😲 the big, BTC reveal?
Alleged Bitcoin founder wins trial, RBI maintains status quo, Ola raises new funding and more updates.
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Market Recap 📈
Indian benchmark indices rose for a third straight day, led by gains in FMCG, auto, and metal stocks. Meanwhile, US stock markets remained slightly higher as investor confidence grew despite Omicron variant concerns and mixed economic data.
Sensex: 58,807.13 (+0.27%) ↑
Nifty 50: 17,516.85 (+0.27%) ↑
Dow Jones: 35,754.75 (+0.099%) ↑
Nasdaq 100: 16,394.34 (+0.42%) ↑
Top Stories 📰
1. BREAKING: Bitcoin creator revealed!
…Or is he/are they?
Satoshi Nakamoto has been an elusive figure in the tech world ever since Bitcoin's creation. And there have been many attempts made to claim his identity, including this one, by Australian computer scientist Craig Wright.
On Monday, a Florida jury rejected a claim made by David Kleiman—Wright's partner who alleges writing the 2008 Bitcoin whitepaper under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto, barring him from keeping a cache of 1.1 million Bitcoin worth $54 billion. While Wright won the trial, the court ordered him to pay $100 million to W&K Info Defense Research LLC—a joint venture between Kleiman and Wright—over intellectual property infringement.
Since 2016, Wright said that he created Bitcoin and even went so far as to claim that he has Nakamoto’s secret Bitcoin keys. In 2019, he registered US copyright in the Bitcoin white paper and the code for Bitcoin, claiming that the government recognized him as Nakamoto. However, the US Copyright Office issued a statement saying that this wasn't true.
Since the verdict, several media publications claimed Wright as Nakamoto, but Coindesk said that it's a matter of "significant ambiguity" and "journalistic error." The statement claiming Wright as Bitcoin's creator was made by his attorney outside the courtroom and had nothing to do with the ruling. In fact, the jury wasn’t asked to determine whether Wright was Nakamoto. Its task was to solely determine whether Wright owed the Kleiman estate any fortune he may have made if he actually did invent Bitcoin.
Why it matters? While we know that Klieman is definitely not the creator of Bitcoin, the jury's still out on Wright. And now that Wright is tasked with paying those millions, he may have to liquidate some of those vintage tokens, so we'll see if he's the real deal. (Fun fact: the last time someone sold these vintage coins, the market had a complete meltdown that erased around $6.5 billion of the BTC market cap.)
2. RBI votes to keep key policy rates unchanged
Yesterday, RBI's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted unanimously to retain the key lending repo rate at 4% by a majority of 5-1. The decision, based on the assessment of macroeconomic factors and outlook, remained unchanged for the ninth straight policy meeting.
It also said that the rate would provide an "accommodative" stance (meaning the MPC will either lower the rate or keep it unchanged) until there was a sustained economic recovery.
The committee also maintained the reverse repo rate at 3.35% and the marginal standing facility—a rate at which RBI lends money to scheduled commercial banks—at 4.25%, both unchanged.
The announcement comes on the heels of growing Omicron variant concerns as India reports more than 12 cases. States have started imposing restrictions on travel and economic activity, anticipating that the surge would lead to a third COVID-19 wave.
Considering recent corrections, high energy and commodity prices, growing volatility in markets, and global supply chain bottlenecks, the MPC released the following predictions:
Real GDP growth estimated at 9.5% for FY22.
Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation projected at 5.3% for FY22.
Why it matters? Analysts see RBI's policy announcements as pro-growth and pro-market as low-interest rates will ensure that the nascent post-COVID recovery is resilient, not short-lived. But as the Omicron variant threat rises, they predict a possibility of a hike in reverse repo by early 2022.
Deal Street 🤑
Ola is now worth $7.3 billion
Bangalore-based mobility startup Ola has raised $139 million as part of its Series J funding round, which valued the firm at around $7.3 billion as it prepares to go public next year. Finserv giant Edelweiss led the round with Hero Enterprise, IIFL, Siddhant Partners and Tejal Mechantile acting as participants. The fundraiser is Ola’s second funding tranche in 2021, which also acquired geo-analytics firm GeoSpoc for Rs. 26 crore. In August, the company launched its first electric scooter but delayed its delivery, citing chip shortage. The SoftBank-backed startup, which raised a $500 million round from Temasek and Warburg Pincus in July, is operational in over 100 cities, has more than a million driver-partners, and has expanded its services to New Zealand, Australia, New Zealand, and the UK.
Byju's continues its acquisition spree
Indian edtech giant Byju's makes its tenth acquisition this year, purchasing Austrian math learning platform GeoGebra. While neither disclosed the deal's price, it's believed to be around $100 million. In a statement, the Bangalore-based startup said that the acquisition "complements" its overall product strategy as it plans to make math more engaging. Founded in 2013, GeoGebra has more than 100 million learners across over 195 nations. Since March 2020, Byju's valuation has skyrocketed as the pandemic led to an online learning boom. So far, the firm has spent around $2.5 billion in buying several edtech platforms, including Tynker, Great Learning, Aakash Institute, and Gradeup. It has over 100 million registered students and 6.5 million paid subscribers.
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