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Tencent Holdings and SoftBank Group both dispute reports of their involvement in the pre-IPO investment round of Chinese cryptocurrency mining giant…

CoinDesk : Tencent Holdings and SoftBank Group both dispute reports of their involvement in the pre-IPO investment round of Chinese cryptocurrency mining giant Bitmain   —  Tencent Holdings and SoftBank Group are both disputing their involvement in a widely reported pre-IPO investment round for Chinese cryptocurrency mining giant Bitmain.

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Elkrem is a blockchain dev board for tinkerers

Creators of the 1Sheeld , a tool designed to connect smartphones to Arduino boards, have created something even more interesting. Their latest product, the Elkrem , is a smart kit for creating blockchain IoT devices and they have raised $250,000 from Endure Capital and Consensys to build the project. The founders are Amr Saleh and Islam Mustafa launched the 1Sheeld at TechCrunch Disrupt 2013 and sold tens of thousands of units in 120 countries. Now they’re building a new tool based entirely on blockchain. “Elkrem is a Blockchain hardware development board. It allows Blockchain developers to integrate Dapps with hardware prototypes in an easy way without having deep knowledge in hardware development, and also allows electrical engineers and hardware developers to connect Blockchain to their hardware projects without having deep knowledge of how the Blockchain works,” said Saleh. “So they both can trigger actuators through smart contracts and log sensors data to smart contracts as well.” The board is similar to an Arduino and has two processors, storage, and WiFi model. One processor runs a specialized Linux variant with interfaces to Ethereum, IPFS, Swarm, Whisper, Bitcoin, Status.im, and others. The other processor can do anything else you throw at it. “Our edge is faster development, faster prototyping and faster go to market,” said Saleh. “The board allows you to send private, decentralized IoT messages using peer-to-peer communication” What does all this mean? Basically it’s a little board that makes it far easier to manage your Blockchain efforts. It uses a library called Koyn to let you accept payments in Bitcoin with a single line of code and they even built a few cool projects including a Bitcoin-enabled candy machine and an electrical outlet that you can rent with Bitcoins. The team plans to go live on Kickstarter later this year.

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From ICO to SEC: Join us for a panel on regulation at TechCrunch Disrupt

Capital, crypto, and regulation go together like bread, peanut butter, and jelly. And what better way to make a great sandwich than to bring them all together at TechCrunch Disrupt. I’ll be leading a panel with Avichal Garg of Electric Capital, Arianna Simpson of Autonomous Partners, and Valerie Szczepanik of the SEC in San Francisco. Garg is a longtime investor and former product head at Facebook. He’s currently at Electric Capital where he’s a managing partner. Simpson is a skilled crypto investor and is currently managing director at Autonomous Partners. Szczepanik has had a long career at the SEC and was recently named Associate Director of the Division of Corporation Finance and Senior Advisor for Digital Assets and Innovation. All three of them will help us navigate the new world of investment we are no all coming to face. The future of investment is currently up in the air. With the rise of token sales, fundraising seems like a needless task for most founders. But where will they be with the token world fizzles out

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Sequoia announces a new $695M fund aimed at India and Southeast Asia, its fifth such fund since expanding to India in 2006 (Jon Russell/TechCrunch)

Jon Russell / TechCrunch : Sequoia announces a new $695M fund aimed at India and Southeast Asia, its fifth such fund since expanding to India in 2006   —  Sequoia has announced the close of its newest fund for India and Southeast Asia.  The firm has raised $695 million for this fund, which is its fifth since it expanded into India 12 years ago.

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