Medici Ventures, a blockchain subsidiary of Overstock.com has purchased a 5.1 percent stake in Bankorus, blockchain banking platform focused on custody, lending, and exchange of assets on the blockchain.
According to the announcement made by Overstock, the stake that Medici Ventures holds will allow the company to work on the “foundation of a blockchain-based technology stack for society.”
While making the announcement, Jonathan Johnson, president of Medici Ventures said, “The addition of Bankorus to Medici Ventures’ portfolio of companies will further our work in building the foundation of a blockchain-based technology stack for society.”
Reportedly, Medici decided to purchase a stake in Bankorus because the latter has created “a revolutionary blockchain banking platform.” This, Johnson explains, is to be in line with their goal of “eliminating middlemen, democratizing capital, and rehumanizing commerce by helping individuals access and control their digital asset.” The financial details of the purchase were not disclosed.
Bankorus, founded in 2017, has offices in Europe and China. The platform allows its customers (individuals and customers) to buy, sell, store and lend virtual currency. Its mission is to unlock traditional assets held by high net worth individuals and move them to crypto.
Medici Ventures has massively invested in the cryptocurrency space over the years. At the end of 2018, the company had a 10 percent stake for $2.5 million in GrainChain, a blockchain powered agriculture project that allows parties to track the distribution process of harvests. According to reports, the purchase is aimed at helping GrainChain to expand its market share in Central and South America.
A few months earlier, Medici Ventures invested in VinX, a blockchain startup that tracks wine futures. The investment was aimed at helping the startup reduce fraudulent labelling of wines across the globe.
Patrick Byrne, Overstock’s founder, and CEO stated while commenting on the investments:
“[T]he wine industry has difficulty scaling its middlemen-heavy systems in parallel with the growing demands of an increasingly global market. VinX’s steps in tokenizing wine futures while allowing wine enthusiasts to know without a doubt that the bottles they purchase are filled with authentic wines will position the entire industry as a model of a new global economy that replaces old boys’ networks with frictionless trust through technology.”
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