Singapore's central bank funds blockchain-based project; former Skype COO joins board; 36 French startups team up to create Fintech association; Citigroup develops 3 blockchains and more top stories for July 3.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore Funds Blockchain Project

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), the city-state's central bank and financial regulator, has funded a blockchain-based record-keeping project as part of a five-year $225m investment plan aimed at financial technology, reported CoinDesk.

Speaking at the Global Technology Law Conference in Singapore, MAS' managing director Ravi Menon, said:

"The potential benefits of such a distributed ledger system include: faster and more efficient processing; lower cost of operation; and greater resilience against system failure."

Former COO of Skype Joins Board

Michael Jackson, former COO of Skype, has joined the board of Jackson will "focus on being a source of counsel as the company solves many of the same scaling, growth, and regulatory challenged we faced in the past," he wrote in a blog post.

"I am happy to have been allowed to join, and I look forward to both learning and helping them to be the organization that brings the power of the block chain to millions of people. If we can fulfill even a tenth of its potential, then Blockchain will embrace a great future."

Coinfloor Launches Exchange-Based P2P Bitcoin Marketplace

UK-based Coinfloor has announced the launch of the world's first broker based bitcoin marketplace.

Coinfloor CEO Mark Lamb, said in a release:

"Our founding members are key to the success of Coinfloor Market. Just as the NYSE was committed to a decentralised network of brokers backed by a centralised exchange, Coinfloor is the first institution in the Bitcoin industry to mirror this proven model."

Backpage Forced into Cryptocurrency-Only Business

Classified advertising website Backpage, has just had its payment processing terminated by both Visa and Mastercard, following termination by American Express last year.

According to media reports:

"Cook County Sheriff's Police say they have made more than 800 arrests since 2009 connected to Backpage adult service ads. Fifty of the arrests were for sex trafficking, involuntary servitude or promoting prostitution."

Backpage Forced into Cryptocurrency-Only Business

36 French Startups Team up to Launch Fintech Association

36 startups and corporate leaders have banded together to create the France Fintech association, an initiative that has received full backing of government financial regulators.

Axelle Lemaire, France’s minister of state for digital affairs said:

"The challenges facing the financial industry are those which affect our whole economy. To turn that industry into a key player in the digital revolution requires simplicity, trust and strong support for start-ups and French innovation. The government also wishes to ensure that the sector is structured. That is the reasoning behind the creation of the France FinTech association, which I applaud."

36 French Startups Team up to Launch Fintech Association

Citi Develops 3 Blockchains with Own 'Citicoin' Token

Banking giant Citigroup, has developed 3 blockchains and a test cryptocurrency dubbed 'Citicoin' to run across them. The bank wants to make sure it is "at the leading edge of [distributed ledger technology]" so it can "exploit the opportunities within it."

According to Ken Moore, head of Citi Innovation Labs:

"We also have an equivalent to bitcoin up and running, again within the labs, so we can mine what we call a 'Citicoin', for want of a better term. It's in the labs, but it's to make sure we are at the leading edge of this technology and that we can exploit the opportunities within it."

Citi Develops 3 Blockchains with Own 'Citicoin' Token

Tibdit Raises £122,000 for Bitcoin Tipping Platform

Bitcoin micropayments startup Tibdit has raised £122,080 in seed capital through a crowdfunding campaign. As a result of the raise, 161 investors will receive 15.03% equity in the company, reported CoinDesk.

Tibdit co-founder Justin Maxwell, said:

"Micropayments made via Tibdit are inherently very 'democratic', providing an opportunity for everyone whether they are the online equivalent of buskers [or] mainstream content providers."

Jon Matonis Explains US$4.6M Loss in 2014

Bitcoin Foundation's founding director Jon Matonis, provided an Ask Me Anything (AMA) to ZapChain last week, where he explained the US$4.6 million loss in 2014.

Matonis said:

"A lot of the funds that did not go towards funding core development actually went towards sponsoring annual conferences for the Bitcoin Community at near breakeven budgets."