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The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the web:

POTUS’ payments

A New York Times profile of President Joe Biden mentioned he has sent his grandchildren money on Venmo, prompting another media company to find Biden’s private social connections.

BuzzFeed News reports it used the app’s search tools and public friends feature to find a dozen Biden family members. It also produced a social web including the first family, senior White House officials and all of their Venmo contacts. The actual transactions were not public.

BuzzFeed added this information was quickly removed when it contacted the White House for comment. A Venmo spokesperson told PaymentsSource users have the ability to make transactions private and determine their own privacy setting in the app.

U.S. President Joe Biden mentioned his Venmo use in an interview, prompting a separate news organization to attempt to piece together his Venmo network.


Pound for pound

The U.K. has accelerated work on a central bank digital currency, with Bank of England Deputy Governor Jon Conliffe saying it may be necessary to ensure the general public can access the financial system as traditional cash usage declines.

Coinliffe made his statement at a speech last week, reports Finextra, adding the growth of countries considering a CBDC, including the EU, makes a “Britcoin” a necessary and inevitable part of the future.

Given the age of the U.K.’s currency system, there are extra structural complications in building a CBDC that can co-exist with traditional money.

Climate club

Cryptocurrency mining firm Argo Blockchain and cryptocurrency technology company DMG Blockchain Solutions are partnering with the Crypto Climate Accord to promote the decarbonization of the cryptocurrency industry.

The two companies will work on projects that reduce the energy required for cryptocurrency mining and increase transparency into energy use, estimating bitcoin miners use about 0.5% of all global power.

The CCA’s goal is to reach net-zero emissions for crypto electricity consumption by 2030, and build tools and standards to reach 100% renewably-powered blockchains by 2025.

Power drain

Another cryptocurrency mining operation, Greenidge Generation Holdings, plans to counter its emissions with carbon offset purchases.

Greenidge uses natural gas to power its mining, which has drawn criticism in its upstate New York region, reports Coindesk.

The company will create a portfolio of greenhouse gas reduction projects for investment and will also invest part of its mining profits in green energy products in New York.

From the web

Indonesia’s Gojek, Tokopedia merge to create tech giant
REUTERS | Monday, May 17, 2021
Indonesian ride-hailing and payments firm Gojek and e-commerce leader Tokopedia have agreed to a merger to create a multi-billion dollar tech company called GoTo in the country’s largest-ever deal.

India’s Moglix valued at $1 billion in $120 million fundraise
TECHCRUNCH | Monday, May 17, 2021
Moglix, an industrial business-to-business marketplace in India, said on Monday it has raised $120 million in a new financing round at $1 billion valuation, becoming the 13th firm from the world’s second largest market to attain the unicorn status this year.

JD Logistics, China’s answer to Amazon’s logistics ambitions, to raise $3.4B in IPO
TECHCRUNCH | Monday, May 17, 2021
After operating in the red for 14 years,’s logistics subsidiary is getting ready for an initial public offering in Hong Kong. JD Logistics will price its share between HK$39.36 and HK$43.36 apiece, which could see the firm raise up to about HK$26.4 billion or $3.4 billion, according to its new filing.

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