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Exclusive: Visa Pours Millions into Cryptocurrency Startup Anchorage

Visa has invested millions of dollars in Anchorage, a startup that secures cryptocurrency holdings for institutional investors. The two companies are founding members of Facebook’s high-profile cryptocurrency project Libra.
Visa co-led Anchorage’s new funding round, worth $40 million, alongside Blockchain Capital, a cryptocurrency-focused venture capital firm. This is the second known investment Visa has made in a cryptocurrency startup, the first having been made four years ago in Chain, an enterprise blockchain firm acquired in September by Lightyear, a startup affiliated with the cryptocurrency Stellar.
Anchorage was little-known before June 18, when its logo appeared alongside boldfaced names such as Mastercard, PayPal, Uber, Spotify, and, notably, Visa, on a slide introducing the Libra Association. Facebook instigated the creation of the association, a Swiss nonprofit comprised of 28 organizations that plans to grow to 100 by next year, to support its ambitious push for a global cryptocurrency.
Terry Angelos, who leads Visa’s efforts in financial tech, or fintech, said in a statement that Visa is interested in supporting “companies like Anchorage who are working to provide secure infrastructure to the growing ecosystem of digital assets.” He said that Anchorage “is building the foundation to support an array of new financial services.”
The exact size of Visa’s contribution as well as Anchorage’s private valuation were not disclosed.
Diogo Monica, Anchorage’s cofounder and president, told _Fortune_that his team has been working with Facebook on designing the technical underpinnings of the Libra cryptocurrency “since Day One, since it was basically only two people at Facebook.” Those two people were David Marcus, a Facebook executive who leads the Libra project, and Morgan Beller, a Libra co-creator who heads strategy at Colibra, a Facebook subsidiary focused on Libra, Monica said.
Monica and his Anchorage cofounder and CEO, Nathan McAuley, are longtime business partners. In March 2011, the pair started in the same week on the security team at fintech firm Square, where they built its first encrypted payment card reader. Later, in 2015, they joined Docker, a “cloud” software startup, before setting out to build Anchorage two years later.
Anchorage’s product offers an alternative to “cold storage,” a safety measure investors commonly rely on for the secure storage of their cryptocurrency holdings. Cold storage custody, as it’s called, typically involves stashing so-called private keys, the password-like strings of letters and numbers that grant ownership of cryptocurrency, in hard-to-reach, offline places, such as inside mountains or bank safety deposit boxes.
In contrast, Anchorage uses biometric-based software alongside a system of multiple approvals and human reviews to secure investors’ cryptocurrency. The advantage is, Monica says, that investors gain greater access to and control over their holdings, enabling them to freely and actively participate in cryptocurrency networks. (Investors interested in quickly taking advantage of market volatility would have an easier time trading, for instance, while others seeking to “stake” their funds, an action that can reap literal dividends for holders of certain cryptocurrencies, can more easily do so, too.)
Bart Stephens, managing partner of Blockchain Capital, who led his firm’s investment in Anchorage, said he has never been more impressed by a startup’s technology. “I found it to be the most compelling product demo I’ve seen in seven years, having reviewed 4,500 companies” he told Fortune. Blockchain Capital first signed up as an Anchorage customer, and then later became an investor.
Anchorage, which has about 35 employees, so far supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, and more than 50 other virtual currencies. Monica said he plans to use the new funding to continue adding more cryptocurrencies to the mix as well as new features, such as a cryptocurrency exchange and automated book-auditing and tax preparation tools.
Anchorage has in two funding rounds raised a total of $57 million to date, including the latest cash injection.
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Paypal and eBay have wronged me and others. Offering reward of 1- 5 Ltc Lealana coin. Paypal banned all bitcoin and others. Even physical coins. PLUS eBay forcing to list items in "classified" category. Froze all my accounts. "Bad faith"

Offering reward of 1- 5 Ltc Lealana silver funded coin. *see below. If you don’t care about his topic, please don’t waste your time reading it and please save your comments. Help from anyone here or anyone selling bitcoin type items that has been wronged by Paypal or eBay is much appreciated. Let's get David Marcus involved in tweets or whatever necessary to fix this. I saw a post from a few days ago where a reddit member was told he couldn't sell mining equip by paypal and it looks like it stirred up enough to get resolved. (also see article from wired:) Paypal and eBay have being ruining my business and the business of others eBayers. They are operating in bad faith and bad business. They appear to be targeting established sellers with goods sales volume (and perfect feedback, go figure). Paypal banned all bitcoin and other e-currencies. Even physical coins. PLUS eBay forcing to list items in "classified" category. Froze all my accounts. "Bad faith" business by both as others continue to sell as auctions and accept paypal. Have emails to prove such. It started in Oct when Ppal said they considered sellers a "money services business", and threatened to freeze my accts if not stop using ppal for sales of bitcoin, or other e-currencies. I was selling paper wallets and physical coins. I provide insured s/h and del signature. NOT digital transfers subject to disputes. They instructed me to cancel all current listings and refund sales not yet shipped. I complied, much to dismay of buyers, and wasted a bunch of time explaining to buyers and disputing neg feedback, which all got resolved positively. I appealed to paypal compliance dept and acceptible use departments on the basis these are "physical items", not digitally delivered goods" or electronic currency. The physical metal coin is just a store of the numbers which correlate to an actual digital coin/currency. A metal coin in and of itself cannot technically be a bitcoin, it's actually a collectible. I asked for permission to at least sell the physical coins. “ 12/5/13
to compliance, aup, rswebhelp, bcc: me
Hello, I need paypal's immediate assistance. BITCOIN, LITECOIN, e-CURRENCY violations.
I am complying , however MY restriced use of paypal for these items in unfair and unethical business practices if OTHERS CONTINUE TO BE ALLOWED to violate your policy with no consequences.
My account was restricted a few weeks ago and I have complied and since had it restored, I was informed you are working on the situation for prohibiting sellers who sell bitcoins, litecoins, or other e-currencies from accepting paypal as payment.
Per an email from ppal support, I was OFFICIALLY told in writing these items were not permitted and was asked to even report the items if seen on ebay.
There CURRENTLY are upwards of 1000 LISTINGS IN VIOLATION on ebay right now in related categories. MY LISTINGS WILL NOT sell as well or at all if I cannot accept paypal and others can. I just had a couple listings close with no bids that otherwise would have sold. THIS IS UNFAIR.
I will happily forward you listing numbers on ebay in violation, however a simple search for: bitcoin litecoin brings up hundreds and hundreds and I would assume paypal has compliance staff in place to easily accomplish this.
Kindly contact and limit these sellers as well. I had to cancel out and refund over 20 transactions a few weeks ago per paypal's advice due to your policies, much to the dismay of the buyers, and if this is to be enforced and is the policy, then other sellers need to be aware of this as well.
These sellers must be held to the same standards as I or any other seller is held. My credibility as a seller when stating I cannot accept paypal must also have basis and credibility, and this cannot be accomplished with other sellers having listings for the same items and accepting paypal.
You urgent assistance in this matter is much appreciated. Please reply to this and update me as to your course of action in this matter. Regards, ********* “
My biggest argument to them was that if I and others are to comply, it MUST BE A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD. The ongoing,(still to this day) hundreds of listings on eBay for both digital and physical items which accept paypal as payment is blatant BS! They keep stating they are not targeting anyone and are trying to shut everyone down, but they just don't seem to do it. They even sent me a letter encouraging me to "report" listing number violations that I see, which I stated should be their job, and not a real difficult one at that, where they only have to search "bitcoin" on eBay to find all the voilators, and then click a button to send a msg to that ppal customer. I also recommended they get with eBay and have a programmer fix the payment options prompt to not offer paypal as an option. I moved forward, without a choice, and by early Dec I had been listing my items w/o ppal as option, offering skrill, propay, and bank dep/wire, and only having minor success and many cancelled sales from buyers who didn't read the listing, (which I described in detail the situation). Paypal cost me many sales and wasted a lot of my time. I thought I was in luck when paypl compliance dept finally answered my appeal on 12-8-13, and said: "Dear ****, In regards to your previous inquiry, PayPal’s Acceptable Use Policy for money service businesses does not permit our users to operate as a e-currency exchange, currency exchange or check cashing business. However, PayPal can be used to sell currency as a collectible in which sales of collectible currency cannot reach the threshold of $1,000 USD per person, per day. For further confirmation in regards to the use of PayPal for the sale of physical, collectible coins in relation to Bitcoins, you may want to submit a detailed item description so that it may be reviewed and to confirm compliance with PayPal’s Acceptable Use Policy. Sincerely, Alex PayPal Compliance Department" I read this as collectible format was ok, and the recommendation I "may" want to submit further info as that I had wasted enough time and honestly didn't want to rock the boat. Fast fwd to Jan 2, received this email, (again) : "Dear *****,
We have reviewed your PayPal account and found that you have been involved in the sale of electronic media exchange (such as electronic money or digital currency). Per our current Acceptable Use Policy for Money Service Businesses, PayPal may not be used for currency exchange including the sale of Litecoin and any form of ecurrency. To continue using your PayPal account, we need some additional information from you. Please provide us with a signed and notarized affidavit stating that you understand and will comply with PayPal's terms and conditions." Also received call from compliance same day saying they warned me before and will freeze account. The agent was very rude and condescending and I had him reference the letter received giving permission to sell currency to a particular daily threshold, which he did not interpret the same way. I asked, much to his dismay, to speak with supervisor, which he finally complied after 3 or 4 requests, Supervisor was cordial at least and said they are working to shut everyone down, and gave me an “extended date, since it sounded like I had been thru the ringer”, of 1-17-14 to comply and send in affidavit. A few days later, eBay cancelled all my listings on 2 separate accounts and suspended my one account for 3 days. They now state, verbatim: "Jan 8, 2014, eBay eBay sent this message to ****** (cflow01). Your registered name is included to show this message came from eBay. Learn more about how to tell if an email is really from eBay. MC999 Listing policy violation alert: Digitally Delivered Goods Hello cflow01, After reviewing your eBay account, it appears that you have violated eBay's Digitally Delivered Goods policy. As a result, we've taken the following action on your account: - Violating listings have been removed. A list of removed items is available further down in this email. - We have credited all associated fees except for the final value fee for your listing(s).
Listing digitally delivered goods outside of the Classified Ad format in the Everything Else > Informational products category is not allowed.
The guidelines for digitally delivered goods help prevent feedback manipulation or artificial increases in eBay seller ratings. The guidelines also help protect members by preventing item listings that may infringe on the intellectual property rights of others.
You can list most digitally delivered goods, but only if you use the Classified Ad format and list your item in the Everything Else > Information Products category.
Here's more information on our policy:
Virtual currency such as Bitcoin, Peercoin, Litecoin, and others, can only be listed in the Classified Ad format. Additionally, PayPal prohibits the transfer of funds for transactions related to virtual currency, therefore PayPal cannot be offered as a payment method for these items.
If you have more questions, contact our policy experts:
Please be sure your future listings follow these guidelines. If they don't, they may be removed, and you may be subject to a range of other actions, including restrictions of your buying and selling privileges and suspension of your account.
Here are the listings that were removed: 291052195953 - Litecoin 5 Ltc .25 oz Physical Lealana Silver Coin (Not Bitcoin, PPC, Digital) 291052200502 - Litecoin 10 Ltc Physical Lealana .999 Silver Coin (Not Bitcoin, PPC,FTC,Digital) 291052372404 - Titan Physical Bitcoin btc high security (Not Casascius, Litecoin, Ftc) We appreciate your understanding. Thanks, eBay "
If you note, they even state you can't use paypal. If fact, in an interview with cnet on Dec 10: Mr. Marcus, paypal president states: "I really like Bitcoin. I own bitcoins." "People are confused. They think because it's called cryptocurrency it's a currency. I don't think it is a currency. It's a store of value, a distributed ledger." How can paypal and eBay say you are selling a digital currency when the very president of Paypal states it's not even a currency?
Bottom line, Paypal and eBay are in the wrong here, at least in the fact they are acting in bad faith and in bad business in targeting certain sellers and not holding everyone to the same standards. Let's get Mr. Marcus involved here. Let's hold them accountable and at least consistent in their rules. Spread the word, especially if you are one of the ones being wronged. Let's get this resolved, let's band together, let's seek legal action if need be. ( I have spoken to my friend, an attorney briefly.) *I will even give that 5 Ltc coin mentioned above to the person who helps most if we can get Paypal and eBay to see the light and allow the use of paypal or the use of standard ebay listing formats, or at least get them to guarantee in writing (and actually honor it) to make everyone follow the rules. Sorry for the long post here, but this is one of the most frustrating things I have had to deal with in a long time and they are truly hurting our credibility and ability to sell in a fair marketplace. I, like many I am sure, have a lot invested in this. Please help! Thank you in advance!
submitted by bitguy101 to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

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David Marcus (CEO of Paypal) “I really like Bitcoin. I own Bitcoins. It’s a store of value, a distributed ledger. It’s a great place to put assets, especially in places like Argentina with 40 per cent inflation, where $1 today is worth 60 cents in a year, and a government’s currency does not hold value. It’s also a good investment vehicle if you have an appetite for risk. But it won ... While Bitcoin is a store of value, Libra, like many other FIAT currencies, is a medium of exchange. David Marcus, the Co-Creator of Libra, Head of Facebook’s Blockchain team and former head of PayPal suggested the same in a tweet, he said, “Many want to pit Libra vs. Bitcoin. In my mind these two are not in the same category. BTC is a ... David Marcus, who leads the initiative for Facebook, used to be president of PayPal. Bitcoin’s been on a hot streak this month, rising about 19% in October. Still, the use case for the cryptocurrency remains limited. Data from blockchain researcher Chainalysis Inc. last year showed hardly anyone used Bitcoin for anything beyond speculation. David Marcus, PayPal President stated that the company was thinking a lot about bitcoin. David Marcus, president of EBay Inc.’s PayPal unit, talks about mobile payment security and the prospects for virtual currency bitcoin. He speaks to Guy Johnson on Bloomberg Television’s show called “The Pulse”. According to Libra board member David Marcus, mainstream banks are following the footsteps of PayPal in recognizing the potential of Bitcoin. “Turning a Corner” In his latest tweet, Libra co-creator says they are “turning a corner” as “mainstream financial services players getting on the crypto bandwagon.” Libra project was rolled out by the social giant Facebook with the support ...

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