20 July 2019

Ben Ng

EJ Insight writer
  • Sean Moss-Pultz, Bitmark's co-founder and CEO, said the company's certificates of ownership of digital assets and data can be used as evidence in a court of law in case of a legal dispute. Photo: Bitmark

    Bitmark: Secure your property rights over digital data

    - Jul 18, 2019 11:41am
    The growing opposition from regulatory bodies to Facebook’s plans to launch its own cryptocurrency highlight widespread concerns over how technology companies make use of personal data for profit at the expense of the consumers’ privacy. People now...
  • Tableau’s Chief Technology Officer Andrew Beers (R) and the firm’s head of Greater China operations Thomas Yap (L) say their company aims to promote a data-driven culture among enterprises and individuals. Photos: Tableau

    Building community crucial to data platform success: Tableau

    - Jul 8, 2019 5:47pm
    US-based analytics platform Tableau (NYSE: DATA), which offers data visualization and analytics software that it says are easy enough for non-technical people to use, opened an office in Hong Kong last month. The facility, which is...
  • Joao Reginatto believes Circle’s stablecoin will benefit from the increased awareness that Facebook will bring to the cryptocurrency field. Photos: Circle

    Cryptocurrency sector will benefit from Facebook’s Libra: Circle

    - Jul 2, 2019 4:49pm
    Social media giant Facebook unveiled plans last month to launch a cryptocurrency called Libra, allowing money transfers over its messaging infrastructure – WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook Messenger. Backed by a reserve of fiat currencies and low-risk...
  • Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wants to make cryptocurrency mainstream, a goal which bitcoin has yet to accomplish. Photo: Reuters

    Internet of Money: Bitcoin and Facebook’s Libra

    - Jun 21, 2019 12:03pm
    Facebook finally unveiled this week the details of its digital currency, Libra, which will roll out for use in 2020, allowing the group’s billions of users across the world to buy things or send money to...
  • Max Kantelia, co-founder of Singapore-based blockchain startup Zilliqa, said the scalability issue remains a bottleneck in the application of blockchain technology. Photo: Zilliqa

    Let’s not get too excited about blockchain

    - Jun 18, 2019 2:57pm
    Blockchain, which underpins cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, has drawn massive interest around the world, with a growing number of enterprises investing heavily in the technology for deployment in their businesses. But amid the excitement, some blockchain...
  • Yat Siu and his gaming firm Animoca Brands partnered with Formula 1 to launch the blockchain-based racing game, in which players collect virtual cars, existing as non-fungible tokens in Ethereum blockchain, and race against each other. Pic: Animoca Brands

    Animoca Brands offers crypto collectibles for F1 racing game

    - Jun 4, 2019 5:06pm
    As players turn more serious about their gaming life than ever, virtual gaming assets are becoming as important and valuable as tangible assets. Recognizing this phenomenon, a Hong Kong gaming company has introduced a blockchain solution...
  • Financial product comparison website GoBear, led by CEO Adrian Chng (inset), is stepping up business expansion plans after raising new funds. Photo: GoBear

    GoBear to launch online insurance broking and lending business

    - May 20, 2019 3:10pm
    Online platform GoBear, which allows users to search and compare various financial products in the marketplace, recently received US$80 million in fresh funding. Following the capital infusion, the company is stepping up business expansion initiatives.  Chief...
  • Kelvin Teo and Reynold Wijaya are the co-founders of Funding Societies, a Singapore-based peer-to-peer lending platform that aims to support SMEs by providing them access to funding. Photo: Funding Societies

    How Funding Societies is able to grow in P2P lending market

    - May 14, 2019 3:37pm
    Pioneered by US-based firms like LendingClub, the peer-to-peer (P2P) lending market has witnessed an explosive boom in China and Southeast Asia. Funding Societies, founded in 2015, targets small and medium-sized enterprises, seeking to fuel their growth through...
  • Paxful founders Ray Youssef (top left) and Artur Schaback. The crypto trading platform has seen a significant growth of trading in Africa. Photo: Paxful

    Paxful sees huge crypto demand in developing markets

    - Apr 29, 2019 3:11pm
    While cryptocurrencies are on the rise, their susceptibility to speculative activities and resulting price volatility have reduced their appeal to investors, particularly in the United States, Europe and China. However, some crypto startups believe that emerging markets, where...
  • Oriente operates in the Philippines and Indonesia where its two services, Cashalo and Finmas, respectively, offer credit services for consumers using a mixture of online and offline channels. Photo: Oriente

    Oriente’s Prentice sees vast opportunities in Southeast Asia

    - Apr 15, 2019 3:07pm
    The financial technology (fintech) industry has not even scratched the surface of opportunities across Southeast Asia, says Geoff Prentice, co-founder of Hong Kong-based micro-lending startup Oriente. In 2017, Prentice, a Skype co-founder and its former chief...
  • Abra enables users to invest in traditional stocks, ETFs, and crypto assets with a single app, according to founder Bill Barhydt. Photo: Abra

    Crypto startup Abra to make all-in-one global investing app

    - Apr 11, 2019 2:45pm
    US-based cryptocurrency startup Abra aims to be an all-in-one global investment app, according to founder Bull Barhydt. In a recent interview with EJ Insight, Barhydt, an early Netscape employee, shared his vision for the company he...
  • Bitspark, led by co-founder and CEO George Harrap, recently launched a stablecoin that is pegged 1:1 to the Hong Kong dollar. Photo: HKEJ

    Bitspark touts the benefits of its HKD-backed stablecoin

    - Mar 20, 2019 11:08am
    Following a crash in prices of cryptocurrencies and a cooling in investor frenzy, the sector has seen a new star emerge on the horizon: “stablecoins”. In February, US-based investment bank JPMorgan Chase announced that it is...
  • Ledger's Benjamin Soong expects growing demand for the company's hardware wallet products from the institutional side. Photo: HKEJ

    Institutional market seen key to bringing crypto sector back up

    - Mar 18, 2019 11:19am
    With the rise of cryptocurrencies around the globe, there have been quite a few cases of hacker attacks on crypto exchanges, causing significant losses in the industry. According to a Reuters report, over US$927 million worth...
  • Aiming for an Asian expansion, crypto security firm Ledger has set up a branch in Hong Kong, with Benjamin Soong appointed as regional head. Photo: HKEJ

    Crypto security firm Ledger sees big Asia opportunities

    - Mar 18, 2019 11:13am
    Given multiple incidents of security breaches and hacks in crypto exchanges in recent years, securing the cryptocurrency wallet has become a growing concern for crypto investors. Amid this situation, Ledger, a Paris-headquartered cryptocurrency security firm known...
  • JPMorgan, whose boss Jamie Dimon (inset, left) once bashed bitcoin as a ‘fraud’, has launched its own crypto initiative, but industry insider Elizabeth White (inset, right) feels the unit’s implication would be limited. Photos: Reuters, The White Company

    Is JPMCoin a cryptocurrency?

    - Feb 26, 2019 11:52am
    Despite a major selloff of popular cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, the market has seen a boom in “stablecoin” initiatives in the fast-moving crypto sector, as investors sought out cryptocurrency whose value is pegged to...
  • New York-based startup The White Company, led by Elizabeth White (inset), has launched a stablecoin initiative to help clients purchase items using cryptocurrency. Photos: Reuters, The White Company

    Are stablecoins the way forward for crypto units? An expert view

    - Feb 26, 2019 11:05am
    The financial industry has shown interest in digital coins and blockchain, aiming to utilize tamper-proof digital ledger technology. Recently, US-based investment bank JP Morgan announced that it is launching its own “stablecoin” in order to facilitate...
  • FinFabrik, co-founded by Alex Medana, aims to help in the push toward digitizing traditional assets, using proprietary blockchain and machine learning technologies. Photo: FinFabrik

    FinFabrik to partner crypto exchange BitMEX in digitizing assets

    - Feb 18, 2019 10:20am
    Hong Kong-based financial technology startup FinFabrik announced last week the completion of its seed round of funding, led by BitMEX Ventures, an arm of the cryptocurrency exchange and derivatives trading platform BitMEX. Alex Medana, FinFabrik’s co-founder and...
  • Victor Lang, co-founder and COO of gini, said the startup has just completed a $1.6 million funding round, allowing it to expand overseas. Photo: HKEJ

    Personal finance app gini welcomes competition from bank giants

    - Feb 8, 2019 2:47pm
    Hong Kong-based startup gini piloted last year a spending tracker app that allows users to bring together all their accounts and credit cards in one spot, enabling them to keep track of their finances conveniently. Recently,...
  • Tech entrepreneur Yat Siu founded Hong Kong’s first internet provider, and then a conglomerate specializing in cloud and smartphone software. Photo: HKEJ

    Tech legend Yat Siu doubles down on blockchain gaming

    - Jan 30, 2019 1:54pm
    Famed tech entrepreneur Yat Siu, who launched Hong Kong’s first internet provider and founded a conglomerate specializing in cloud and smartphone software, is riding high on the next big wave in the industry: blockchain technology. In...
  • Duncan Wong, CryptoBLK’s co-founder and CEO, is among the tech enthusiasts who are seen as having driven HKMA's early dalliances with blockchain technology. Photo: HKEJ

    CryptoBLK lures bank giants to bring blockchain to trade finance

    - Jan 21, 2019 4:19pm
    In October 2015, The Economist published a much-discussed report on blockchain, featuring the topic on the magazine’s cover along with the tag line “The Trust Machine: How the technology behind Bitcoin could change the world.” Since...

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