May featured NYC Blockchain week, a crypto week like America itself, it’s all about scale. Thousands of people in the crypto industry made the trip to the US to be part of this very big and social week in person, we’re social creatures after all. If there’s one thing we’ve realised at KR1 since our inception three years ago, to keep us ahead as an investment company in the space, aside from nurturing any people or projects we invest in, is making sure that the KR1 team is on the ground for big crypto gatherings. Dashing around a city at all hours, meeting developers and entrepreneurs that are starting out projects or meeting friendly crypto funds that loop us in on what’s happening in Asia or Silicon Valley.

Gotham Crypto City

New York Blockchain week was all about the return of Bitcoin and the consolidation of Ethereum. Bitcoin, seemingly the darling of young Wall Street traders for this year’s edition. Ethereum, much criticised by its competitors, but still king of New York Blockchain week and on top of everyone’s mind.

There was a stack of events and meetups in this year’s NYC Blockchain week 2019 edition, and it’s the place to go if you ever wanted to meet your crypto twitter feed in person. It’s an endless parade of the Twitterati and for the crypto-obsessed, it’s a must go. For George and Janos the diary was looking close to bursting point, while Keld stayed at home with his new baby boy. As the daytime conference closed, the endless evening meetups began. They were stacked on top of each other in the calendar, ticked off one by one.

Emin Gun Sirer, Co-Founder of AVA Labs - and one of our favourite Twitter people - giving a great demo of Avalanche at a Cosmos-hosted Meetup

Dfinity, another favourite project of ours, had a great meetup and new demo during the week. Dominic and team have really solid newsflow sharing all the progress they are making as they head to mainnet launch, we wonder who will be first to launch, Polkadot or Dfinity. KR1’s money is on both of them!

One of the highlights of the week was Token Summit once again. It was great to return, having been original sponsors with KR1, at the time KRYPTONITE1 still, to the first-ever Token Summit back in 2017. The event was a jam-packed day of conversations with the very best from the token world. Perhaps most controversial was the interview with Ted Livingston, Kik CEO, who announced Kik’s intention to do an ICO publicly at the very first Token Summit ’17. This year, he spent the entire conversation with William Mougayar talking through their issues with the SEC as it seems things have not progressed well in the interim. Seems we’re in store for a showdown! Never a dull day in crypto! Fortunately, no US-based projects in our portfolio have had any issues with US authorities to date. A token is not always equal to a token, as for instance in our view Kik’s “KIN” token, we didn’t invest, is miles away in terms of token design and mechanisms than e.g. the FOAM token that is headed by Ryan in NYC.

Cosmos and Polkadot, two titans of Proof of Stake Networks & Lane, Jae, Ameen, Kevin on stage at Token Summit ‘19

Here are some great videos of the week featuring all thing that happened at Token Summit ’19. As the week ended the conversations and events seemed set to continue long past NYC Blockchain week itself.

Flowered up, Pantera drinks on the roof!

All Things KR1

Portfolio Update: Just yesterday we announced our first realised profit taking on our Cosmos ATOM investment position, we were busy selling into the ATOM price runs in May. We sold 70,079 ATOM from our investment position for an average price of $5.14 USD per token, realising $360,605 USD in proceeds. We acquired the tokens at a price of $0.10 USD per ATOM during the public Cosmos fundraiser in early 2017, see our announcement from back then here.

Cosmos Staking Yields: In addition, we continued with our staking activities that are yielding us recurring revenues on top of our investment position, as announced in our ‘Revenues from Cosmos Staking Yields’ RNS last month.

Since the last announcement, in a little under four weeks, we have generated a further 7,008 ATOM from our staking activities on the Cosmos network, which we realised at a price of $6.93 USD per ATOM, thus yielding us $48,578 USD. The Cosmos network continues to mature with the staking ratio very slowly growing.

This brings the total revenue from ATOM staking activities since the Cosmos network’s launch on 14 March 2019 to a total of over USD $122,250 for KR1. As mentioned in the announcement, we continue to hold a large majority of our initial ATOM investment position and continue to generate revenues from that.

Don’t understand what staking is? Read this brilliant ‘State of Staking’ blog from Stakefish.

Staking is that staking should not be considered as a method to purely earn interest. Staking protects coin holders from being diluted from new issuance or additional coins being added to circulation. Coin holders are able to maintain their share of the network’s power by staking early on.

We also announced that Rupert and Jeremy are stepping down as KR1 directors, see the announcement here. Some more context on the change here via Proactive Investors.

Stephen, Keld and George remain on the board, thus this change will not affect KR1’s operations. While Rupert and Jeremy were instrumental in the initial set-up of KR1 in 2016, they haven’t been involved in the sourcing of investments or the day-to-day crypto operations of the company since then. Regarding their financial markets and company structuring expertise, they’ll continue their roles as external consultants to the company.

George McDonaugh, KR1’s chief executive, said that the company was now on a “good footing” and as such the involvement of the two was not required as much as it was when the firm was first set up.

He added that Williams and Woodgate were still “very much aligned” with the company and that they would be working together going forward.

We held a progressive board meeting in our Douglas, Isle of Man office in May. Including discussing some strategy on the new dynamics with the Cosmos staking yields among many other things.

Keld, George and Stephen

As announced and also published in last week’s blog post, find last week’s Final Results 2018 blog here, we recently published our 31 December 2018 final year results. Please find them here via the exchange or the full report on our website. As many of you expected, given the long ‘crypto winter’, the results published were not as stellar as our results the year before, which was definitely reflected in the share price in December 2018.

George McDonaugh, CEO, KR1 plc, commented in the report:

We are more confident than ever that digital assets will power a new wave of technologies that are the logical next step in an increasingly digital world that all of us participate and live in and where the things we interact with conversely interact with each other autonomously. This future digital world should be based on the premises of trustlessness, independent verifiability, the laws of mathematics and decentralisation where no single point of failure occurs. Our job at KR1, on behalf of our shareholders, has always been to capture some of those networks on which the digital world will be built upon and we look forward with great optimism to the future of this emerging technology.

What else is going on in Crypto?

Ethereum’s Devcon 5 was announced during NYC Blockchain week at Ethereal. This year Vitalik & co will be heading to Osaka, Japan on October 8–11. Devcon returning to Asia!

Nexus Mutual is one of our investments that went live on the mainnet recently. You can participate and contribute ETH to Nexus’ contracts here if you like.

Nexus Mutual Dashboard

Nexus Mutual has been generally well received by the community, and is starting to get some traction as a much-needed service for cover for smart contracts.

Nexus features a hybrid approach between on-chain blockchain DAO and legal entity.

It also had some decent coverage in the Staking Review newsletter:

Another even more intriguing example of staking is Nexus Mutual, who just launched their smart contract insurance on Ethereum. In this example, token holders stake to signal their confidence in particular smart contracts. Those that stake receive a share of the premiums of insurance cover buyers, but their stake is also used as collateral in case the smart contract they staked on is hacked. An interface to interact with Nexus Mutual is live and can be found here.

After acquiring Chainspace, there is much talk about a new Facebook ‘Global Coin’, a crypto for the unbanked, that can be used with friends but also with merchants. A crazy rumour is that FB will be charging 10 million for the ‘privilege’ to run a node! Bitcoin or almost all other real cryptocurrencies are completely permissionless, thus ‘charge’ zero, this might say it all! Well Zuck, you can already create your own branded-stablecoin with one of our projects OST.

“Whaaa! OST is doing this already?”

More KR1!

George was on discussing the Crypto market situation with his crystal ball, the video below:

… and commenting on Crypto Coins News on the Bitcoin bottom:

Keld contributed to Fintech Finance on the future of Proof of Stake networks, and how PoS will change crypto, read below:

Crypto Compare Digital Asset Summit: In June our friends from Crypto Compare are hosting a great summit in London with confirmed speakers like Andreas Antonopoulos, we’re very excited to have Andreas back in town! George will be on a panel.

Cosmos Interchain Conversations & HackAtom Berlin: We will be at the first all things Cosmos developer conference and hackathon in Berlin featuring the whole Cosmos team and many people from the ecosystem, woohoo! How could we miss this?

Web3 Summit: In August we’ll be representing KR1 at the Web3 Summit, hosted by the Web3 Foundation featuring Polkadot, Cosmos, Tezos, Ethereum, Filecoin/IPFS and lots of other exciting technologies. Ed Snowden is even confirmed as a speaker, exciting!

KR1 is Europe’s leading digital asset investment company supporting early-stage decentralised and open source blockchain projects. Founded in 2016, KR1 has been a notable first investor in many key projects that will power the decentralised assets, platforms and protocols that form the emerging Web3 infrastructure.

In the spirit of the open and decentralised movement, any individual or institution can buy publicly listed KR1 shares through the London-based NEX stock exchange.

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KR1 plc is Europe's leading publicly listed investment company focused on blockchain and decentralised technologies (KR1:AQSE). KR1 was founded in March 2016.