Category: XLM

How Stellar’s $40M Investment In Tala Will Give Millions Access To Financial Services

How Stellar’s $40M Investment In Tala Will Give Millions Access To Financial Services

The Stellar Development Foundation (SDF) has made a fresh bet on the financial services sector. According to a press release, the institution participated in a $145 million series E for Tala.
A global technology company working on providing millions of people with access to lend, borrow, and other financial services Tala reached an over $350 million funding with support from the SDF and its Enterprise Fund, Upstart, and others.
Related Reading | Stellar Network To Power New Savings API Launched By Wyre
Launch in 2020, the SDF’s Enterprise Fund provides support, in U.S. dollar or XLM, to payments companies with a cross-border approach, companies that provide financial inclusions in emerging markets, access to tokenized assets, and other criteria.
The fund was launch with the objective of investing in companies capable of bringing real world use case and contribute with the Stellar ecosystem.
Tala will use the funds to create a crypto product to attract mass adoption especially oriented to developing countries. In these countries, over 3 billion people lack options to participate in the global financial sector.
Thus, Tala will leverage cryptocurrencies, mobile technology, and data science to provide people with tools to increment their wealth and achieve economic independence.
Related Reading | Stellar To Introduce AMM Functionality, What This Means For Its Ecosystem
Denelle Dixon, CEO and Executive Director for the Stellar Development Foundation, claimed that their investment in Tala represents their confidence in the company’s potential. Dixon added:
Joining forces with Tala to improve access to financial services for millions of people in emerging markets is exactly aligned with our mission at Stellar Development Foundation. Since the Stellar network leverages interoperability with the world’s existing financial systems, Stellar and Tala technology together are a powerful tool to bridge gaps for those who have been left out.
Stellar New Partnership And A Future Of Financial Inclusion
The CEO and Founder of Tala Shivani Siroya said the following on their progress over the past years, trying to improve the traditional financial system, and their future:
This new investment will accelerate our path to becoming the primary financial account for the global underbanked and helping millions more people make progress in their financial lives. Paul Gu and Denelle Dixon are visionary leaders who share our commitment to building a financial system that works for everyone and we are thrilled to welcome them to the team.
The Co-Found and Head of Product at Upstart Paul Gu claimed that Tala has begun to solve one of the most important issues for consumers in the developing world by providing with access to financial services. Gu said:
Upstart shares Tala’s belief that technology is the key to unlock access for the underserved, and we’re excited to support them in serving the next 1 billion people entering the financial system.
As NewsBTC reported yesterday, Stellar has been making relevant developments, getting major partners such as payment giant MoneyGram, and investments in 2021. This network ecosystem seems to be growing as the year ends.
This has translated into positive performance for Stellar’s native asset XLM. Over the past 2 weeks, this cryptocurrency has been one of the best performing assets in the crypto top 25 with a 35.7% profit.
Related Reading | Stellar Development Foundation Takes Part In Abra $55 Million Series C Funding
In lower timeframes, as Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), and the rest of the cryptocurrencies in the top 10 move sideways, XLM records a 2% and 3.5% profit in the daily and weekly charts, respectively.
XLM with minor profits in the daily chart. Source: XLMUSDT Tradingview

Stellar Soars 8% Overtaking Bitcoin’s Performance, What Prompted The Boom?

Stellar Soars 8% Overtaking Bitcoin’s Performance, What Prompted The Boom?

Up 10% in the daily and 36.3% in the 2 week chart, at the time of writing, Stellar Lumens (XLM) has been one of the best performing assets in the crypto top 30 by market cap. The cryptocurrency has managed to outperform Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other major coins in the top 10.
XLM with minor profits in the 24-hour chart. Source: XLMUSDT Tradingview
Stellar technical indicators have quickly moved into the buying zone with the simple moving average (SMA) and exponential moving average (EMA) crossing the $0,32 mark.
Related Reading | Stellar Development Foundation Takes Part In Abra $55 Million Series C Funding
The Relative Strength Index (RSI) remains neutral with a 61.5 value, but the Moving Average Convergence Divergence, a metric used to measure price momentum in an asset, is flashing a buy signal.
XLM trending to the upside coincides with exponential growth in its ecosystem. As summarized by the Stellar Development Foundation (SDF), the network made significant developments in Q3, 2021.
In addition, it managed to secure important partnerships such as the one with payment giant MoneyGram. This will allow users to connect their wallets with the company’s global retail platform.
Thus, consumers will be able to leverage cash funding and payouts in USD Coin (USDC) with Stellar potential to instantly settle a transaction. In that sense, the network has expanded its main use case and its capacity to onboard millions of new users into its network.
Related Reading | Stellar Network To Power New Savings API Launched By Wyre
At the time, the CEO and Executive Director for the SDF Denelle Dixon called the partnership a demonstration of the power of blockchain technology to improve the legacy financial system. Dixon added:
Thanks to the reach of MoneyGram’s services and the speed and low cost of transactions on Stellar, a new segment of cash users will be able to convert their cash into and out of USDC, giving them access to fast and affordable digital asset services that may have previously been out of reach.
Stellar Growths To Fulfill Its Original Vision
In addition to the MoneyGram partnership, the SDF released a Whitepaper describing how Stellar was designed to facilitate the deployment of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs).
The SDF claims that the network has unique characteristics which allow it to support these assets and how a central bank can issue implement it on Stellar.
With the development of the digital Yuan and its fast progress, CBDCs are climbing the priorities of international governments. The network could support the CBDCs of the European Union, of developing countries in Africa, and others in the future.
In addition, as NewsBTC reported, the network will soon vote to implement Protocol which will grant it Automated Market Makers (AMMs) functionality. The SDF claimed:
This AMM development process to-date has been a shining example of how our entire ecosystem can work together, anchored around Stellar’s guiding open source principles, to further Stellar network development and sets a new bar on our collective collaboration.
The ecosystem has experienced other important developments and its use cases from cross-border payments to its energy efficiency to a recently announced initiative to accelerate blockchain education.
Related Reading | Stellar To Introduce AMM Functionality, What This Means For Its Ecosystem
In many sectors, XLM seems to be moving ahead of the curve and it has reflected on its price action suggesting a strong potential for a sustained rally into Q4, 2021.

Stellar Development Foundation Takes Part In Abra $55 Million Series C Funding

Stellar Development Foundation Takes Part In Abra $55 Million Series C Funding

Leading wealth management platform Abra completed a Series C funding with participation from the Stellar Development Foundation. The company raised $55 million in the round led by major players in the industry, such as IGNIA and Blockchain Capital.
The Stellar Development Foundation was one of the new investors in the company alongside Kingsway Capital and Tiga Investment. In addition, Abra received investments from Lerer Hippeau Ventures, Amex Ventures, Arbor Ventures, RRE Ventures, CMT Digital Ventures, and Kenetic Advisors.
Related Reading | An Introduction To Stellar And XLM: Mission, Control, And Consensus
Other relevant names participated in the Series C funding, according to a press release. The wealth management platform increased its total funding to more than $85 million since its creation.
The release claims that the funds will be used to expand Abra’s team into new offerings which include wealth management, trading, and payments. Thus, why the investment from the Stellar Development Foundation could have a relevant role to achieve this goal.  Bill Barhydt, founder, and CEO of Abra said the following:
Cryptocurrencies, NFTs and DeFi are now top of mind for almost all investors. The crypto asset class is growing exponentially, even outpacing the early commercial Internet itself. Our vision of crypto-centric banking is coming to life in front of our eyes, and Abra is excited to serve as a leader in the space.
Barhydt claimed to feel “proud” of the Abra team and their accomplishments. The executive expects the platform to keep scaling and growing.
Stellar And Abra’s Shared History Of Crypto Expansion
Since 2020, Abra has seen “tremendous” growth, according to the press release. The company records a ten-fold increase in revenues, and a 0 to $1 billion in assets under management (AUM) for its custody services, Abra Trade and Abra Earn.
Related Reading | Stellar Network To Power New Savings API Launched By Wyre
In the same period, the company’s 155,000 monthly users have processed $4 billion in transactions. In that sense, Bart Stephens, Managing Partner at Blockchain Capital, said the following on its latest Series C Funding:
We believe Abra is on an exciting growth trajectory, led by a strong management team with an understanding of the long-term potential for cryptocurrencies. Abra offers unmatched accessibility for every type of investor which positions the company well for capitalizing on the growth in adoption and interest in cryptocurrencies globally.
In 2020, the Stellar Development Foundation made a $5 million investment in Abra. The partners worked to expand Abra’s financial services with Stellar as a blockchain back-end and “democratize access” to them for new customers in developing countries.
Related Reading | New To Bitcoin? Learn To Trade Crypto With The NewsBTC Trading Course
At the time, the CEO of the Stellar Development Foundation Denelle Dixon said:
Abra is building a product portfolio of financial services that aligns directly with our mission to create equitable access to the global financial system. They’re committed to providing innovative investment opportunities in underserved, capital-scarce markets.
Alvaro Rodriguez Arregui, a Managing Partner of IGNIA, added:
Abra is perfectly positioned to execute on its mission to expand access to crypto assets in a safe and secure way for customers. As international investors ourselves, we recognize the need for safe and reliable access to the crypto ecosystem and are excited to support Abra.
At the time of writing, XLM trades at $0,33 with a 3.8% profit in the daily chart.
XLM with small profits in the daily chart. Source: XLMUSDT Tradingview

An Introduction To Stellar And XLM: Mission, Control, And Consensus

An Introduction To Stellar And XLM: Mission, Control, And Consensus

This project is an enigma. On the one hand, Stellar is not for profit, it doesn’t have owners or shareholders, and strives to be somewhat decentralized. On the other, Stellar is a compliance-focused protocol, and its directors often meet with shadowy organizations like the World Economic Forum. According to their website, the protocol seeks “to unlock the world’s economic potential by making money more fluid, markets more open, and people more empowered.” Fine, but, at what cost?
Related Reading | Stellar To Power VISA’s New Partnership, XLM Begins Breakout
According to the legend, Stellar is a Ripple fork. However, as you’ll see below, that’s not exactly true. Founder of the infamous Mt. Gox cryptocurrency exchange and co-founder of Ripple, Jed McCaleb, launched Stellar in 2014. Joyce Kim, a lawyer, was his partner in the venture. Stripe financed the initial operation. The native currency of the whole Stelar ecosystem is called Lumen or XLM.
Stellar’s Mission And Approach
The recently appointed CEO and Executive Director of the Stellar Development Foundation, Denelle Dixon, was recently interviewed by Securities.io. “The vision is big: Stellar and SDF hope to unlock the world’s economic potential by making money more fluid, markets more open, and people more empowered,” she told them.
On its website, Stellar justifies its existence by telling us. “The way the global financial establishment is structured today, people are born into an economy just like they’re born into a political system. Stellar is a way out: it lets people participate in a worldwide, stable, financial network regardless of where they live.”
The controversial aspect is Stellar’s approach. It’s completely opposed to the cryptocurrency ethos. The company wants to build a bridge between the traditional banking system and the cryptocurrency space, but by following the traditional banking system’s rusty rules. “The software has always been intended to enhance rather than undermine or replace the existing financial system.” 
In other words, Stellar aims to provide a platform with which all financial actors can interact without any friction. All financial actors that are properly identified and approved by the legacy system, that is. 
What Is The Stellar Consensus Protocol?
As a consensus mechanism, Stellar doesn’t use Proof-Of-Work or Proof-Of-Stake. It uses its own Stellar Consensus Protocol (SCP.) For a formal definition, let’s quote the paper that Stellar presented at the Symposium on Operating Systems Principles. How did Stellar solve the Byzantine general problem?
“With SCP, each institution specifies other institutions with which to remain in agreement; through the global interconnectedness of the financial system, the whole network then agrees on atomic transactions spanning arbitrary institutions, with no solvency or exchange-rate risk from intermediary asset issuers or market makers.”
And, what does the Stellar Consensus Protocol accomplish exactly?
“SCP lets Stellar atomically commit irreversible transactions across arbitrary participants who don’t know about or trust each other. That in turn guarantees new entrants access to the same markets as established players, makes it secure to get the best available exchange rates even from untrusted market makers, and dramatically reduces payment latency.”
For the system to function, Stellar relies on Federated Byzantine Agreements. For a description of what those do, let’s quote Bit2meAcademy:
“For the FBAs to function properly, participants must wait for the majority to reach a consensus. In this way, participants know which transactions are most relevant before starting to settle them. So when the majority of the network takes a position, the network accepts the transaction and makes it unfeasible to roll it back for an attacker.
In other words, the Stellar Consensus Protocol tends towards centralization and just ignores most of the problems that Proof-Of-Work solves. It does use significantly less energy, though.

XLM price chart for 09/04/2021 on Bitfinex | Source: XLM/USD on TradingView.com
Key Characteristics Of The Stellar Blockchain

Almost all of the Stellar validators are corporate entities of some sort. Or are maintained by the  Stellar Development Foundation. However, “anyone can install the Stellar software and join the consensus process.”
Each Stellar Lumen account must have a minimum of XLM in them. This minimum balance protects the network from spam accounts.
The Stellar Lumen’s mission is to pay for gas to conduct operations inside the Stellar ecosystem.
The Stellar ecosystem was not designed for direct payments. The idea is to provide a platform to serve as an intermediary in currency exchange.
The system “doesn’t privilege any particular currency.”
The code is open source and auditable by anyone.
“The Foundation helps maintain Stellar’s codebase, supports the technical and business communities around Stellar,” great! “And is a speaking partner to regulators and institutions,” ow.
Stellar recently signed a partnership with “crypto-asset risk management solutions” firm Elliptic. That means, “Elliptic’s monitoring, compliance, and analysis software now incorporates support for XLM, the native asset of Stellar.” Ow.
With the recent protocol 13 update, Stellar allows “fine-grained control of asset authorization.” This means the issuer of an asset can deauthorize accounts and don’t let them use the asset. This means, more control and permissions.
The Lumens had an inflation rate of 1% per year. In September 2019, Stellar removed inflation of Lumens. Also, the Stellar Development Foundation burned 55B of their Lumens. 

So, Is Stellar a Ripple Fork?
In its FAQ, Stellar goes back to its origins:
“The old Stellar network launched in July 2014. The node software (stellard) was a modified fork of the Ripple node software (rippled). The ledger was completely new and contained no history from Ripple’s network.”
Related Reading | Stellar To Introduce AMM Functionality, What This Means For Its Ecosystem
So, the software was originally based on Ripple’s, but the ledger was brand new. Nevertheless, in 2015, when they released the Stellar Consensus Protocol, they re-wrote the software from scratch. From that point onwards, Stellar doesn’t share any code with Ripple.
Featured Image by Nicole Avagliano on Unsplash – Charts by TradingView

XRP, Litecoin and Two Other Altcoins Ready To Wake Up and Launch New Rallies, According to Top Crypto Strategist

XRP, Litecoin and Two Other Altcoins Ready To Wake Up and Launch New Rallies, According to Top Crypto Strategist

Prominent crypto strategist and trader Michaël van de Poppe is keeping a close watch on XRP, Litecoin and two other altcoins that he says are close to waking up.
In a new strategy session, the analyst tells his 116,000 YouTube subscribers that XRP is poised to rally and print a new all-time high.
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