Welcome to another weekly blockchain news roundup from around the world. Here we present to you all the latest Bitcoin news continent by continent and country by country.
Two Brazilian crypto active startups make it into the semi-final of the Innovation Awards Latam: In this year’s Innovation Awards Latam, two crypto related Brazilian startups, Uzzo and Z.ro, have made it into the semi-finals out of a total of 1700 startups. The Innovation Awards is an initiative that features startup ideas from different categories such as social impact, retailtech, fintech, health tech, agrotech, and smart cities.
165 startups have made it into the semis and were judged by a panel of 12 experts and investors hailing from different countries. Uzzo is a Fintech responsible for creating free digital accounts by using crypto-currency payment solutions and Z.ro Bank is a Fintech bank resulting from a merger between CoinWISE and BitBlue. The finalists will be announced on the 3rd of July with the awards ceremony taking place on the 26th of August.
Microsoft to launch blockchain applications for agribusiness in Brazil: Microsoft has registered for several technology-based applications in Brazil as part of a program called Microsoft Farmbeats to push for developments in the agricultural fields using blockchain technology. According to Ranveer Chandra, global chief scientist at Azure and the mind behind the project, the data collected aims to create a more accurate agricultural mapping of the farming landscape.
For example, this would measure the moisture, pH index, temperature, and soil nutrients in each area and would allow a uniform application of water, fertilizers, and pesticides throughout the field. This integration of technology will help increase yields, reduce costs, and cut down the negative environmental impact.
Brazilian Fintech uses blockchain to register loan agreements: REBEL, a Brazilian startup focused on fintech services, will now also offer loan agreements and contract recordings using blockchain, making it the first fintech in Brazil to use blockchain technology for this application.
The technique also allows the personalization of credit profile for each customer using machine learning and Big Data and claims to be an alternative to the status quo style of contract registration and negotiation. The company uses the Ethereum platform and offers its users to be registered forever and while being able to contact at any time reliably..
Visa wants to accelerate Brazilian startups involved with blockchain: The second round of the Visa acceleration program was launched on Monday, 3 June, to foster the startup ecosystem and “to promote entrepreneurship, innovation, and technology.” Visa do Brasil has launched an open call for startups with disruptive ideas which are currently in the growth phase. It has also announced that solutions aimed at improving the customers and end-user experience while enhancing the operational efficiency will be preferred.
Startups interested should also have a focus on “leveraging sales, raising or expanding investments, and fine-tuning strategy for their business operations”. Among the 13 other areas of interest, blockchain features among the top with a focus on high professional grade products, easy scalability, relatively low investment, and an accessible international market.
Venezuela and Russia allegedly discuss exchange agreement involving Petro and Russian rubles: Venezuela and Russia are on the verge of agreeing on a mutual liquidity deal based on rubles (Russian local currency) and the Venezuelan cryptocurrency, Petro.
This is a joint attempt to remove the influence of the US dollar for both of the countries, along with improving the valuation and utility of their local currencies. This is seen as a last-ditch attempt by the Venezuelan government to circumvent the crippling sanctions imposed by the US by seeking help from the Russian government and attempting to restructure their foreign debt. Despite all recent failures and criticism by the experts, the government seems adamant on using Petro, which was first launched in February 2018 to “fight poverty and hyperinflation.”
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