What a year it has been for blockchain. Most notably, this has been the first year in which blockchain technology is starting to get vast recognition outside of its cryptocurrency application.
Gone are the days when everyone thinks that bitcoin is all there is to blockchain. Major corporations around the world are now experimenting and already using blockchain solutions to improve their operations, finally recognizing the potential of decentralization.
The financial services sector is certainly the industry where most of the innovation is happening, seeing as the technology’s advantages greatly match the improvement demands of the sector.
The crypto market on the other hand has comparatively experienced a slow year, going swiftly through a few bullish and bearish trends before ultimately sliding back into a stagnant position.
Fraud has been a major problem for the blockchain-enabled cryptocurrency industry, with too many occurrences of exchange hacks, Ponzi schemes, phishing scams, and mining malware. This malicious activity is crippling the crypto market, keeping it stagnant as bulls engage in an endless tug of war with the bears.
But despite all this, the digital assets market has performed much more on the positive side compared to 2018. We even saw an explosive bull run for a second, reminiscent of the one towards the end of 2017.
Through innovation and regulation, through uptrends and downtrends, and through trials and real-world application, the blockchain sector has entered its innovation stage – the stage when companies race to become the new Apple, Google, and Microsoft of what’s shaping up to be the decade of distributed ledger technology.
But before we turn the page over completely, It is only natural that we commemorate the defining blockchain events of the last year of the previous decade, a decade which picked up from the ashes of the 2008 economic crisis to birth a trustless self-governed financial system by the name of Bitcoin – the one that started it all.
The story of blockchain in 2019
First Mimblewimble Coin Launches Mainnet
Privacy-focused Beam went live using the Mimblewimble blockchain design.
Cryptopia Announces Security Breach, Goes Offline
The hack that ultimately lead to the liquidation of the exchange happened so early in the year.
Ethereum Shows First Signs of Life
Recovering to about $130, Ethereum led the way for the first bullish trend of the year.
Grin Mainnet Goes Live
The privacy-focused cryptocurrency with an anonymous development team mined the first block at 17:38 UTC.
Wyoming Proposes Tokenization of Stocks Bill
House Bill 0185 was jointly filled by representatives Olsen, Hunt, Brown, Lindholm, Western and Zwonitzer, and senators Driskill and Rothfuss.
CoinEx Token Jumps 40%
Following news of Haipo Yang’s release from prison, founder of ViaBTC and CoinEx, the token skyrocketed in market cap.
Zilliqa, MaiCoin Partner on Security Token Exchange
The centralized security token exchange was announced as Hg Exchange.
WordPress Announces Blockchain-Empowered Publishing Platform
Titled Newspack, the new product by WordPress was marketed as an inexpensive platform for small and medium-sized news organizations.
NY Regulator Approves BitLicense Applications for Robinhood, LibertyX
Receiving the BitLicense meant that the two companies could now legally operate in New York.
Localbitcoins Security Breach
Users of the website quickly identified that the site’s forum page redirected to a phishing page.
Ripple Reports That They Sold $535 Million Worth of XRP in 2018
The Q4 2018 report by the company showed strong numbers, support, and demand for the XRP ecosystem.
Liqui Shuts Down
The cryptocurrency exchange promptly notified its users that it will close its operations with a farewell notice.
Kraken Evolves With New Website Design
Featuring contrasting colours representing the dynamic nature of the markets, the company completely revamped their exchange’s website.
Squire Mining CEO Resigns
After poor ASIC prototype performance, Taras Kulyk stepped down as CEO and director of the Canadian-based Squire Mining Ltd.
Kik Announces it Will Fight SEC Over ICO Allegations
The Canadian-based startup decided not to bend to the will of the SEC, which accused the company of selling unregistered securities in its ICO back in 2017.
BitTorrent Token Sale Ends in 15 Minutes
One of the most notable IEOs on Binance Launchpad sold close to 60 billion BTT (about $7 million) in under 15 minutes, despite a small system issue.
Opera Adds Crypto Support
Users of the Android version of the browser were now able to easily buy ETH.
Litecoin Jumps 20%
Following news of Mimblewimble support and Beam partnership, the popular cryptocurrency pumped very quickly.
Zcash Reveals a Counterfeiting Vulnerability Fix
The vulnerability was discovered by Ariel Gabizon, an engineer at the Zerocoin Electric Coin Company. The vulnerability was subsequently fixed in 2018.
Fake MetaMask Removed From Google Play Store
The app contained malware and was identified by Eset researchers.
Luxembourg Passes Bill, Gives Blockchain Securities Legal Status
Bill 7363 aimed to provide legal certainty and transparency to financial market participants who use blockchain tech to issue securities.
Bitmain Announces 7nm Mining Chip
The announcement troubled current, at the time, SHA256 mining machines, making them potentially obsolete.
Binance Launches DEX Testnet
The company made their decentralized exchange available for users to create wallets, exchange tokens, and interact with the platform in a test environment.
The Ethereum Foundation Releases 5th Wave of Grants
Seven grant recipients received an undisclosed sum of funds. Comparatively, the fourth wave of grants awarded around $3 million to 20 different entities.
Fetch.AI IEO Sells Out in Minutes
Binance Launchpad promoted and held the IEO, which nostalgically reminded people of the ICO craze back in 2017, when projects sold out digital assets in seconds.
Accenture, Mastercard, Amazon, Announce Blockchain-Enabled Supply Chain
The announcement described using blockchain technology to improve circular supply chain.
Sony, Fujitsu Initiate Blockchain Trial for Education
The partnership aimed to test the viability of blockchain technology in the management of course records and exam grades.
Ethereum Adds Two Upgrades
Constantinople and St. Petersburg went live on the ETH blockchain.
First Rumors of Facebook’s Libra Appear
The New York Times report on a highly-secretive Facebook cryptocurrency project.
Cryptopia Shares Info on Stolen Amount
More than 6 weeks after the security breach, still a lot of speculation was surrounding the situation. Reports at the time suggested that about $16 million was stolen.
Ground X Raises $90 Million
Participants in the private token sale included firms such as IDG Capital, Crescendo Equity Partners, and Translink Capital.
EU Report Recommends Blockchain Interoperability Standards
The report was published by the European Union Blockchain Observatory and Forum (EUBOF) and was titled “Scalability, Interoperability and Sustainability of Blockchain”.
Tether Updates Terms, Raises Suspicions
Building up to that point, a lot of speculation had amassed surrounding Tether’s USD reserves, in light of the lack of a full independent audit.
MtGox CEO Sentenced
Mark Karpeles was found guilty of record tampering and not guilty of embezzlement, receiving two and a half years of suspended sentence.
Bittrex Cancels RAID Token Sale, Postpones Indefinitely
The plan was for the project to raise $6 million in the first ever IEO on the platform.
Celer IEO Concludes With Community Disappointment
Although the sale completed really fast as had become traditional for IEOs on Binance Launchpad, there was a lot of negative comments regarding the participation process.
Bitmain Releases Antminer Z11
The new internal circuit structure described the Z11 as capable of achieving three times the hash rate of its predecessor – all the way up to 135 KSol/s.
Huobi Joins the IEO Race
Similar to Binance Launchpad, Huobi prime aimed to provide the platform’s customers with an easy way to access altcoin tokens before they appear on other major exchanges.
AriseBank CEO Pleads Guilty
Jared Rice Sr., former CEO of AriseBank, pleaded guilty to one count of securities fraud, related to a $4.2 million ICO scam.
TOP Network IEO Ends in Seconds
A huge success for the first IEO on Huobi Prime.
Bitmain Announces New CEO
The former chief of engineering Wang Haichao was appointed as the new chief executive officer of the company.
Voltaire Exchange Shuts Down
Seemingly out of nowhere, the cryptocurrency exchange notified its customers that it will be closing down operations.
Airbnb Makes Reservations with Crypto Gift Cards Possible
Bitrefill, a digital gift card provider, partnered with Airbnb to make possible reservations with cryptocurrency.
Bithumb Hacked, Again
This time the cryptocurrency exchange lost around $19 million in a hack considered to be an inside job. This was the second major breach the exchange experienced in less than a year.
Liquid Valued at Over $1 Billion
The Series C funding round of the company, reportedly led by IDG Capital, ended with a valuation of the company of over $1 billion.
PewDiePie Partners With DLive
With more than 93 million subscribers on YouTube, PewDiePie became the biggest live streamer to join the fast-growing blockchain-based broadcasting service, amid frustrations with Twitch.
Julian Assange Supporters Send Donations Amid Arrest
In reaction to the WikiLeaks founder being imprisoned after Ecuador reclined his asylum, supporters of his cause started sending Bitcoin donations in large amounts, hoping to help in any way possible.
IMF, World Bank Launch Education Token
In a report, the two institutions mentioned Learning Coin, which is not a cryptocurrency and has no monetary value, but will rather be used to explore blockchain technology in the educational sector.
Second Huobi Prime IEO Ends Succesfully
The Newton Project saw 16,360 users participate in its IEO, easily reaching the hard cap in three stages with increasing token prices.
Coinnest Closes Down
The South Korea-based crypto exchange ended its operations amid decreasing trading volumes and regulatory issues.
TaaS Shuts Down
After two years of active trading and investing, one of the first and most popular ICO-funded crypto hedge funds announced that it will stop its market trading activities and distribute assets to all token holders.
Zaif Resumes Full Service After Hack
The Japanese crypto exchange that was previously hacked, resumed its operations after transferring management from Tech Bureau to Fisco Digital Asset Group.
U.K. Startup Raises $3.9 Million in London Stock Exchange Test issuance
Known as 20|30, the company was able to successfully use its capital raising platform TokenFactory to execute the test issuance.
LA Times Becomes a Verified Brave Browser Publisher
Following in the footsteps of other major publications such as The Guarding and The Washington Post, the LA Times joining the decentralized ad network of Brave further cemented the viability of the new privacy-focused browser.
Bitfinex Alleged of Using Tether Funds to Cover $850 Million Loss
New York Attorney General Letitia James and her office obtained a court order against iFinex Inc., the company behind Bitfinex and Tether Limited, accusing them of covering an $850 million loss to Crypto Capital Corp using Tether funds that should have been exclusively used to back USDT.
Bitmain Antminer T17 Becomes Available for Purchase
Priced at $1,270 at the time, the machine was marketed as being able to mine SHA256-based cryptocurrencies at 40TH/s.
Nasdaq Announce Addition of Brave New Coin’s XRP Liquidity Index
The new index was called XRP Liquid Index (XRPLX) and was announced to be added on May 1, referencing the rate for the price of XRP in USD.
Elon Musk Talks Ethereum
In a series of replies on Twitter, Elon Musk discussed the possibilities of what could be developed on Ethereum with the blockchain’s very own founder Vitalik Buterin.
BitPay, Refundo Partner to Provide Bitcoin Tax Refunds
The announcement focused on the new Refundo product titled CoinRT, which allowed taxpayers to receive either a portion or all of their federal and state tax returns in Bitcoin.
Binance Hacked, Loses 7,000 BTC
The hackers used a variety of tactics, including phishing and viruses, before getting access to users’ API keys and two-factor authentication codes.
Reports Bitfinex Planning the Sale of $1 Billion Worth of LEO Tokens Appear
Founding partner of Primitive Ventures Dovey Wan shared the alleged at the time plans of the crypto exchange.
Bitfinex Publishes Official LEO Token Whitepaper
That confirmed the rumors from the previous day and also confirmed the cap of 1 billion USDT the exchange planned to raise in the LEO token IEO.
Ankr Migrates to Binance Chain
The goal of the shift was to bring additional liquidity to the token, including a unique three token type swap mechanism titled Ankr Triangle.
Mike Novogratz Bets on Web3.0, Not Bitcoin
The former Wall Street executive shared his thoughts on the crypto revolution, betting on web 3.0’s uprise and not so much on Bitcoin, though he is a well-known Bitcoin supporter.
Cryptopia Suspends Operations, Goes Into Liquidation
After a few months of trying to figure out how to save the exchange as a result of the January hack, the company called it quits and assigned Grant Thornton as the liquidator.
Chainlink Announces Mainnet Launch on Ethereum
The long-awaited Chainlink mainnet finally had a set launch date for the end of the month.
Huobi Announces Third IEO
After two very successful runs, Huobi set its sights on the Reserve Rights Token (RSR) as the third IEO to run on Huobi Prime.
Bittrex Announce Vodi X IEO
The mobile platform finally managed to reach a deal with an exchange for their IEO.
Bitfinex, Ethfinex Join the IEO Race
The new IEO platform was titled Tokinex and immediately scheduled an announcement for the first IEO on the following day.
Huobi Prime Third IEO Ends in Seconds
The Reserve IEO’s completion time rivaled that of the previous two IEOs on the platform – TOP Network and Newton Project.
Kraken Announces Fundraiser
The crypto exchange was looking to sell some of its company stock in a private sale.
AT&T Start Accepting Bill Payments in Crypto
The media and telecom giant became the first mobile carrier to accept cryptocurrency for payments, thanks to the integration with BitPay.
More Details Emerge on Facebook’s Cryptocurrency
At the time, the stablecoin was rumored to be called GlobalCoin.
ConsenSys Launches New Job Kit
The DApp Developer Job Kit was released with the goal of helping developers enter the growing blockchain market.
Binance CEO Sues Sequoia Capital
In a preventative lawsuit, Changpeng Zhao sued the venture capital firm for potential monetary losses caused by a previously failed deal.
Australian Securities & Investments Commission Release ICO Guidance
Seeing as ICOs are quite popular in the country, it was only natural for a governing body to issue legal guidance, trying to prevent investor fraud.
Yet Another Successful IEO on Binance Launchpad
The Harmony Protocol IEO didn’t break the successful streak of Binance’s IEO launchpad, later accounting for about 96% of Binance DEX’s trading volume.
Block.one Announces EOS-Based Social Media Platform
Titled Voice, the platform was announced during an event organized by Block.one at the DC Armory in Washington.
Tether Announces USDT for EOS
The company decided to continue spreading their stablecoin on other platforms, after seeing the huge success it had using the Omni Layer.
SEC Announce Kik Lawsuit
The $100 million ICO in 2017 caught the attention of the regulatory agency, prompting them to take action against what they called an unregistered securities sale.
LINE Pay, Visa Partner on Payment Solutions
The two companies announced their cooperation on developing blockchain-powered technologies such as B2B and cross-border-payments, and alternative currency transactions.
Facebook Officially Confirm Their Crypto Project
After months of speculation, the company finally announced that they will announce their own cryptocurrency by the end of the month.
Details About Facebook’s Libra Finally Emerge
Hours after the company’s official confirmation of their crypto project, people already knew that it was titled Libra and that it was going to be a global stablecoin.
Harmony Partners with Chainlink
The partnership complemented the highly scalable high-throughput network with off-chain data integrity guarantees.
Bittrex Advances in the IEO Race
Confirming the upcoming IEO of Standard Tokenization Protocol, the exchange officially entered the chase of tokenization supremacy.
Lightning Network Announces ‘Watchtowers’ in New Release
The anti-fraud functionality was to be added to Bitcoin’s Lightning Network in the next release.
Bloomberg, Reuters Announce Crypto Data Addition to Their Terminals
The data that would be used by the terminals was to be provided by Cryptoindex.com.
Binance Blocks Services for U.S. Customers
Bittrex Delists Numerous Altcoins for U.S. Traders
As regulatory pressure mounted on crypto exchanges, a total of 42 different altcoins became unavailable for traders based in the United States.
Facebook Release Libra Whitepaper
After months of waiting, the crypto community finally got its first official glimpse of what Facebook’s new stablecoin was all about.
First Initial DEX Offering Concudes
The Raven Protocol successfully introduced and tested out the Initial DEX Offering (IDO) concept. The hard cap of $500,000 was reached almost instantly.
First Signs of Regulatory Pressure on Libra Appear
The U.S. Senate Banking Committee scheduled a hearing on the project for July 16.
Ripple Announce $50 Million Investment in MoneyGram
The investment deal came as a sequel to their previous 2018 partnership.
Binance Announce Another IEO
The high-speed and throughput blockchain Elrond, back then in testnet stage, was chosen as the next project to have its digital asset sold on Binance Launchpad.
J. P. Morgan Announces Trials of JPM Coin
The customer trials were to begin with several of its already-existing corporate clients, which remained unnamed at the time of the announcement.
Bitmain Renews IPO Plans
The company behind the most popular and successful crypto mining hardware again announced that they will be trying to do an IPO again, this time in the United States.
CoinEx Announces Own Chain, DEX
The crypto exchange announced that it has been working on its own blockchain for more than a year before Binance launched their own chain.
Bitrue Hacked, $4.2 Million Lost
The cryptocurrency exchange was very transparent about the situation, guaranteeing that customer funds will be restored with company assets.
Circle, Coinbase Form Consortium to Promote USDC
The two crypto giants announced their partnership with the goal of promoting the USDC stablecoin, reacting to the momentum that Libra had gained.
Binance Talks Listing Libra
The CSO of the company confirmed preliminary talks with Facebook about adding their recently-announced Libra stablecoin to Binance.
Big Wall Street Player Bets on Crypto
Billionaire Henry Kravis invested in a crypto fund managed by ParaFi Capital.
Libra Under Siege
The U.S. Congress requested that the company freeze development of Libra until they have had a chance to thoroughly review the project.
The FCA Proposes Ban on all Cryptocurrency-Related Products
The Financial Conduct Authority justified their move by saying that they were trying to protect investors.
Chinese Ponzi Scheme Steals More Than $30 Million, Victims Blame Tron
The scammers claimed official association with Tron and managed to get away with around $30 million worth of investor money. The victims blamed Tron and Justin Sun for not taking swifter action to stop the scheme.
Binance Launches 2.0 Platform, Margin Trading
Initially, margin trading became available across 6 cryptocurrencies – BTC, ETH, XRP, BNB, TRX, and USDT, with fees as low as 0.01%.
Bitpoint Suspends Services After Hack
A total of 3.5 billion yen worth of crypto was stolen from the exchange, 2.5 billion of which belonged to customers.
U.S. Senate Committee Approves Blockchain Promotion Act
The act is a bipartisan legislation that directs the Department of Commerce to come up with a definition of blockchain at the federal level.
Brave Reaches 200,000 Publishers
Amassed from popular platforms such as YouTube, Twitter, Twitch, Vimeo, and Reddit, the decentralized ad network surrounding Brave browser reached the 200,000 verified publishers milestone.
Libra Under Heavy Attack in Senate Hearing
Most senators raised concerns over Facebook’s repeated history of privacy issues and the resulting lack of trust by the general public.
Bitpoint Announces Reimbursement Program
After the exchange lost a lot of customer money in a hack, it vowed to cover 2.06 billion yen ($20 million) worth of customer losses with the company’s own assets.
Bulls on the Horizon
In just about 30 minutes, Bitcoin jumped from $9,300 to $10,400.
Chainalysis is Included in Forbes’ Next Billion-Dollar Startups List
The cyber security company focused on the crypto industry helps prevent crimes in the sector and also provides regulatory compliance services.
The new coin was named Ycash and went live immediately after the split from the main network.
KPMG, Microsoft, R3, Tomia Partner on Blockchain Telecom Solution
The solution would try to reduce the number of disputes, costs, and time involved in telecom settlements by leveraging the use of smart contracts.
Ripple Sells Over $250 Million in XRP in Q2 2019
In the company’s quarterly report, they reveal a massive 48% quarterly increase in XRP sold.
First SEC Approval of Ethereum-Based Tokens
Pocketful of Quarters became the first startup to receive the green light by the SEC to issue their ERC-20 Quarters tokens to the public.
Blockchain.com Announces The PIT
The blockchain giant announced its expansion into trading with its new crypto exchange, now rebranded into Blockchain Exchange.
Bitcoin.com Announce Fiat Gateway, Leadership Change
Stefan Rust replaced Roger Ver as CEO of the most premium domain name in crypto. Additionally, the website announced a full-fledged exchange and fiat gateway on the way.
Litecoin Mining Reward Halves
As of block height 1,680,000, the Litecoin network lowered the mining block reward from 25 LTC to 12.5 LTC.
Binance Announces 8th IEO
The next IEO to try and break Binance Launchpad records was announced to be Perlin’s Wavelet, a high-throughput, quick-finality blockchain.
IBM Files for Blockchain-Based Web Browser Patent
The web browser was described as gathering pre-specified info from browsing session, which would then be transferred to a peer-to-peer network for storage.
New Zealand Makes Crypto Salaries Legal
The new ruling stated that employees could receive their salaries in crypto assets if they form part of their regular earnings.
Samsung Adds Support for Bitcoin to its Blockchain Keystore
The mobile mobile phones giant quietly added support for Bitcoin and Klaytn to its decentralized app store.
Google Cloud Partners with Cypherium
The new partnership allowed Google Cloud customers to have direct access to Cypherium’s blockchain platform.
Rakuten Wallet Adds Crypto Trading Support
Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Bitcoin Cash were now able to be traded against the Japanese yen directly through Rakuten Wallet.
Kraken Announces Listing of BAT, WAVES
Deposits and withdrawals for the two tokens became available on 22 August.
Libra Members Begin Questioning Participation
At least three companies, two of which founding members of Libra, were holding discussions on what their “right next steps” should be.
Binance Announces Crypto Lending
Initially users were able to lend ETC, USDT, and BNB, on which they would earn interest.
Hedera Hashgraph Announces Mainnet Launch Date
The company set the long-awaited public mainnet launch for September 16.
European Central Bank Warns About Libra
Yves Mersch of the ECB warned that Facebook’s new stablecoin could affect banks’ ability to set monetary policies, hindering economics worldwide from functioning as they have.
Binance Acquires JEX
The acquisition aimed to provide Binance’s users with services such as futures contracts, options, and other derivative products offered by JEX’s trading platform.
NSA Announces Working on Quantum-Resistant crypto
The director of the NSA’s Cybersecurity Directorate, Anne Neuberger, made the comment at the 10th Annual Billington Cyber Security Summit in Washington.
Binance Announces BUSD Stablecoin Launch
Approved by the New York State Department of Financial Services, the long-awaited Binance USD (BUSD) stablecoin will be a collaboration with trust company Paxos and backed by USD on a 1:1 ratio.
MERJ Launches 1st Tokenized IPO
The company became the first national stock exchange to sell tokenized shares to investors.
France Pressures Libra
The French Economy and Finance Minister, Bruno Le Maire, said that Libra could pose a threat to the sovereignty of national currencies.
Santander Digitizes $20 Million Bond Trade on Ethereum
The company used an Ethereum token to depict a $20 million debt issuance and settled it with other ERC-20 tokens that depict cash held in a custody account.
LINE Launches Bitmax
The new crypto exchange obtained a cryptocurrency exchange license to operate in Japan and became available for the 81 million, at the time, Japan-based users of LINE’s popular messaging app.
Germany Approves Strategy for Exploring Valuable Blockchain Use Cases
The program came out after extensive talks which engaged 158 professionals and company representatives.
Verizon Awarded Blockchain-Based vSIM Patent
The telecommunications giant experimented replacing traditional physical SIM cards with a software version, secured with blockchain-based encryption.
Binance Receives International Recognized ISA
The company received the reputable ISO/IEC 27001 standard.
The long-awaited Intercontinental Exchange-backed BTC warehouse finally launched after months of speculations and delays, executing the first bitcoin futures trade at a price of $10,115.
Kik Messaging Shuts Down
After 18 months of back-and-forth with the SEC, the company had no other choice but to streamline operations and focus on the legal battle with the regulatory agency.
Daimler Conduct First Transaction on Marco Polo
The transaction between Daimler and Dürr included an order and delivery agreement, with the payment being secured by a conditional payment commitment from Daimler’s bank.
Ripple’s Xpring Acquires Logos Network
The acquisition had the goal of expanding the ecosystem around XRP by building DeFi products.
Malware Using Telegram to Swap Wallet Addresses Identified
The “Masad Clipper and Stealer” clipping option worked with a number of cryptocurrencies, such as BTC, ETH, XRP, BCH, LTC, and others.
EOS Reaches $24 Million Settlement with SEC
The settlement defined the original ERC-20 EOS token as a security, but did not extend to the current EOS token.
Skale Network Raises $17.1 Million for Mainnet Launch
The Ethereum-compatible blockchain scalability platform amassed 40 investors from the U.S., EU, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, and Singapore.
PayPal Backs Out of Libra
Amanda Coffee, a spokeswoman for PayPal, confirmed that the company had withdrawn form the Libra Association.
UNICEF Launches Crypto Fund
The announcement made UNICEF the first U.N. organization that could receive and distribute BTC and ETH donations in support of open source technology.
Swiss Central Bank Announces CBDC Research Efforts
The Swiss National Bank would work together with the SIX Digital Exchange to explore how central bank digital currencies (CBDC) can be integrated into a DLT platform.
SEC Rejects Bitwise’s Bitcoin ETF Proposal
The reason behind the rejection was that NYSE Arca did not meet the requirements to prevent market manipulation and other illicit activities.
First Regulated ICO Portal in Thailand
SE Digital instantly planned the launch of its first token offering, with a funding goal of $98 million.
Libra in Trouble
Following in the footsteps of PayPal, Visa, Mastercard, eBay, Stripe, and Mercado Pago withdrew from the project.
SEC Deems Telegram’s ICO Unlawful
The agency claimed that Telegram failed to provide investors with required info regarding the GRM token and blocked the digital asset from use in the U.S..
Libra Association Holds Inaugural Meeting
21 organizations signed the Libra Association charter, while also naming its five member board of directors.
Bermuda Starts Accepting USDC for Tax Payments
This made the second most popular stablecoin available for use by more than 60,000 residents of the island nation, helping them pay for taxes, fees, and other government services.
Kik Sells Messaging App
Even though the app was to be shut down because of the U.S. SEC lawsuit, it continued to operate under new ownership, the holding company MediaLab.
PeerNova Raises $31 Million
With the help of Overstock’s VC arm, the company successfully completed its Series B funding round, totaling its fundraising to $74 million.
China Calls for Accelerated Blockchain Adoption
Speaking at a Politburo Committee session, the Chinese President said that blockchain technology is key to promoting technological innovation.
China Passes Cryptography Law
The new law aimed to set standards for the application of cryptography in the country, and also to tackle regulatory and legal challenges.
Bitmain Files for U.S. IPO, Backed by Deutsche Bank
In order to increase its chances of a U.S. listing, the company hired a former Nasdaq representative.
Stellar Burns $4.7 Billion Worth of XLM
Out of the 105 billion XLM tokens that were in existence at the time, the Stellar Development Foundation decided to destroy 55 billion of its own tokens.
Tencent Receives License to Operate a Blockchain Bank
General manager Weige Cai announced the news in a keynote speech at the Wuzhen blockchain conference.
Russia Proceeds with Crypto Confiscation Laws
The laws that will allow confiscation of digital assets should come into action in 2021.
Singapore’s Central Bank, J. P. Morgan Reveal Payments System
The new prototype platform was developed to enable payments denominated in different currencies.
Bakkt Launches Custodial Services
After receiving the green light from the N.Y. Department of Financial Services, Bakkt opened its custody services to its entire client base.
HTC Releases Binance Chain-Enabled Smartphone
The Exodus 1 Binance Edition would integrate its native crypto wallet app with Binance DEX.
Brave Releases 1.0 Version
After years of development, the innovative browser finally released its 1.0 version.
Bitfinex, ODEM Partner on Blockcahin Education
ODEM will not only launch a full simulation of its education marketplace, but will also release educational courses for Bitfinex users.
E.U. Reveals €400 Million Blockchain, AI investment Fund
A total of €100 million were put together for the investment scheme, while another €300 million came from private investors.
OneCoin Lawyer Found Guilty
Mark Scott allegedly got paid $50 million to help Ruja Ignatova launder $400 million, for which he is now facing 50 years in jail.
Algorand 2.0 Goes Live
With DeFi features and smart contracts, the new blockchain protocol upgrade also added new capabilities into Layer-1, such as standardized asset creation and atomic transfers.
New Binance launchpad IEO Announced
Troy Trade would try to raise $4 million through its token sale, for which it allocated 8% of its total supply.
Ripple Completes $50 Million MoneyGram Investment Commitment
Ripple now owned nearly 10% of the company’s outstanding common stock.
BitBay Delists Monero
Estonia-based BitBay stopped all XMR deposits to its platform on 29 November, and will completely delist the coin on 19 February, 2020, largely due to money laundering concerns.
World Chess Issues Hybrid Tokens
Qualified investors from the U.S and E.U. were able to buy the World Chess digital token, which was convertible to IPO shares.
Quantstamp Wins Blockchain Cybersecurity Award
Disruptor Daily organized the awards with the goal to profile companies providing practical blockchain-based cybersecurity tools.
Uptbit Hacked, Loses $50 Million
Upbit quickly confirmed that the 342,000 ETH that were transferred from its wallet to an unknown ethereum address was in fact a theft.
CipherTrace Reports Crypto Crime Losses up to $4.4 Billion
Just two fraudulent activities in 2019 amounted to more than $3 billion is losses for investors.
Binance Acquires DappReview
DappReview maintained its independence from Binance, and will continue to provide data analytics, user insights and information for over 3,900 dapps.
Steemit Releases Token Launching Protocol
The new Smart Media Tokens allow users to build their own cryptocurrency on top of the Steemit blockchain.
Bakkt CEO Appointed as New U.S. Senator
Replacing Sen. Johnny Isakson, who retired at the end of the year, Kelly Loeffler stepped down as CEO of Bakkt and took office on 1 January 2020.
Microsoft Partners with Enjin
Not long after the announcement, the price of ENJ skyrocketed.
China’s Central Bank Announces Real-World Trial of its Digital Currency
The People’s Bank of China would start trials of its digital currency in Shenzhen and Suzhou.
Japanese Banks Eyeing J. P. Morgan’s Blockchain Payment Network
More than 80 banks in the land of the rising sun intend to join J.P. Morgan’s Interbank Information Network.
Chainalysis Delivers AML Compliance Solution to Bitfinex
The company expanded its coverage and now screens 41 cryptocurrencies, stablecoins and ERC-20 tokens.
VeChain Foundation Hacked, Loses $6.6 Million
Around 1.1 billion VET tokens were stolen from the foundation’s buyback wallet.
R3’s Marco Polo Completes Largest Trade Finance Trial
The blockchain-based trade finance consortium claimed to have completed more than 700 funding requests.
Ponzi Scheme Blamed for Bitcoin Downtrend
In an in-depth report, Chainalysis alleged the $2 billion PLUS token Ponzi scheme as the cause for the crypto market downtrend at the time.
Maker Focuses on Asia Market
Selling $27.5 million worth of MKR to two crypto investment funds, which represents 5.5% of the total supply of the Maker token, the company solidified its foothold in Asia.
Ripple Raises $200 Million
In a Series C funding round led by Tetragon, the company raised capital from companies such as SBI Holdings and Route 66 Ventures.
Blockchain Innovations Award Presented to Intel, Leidos, First Genesis
The winning entry was selected from among nine other submissions focusing on resolving governmental issues.
Zcoin Launches Decentralized Crowdfunding System
The new funding model was titled the Zcoin Crowdfunding System and would begin funding for basic project tasks such as community management.
Huobi Japan Raises $4.6 Million
The company also issued new stocks to Tokai Tokyo Financial Holdings over private placement.
South Korea Announces CBDC Task Force
To be established in 2020, the task force will consist of a team of experts who will focus on studying the effects of central bank digital currencies on local economies.
2019 came and went, marking an important transition period for blockchain. As the industry recovers from the slump that was 2018, we are looking towards a hopeful 2020, one that would advance blockchain innovation even more and one that would see the crypto market further mature, finally capturing the attention and respect of the broader financial world.