Week Ahead Industry Previews: Fourth Week of Feb 2024

  • The deadline for virtual asset trading platforms in Hong Kong to submit license applications is February 29, 2024.
  • The Hong Kong government is set to announce a new budget on February 28, 2024, with considerations for the ICO mechanism.
  • The DYDX token, associated with dydx, will unlock 33.33 million tokens on March 1, valued at approximately $100 million.
  • The Snapshot vote for “Activating Uniswap Protocol Governance” will commence on March 1. ETH Denver 2024 will conclude on March 3.

Important Events

This week, Hong Kong is approaching a crucial deadline for virtual asset trading platforms. The deadline for virtual asset trading platforms in Hong Kong to submit license applications is February 29, 2024. According to new regulations in Hong Kong, existing virtual asset trading platforms must submit license applications online between June 1, 2023, and February 29, 2024, to qualify for the licensed arrangement under the Anti-Money Laundering Ordinance. The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) of Hong Kong has stated that virtual asset trading platforms operating in Hong Kong must submit license applications to the SFC by February 29, and those that fail to do so will have to cease operations in Hong Kong by May 31.

While strengthening regulations on virtual asset trading platforms, the Hong Kong government is actively exploring other regulatory frameworks and development paths in the digital asset field. On February 28, 2024, the Hong Kong government will announce a new budget. Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po has conducted consultations on the budget with professionals in the financial services sector to gather opinions. The official website of the Hong Kong Institute of Securities and Futures has released opinions on the 2024-25 budget, suggesting the consideration of introducing an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) mechanism.

Project Updates

  • NFT market Magic Eden is set to launch an Ethereum NFT marketplace on February 27. The first Ethereum Launchpad project on this marketplace will be Okay Dogs in collaboration with Okay. The Ethereum NFT marketplace will be supported by the market protocol Payment Processor developed by Limit Break to reduce Gas fees by at least 6%.
  • Cosmos community user @Cryptocito on X platform announced that the Cosmos Hub fork, AtomOne (or GovGen), will launch its mainnet on February 27.
  • NFTScan Labs and MintCore jointly introduce Mint, an Ethereum Layer2 network for NFTs, which will release its testnet on February 28. The first batch of 30 partners will also be revealed.
  • Web3 game development platform Immutable will undergo an upgrade for Immutable X on February 28, with network functions restricted from 7:00 to 8:00 Beijing time.
  • Arbitrum’s ecological game Layer3 solution, XAI Staking v1, is set to go live this week, with v2 scheduled for launch in March.
  • Asset management protocol Black Panther announces the distribution of POINT rewards to users staking INJ at its validation nodes on March 1. The first snapshot of stakers has been taken, and the second snapshot is scheduled for February 29.
  • The Burndrop plan for Mint Cash, a stablecoin project on Terra, is set to launch on February 29. The Burndrop plan will distribute a basket of tokens, including oppaMINT (OPtion Per Annum MINT), a special call option token allowing holders to mint new bMINT at a high discount rate (50%+), with specific rates to be announced closer to the release date. ANC, the governance token for Anchor Sail, is also part of the distribution.

Upcoming Events

This week, various activities of ETH Denver 2024 are in full swing, divided into three parts. BUIDLWeek takes place from February 23 to February 28, with the main events scheduled from February 29 to March 3, and MTN Retreat occurring from March 4 to March 7.

Solana Foundation, infrastructure company Helius, and Web3 education platform HackQuest are jointly hosting the 2024 Solana Founder Training Camp, which commenced on February 26 and will run until March 9. The program includes seven workshops and office hours covering various aspects such as technology, financing, and ecosystem support. Mentors for the camp include members of the Solana Foundation and founders of top projects in the Solana ecosystem, such as Abhay, CEO of the Helium Foundation, Mert, co-founder and CEO of Helius, and Tristan, co-founder of Backpack and MadLads. In this edition of the training camp, 20 projects will be selected from the Chinese-speaking region, and the chosen projects will have the opportunity to receive guidance for participation in the Solana Global Hackathon and apply for support from the Solana Foundation Grant.

The CoinList Winter 2024 “CoinList Seed” application deadline is February 29, 2024. CoinList will collaborate with early crypto risk fund Lattice and receive support from crypto institutions including Solana, Optimism, zkSync, Privy, and Alchemy. This initiative is focused on early-stage cryptocurrency projects with the aim of accelerating project visibility and user acquisition, rather than acting as an incubator, fundraising platform, or token launchpad.

Token Unlock

According to Token Unlocks data, this week will see a significant one-time unlocking of tokens for DYDX, OP, PRIME, and others, including:

  • Echelon Prime token PRIME will unlock 1.66 million tokens, valued at approximately $20 million, on February 29 at 8:00.
  • Optimism token OP will unlock 24.16 million tokens, valued at approximately $84 million, on February 29 at 12:00.
  • Manta Network token MANTA will unlock 1.87 million tokens, valued at approximately $5.5 million, on March 1 at 7:59.
  • ZetaChain token ZETA will unlock 5.29 million tokens, valued at approximately $11.6 million, on March 1 at 8:00.
  • dydx token DYDX will unlock 33.33 million tokens, valued at approximately $100 million, on March 1.
  • Acala token ACA will unlock 27.43 million tokens, valued at approximately $3 million, on March 1 at 15:00.

Governance Voting

Uniswap’s Snapshot vote on “Activating Uniswap Protocol Governance” will be released on March 1. This upgrade aims to allocate protocol fees to UNI holders who have staked and delegated their tokens. The announcement of this upgrade had a notable impact on the UNI token price, causing it to surge over 78% on February 23.

Offchain Labs has proposed the “ArbOS 20 ‘Atlas'” AIP (Arbitrum Improvement Proposal), which will conclude its vote on March 2 at 7:28. The AIP suggests various improvements to Arbitrum, including the ability to release batch L2 transactions in Blob format on Ethereum at a lower cost using EIP-4844, support for most changes included in the Ethereum Dencun upgrade, and two improvements for batch deployment on Arbitrum One and Nova.