Authors: Beosin Donny, Eaton, Dorit
Around 1920, Hemingway lived in Paris as a journalist, and “A Moveable Feast” recorded his daily life at that time.
However, the writing of this book took place nearly forty years later. In other words, the “scene” of the feast had long disappeared. Both the author and the readers were only chasing after those past years in their memories. But whether it’s the author or the readers, these memories have become blurred and distorted in the lens of time.
All memories related to Paris are mixed into a common historical memory of Paris. In this semi-realistic and semi-fictional work, the customs and scenes of the Paris literary circle in the 1920s unfold gradually. Those figures who once dominated the literary and art world are vividly depicted with a few strokes, forever blending with this city and this book.
And now, a hundred years later, Paris is embarking on a brand-new feast—the Web3 crypto feast.
Ethereum Community Conference (EthCC), a moveable crypto feast
Recently, the liveliest event in Paris is undoubtedly the Ethereum Community Conference (EthCC), which will be held from July 17th to 20th in Paris, France.
EthCC is organized by the non-profit organization Ethereum France, and it has been held in Paris since 2018, aiming to provide more communication opportunities for startups and investors.
At the 2020 conference, the founder and chairman of Ethereum France, Jerome de Tychey, said, “In the next decade, our goal is to continue revitalizing the industry and establishing meaningful connections within the community. One thing we want to emphasize is that we welcome the global French-speaking community to join the Ethereum ecosystem.”
This year’s EthCC will be held from July 17th to 20th. Since last month, tickets for EthCC have been in high demand, and the conference has been extended from three days to four days compared to last year. It is the most anticipated event for Ethereum developers and the entire cryptocurrency community after EDCON Montenegro this year.
In Paris, another event worth noting is the DeFi Security Summit, which will be held on July 15th. Following the successful first DeFi Security Summit held in Stanford, the second summit will meet with everyone in Paris, France.
During the two-day event, participants will listen to world-leading DeFi security researchers, auditors, and hackers talk about their special ways of working. As a global leading blockchain security company, Beosin will certainly not miss this opportunity to acquire the latest industry trends, and Beosin’s security experts have also arrived on-site to communicate with everyone.
In the past year, there have been numerous new DeFi hacks. According to Beosin’s semi-annual security report, the loss amount in just the first half of this year reached a staggering $600 million. Preventing and resolving these attacks is not only crucial for protecting existing users, but also important for the overall development of the DeFi market. We look forward to the DeFi Security Summit bringing more inspiration and innovation to the current global DeFi market.
DeFi Security Summit on-site
Paris, with its fashionable label, will merge perfectly with the Web3 world?
In a March report, Vogue Business mentioned how Paris has become the best fusion ground for the fashion industry and the Web3 world. Just a few days before the opening of Paris Fashion Week in March this year, the NFT industry conference, NFT LianGuairis, still attracted a global audience to discuss the future of fashion. The juxtaposition of NFT LianGuairis and Paris Fashion Week implies the city’s ability to attract the fusion of Web3 and fashion. Paris has established a unique position in bridging the gap between the luxury fashion industry and the technology industry, providing early interpretations of industry sentiment even in the bear market of cryptocurrency.
At the NFT LianGuairis conference, venture capital firm A16Z hosted a dinner for industry leaders in luxury brands, NFTs, and investments. Executives from companies such as Balmain, Shopify, and Chanel attended alongside Web3 founders like Rtfkt’s LianGuaigotto and Leanne Elliott-Young.
Fashion brands that have frequently favored virtual art forms in recent years were still the focus of the conference. For example, Balmain collaborated with SLianGuaice Runners to launch the latest Phygital sports shoe NFT series. Meanwhile, RTFKT, a crypto fashion brand owned by Nike, announced a capsule collection with cryptocurrency hardware wallet manufacturer Ledger, including custom white Ledger Nano S Plus and Nano X, both of which will be sold virtually and can be exchanged for physical items.
The hot hosting of many exhibitions demonstrates the support of Paris and its government for the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry. In fact, Paris has attracted many well-known cryptocurrency companies and organizations, such as ConsenSys and Ledger. With the continuous development of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology, we have reason to believe that Paris will continue to play an important role in this field.
Web3 crypto institutions “grown” in Paris
After conducting research, Beosin found that Paris is very friendly to the crypto ecosystem, emphasizing innovation, and has attracted several top Web3 companies to establish their headquarters in Paris:
1. Ledger hardware wallet
In 2014, Ledger started with manufacturing hardware wallets, launching the Ledger Nano series and the Ledger Live app, which provides services such as buying, selling, transferring, and lending for users. In 2021, Ledger completed a Series C financing of $385 million, with a valuation of $1.4 billion, and additionally raised $108 million for its Series C financing this year, with participation from institutions such as 10T, Cathay Innovation, and DCG.
Flowdesk was founded in 2020 and is registered with the French Financial Markets Authority (AMF) and the Prudential Supervisory and Resolution Authority (ACPR). It mainly provides market-making services for cryptocurrency exchanges and DeFi projects, and has already served over 85 exchanges. In addition, Flowdesk also offers digital asset management, brokerage, and custody services. In 2022, Flowdesk completed a $30 million Series A financing round, with participation from institutions and angel investors such as Coinbase, Ledger, Eurazeo, Aglaé Ventures, ISAI, Speedinvest, and Fabric.vc.
Kaiko was founded in 2014 and provides market data, portfolio solutions, interest rates and indices, pricing services, DeFi data, and research on digital assets, covering over 95% of global trading volume, for institutional companies, DeFi, and Web3 enterprises. Its clients and partners include Deutsche Boerse, ICE Global Network, Messari, and LianGuaixos. In 2021, Kaiko completed a $24 million Series A financing round, led by Anthemis and Underscore. In June 2022, Kaiko completed a $53 million Series B financing round, led by Eight Roads, with participation from French venture capital firms Revaia, Alven, Point Nine, Anthemis, and Underscore.
ACINQ was founded in 2014 and specializes in Eclair Lightning Network deployment and mobile wallet applications, developing lightning network payment API services for merchants. In 2015, ACINQ started researching the Bitcoin Lightning Network and in 2017, it implemented its own lightning network protocol, Eclair, and launched a corresponding lightning network wallet. In 2019, ACINQ completed an $8 million Series A financing round, with lead investment from Idinvest LianGuairtners and participation from venture capital firms Serena and Bpifrance, the French national investment bank. ACINQ subsequently launched its second-generation lightning network self-hosted wallet, Phoenix, to make it easier for users to make payments using the lightning network.
In addition to the above-mentioned companies, there are also Web3 project teams in Paris, such as Morpho Labs, Aleph.im, Pianity, and LianGuairaSwap.
Regulatory Policies and Future in Paris
A cryptocurrency-friendly city can be defined as a city that actively creates a legal framework for the flourishing development of cryptocurrencies, while enhancing consumer confidence and reducing fraud risks. Although many countries are racing to better adapt to the rapidly evolving decentralized financial world, France has been an early leader.
In April 2019, the French National Assembly passed a law called LianGuaiCTE (Action Plan for Business Growth and Transformation) aimed at boosting the French economy. This law includes a chapter on digital assets, establishing a legal framework for cryptocurrency service providers and initial token offerings. The key points of this framework include:
1. The French Financial Markets Authority (AMF) exercises regulatory oversight of crypto assets.
2. If the issuer of an ICO project meets certain conditions, they can apply to the AMF for issuance approval.
3. Regulated issuers, trading platforms, custodians, and investors of cryptocurrencies must pay taxes on the profits they obtain from cryptocurrencies.
4. There are two types of funds that can invest in digital assets: professional cryptocurrency investment funds and professional private equity investment funds.
Clearer regulatory policies provide a legal basis, which will help the thriving cryptocurrency industry and economic employment in France. The introduction of this regulatory framework demonstrates the French government’s relatively open attitude towards the blockchain and cryptocurrency industry.
In May of this year, the European Union issued the Markets in Crypto-assets Regulation (MiCA) and published it in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) on June 9th. This will create a unified virtual asset market covering 500 million consumers and 27 EU member states. After an 18-month transition period, MiCA will officially take effect on December 30, 2024.
MiCA is part of the European Union’s Digital Finance Strategy, which will unify the following rules of EU member states: transparency and disclosure requirements for the issuance and trading access of digital assets; authorization and supervision of cryptocurrency service providers and issuers; operation, organization, and governance rules for asset-referenced tokens, electronic money tokens, and other cryptocurrency service providers; consumer protection rules for cryptocurrencies; measures to prevent market abuse and ensure the integrity of the cryptocurrency market. In general, MiCA primarily regulates:
(1) Various types of cryptocurrencies, including e-money tokens, asset-referenced tokens, and other tokens; (2) Various types of cryptocurrency services and service providers, including wallet custody services, deposit and withdrawal services, exchange services, asset management services, investment advisory services, etc.
As one of the few countries in Europe to regulate cryptocurrencies before the EU’s MiCA regulation, France has stated that it will provide a fast track for cryptocurrency companies registered in France to comply with stricter MiCA rules, including stricter governance, consumer protection, and financial stability rules. According to MiCA regulations, companies already registered in France will have an additional 18 months to comply with stricter MiCA rules.
While actively promoting the development of virtual asset business, France has always insisted on strict regulation of related activities to ensure the safety of consumers and the market.
Recently, the Paris Prosecutor’s Office confirmed that Binance’s French subsidiary is under investigation by local authorities for allegedly providing “illegal” digital asset services and engaging in “serious money laundering activities”. However, Binance’s founder and CEO, Changpeng Zhao (CZ), stated on Twitter: “In France, sudden on-site visits to regulated companies are commonplace. Binance France is fully cooperating with the investigation. Binance is not the only cryptocurrency company undergoing inspection. This has also happened to other well-known cryptocurrency companies in Paris.”
Apparently, although the French government supports investment and trading in cryptocurrencies, the regulation of the virtual asset market is still very strict.
Among countless fictional or non-fictional works about Paris in history, “The Moveable Feast” is one of the most famous. The dedication on its title page – “If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast” has become a “cultural calling card” of Paris and is widely known.
Now, as cryptocurrency becomes a new “label” of Paris, what kind of transformation and innovation will this city undergo? Let’s wait and see.