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While Sustainability Software Booms, Investors Demand Climate Data Proof

Protocol | Aisha Counts | Feb 1, 2022

which green do you see - While Sustainability Software Booms, Investors Demand Climate Data ProofShareholders have made it overwhelmingly clear that a company’s approach to sustainability can make or break its investment prospects. But it’s not enough for enterprises to say they’re sustainable — they have to prove it.

Just like the earth, the market for climate reporting software is heating up.

Driven by pressure from investors, regulators and consumers, demand is rising for software that can track and report environmental data. When it comes to betting on the messy business of wrangling environmental data from disparate sources, investors spent more than $570 million backing startups in the first six months of 2021 alone, according to a report by PwC.

Shareholders have made it overwhelmingly clear that a company’s approach to sustainability can make or break its investment prospects. But it’s not enough for enterprises to say they’re sustainable — they have to prove it. That’s why the Big Four accounting firms are already being asked to audit carbon progress in the same way they would financial results, explained Ron Beck, director of Marketing for industrial software company AspenTech. “It's not just can the government audit it — that's actually even less of the concern — it’s, can the investment community audit it?” he said.

See:  Alternative forms of capital will be key to develop sustainable economic systems

That question has sent companies scrambling for ways to collect, aggregate and report environmental data in a way that resonates with their investors.

At SAP, head of Sustainability Product Management James Sullivan said only 5% of the company’s institutional investors used to be socially responsible investors. But now, “as we looked at the latest data, we're well over 35% and that's long-term, more stable money,” he said.

The cloud giants — which fall all over themselves to demonstrate how environmentally friendly they are, despite their enormous data-center footprint — aren’t strangers to sustainability reporting. ServiceNow, Salesforce and Microsoft all have burgeoning sustainability offerings. ServiceNow added an ESG reporting function in October of last year, Salesforce offers carbon emission tracking via its net zero-as-a-service and Microsoft enables environmental reporting via its Cloud for Sustainability.

As companies look to quickly bolster their ESG reporting capabilities, dealmaking is on the rise. In June 2021, JPMorgan bought ESG startup OpenInvest, followed by Blackstone’s acquisition of sustainability software Sphera for $1.4 billion a few months later. To start off the new year, IBM acquired environmental data startup Envizi and SAP launched several new products to enhance its sustainability outcomes measurements.

The market driver for all this activity is not as much about goodwill as it is about money.

See:  Capitalism must be saved by capitalists, argue these pioneering ESG investors

BlackRock CEO Larry Fink wrote in a recent letter to CEOs that sustainable investments had already reached a whopping $4 trillion, indicating the magnitude of investor appetite for ESG-conscious assets:

“We focus on sustainability not because we're environmentalists, but because we are capitalists.”

It’s a data problem

But among the companies that want to invest in sustainability reporting, most “customers have a data problem,” said Kareem Yusuf, whose AI applications team at IBM led the acquisition of Envizi.

“How are they going to pull together this data? And I think this is the most important: in a verifiable, and automated way.”

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - While Sustainability Software Booms, Investors Demand Climate Data Proof The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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L2s are the path to mass adoption says QuickSwap founder Sameep Singhania

Cointelegraph Magazine | Elias Ahonen  | Jan 12, 202

Cointelegraph Polygon DEX quickswap - L2s are the path to mass adoption says QuickSwap founder Sameep SinghaniaAs Ethereum gas prices rise, the chain that inspired Web3 is becoming gentrified, with high transaction costs pushing less wealthy users onto competing blockchains or scaling solutions.

This means that many use cases are becoming unfeasible in the proverbial layer-one downtown, and suburban neighborhoods are being developed to allow for a cost-effective layer-two blockchain experience.

Since getting acquainted with Polygon around the time of its launch in late 2019, Sameep Singhania has been an avid supporter of projects built on the protocol. In 2021, he created QuickSwap, a decentralized exchange (DEX) serving the needs of the budding Polygon ecosystem.

A DEX for Polygon

After working on perhaps dozens of projects on Polygon from 2019 onward, Singhania “realized that to grow the Polygon ecosystem, we need a DEX.”

See:  Single largest Ethereum contract worth $33.5 billion ‘trapped’

This was because while “99% of blockchain projects have a token,” listings on popular exchanges are not easy to arrange, and many users are not willing to create an account at an obscure exchange just to trade a particular token that is not listed elsewhere. A DEX can function as the central market square of a blockchain network, giving its users access to everything they need without having to venture to another chain.

Polygon — previously called Matic Network, with MATIC remaining its ticker — is a layer-two blockchain. That means it’s a blockchain built on top of an existing chain. Whereas Lighting is an example of a layer-two, or L2, built on Bitcoin, Polygon is built upon Ethereum.

QuickSwap is Polygon’s primary DEX and functions as a heart of the network.

“Polygon is there to scale Ethereum,” Singhania says, which has its pros and cons. He further explains that while “Ethereum is the most secure solution out there,” it comes at the cost of high gas fees and relatively slow transaction times.

See:  tbDEX: Square Releases White Paper Detailing Protocol for a Decentralized Bitcoin Exchange

Onboarding the next generation

Now that Polygon is a low-cost option to L1 and has a reliable DEX, Singhania believes that the next step in scaling the layer is to improve the user experience in order to make it user-friendly for millions of people who are new to cryptocurrency. As QuickSwap is a central point of the Polygon ecosystem, much of the responsibility falls to his shoulders.

Continue to the full article --> here

 


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - L2s are the path to mass adoption says QuickSwap founder Sameep Singhania The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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How Employers and Leaders Can Help With Our Mental Health Crisis

Forbes |Jack Kelly | Jan 8, 2022

mental health issues - How Employers and Leaders Can Help With Our Mental Health CrisisFor two years we've been subjected to fear, anxiety, isolation, powerlessness which all contributed to a crisis of “collective trauma,” and being on “edge.’  It took a deadly virus outbreak to wake up employers to look after the mental health and emotional well-being of their people.

See:  How Covid has kickstarted Canadian fintech

LifeWorks’ mental health index tracks how people are faring across the world. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Nearly one-fifth of working Americans report that their working life has worsened since the start of the pandemic.
  • Seventeen percent of Americans indicate that their working life has worsened compared to before the pandemic; the mental health of this group is nearly 11 points below the national average.
  • Sixteen percent of Americans report that their personal life has worsened compared to before the pandemic; the mental health of this group is nearly 15 points below the national average.
  •  Differences in mental health scores between those with and without emergency savings have been reported since the launch of the Index in April 2020. Nearly two years later, individuals without emergency savings have a mental health score (-21.8) more than 18 points below the overall group (-3.7) and more than 20 points below those with emergency savings (0.9).
  • For the 20th consecutive month, full-time post-secondary students have the lowest mental health score (-18.8) by a significant margin

What Leadership Needs To Do Now

Change comes from the top. Fortunately, we’ve started to see C-suite executives taking action and communicating the importance of mental health and well-being, and demonstrating empathy. That helps people feel valued, understood and less isolated in their struggles.

See:  The Psychological Price of Entrepreneurship

Managers need to acknowledge that people have different situations to deal with, as everyone is on their own personal journey. Some staff members may need a lot of help—others, not so much. Everyone can benefit from some form of guidance or support.

It's not reasonable to presume managers intuitively know how to deal with these serious matters. Therefore, it's incumbent upon leadership to train the managers and teach them how to express empathy. It may make sense to bring in outside experts, especially if there is a sense that morale is dropping and the rate of employee attrition is increasing at an alarming rate.

Baby Boomers and Gen-Xers didn’t talk about mental health issues, career burnout, feeling of depression or existential crises. In the past, there was a stigma attached to these feelings. With this in mind, it takes time for people to feel comfortable admitting that they need help.

What You Can Do Right Now

We always talk about the importance of our physical health. We all agree that it's important to eat healthily, exercise and avoid excesses, such as drinking too much, smoking or indulging in illicit drugs. You need to adopt this mindset for your mental health.

See:  COVID-19: Making the case for robust digital financial infrastructure

By showing gratitude and recognizing others can help both you and the other person, it actually rewires your brain in a way that helps your own resilience. It's hard to manage the unrelenting stress and avoid burnout all by yourself.  It is restorative to have relationships. It’s also important to keep things in perspective.

Our challenge is that the virus outbreak cut us off from society. The amount of outside activities have been diminished.

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - How Employers and Leaders Can Help With Our Mental Health Crisis The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Cato: A Simple Proposal for Regulating Stablecoins

Cato Institute | Norbert Michel and Jennifer J. Schulp | Nov 5, 2021

Cato simple proposal for regulating stablecoins - Cato:  A Simple Proposal for Regulating Stablecoins

There is nothing inherently problematic about a federal regulatory framework for stablecoins, and a properly structured one would likely spur further innovation to the U.S. payments system, benefiting millions of people.

See:  Regulating financial innovation – going behind the scenes

There is nothing inherently problematic about a federal regulatory framework for stablecoins, and a properly structured one would likely spur further innovation to the U.S. payments system, benefiting millions of people. However, the Biden administration is promoting a misguided approach that will discourage innovation and keep beneficial payments innovations—and the companies that create them—out of the United States. This briefing paper proposes a better regulatory framework for the most common types of stablecoins: straightforward rules based on preventing fraud and promoting transparency.

Superior Alternative Proposal

The greatest risk for most stablecoin holders is whether the issuing entity has the reserves that it claims to have. A lack of transparency about the reserves that are used to stabilize the coin’s value prevents a holder from evaluating the issuer’s claims about stability and does little to protect holders from fraudulent misconduct.

A good regulatory framework addresses this issue by providing basic collateral requirements and requiring a baseline for transparency. While state laws generally provide protection against deceptive or unfair practices (and the state of New York did sue Tether for deceptive trading practices), dealing with up to 50 separate state laws is cumbersome and costly for both issuers and holders.   Therefore, it makes sense to have a streamlined federal regulatory framework for stablecoin issuers.

See:

Biden’s PWG report on stablecoins and the verdict is….

Hester Peirce: Lawless in Austin

This briefing paper suggests creating such a proper federal framework by requiring a stablecoin issuer to be regulated as a newly created “limited purpose investment company.” A limited purpose investment company would be subject to basic reserve requirements and mandatory disclosure of relevant information about reserve holdings. This framework would be designed to regulate the reserves that stablecoin issuers claim to hold and, therefore, the actions that issuers undertake to maintain a stable coin value.

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Download the 5 page PDF Proposal --> here


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Cato:  A Simple Proposal for Regulating Stablecoins The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Latest from BIS and a group of 7 central banks including Canada on retail CBDCs

BIS | Oct 1, 2021

CBDCs and central banks and BIS - Latest from BIS and a group of 7 central banks including Canada on retail CBDCsA group of seven central banks (Bank of Canada, Bank of England, Bank of Japan, European Central Bank, Federal Reserve, Sveriges Riksbank and Swiss National Bank), together with the Bank for International Settlements, are working together to explore central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) for the public ("general purpose" or "retail'' CBDC).

Here is a summary of progress made since publishing a report in October 2020 setting out the common foundational principles and core features of a CBDC. Alongside the executive summary, three detailed reports are also being published:

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Latest from BIS and a group of 7 central banks including Canada on retail CBDCs The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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[ Event, Oct 21, 2021]: Alberta Securities Commission Hosts their 5th Annual ASC Connect Conference

ASC | Sep 27, 2021

ASC Connect - [ Event, Oct 21, 2021]:  Alberta Securities Commission Hosts their 5th Annual ASC Connect Conference

ASC Connect includes a full morning (8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.) of informative and interactive panel discussions led by industry experts and senior ASC leaders, in a format you can enjoy from your home or office.

The Alberta Securities Commission’s fifth annual ASC Connect conference will be held virtually on Thursday, October 21, 2021.

See:  ASC and FCAA adopt new prospectus exemption to support small business capital raising

In the past year, Alberta’s capital market was not spared from the significant challenges that impacted communities world wide. Despite these challenges, our market continues to create and leverage opportunities for growth. Join senior ASC leaders and industry experts in a full morning of informative and interactive panel discussions covering the opportunities, trends, and issues affecting Alberta’s capital market in its continued economic recovery.

Register today for this FREE virtual conference and listen to industry experts discuss the critical opportunities and evolving trends affecting Alberta's capital market. This is your chance to gain new insights and perspectives from thought-provoking business leaders.

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - [ Event, Oct 21, 2021]:  Alberta Securities Commission Hosts their 5th Annual ASC Connect Conference The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Powell says The Federal Reserve is [still] evaluating whether to launch a CBDC

CNBC | Jeff Cox | Sep 22, 2021

waiting room - Powell says The Federal Reserve is [still] evaluating whether to launch a CBDC

Main Point:

  • The Fed is pushing ahead with its study into whether to implement its own digital currency and will be releasing a paper on the issue shortly, Chairman Jerome Powell said Wednesday.
  • No decision has been made on the matter yet, he added, and said the Fed does not feel pressured to do something quickly as other nations move forward with their own projects

"We think it's really important that the central bank maintain a stable currency and payments system for the public's benefit. That's one of our jobs," Powell said. He noted the "transformational innovation" in the area of digital payments and said the Fed is continuing to do work on the matter, including its own FedNow system expected to go online in 2023.

See:

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Central Bank Digital Coins (CBDCs)

Cryptoassets as National Currency? A Step Too Far

BIS Research: CBDCs beyond borders: results from a survey of central banks

Bank of America says CBDCs could ‘Replace cash completely in the (distant) future’ in Research Note

Ripple Pilots a Private Ledger for Central Banks Launching CBDCs

Canadian researchers develop CBDC digital currency proposal for Bank of Canada

 

Some concerns even have been raised that if the Fed does not act more aggressively, the dollar's position as the global reserve currency could be challenged.

Powell noted the dollar's position in the world and said the Fed is "in a good place" to make a decision on whether to implement its own digital currency. He expressed some concern about the regulatory landscape and said the Fed likely will need congressional permission should it decide to proceed.

Continue to the full article --> here


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Powell says The Federal Reserve is [still] evaluating whether to launch a CBDC The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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