KW 28: Volvo invests in blockchain technology firm Circulor, Signs of a new bull run, Austria wants to integrate Bitcoin across the board


Volvo invests in blockchain technology firm Circulor: Volvo Cars has made an investment in blockchain technology firm Circulor through the Volvo Cars Tech Fund, the company’s venture capital investment arm. Volvo previously used Circulor’s traceability solution to track cobalt in its batteries. Much of cobalt mining happens in Africa under questionable conditions and involves child labor. In the era where more consumers are becoming concerned with how the products they buy are produced, the ability to verify the entire supply chain may provide a competitive advantage. Volvo may also be planning to use Circulor’s solution to trace carbon emissions. The investment in Circulor by Volvo Cars allows both companies to expand their focus beyond cobalt, for example by looking at increasing traceability of mica, a mineral used as isolation material in the battery pack of electric Volvos.,

Signs of a new bull run: 61% of bitcoin’s circulating supply has remained untouched for more than a year, mirroring the conditions leading up to the last BTC bull-run. According to data compiled by crypto analytics firm Glassnode, the amount of bitcoin remaining dormant for one year or more has reached an all-time high of 61.33%. The previous high was established at 61.28% on Jan 15, 2016, when the price of BTC was still trading for $360.

Austria wants to integrate Bitcoin across the board: As early as this summer, Austrians will be able to pay using Bitcoin, Dash and other cryptocurrencies in many places in Austria. The payment service provider Salamantex wants to enable payment with different cryptocurrencies at more than 2,500 acceptance locations. The prerequisite for this is that retailers activate the payment option. The dealers themselves receive the money in euros, so they are spared from exchange rate fluctuations or the like. Salamantex believes that it is an ideal time to integrate contactless payment options into everyday retailers.

Daimler cooperates with Ocean: The Ocean Protocol is a data-sharing platform based on blockchain technology that has successfully completed a proof-of-concept with German automaker Daimler. The successful test shows how Mercedes-Benz and other automotive companies can monetize data streams across supply chains as well as internally. The test between Daimler and Ocean comes at a time when other industries have also been testing the application of blockchain to improve the supply-chain transparency and security as in the case of IBM and Norwegian seafood producers. The automotive industry has also seen a growth in interest with giants like Daimler, General Motors, and BMW, researching the use of blockchain on applications going as far as self-driving cars.

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Nexo co-founder Antoni Trenchev thinks that the Bitcoin price could continue to rise to the $50,000 mark in 2020.


Blockchain in electricity trading: Decentralization and networking are increasingly used in the energy industry. Blockchain technology holds many innovation opportunities and new business models. According to a survey by the German Energy Agency (dena) and the European School of Management and Technology (ESMT Berlin), 50% of participants in the utility market already have experience with blockchain pilot projects, or at least plan to gain experience. There are a variety of options especially in the area of ​​organization and process optimization. For example, the electricity trade between owners of photovoltaic or biogas plants and consumers could be solved with a combination of so-called “smart meters” and the blockchain. Smart meters are electricity meters that can send and receive digital data. They can also be used to measure the electricity production of decentralized systems and consumer consumption. It is conceivable that customers with increased electricity requirements could buy electricity directly from the producers via blockchain. This clearly shows that transaction technologies not only have enormous potential for new business areas, but also in areas in which processes can be further automated, offering great advantages for companies.

Sustainable fashion through blockchain: Fast fashion, i.e. cheaply produced clothing that is quickly sorted out and thrown away, has long been a thorn in the side of activists and sustainability fans. Luxury fashion brands now want to take advantage of the consumption break caused by the coronavirus and use blockchain technology to their advantage: Many consumers have long paid attention to supply chain transparency and fair production conditions for their clothing. Clothing companies can use blockchain technology to provide consumers with detailed information about the origin and delivery routes of their garments, as well as the working conditions under which they were produced. In this way, companies can create more trust among customers, bind them better and thus increase sales. Of course, this is associated with larger investments, which is why more expensive brands are relying on the technology to strengthen their ecological footprint and thus gain competitive advantages.


„For most assets you buy, the more they go up in price, the less value they have to gain, and the more risky it becomes. Bitcoin is in the unusual position of being exactly the opposite of this.“
Bill Miller, Chairman and Chief Investment Officer of Miller Value Partners, on the benefits of Bitcoin over traditional investments.


KlickOwn completes first security token offering: KlickOwn, a real estate crowdfunding platform based in Germany, has completed its first security token offering for a property. KlickOwn had listed a digital bond for a building located in Lüneburg, Germany. The digital security has raised its €1.5 million goal for a digital security that is anticipated to generate a 5% return annually. Investors could participate in the offering for as little as €10 – due, in part, to the low-cost blockchain-based securitization process.

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