Week Ahead Industry Previews: Second Week of Jan 2024

  • This week is a crucial period for the SEC’s decision on the Bitcoin spot ETF application.
  • The UK’s “Financial Services and Markets Act 2023” will come into effect on January 8.
  • The Starknet mainnet might undergo the v0.13 update, introducing STRK token for gas payments.
  • Coinbase will delist BSV on January 9.
  • Approximately $225 million worth of APT tokens will unlock on January 12.

Key Events

This week marks a crucial period for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in deciding on the Bitcoin spot ETF application. Last week, 11 applicants, including Ark Invest, Fidelity, Bitwise, Grayscale, Hashdex, Invesco, WisdomTree, Franklin Templeton, and VanEck, submitted revised 19b-4 documents for their Bitcoin spot ETFs. It’s anticipated that SEC commissioners will vote on the 19b-4 submissions made by Bitcoin spot ETF issuers this week. Sources suggest that the SEC might approve both the 19b-4 and S-1 forms, potentially allowing ETF trading to commence as early as this week. Additionally, SEC must make decisions on Ark 21Shares Bitcoin spot ETF on January 10 and on Bitwise Bitcoin ETP Trust on January 14.

The UK’s regulated digital securities sandbox, as per the Financial Services and Markets Act 2023, goes into effect on January 8, 2024. The new regulations outline overall restrictions on operations within the sandbox and eligibility criteria for participants. The sandbox allows regulatory bodies and firms to test solutions, including distributed ledger technology and tokenized securities. This regulation was proposed by UK Chancellor Jeremy Hunt in November’s budget report. Several crypto companies have responded to these regulations; Coinbase is requiring its UK users to fill out risk assessment forms as per the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) guidelines, specifying their investor types and confirming their understanding of the high-risk nature of crypto investments.

Two cryptocurrency-related satellite launches are expected this week: BitMEX plans to send a physical Bitcoin weighing 43 grams (approximately $45,000) from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida, to the moon on January 8, 02:18 ET (15:18 Beijing time). The aim is to demonstrate the potential of Bitcoin and blockchain technology in establishing a borderless financial system beyond Earth. The tentative arrival date on the moon is February 23, 2024. Moreover, the “Doge-1” lunar mission, funded by DOGE, is scheduled to launch on January 12. The “Doge-1” mission has received approvals from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) in the United States.

Project Updates

  • Starknet Mainnet v0.13 Update:** Expected around January 10, 2024, at 19:00 (subject to governance vote approval), enabling full node upgrades. Users are advised to upgrade their full nodes to ensure consistency and lower costs, avoiding potential errors. This update introduces STRK token payments for Gas on Starknet.
  • Coinbase Delisting BSV:** On January 9, 2024, Coinbase will delist BSV. Users are required to withdraw their BSV before the specified date. Unclaimed BSV will be liquidated and converted into other supported cryptocurrencies, credited to respective accounts.

Token Issuance and Airdrops

  • The lending platform Tonka Finance has its Token Generation Event (TGE) on Uniswap, enabling trading.
  • The WGT token’s Initial DEX Offering (IDO) concludes on January 8, 2024, at 15:00.
  • The Mantle ecosystem’s DEX, Merchant Moe, initiates the MOE token airdrop on January 8, 2024.
  • DeGate enters the mainnet phase on January 9, 2024, distributing 40 million DG tokens in the Key-to-DG exchange event.
  • ZKFair’s L2 network opens Airdrop claims until January 11, 2024.
  • MixMob’s public sale of MixBot and MXM token packages is scheduled for January 12, 2024, within the Solana ecosystem.
  • Focus begins FOCUS token reservations on January 12, 2024, at 00:11.
  • Zeta Markets initiates its second season of Z-Score activities on January 10, 2024.

Upcoming Events

  • Viction Horizon Hackathon Demo Day: Scheduled from January 8th to January 9th, 2024, this hackathon’s Demo Day offers rewards exceeding $200,000, covering social, gaming, payments, stablecoins, and DeFi.
  • ETHGlobal Online Event – LFGHO: Running from January 12th to January 24th, 2024, this online event by ETHGlobal offers a platform for discussions and presentations.
  • Cycle Attraction – Exploring Bitcoin’s Ecosystem and Cryptocurrency Asset Management Before the Fourth Halving Forum: Organized by Coin100 Capital and China Finance Family Office Alliance, this closed-door forum is set to take place from January 13th to 14th, 2024, at Cyberport Arena in Hong Kong. Distinguished guests include founder of Matrixport; CEO of Bitdeer; Co-founder of Matrixport; CEO of Hashkey Group; Web3 Wallet Lead at OKX; founder of C² Ventures; COO of Matrixport; and founder of Unisat.

Token Unlocks

According to Token Unlocks data, there will be one-time unlocks for GLMR, APT, and CYBER tokens between January 8th and January 14th. Specifically, the Aptos token APT is scheduled to unlock 24.84 million tokens (approximately $225 million) on January 12th at 09:59, constituting 8.05% of the circulating supply.

Governance Voting

Horizen plans to conduct a vote on ZenIP 42207 by January 8th to transform ZEN from a privacy coin. This vote aims to completely eliminate shielded pools from the main chain, disabling shielded transactions and all related addresses’ functionalities. Before the ZEND 4.2.0 hard fork in mid-February, users will be able to move their assets out of the shielded pool.

ArbOS version 11 upgrade proposal voting will conclude on January 8th. It proposes multiple improvements to the Arbitrum chain, including support for EVM Shanghai (including the PUSH0 opcode), retryable patch programs, fixing certain precompiled contract behaviors, and adjusting default L1 pricing parameters.

NFT Minting

The Bitcoin gaming project, Bitcoin Cats, is set to launch the Bitcoin Cats Genesis NFT on January 9th at 16:00 UTC via the Bitcoin Ordinals protocol. The total supply is 10,000, with 8,500 available for sale at a price of 0.3 ETH (approximately 0.015 BTC) each. Participation tokens include ETH, 1CAT (Ethereum mainnet), and BAKE (BSC network).

The Ethereum Layer 2 network Mint’s Genesis NFT minting event for NFTs will commence at 08:00 UTC on January 10th. The final whitelist update has been completed, mainly involving refreshing the current whitelist of eligible addresses in the minting community. Users who previously met the criteria but were not listed have been included.

Silly Dragon is launching its inaugural NFT series, Silly Dragon Chibi, on January 10th. This highly limited series consists of only 50 unique 1/1 art pieces and will be offered to Solana founders, SILLY pioneers, and outstanding community members. Additionally, tasks will be provided to community members to enable them to earn NFT whitelist qualifications. The NFT series implements a burn mechanism, reducing the SILLY token supply with each NFT transaction, thereby increasing value through scarcity.