and combine video game development with blockchain integration, NFTs, and play-and-earn capabilities.
  • “Metaverse innovation” and entertainment company Infinite Reality (iR) announced that they have entered into a definitive merger agreement to acquire esports and entertainment conglomerate ReKTGlobal in a USD 470m all-stock deal, based on an equity valuation for iR of USD 2bn, for a combined post-close valuation of USD 2.47bn.
  • Blockchain developer Ignite announced the launch of a USD 150m accelerator program called Ignite Accelerator, focusing on early-stage blockchain projects. The program will support up to 20 projects a year, with two cohorts annually, they added.
  • Avatar technology company Genies announced it has raised a USD 150m Series C round led by Silver Lake. The funds will be used for hiring and investing in their core technologies, they added.

Metaverse news

  • Meta, the parent company of social network Facebook, is planning to take a cut of up to 47.5% on the sale of digital assets on its virtual reality platform Horizon Worldsper CNBC. This includes a “hardware platform fee” of 30% for sales made through the Meta Quest Store, along with a 17.5% fee charged by Horizon Worlds.

CBDCs news

  • The Bank of Japan (BOJ) won’t issue any digital currency with the aim of achieving negative interest rates, Bloomberg reported, citing BOJ Executive Director Shinichi Uchida. The functionality would be “operationally unrealistic” as long as cash exists, and it is unlikely that the general public would support such a decision, per the report.

Wallets news

  • Metamask Institutional, the institutional-grade extension of crypto wallet Metamaskannounced that it has integrated Web3 safety standard Gnosis Safe into its solution, enabling multisig (multi-signature) capabilities for decentralized finance (DeFi) interactions.

Exchanges news

  • London concert venue Koko announced a partnership with crypto platform Luno which will include the launch of The Luno, a multi-format space at the top of the theatre, which will host DJ shows, digital art exhibitions, and immersive events.

NFTs news

  • Autograph, the Web3 brand co-founded by American football star Tom Brady, announced a deal with Penske Entertainment and professional sports team Team Penske. The relationship encompasses racing brands: NTT INDYCAR SERIESIndianapolis Motor Speedway, and Team Penske. The multiyear partnership will see its first premiere NFT collections drop on May 29, they said.

Career news

  • Mick Mulvaney, acting chief of staff under former US President Donald Trump, has been hired by Astra Protocol to advise on US strategy in satisfying compliance demands in DeFi, Bloomberg reported. Mulvaney will work with the Swiss startup as it raises money and works to navigate policy developments, it added.