An Icelandic man has received a four-and-a-half-year prison sentence for stealing Bitcoin mining equipment, local English-language news outlet Iceland Monitor reported Jan. 17.Sindri Þór Stefánsson, who in April 2018 boarded a flight to Stockholm from Reykjavik reportedly with a stolen passport, was subsequently arrested in Amsterdam and returned home. Stefánsson claimed he legally fled custody to Sweden.In court, Stefánsson, along with six accomplices, received a lengthy jail term.The proceedings relate to thefts of Bitcoin mining equipment reportedly worth $2 million, and two other attempted heists that took place December 2017 and January 2018.The target was Nordic IT company Advania, to which all seven defendants will now pay compensation of 33 million Icelandic Krona (about $273,000).
Iceland’s blockchain-based identity verification platform Authenteq has raised $5 million in a funding round led by Draper Associates and Capital300, the American tech website VentureBeat reports on Jan. 14.Following the two-week funding round, the company revealed its intention to conduct the second closing of the Series A financing for additional investors in the coming weeks.The latest $5 million closing was held on Jan. 10, while the total amount raised constitutes $7 million over seven rounds since 2015, according to business data provider Crunchbase.Authenteq funding rounds and key investors. Source: CrunchbaseWithin the latest funding round, Authenteq has touted its new identity verification tool powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain technology. The service reported
Ethereum (ETH) blockchain startup and incubator ConsenSys has participated in a $2 million seed funding round for Iceland-based blockchain startup Monerium, according to a press release from the firm, published Jan. 11. The startup counts the former chairman of Iceland’s central bank among its four founders.The funding round was reportedly led by Icelandic venture capital fund Crowberry Capital, and has also seen the participation of Icelandic private investment firm Hof Holdings.Founded in 2016, Monerium is reportedly developing a solution for “bridging fiat money and blockchains,” issuing what it refers to as e-money.Former central bank chairman Jon Helgi Egilsson, alongside co-founders Gísli Kristjánsson, Hjörtur Hjartarson, and Sveinn Valfells, are spearheading a workforce of 14 people
Ethereum development studio ConsenSys has participated in a $2 million seed funding round for Iceland-based blockchain startup Monerium, the firm announced Friday. The round was led by early-stage venture capital firm Crowberry Capital and included participation from private investment firm Hof Holdings, both also based in Iceland. Founded in 2016, Monerium is a fintech startup led by, among others, Jon Helgi Egilsson, former chairman of the Central Bank of Iceland. The firm is developing a solution for transacting fiat currencies over blockchains, what it calls “e-money.” The seed funding will be used to accelerate development of its services. Monerium ultimately aims to issue “asset-backed, redeemable and regulated e-money” over blockchains once a licensed institution, saying its product
The cryptocurrency mining industry gets a lot of attention lately. Its perceived energy usage remains a topic of substantial debate. Icelandic farmers may have come up with a viable and sustainable solution in this regard. Several initiatives show how this business can be accommodated without any side effects.A Different Take on Cryptocurrency MiningThe reports condemning cryptocurrency mining and its electricity use are growing in number. A lot of experts have different views on this business model and how it affects communities and even cities. In Iceland, several Bitcoin mining firms are in operation today. All of them rely on the country’s abundance of renewable energy. At the same time, even that approach may not be entirely sustainable.To counter this problem, local farmers have come
Iceland has been a hotbed for bitcoin and other cryptocurrency miners due to its very cold climate and the availability of cheap power supply. However, 2018 has seen a shift of interest from bitcoin mining to core blockchain ventures in the country, partly due to the slump in the price of bitcoin, reported Red Herring on September 23, 2018. Move over Bitcoin, Blockchain Technology is the New Cool While 2017 was a great year for bitcoin and other cryptos, with the price of bitcoin reaching an all-time high of nearly $20,000, 2018 has been an entirely different story for the cryptocurrency markets in general, with the bears taking away a significant chunk of last year’s crypto gains. Per a Red Herring report, Advania, Iceland’s biggest data center became home to foreigners from all parts o
Iceland’s crypto industry is expected to move away from crypto mining and shift to “pure blockchain businesses.” This is according to forecasts made by a number of local industry insiders who talked to the news site Red Herring September 23.Halldór Jörgensson, chairman of Reykjavik-based Borealis Data Center, told Red Herring that demand from local crypto and blockchain facilities is “shifting more towards the pure blockchain business,” rather than focusing on Bitcoin mining.According to Jörgensson, the frenzy around Bitcoin (BTC) mining has declined to a level that is “not as crazy as it was a year ago,” when the cryptocurrency has hit its all-time price high. Despite that, the chairman has suggested that the Bitcoin mining “wave” has contributed to the faster growth of local energy and d
Following the 2018 decline in the prices of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, stakeholders in Iceland believe more resources should be employed in other aspects of the emerging cryptocurrency and blockchain technology industry.The 2017 Bitcoin Mining ManiaAt the height of Bitcoin mania in 2017 when the price was surging rapidly, miners flocked to Iceland. With its rich geothermal potential and cheap energy, the Arctic island proved a haven for Bitcoin mining companies looking to make huge profits.Thus, giants like BitFury, Genesis, etc. came into the domestic scene, outmuscling the local cryptocurrency mining enthusiasts. Such was the scale of the virtual currency mining craze that a high-profile Bitcoin mining heist even occurred at the start of 2018. In April, Dutch police apprehended ...
Iceland has seen the first registration of a cryptocurrency exchange with its regulatory body, the Financial Supervisory Authority.The island nation of Iceland may be small, but it’s becoming a major part of the cryptocurrency ecosystem. The country has seen an influx of Bitcoin miners due to the fact that practically all of Iceland’s electricity is generated by renewable energy. This means that power is cheap, and the cooler clime also lowers energy costs for the mining equipment. Another crypto chapter has started in Iceland as the country’s Financial Supervisory Authority (FME) announces the first registration of a cryptocurrency exchange.Technically Not the First Crypto ExchangeThe cryptocurrency exchange in question is Skiptimynt. The exchange features two trading pairs: Icelandic kro
People have long disparaged Bitcoin mining due to its energy consumption. An article published in Forbes back on May 30th accused Bitcoin of being one of the big reasons for the increase in global energy consumption. A Ph.D. scholar, however, has dared to challenge the conclusion of this claim.Dr. Katrina Kelly-Pitou, a Research Associate in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh, believes that the whole concept of Bitcoin’s energy consumption has been oversimplified and blown out of proportion. She specifically studies the transition towards energy systems with a lower carbon footprint that is a part of clean energy technology.She notes that every new technology that comes along is energy-intensive. However, such technology becomes more energy efficient as tim