Crypto Africa Roundup: African Investors Bullish on Blockchain, RhinoCoin to Protect Species

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‘Rhino Coin’ Aims To Play a Pivotal Role in Species Protection

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In a country that holds 80% of the world’s rhinoceros population, and where 1,000 are poached each year (since 2013), many South Africans are understandably concerned about rhino conservation. And some enterprising Saffers launched a cryptocurrency specifically to aid in the conservation of one of the proudest symbols of Africa.

Called the ‘Rhino Coin’ and trading as ‘RNC’, and the brainchild of founders Alexander Wilcocks and Jacques du Randt, the coin aims to give value to legal rhino horn on a 1 coin to 1 gram (of rhino horn) basis, thereby allowing conservationists to unlock value from a stored asset that currently does not have a legal market value. There is an ongoing debate between two opposing camps: pro-traders and anti-traders, and pro-traders believe that the large stockpiles of rhino horn (mostly acquired through natural mortality) should be sold which in turn will provide income for conservation whilst hopefully putting an end to illegal trade and poaching.

The value of rhino horn on the international market is approximately $125 per gram whereas a Rhino Coin is just a fraction of the cost. Investors who purchase Rhino Coin on a 1:1 basis (against 1 gram of stored rhino horn) not only inject much needed capital into conservation in the short term, but in the event that global trade (which has been illegal since 1977) becomes legal, could reap significant returns by selling the horn internationally. Until then, since domestic trade is legal, and subject to the investor having the necessary permits, they can redeem their coins if they wish.

Most investors, however, will be secure in the knowledge that they are contributing to conserving one of the world’s most majestic animals whilst looking for solid returns through trading Rhino Coin on Cornu Exchange.

Blockchain Technology In Africa Increases Investors’ Confidence Levels

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UWIN (Unleashing the Wealth in Nations) recently released research that suggests that investors in Africa are increasingly positive as a result of increasing technological advances, most notably blockchain.

Selected key findings according to a BlockTribune report include:

· 42% of investors expect levels of corruption in Africa to fall compared to only 24% who anticipate it will increase

· 46% of professional investors expect Africa to enjoy some of the strongest economic growth of anywhere in the world over the next few years

· 54% of professional investors say Africa will attract more foreign direct investment because the continent will become more appealing to investors because there will be greater stability in the region, followed by 44% who said its young and fast-growing workforce give it an advantage over many developed countries that have the opposite.

· Between now and 2023, 42% of investors expect levels of corruption in Africa to fall compared to only 24% who anticipate it will increase

· Lack of infrastructure is seen as biggest obstacle holding back Africa – highlighted by 82% of professional investors interviewed.This is followed by a lack of robust regulation (78% of investors) and political risk (80% of investors). However, there is a strong feeling amongst investors that many of these issues are beginning to be addressed.

· Much of the investment into Africa is also expected to go on improving the infrastructure of the region – 80% of investors expect the use of Project Finance in Africa to increase over the next five years, and 88% believe the amount spent on infrastructure overall will increase.

· 64% of professional investors expect foreign direct investment into Africa to increase over the next five years’

· 46% believe Africa will enjoy some of the strongest economic growth of anywhere in the world

· Biggest obstacles to Africa reaching its potential are a lack of infrastructure, corruption and poor regulation.

SA Insurers Should ‘Consider Sub-Limiting Bitcoin Claims in the Same Way They Sub-Limit Money Claims’, Says Norton Rose Fulbright

Patrick Bracher, a director of global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright, recently warned South African insurers to consider sub-limiting Bitcoin claims in the same way that they sub-limit money claims.

Sub-limiting is a limitation in an insurance policy on the amount of coverage available to cover a specific type of loss. A sub-limit is part of, rather than an addition to, the limit that would otherwise apply to the loss.

This was after a court in Ohio in the US “found that Bitcoin is covered ‘property’ under a homeowner’s policy and not ‘money’ and therefore the claim for lost Bitcoin was not limited by the money sub-limit”, according to Bracher

As a result, the policyholder successfully claimed $16,000 for stolen Bitcoin whereas the ‘money’ sub-limit was just $2,000.

Bracher maintains that how this will be treated in South Africa depends ultimately on how Bitcoin is seen by the authorities in relation to South African currency. But in the meantime insurers should consider protecting themselves by sub-limiting Bitcoin in addition to money.

Getting to Know Africa’s Blockchain Movers and Shakers

Ian Bessarabia the Head of South African Operations for ConsenSys, an international company that focuses on building blockchain applications on the Ethereum platform. A passionate advocate of blockchain and a celebrated international speaker, Ian brings a wealth of experience to ConsenSys, and is ‘commited to building new transactional infrastructure based on trust mechanisms with guaranteed execution’.

Prior to joining ConsenSys, Ian was Market Development Lead at Thomson Reuters, and in the role Ian focused on laying the groundwork for customers to efficiently implement enabling technology platforms, manage real-time workflows, increasing customer experience and profitability.

Before this, Ian was Business Development Manager for SWIFT, and spent 12 years at RMB Asset Management.

With his vast experience paired with an innate curiosity, Ian is poised to make an enormous difference bringing blockchain solutions to a continent often criticized for inadequate structures and processes.