Connect with us

Business

Mobile Encryption Firm Silent Circle Raises $50 Million

Published

on

Geneva-based Silent Circle, an encrypted communications company specializing in privacy-focused services and software has raised $50 million in a round of funding.

// -- Discuss and ask questions in our community on Workplace.

Silent Circle, a firm that has notably endeavored to secure mobile communications has revealed that it has raised $50 million in a Series C funding round.

Founded in 2012 out of Geneva, Switzerland, the company specializes in privacy-focused services and software, including phone applications that provide secure file sharing, messaging and calling. In 2014, a partnership with hardware manufacturer Geeksphone, resulted in the release of Silent Circle’s much-publicized Blackphone. The phone and technology were lauded for its pro-privacy approach by advocates .Last year, Geeksphone was acquired entirely by Silent Circle and launched the $800 Blackphone 2.

However, the products found muted success, primarily due to free and popular applications launched by the likes of Facebook through Whatsapp and Apple, with end-to-end encryption technology. Furthermore, TechCrunch cites court documents that reveal that the first iteration of the Blackphone failed to reach sales expectations, leaving Silent Circle no choice but to scale down its software operations and operational costs. Co-founder Jon Callas, who joined Apple recently, departed the company and so too did a number of other employees to staff cuts during cost-cutting.

// -- Become a yearly Platinum Member and save 69 USD and get access to our secret group on Workplace. Click here to change your current membership -- //

Still, Silent Circle had raised nearly $80 million in funding, before the new influx of the recent $50 million. The latest round of funding was led by Santander Bank, with the new capital used to “expand product development, customer service, business development and marketing activities while eliminating its debt.”

Silent Circle Co-founder and Chairman Mike Janke stated:

[The] announcement is a key milestone as we continue to set the bar for what’s required in secure mobile communications.

Our growth in new customers, coupled with expanding engagements with our existing enterprise and governmental clients, underscores the pressing need for our Enterprise Privacy Platform and the business-critical value proposition it embodies.

Featured image from Silent Circle.

Important: Never invest money you can't afford to lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here.



Feedback or Requests?

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Real Anti-Racist Action

    July 19, 2016 at 6:43 am

    So they could be a multi billion dollar a year company. But their future does not lay in getting government contracts, or only CEO’s of billion dollar business.
    But in regular people. People will spend the money if they know about it. Just like the silly $800 Apple phones right?
    If they will explain to me how a monthly plan will cost me about the same, or a little more then my regular phone plan, then i would make the switch, plus pay for the phone up front.
    So when they are ready, they can better explain on their site how this is competitive for the average person on the street like me. And how it will not be an outrageous price to maintain the same amount of texting and calling as I already normally do.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Business

New York-Based TokenBnk Launches Crypto Savings Account

Published

on

The blockchain ecosystem is budding with innovation. TokenBnk has added its name to the list of most interesting blockchain startups when it launched a decentralized application that functions very much like a traditional savings account.

// -- Discuss and ask questions in our community on Workplace.

Traditional Finance Meets Cryptocurrency

New York-based TokenBnk is the world’s first Ethereum-based savings account. The general idea behind TokenBnk is that you can deposit tokens into your Savings Contract (instead of a savings account) and earn rewards in the same token you hold. It operates very much like a traditional bank account, only for cryptocurrency. That’s kinda what we’re all about here at Hacked.

To illustrate how the platform works, suppose you receive 1,000 TBK as a reward and hold 500 of them in ether and 500 in OmiseGo. You will receive the same proportion of tokens back into your Savings Contract, thereby boosting your position size.

To withdraw ether from your savings account, you must pay a predetermined fee using the platform’s native TBK token. The fee is distributed as an award throughout the network via smart contract. The amount network participants receive is proportional to the percentage of the Total Network Value they represent.

// -- Become a yearly Platinum Member and save 69 USD and get access to our secret group on Workplace. Click here to change your current membership -- //

The Launch

TokenBnk emerged-by-stealth on or about Thursday, much to the surprise of the author, who has been anticipating this project for quite some time. The release was accompanied by an 11-page whitepaper and plans for a Nov. 30 token launch.

The protocol is being audited as we speak before beta testing goes live. TokenBnk will launch via mobile app some time in Q1 2018, followed by a full platform launch later in the year.

The development team behind TBK is impressive, with the main website listing 14 young men who can’t be more than 35 years old. The team hails from some of America’s most prestigious universities, such as Stanford, Princeton, Columbia, Carnegie Mellon and NYU. Private sector experience is also exemplified with stints at Amazon, AngelList and J.P. Morgan. (We’re glad the former JPM employees at TokenBnk didn’t drink from the same Kool-Aid as Jamie Dimon.)

TokenBnk CEO Shayne Coplan makes a strong case for his platform, especially for those of us keen on investing in cryptos over the long term.

“Currently, most long term holders leave their tokens in their Ethereum wallet, but why do that if you can yield automated regular returns by storing them on the blockchain as part of the TokenBnk network?” Coplan told Hacked. “The idea of holding fiat currency long term and earning no ROI is considered foolish, and it will be no different for cryptocurrencies.”

Coplan was part of the ETH presale back in 2014. With ether prices recently surging past $300, most market participants probably regret trading it right off the bat.

“In hindsight, the buy and hold strategy massively outperformed even the most successful of traders,” Coplan adds. “With the new wave of tokens arriving in the market over the next few years, hopefully TokenBnk can help token holders avoid making that same mistake.”

Ether trails only bitcoin in the race for market cap and is widely considered one of the most promising cryptos from a development point of view.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. 

Important: Never invest money you can't afford to lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here.



Feedback or Requests?

Continue Reading

Business

Blockchain, Insurance and the Crisis of Trust

Published

on

Blockchain has been described as the modern-day cure for many ailments facing industry. For insurers, the ledger technology can change the way businesses process claims, share data and prevent fraud.

// -- Discuss and ask questions in our community on Workplace.

Blockchain for Insurance

Fin-tech disruption has played an important role in reshaping the insurance industry. The internet, mobile devices and even data analytics have become indispensable to modern-day insurance providers.  What’s more, the industry full expects this disruption to intensify in coming years.

A survey of financial service providers conducted by PwC found that nearly three-quarters (74%) of insurers identified their own industry as the most likely to undergo significant change as a result of technology. That survey was conducted long before blockchain was even a thing for the average observer.

Fast forward to today, and blockchain is all the rage. Beyond the hype, the ledger technology has radically transformed our perception of record-keeping and trust. As a self-managed system, it can help insurers coordinate claims and boost efficiency without the need for an intermediary.

// -- Become a yearly Platinum Member and save 69 USD and get access to our secret group on Workplace. Click here to change your current membership -- //

Improving Trust

Most people have or at some point will interface with the insurance sector. It is here that they will likely experience the crisis of trust that have caused many to go uninsured. Recent earthquakes in California revealed that only 17% of the state’s homeowners have insurance to cover the natural disaster.

Of course, everyone in the state knows about the San Andreas fault. The choice to go uninsured is a rational one aimed at circumnavigating an industry plagued by a lack of trust. Blockchain isn’t some magic bullet that will fix this problem. But what it can and will provide is transparency.

More transparency can create a more efficient insurance sector by reducing or eliminating all together the need for manual processes. As anyone who has tried to switch healthcare providers knows, manual data entry is prone to huge risks, not to mention fear of losing personal data.  Through blockchain, personal data may be controlled by an individual, but verification is registered on the immutable ledger book.

Blockchain also provides smart contract capability, which can greatly enhance claims processing. By recording and verifying contracts on the ledger, insurers can guarantee that only valid claims are made. For consumers, it also means not having to fill out cumbersome paperwork.

Insurers are also leaning on the blockchain to detect fraud, which drains businesses out of tens of billions of dollars annually. The blockchain’s permanent record provides a decentralized repository insurers can use to verify every customer, policy and transaction. Before the blockchain, this would have required extensive cooperation between various actors.

There’s already a budding community of blockchain companies involved in the insurance industry. Together with other finance companies, they are among the biggest draws of the ICO market. According to CoinSchedule, more than 9% of the total funds raised via ICOs this year have come to finance companies.

When it comes to blockchain, insurance is another sector investors should carefully monitor. It is highly lucrative, but suffers from huge flaws that these new technologies can help fix.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Important: Never invest money you can't afford to lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here.



Feedback or Requests?

Continue Reading

Business

Gizer and Gaze Coin Join Forces to Shape eSports Future

Published

on

Global gaming network Gizer has joined forces with VR platform Gaze Coin in a bid to transform the eSports economy.  The companies are expected to boost monetization channels while providing new opportunities for virtual reality-based gaming.

// -- Discuss and ask questions in our community on Workplace.

Partnership Announced

The strategic partnership, which was just announced via Gizer’s Medium channel, appears to be centered on delivering gaming events in virtual and augmented reality. That’s a powerful concept for the rapidly growing eSports segment.

Gizer launched its crowdsale last month amid much fanfare, and has been ranked one of Hacked.com’s best ICOs of the year. The gaming network made headlines last month after it brought on blockchain heavyweight David Drake to its  advisory board. Drake is the Chairman of LDJ Capital and is regarded as an influential blockchain leader.

Gaze Coin’s ICO is coming down the pipeline for Nov. 28. It will be hosted on the Ethereum platform, with a total supply of 100 million tokens.

// -- Become a yearly Platinum Member and save 69 USD and get access to our secret group on Workplace. Click here to change your current membership -- //

Both companies appear to be synchronizing their development roadmaps to deliver games in virtual and augmented reality. Gizer plans to unveil its marketplace in early 2018. That’s around the same time Gaze Coin intends its launch the mixed-reality game Dream Channel, which debuted at the Cannes Film Festival this past May.

eSports Industry Is Booming

The eSports ecosystem is growing at a rapid rate, according to various research reports that peg it as a billion-dollar industry over the next two years. Earlier this year, Newzoo said it expects eSports revenues to reach $1.5 billion by 2020, with brand investment doubling over that period.

Clearly, the idea of creating professional leagues out of multiplayer games is gaining in popularity. Given the number of users already playing online, the need for an integrated network that connects all the dots and provides incentives has never been greater. The blockchain can greatly enhance the end user experience by creating a stable infrastructure to handle all transactions. This not only improves the platform, but ensures toxic members are kept at bay. (How many times have you played your favorite EA Sports game only to have to deal with members abusing one another and cheating? The blockchain is a potential remedy.)

Greater community involvement and more opportunity to grow the ecosystem are the other major benefits offered exclusively by the blockchain. And because this environment can be monetized, there’s huge incentive to grow and improve it over time.

In reality, eSports is just one of a myriad of industries currently being developed by the blockchain community. A total of 27 industries have been represented by the ICO universe this year alone, according to CoinSchedule. Gaming and VR token raises have been among the most lucrative, drawing in more than $120 million through the first ten months. That’s roughly 4% of the $3.25 billion in ICO funding raised this  year alone.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Important: Never invest money you can't afford to lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here.



Feedback or Requests?

Continue Reading

Trending