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India: Zebpay Refutes Reports Minister Said Bitcoin is Illegal

· March 29, 2017 · 2:30 pm

India is the scene of conflicting reports over Bitcoin’s legality following suspicious statements from the government.


Minister: Virtual Currencies Lack ‘Regulatory Approval’

On Tuesday, Minister of State for Finance Arjun Ram Meghwal said that use of virtual currencies “could subject the users to unintentional breaches of anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism laws.”

On the creation of virtual currencies, the bank spokesman added that “No regulatory approval, registration or authorization is stated to have been obtained by the entities concerned for carrying on such activities.”

Bitcoin India

While not explicitly stating that virtual currencies such as Bitcoin were therefore not legally sanctioned, reports suggested that such a message was implied.

The local Bitcoin industry was quick to dispute such conclusions. Indian exchange Zebpay published a dedicated response to the episode in which it stated its belief that Bitcoin in India “is not illegal.”

A blog post reads:

Nothing has changed regarding bitcoin’s legal status in India this week. In our opinion, bitcoin is not illegal. Bitcoin is legal under all existing laws. It’s business as usual at all Indian bitcoin exchanges, including Zebpay.

Nonetheless, a word of caution accompanied the rebuttal.

“As per media reports, inter-ministerial committee has been setup to study the legality of bitcoins. They will give a response on 20th April 2017,” an update announced.

Bad Actors Give A Bad Name

Recent illicit use of Bitcoin by scam actors was widely reported in the media, with Zebpay commenting at the time that such parties posed a persistent problem to uneducated consumers.

A forgiving perspective was also given to the minister, the exchange taking the stance that regulators were trying to “protect” the public.

“A respectable MP raised the issue that bitcoin is a Ponzi scheme. Certain sections of the media reported this as if bitcoin has been declared illegal,” it summarized.

Additionally, Bitcoin is considered a commodity and falls in the Neutral/Alegal bracket, according to information portal Coin.dance.

India’s Bitcoin ecosystem had seen a surge in usage following the country’s sudden currency reforms introduced in November last year.

Zebpay_interview_article_1_Bitcoinist

Zebpay and fellow exchanges witnessed record trading, part of a wave of Bitcoin interest, which even saw the market become the second largest on Purse.io’s Amazon discount platform behind the US.

Blockchain innovation is also active locally, with crypto investor Tim Draper in February announcing his return to the Indian market, injecting venture capital through the newly acquired Blume Ventures.

What do you think about India’s current stance on virtual currencies? Let us know in the comments below!


Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Zebpay

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Říj 23

CoinAgenda Brings Blockchain Leaders to Vegas on October 25

Source: bitcoin

CoinAgenda

CoinAgenda, a highly popular fintech and investor conference, will hit the Las Vegas Strip this week on October 25 and 26. The third-annual BitAingels Global Conference will coincide with CoinAgenda,  both events bringing the biggest names in digital currency to Vegas.

Also read: Bitcoin ATM Industry Reacts to ‘Money Mules,’ Changing Markets

Both conferences are located in the Skyview Ballrooms of the Ballys Las Vegas. On Monday, October 24, organizers will host a pre-conference with a “mini-hackathon” and cocktail party.

BitAngels, the organizers of the two conferences, organizers told press that the event is “aimed at both mainstream investors, as well as experienced investors in both digital assets and blockchain companies.

CoinAgenda and BitAngels Conference Feature Industry Leaders and Promising Startups

Keeping with that theme, the conference features well known entrepreneurs and financial analysts from the blockchain community, such as Bitcoin.com CEO Roger Ver, Airbitz CEO Paul Puey, and financial analyst Tone Vays.

CoinAgenda’s sessions will center around presentations given by these industry leaders, covering topics including: “Why Bitcoin is as Important as the Internet,” and “Bitcoin Trading (
Introductory and Advanced).”

The BitAngels Global Conference focuses on startups that build blockchain products.

Alongside its keynotes and panels, the conference will have a contest where 20 startups from the blockchain industry present their products or services. The companies will be judged by leading cryptocurrency VCs and angels, who will hand out six awards in the following categories:

  • Best seed-stage startup
  • Best developed startup
  • Best blockchain startup
  • Best pre-launch cryptocurrency
  • Best post-launch cryptocurrency
  • Best of show

Last year year, ZebPay won this competition. ZebPay is an Indian Bitcoin exchange service, available as a mobile application on Android and iOS platforms.

The event, with organizers saying that it is “designed as a high-end ‘Goldman Sachs style investor conference,” will have preferred seating at both conferences, with speakers joining attendees for all meals.

Commenting on the state of the blockchain industry leading up to this year’s event, BitAngels chairman and co-founder Michael Terpin said in a press release:

“This year has been one of incredible growth in the sector, with bitcoin prices up more than 250 percent since January and appreciation in digital assets like Ethereum and Monero up more than 1,000 percent.”

The press release also cited CoinDesk’s report, State of Bitcoin and Blockchain 2016, saying that investment in bitcoin and blockchain companies rose from $2 million in 2012 to $490 million in 2015.  

Are you attending one or both of these conferences? Let us know in the comments below.


Images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons, BitAngels.

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CoinAgenda Brings Blockchain Leaders to Vegas on October 25

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Dub 25

ZebPay Passes $15 Million in First 10 Months of India Operations

Source: bitcoin

Zebpay logo

Zebpay, India’s biggest Bitcoin company, is proud to announce that after only 10 months of operation, it has achieved over 1 billion INR (approximately $15 million USD) in turnover through its Bitcoin app available on both iPhones and Android.  They currently have over 30,000 users, with 6,000 being added every month. As the fastest growing Bitcoin Company in India, Zebpay plans to add 100,000 users by the end of 2016. With the infusion of $1 million from the series A funding round in January, and Bitcoin transaction count having increased by 81% in 2015, it’s certainly a doable task.

Also Read: Ethereum Standard DAO Framework Gains Support From Major Exchanges

Zebpay has many types of users ranging from freelancers accepting payment from overseas customers to users interested in using Bitcoin for profit or as a hedge. Bitcoin has a viable purpose for everyone and Zebpay bridges the gap for all people no matter their need.

Zebpay’s Growth Officer, Chitral Patel states:

“Our users include HNIs, tech savvy individuals, freelancers and a few corporates. They buy bitcoins as an investment with the belief that the bitcoin price will rise.”

Their success lies largely in the prime marketplace India is for Bitcoin, with over 40% of the 1.2 billion person population un-banked. Thanks to Bitcoin, Zebpay can connect to otherwise unreachable customers by forgoing the need for a physical bank structure to be constructed.  People are able to then control their own finances without the need for a bank.  Zebpay’s secure phone app allows people to securely be their own banks.  More people have cell phones than bank accounts in India.

“Bitcoin wallets could be used in remote areas without the need for brick and mortar banks. India is perfect as a society to be at the forefront of developing a vibrant cryptocurrency economy.” – Chitral Patel, Growth Officer at Zebpay

Zebpay a Bridge to Amazon For Millions

Used as a versatile Bitcoin app in India, Zebpays app has many practical uses besides exchanging Bitcoin to and from fiat, one of the many India exclusive features. Users of the app in India can also enjoy recharging their mobile airtime with Bitcoin, as well as save 10% on vouchers from companies like Amazon and Flipkart.  The vouchers allow people who would not normally be able to buy products from Amazon and Flipkart due to not having bank accounts with debit or credit cards. By opening up these services people are able to participate in the growing world economy instead of being left out by mainstream financial institutions.

A user is also able to transfer Bitcoin to other people with minimal effort.  Simple and secure right from the Zebpay app.

Zebpay in March as well released the ability for users to choose their bid and ask prices, a move seen as providing users more flexibility with how they handle their Bitcoin. The new abilities are a move to compete with other Indian Bitcoin services, such as Coinsecure, an Indian Bitcoin exchange and wallet provider, which recently received $1.2 million in Series A funding.

About Zebpay

Zebpay was founded in 2012 by Mahin Gupta, with a focus on integrating Bitcoin and blockchain technology in India. Joined by Saurabh Agrawal and Sandeep Goenka in 2014, their goal is to bring financial freedom to the billions of un-banked.  Zebpay’s Story: We have been involved in bitcoins since its early days in 2011. We started India’s first bitcoin exchange in 2012. We realize that for a new user, there is a learning curve to buy, store and use bitcoins. We are working hard to make this revolutionary technology simple so that Indians can be proud owners and users of bitcoins.

Do you use Zebpay? What do you think has led to Zebpays massive success? Let us know in the comments below!


Photo Source: Zebpay

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ZebPay Passes Million in First 10 Months of India Operations

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Zebpay Raises $1 Million to Promote Bitcoin Wallet In India

Source: bitcoin

india bitcoin, zebpay

In India, Bitcoin is believed to pose legal, operational and regulatory challenges, according to the Reserve Bank of India. More recently, though, the same bank has endorsed blockchain technology. Riding on the tide of better international understanding of Bitcoin, an Ahmedabad-based startup Bitcoin exchange and wallet known by the name of Zebpay has managed to raise $1 million in series A funding to promote bitcoin and the blockchain throughout the South East Asian region.

India’s First Bitcoin Company Raises $1 Milllion in Funding

The investments received from Arjun Handa, the chief managing director of Claris Life Sciences (Rs 3 crore), Amit Jindal, the director of Jindal Worldwide (Rs 1crore) and Nagendra Chaudhary, the director of Triangle Engineering (1 Rs crore), make up most of the funding Zebpay has gathered. According to the company, a large part of the funding will be used to further develop and innovate on the blockchain technology.

Together with this goal, another part of the funds will be spent to “promote bitcoins as a reliable currency and investment option, enlist more e-vouchers on our mobile platform with a target to expand our user base from 25,000 to around one lakh (100,000) within the next one year and ultimately become a bitcoin payment gateway,” according to Zebpay cofounder, Saurabh Aggarwal.

According to the firm’s co-founder, an even larger part of the funding will be spent on setting up a dedicated blockchain laboratory, where research on the blockchain will be carried out, and where the firm will be able to leverage the technology’s power to innovate upon the current transaction processes. With this in mind, the company is also planning to improve the methods of authentication and the authorization of financial operations.

Unfortunately, at this moment in time, bitcoin awareness in India is extremely low. However, due to India’s massive population, the country has high potential for becoming a hub for the cryptocurrency, just like China, where over 80% of daily trading takes place.

The investment follows the recent RBI bitcoin report acknowledging the importance of private blockchains, which have the possibility of improving the financial system by increasing transaction speeds. The bank also stated that due to the technology’s power to fight issues such as counterfeiting, it can also work towards positively transforming financial markets, payment systems and collateral identification processes.

Based on everything that has been outlined so far, do you think that Zebpay will manage to raise awareness by using the funds received? Will their efforts also encourage the RBI to change its mind on bitcoin? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

Source: Twitter

Images from Zebpay.

The post Zebpay Raises $1 Million to Promote Bitcoin Wallet In India appeared first on Bitcoinist.net.

Zebpay Raises Million to Promote Bitcoin Wallet In India

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