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eToro going public: CEO Yoni Assia reveals key details behind the move

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Over the course of 2020, eToro sized up significantly, as Assia explained: “We’ve grown more than 147% year-over-year revenues,” he noted. This year rolled in with mainstream and crypto bull markets in full swing, in tandem with “the biggest discussion we’ve seen in human history around the intersection of social media and investment platforms” — all bubbling together to form what Assia labeled as “a perfect storm.” He added:

“We’re seeing an immense interest all around the world from people who want to participate in the global markets, which was our original vision from 2017 when we started our business of opening the global markets for everyone to trade and invest in a simple and transparent way.”
Bitcoin (BTC), as well as the rest of the crypto market, posted a standout year in 2020 after quickly recovering from a significant price decline around the same time as rising COVID-19 concerns in March 2020. Mainstream markets also rallied in 2020, but Bitcoin picked up steam late in the year, breaking its 2017 record high in December before continuing significantly higher. So far, 2021 has seen a continuation of the mainstream and crypto bull markets.

On March 16, eToro announced plans for taking its operation public on the Nasdaq through a special-purpose acquisition company, or SPAC. Essentially, this is a type of merger in which a private company combines with a specific, already-public company (a SPAC company), turning public in a less direct manner than an initial public offering.

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“When your business grows faster than your expectations, it is always the right thing to do to make sure that you’re fully prepared to take the next stage of growth as a bigger company, as a public markets company,” Assia said. “We’re very excited about this next step of growth.”

Crypto exchange Coinbase plans on taking its business public through a direct listing on the Nasdaq stock exchange in April 2021. Alternatively, Diginex, a digital asset-centered entity, went public on the Nasdaq in October 2020 via a SPAC.

EToro has publicized its intent to buy and merge with a SPAC called Fintech V, Assia noted. “We will merge with that company, actually buying that company, and become the listed eToro,” he said. Formally known as Fintech Acquisition Corp V, the SPAC company currently trades on the Nasdaq under the ticker FTCV.

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“When SPACs announce business combination agreements signed, the SPACs are already trading, so retail investors have the opportunity to invest in SPACs post-announcement under the SPAC ticker,” Assia said.

Essentially, this route of going public gives interested parties the chance to indirectly invest in a private company right away after it announces its intent to go public, even though it is not technically officially listed as a stock yet, based on Assia’s explanation. The investor would buy the involved SPAC’s stock, which would eventually become the stock of the private company. Generally speaking, if a company went public through an IPO, investors would have to wait for the private company’s stock to list and then buy its stock when it lists.

Related: Catalytic event or unbridled optimism? Coinbase approaches public listing

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“During the next couple of months, as we go through the process of completing the merger agreement, we will basically become the listed company on Nasdaq,” Assia explained. Although Assia said his company did not yet have a new ticker name finalized at the time of the interview, eToro will not keep FTCV as its ticker. “We haven’t decided on it frankly,” he said. “We can’t share what we haven’t decided on it yet, like when you’re pregnant with a kid,” he explained with a laugh.

What will going public change for eToro compared to current operations? “I think for the majority of our day-to-day work will stay very much the same,” Assia said, noting customers, persistent technological advancement and products as areas on which eToro will maintain its attention. He added:

“As we conclude the deal, and we bring in the $650-million PIPE [private investment in public equity], as well as a $250-million SPAC into the company’s balance sheet at most, we’ll have a very strong balance sheet to consider potential acquisitions, a more aggressive geographical expansion — whether it’s expanding aggressively in the U.S., or in other markets.”
He concluded that going public while having a balance sheet of over $1 billion “will enable us to be even more aggressive as we think of the growth of eToro.”

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In recent months, talk of crypto companies going public has made a number of headlines. Crypto and financial asset trading platform eToro is one of the latest crypto-involved companies looking to go public. The outfit’s CEO, Yoni Assia, recently explained eToro’s rationale behind the move in an interview with Cointelegraph.

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Binance

Binance’s Trading Volume Hits $100 Billion in Just One Day

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Binance continues to see unprecedent trading activity while attempting to sail through regulatory hurdles

Binance’s daily volume hit an eye-popping $100 billion on Oct. 20, according to a tweet by CEO Changpeng Zhao.

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The leading crypto exchange recorded this crucial milestone on the day Bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency, reached a new all-time high of $67,276.

Despite introducing stricter measures for users due to severe regulatory scrutiny, Binance enjoys a comfortable lead over other crypto exchanges in both spot and derivatives trading, according to data provided by CoinMarketCap.

Eerier this month, the trading platform also announced a $1 billion ecosystem fund.         

Meanwhile, the decentralized finance sector is catching up with centralized behemoths. The total value locked in DeFi protocols has hit $100 billion for the first time.

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Crypto Exchange

Binance Smart Chain DeFi protocol PancakeHunny suffers flash loan attack

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As the users argue “what’s better,” Ethereum or Binance Smart Chain, the latter saw another decentralized protocol being exploited. PancakeHunny on BSC was attacked by a flashloan and no, this wasn’t a first for the protocol.

Blockchain security and data analytics company Peckshield Inc. announced the attack on Twitter.

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The last time that this protocol was exploited, was in June, wherein the team had noted the creation of a smart contract to exploit the Hunny Minter Smart Contract. The contract was subsequently executed 91 times, as per the team.

The team took a long time to respond to the hack this time but assured the users that their funds were safe. The team added in a preliminary report,

“On 20 October 2021, at 0920 UTC. A smart contract was created to exploit the Hunny TUSD vault. The Contract was subsequently executed 26 times.”

PeckShield provided some details about the same noting,

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According to the agency, this hack was possible due to a profit inflation bug, which converts the relatively small amount of harvested ALPACA, to a large amount of TUSD for staking. PeckShield added,

“These converted TUSDs are then counted as profit, now inflated to mint large amount of $HUNNY!”

Source: Twitter

Actions taken by the team

The PancakeHunny team has stopped the minting process for the TUSD vault while assuring that funds in Hives were all SAFE. The exploit did not affect other Hives and Vaults but the price of HUNNY.

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They added that the issue has been identified and the team will change its rooting to higher liquidity pools to prevent the aftereffects of price manipulation of LP pools.

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Coinbase

NBA Makes Coinbase Its Exclusive Crypto Partner

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Coinbase has joined FTX in scoring major partnerships in the sports industry     

The National Basketball Association has announced a multi-year deal with Coinbase, America’s biggest crypto trading platform in an Oct. 19 press release.   

Coinbase will act as the exclusive partner of the NBA, NBA G League, Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), and other leagues. 

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As part of the deal, the exchange will have a brand presence during televised games as well as unique content and activations that are meant to boost crypto awareness.  

Kate Rouch, Coinbase’s chief marketing officer, says that the company is proud of joining forces with the NBA:

The freedom to participate and benefit from the things you believe in is at the heart of Coinbase’s mission.  Nobody believes this more than NBA and WNBA fans. We’re proud to become the Leagues’ official cryptocurrency partner.

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The shares of Coinbase are up roughly 3% at press time. 

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