Article by Forbes: Joresa Blount
In 2018, Asia was one of the leading regions in terms of growth of blockchain jobs, cryptocurrency usage, innovation, and general openness. Despite some early woes with China banning ICOs, China still produces nearly 70% of crypto mining activity.
For users and entrepreneurs, the Asian ecosystem is in general a friendly one. For example, in Singapore Bitcoin is taxed as a good rather than a currency, setting a 7% flat tax for trades or purchases using Bitcoin. In Japan, messenger giant, LINE, was just granted a crypto exchange license from the Japanese financial regulator. In Korea, news just broke that the country’s largest entertainment company would be launching its own token.
Besides the name brand companies that are exploring crypto solutions, there are hundreds of innovative startups and founders looking to radically disrupt their respective industries with blockchain technology. This list contains ten innovative blockchain startups based in Asia worth watching, including exchanges, fintech startups, and more.
Level01 is the world’s first broker less derivatives exchange in collaboration with Thomson Reuters. Through using blockchain technology, the platform eliminates middlemen while providing a decentralized trading experience. Users can trade derivatives and options in forex, cryptocurrencies, commodities, stocks and indices, all from the Level01 platform and app.
Level01 does this by using Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) for transparent and automated trade settlement on the blockchain, with their unique Artificial Intelligence (AI) analytics called Fairsense that provides fair value pricing dynamically to counterparties in a trade, based on current and retrospective market data from Thomson Reuters. The platform and app are currently undergoing stringent beta testing by 50 experienced traders.
2. Galaxy Pool
Galaxy Pool, also known as GPO, is a brand-new asset issuance style on blockchain that utilizes intelligent contracts for initial digital asset issuance. In general, GPO assets can be best described as mining machines used to explore various kinds of digital assets that can obtain value-added benefits of GPO through the repurchase and destruction of pond profits.
With this brand-new asset issuance style on blockchain, more humanistic investment opportunities with free withdrawal rights can be provided to investors.
Headquartered in Singapore, BiKi.com is a global cryptocurrency exchange ranked Top 20 on CoinMarketCap. BiKi.com provides a digital assets platform for trading more than 150 cryptocurrencies and 220 trading pairs. Since its official opening in August 2018, BiKi.com is considered one of the fastest-growing cryptocurrency exchanges in the world with an accumulated 1.5 million registered users, 130,000 daily active users, over 2000 community partners and 200,000 community members in under a year.
BiKi’s competitive advantages include helping projects with marketing, influencers, brand awareness, and community growth in the Chinese markets and abroad. With a global approach, BiKi also helps Chinese companies go global and international companies penetrate Chinese markets.
With a global team of over 100 people, Whitebit is a professional digital asset trading platform that services most major Asian markets via a European license. The exchange holds 95% of user funds in cold wallets and offers users an intuitive user interface with real-time orderbooks, charting and technical analysis tools, and automation features. Whitebit’s major competitive advantage is processing speeds of up to 10,000 trades every second and 1,000,000 TCP connections.
Whitebit has also announced the release of S.M.A.R.T. Box, a program that allows users to budget and allocate funds based on unique plans with varying durations and interest rates. Next is the launch of margin trading in Q4 2020, as well as mobile iOS and Android apps and an eventual US license.
5. Opu Labs
Opu Labs is creating the self-care business model of the future starting with the skincare space. There are over 1.2 billion online skincare consumers with a $3 billion digital services business. Opu Labs helps make the decision-making process easier by offering free advice powered by AI, rewarding users for their purchase data using blockchain technology, and using robust technologies to connect brands and consumers.
Under the leadership of CEO Marc Bookman, Opu Labs was named in the top 25 healthcare solutions by CIO Applications and won the start-up GrandSlam in Singapore. To date, $2m in rewards have been earned on the platform and the company will be releasing their long-awaited apps soon.
Thanks to his vast expertise, experience, and sense of the market, Nikolay Udianskyi created a high-quality crypto exchange called Coinsbit.io. Now leading the Asian crypto market, Coinsbit was named the best 2018 crypto exchange at Asian Blockchain Life 2019.
Coinsbit is planning to further distinguish itself from the competition through a series of novel functions. Among its plans is a P2P microfinancing lending service that will enable users to borrow and lend money on the platform. Coinsbit will ensure privacy for all users and will not require borrowers to show their credit history. An additional planned feature is an invest box service, which will reward users who deposit cryptocurrency by paying them interest on various coins.
7. GST Coin
GST is a comprehensive digital application platform which integrates encrypted payment currency, blockchain and artificial intelligence technology. It is dedicated to providing the most valuable intelligent digital asset service for every user and creating a new GST digital public chain in a diversified market structure. GST project is committed to using the most advanced technology to create the most perfect user experience, and it has always been in the forefront of the market in the decentralized security sharing architecture.
GST was born out of MHC Asset Management Corporation, a high-tech enterprise engaged in R&D and innovation of blockchain technology. Their executive team includes CEO Ms. Zhang Qun and other leading technologists and entrepreneurs in China.
Columbu (CAT) is a global community-based open-source blockchain project that has been active since 2017. Under CTO David Su, CAT’s main focus is building a high-performance DAPP development platform and community encouraging and autonomous system based on software and hardware combined GCloud Everest computing platform. This is the world’s first public blockchain (distributed cloud) using CUDA and blockchain technology.
The project will allow for a worldwide distributed and free economic collaborative network of intelligent economies. This will happen through a community incentive mechanism and autonomous system to build in real-time. The project has an ambitious roadmap that will include growing its global developer community and other projects within their ecosystem.
Registered in Singapore, KBC is the powering token of a global financial infrastructure and range of products focused around gold. These products include an innovative Voice-over-Blockchain smartphone called IMpulse K1, a crypto payment merchant processor called K-Merchant, and a cryptocurrency exchange and trading platform. Together these products and entities combine to form the Gold Imperium, the company’s financial ecosystem.
The company has attracted heavy interest from users who have seen the benefits of having both gold and cryptocurrency exposure, as well as the ease of use of being able to use each day to day through tokens such as KBC. As both markets expand, keep an eye on KBC.
TEXCENT is a Singaporean blockchain and fintech startup focused on fully-integrated solutions for remittance, payments, and microfinancing. Using blockchain technology, the company wants to provide seamless and convenient digital financial services solutions to Asia and the world. TEXCENT is currently focusing on the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand as these markets will grow exponentially in the next 5 years.
Their current products include PAYCENT, an app and hybrid wallet, as well as TEXCENT, a remittance solution with zero fees. TEXCENT has already acquired a remittance license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and is in the process of getting similar licenses for UK, Malaysia and Hong Kong in the coming months. The company is also a member of the Singapore Fintech Association.