2021-03-19 03:25:00

cryptocurrency auction: Cashing in on bitcoins: French government to pocket $30 mn from first-ever cryptocurrency auction

Paris, March 17, 2021 -Governments might look askance at bitcoin, but it does not mean they do not want to cash in on its soaring value and France is set to pocket nearly $30 million from its first-ever action of the cryptocurrency, a minister said on Wednesday.

The sale was of more than 600 coins seized as part of an investigation and were valued at more than $30 million based on current market prices.

Held online by the Kapandji Morhange auction house, the sale attracted nearly 1,600 bidders.

“It’s a sale that will raise 24 million euros ($29 million) in proceeds for the government”, the minister of public finances, Olivier Dussopt, told the television channel, BFM Business, at the end of the auction.

When preparations got underway in September, bitcoin was trading around $10,000, far from the $60,000 it struck over the weekend, putting the sale of 611 coins in an altogether different league.

When bidding began at 9:00 am (0800 GMT), the starting price stood at 23,250 euros per coin, but most of the coins sold for around 40,000 euros apiece, more or less in line with the current market price minus exchange rate rates and commission.

Although bitcoin has often been accused of being a speculative asset and a means for criminals to move and launder money, the cryptocurrency has seen its value soar in recent months as more mainstream companies like Tesla and hedge fund BlackRock get behind it.

No information has been disclosed about the provenance of the bitcoins as the legal process is underway.

If the defendant wins, they’ll receive the funds from the auction minus commissions paid to the auction house.

Otherwise, the French state will pocket any money not awarded by the court to victims or charity.

France is far from the first to auction cryptocurrencies, with the United States doing so in 2014, followed by Canada, Australia, Belgium and Britain, according to the auction house.

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Investing In Wealth & Health

Entrepreneurs are a high-risk group whenever the markets catch a cold. Here’s how they invested to keep themselves, and their companies, in the pink of health.

Jyotsna Uttamchandani, Executive Director, Syska Group

“If I had to stress about investing in something this year, it would be health. A gym, at this point, is accessible to us on our smartphones. We can always do group exercise classes online or even group challenges for steps with our friends. From a business point of view, investing in AI solutions to drive productivity will be a year-round focus. It will prioritise product sales, optimise our pricing, and provide seamless forecasting.”

Gautam Das, CEO, Oorjan Cleantech

“I have participated in almost 50 marathons, including an 87-km comrade run. Spending time outdoors — running, doing yoga or meditation, swimming or playing a sport — is how I invest in my mental and physical well-being. Good health is the biggest wealth. I believe in financial investments in new ventures that create value and jobs. Success and money are the by-products.”

Dhruvil Sanghvi, CEO, LogiNext

“In 2021, I am going to double down on efforts to maintain good health by regular exercise and meditat ion. For our employees too, we are envisaging more ways for people to invest in their mind and body. As for wealth, I actively help upcoming technology entrepreneurs with mentorship and angel investments. I’ll be expanding horizons here to build more pathbreaking global companies from India.”

Ameera Shah, MD, Metropolis Healthcare

“Life is all about tradeoffs. Keep a mental and emotional balance and deal with your anxiety in a positive way. Regular exercise and spending quality time nurturing myself and my family are some of my priorities. On wealth, for those investing in markets, it is better to be diversified and to stay liquid. For entrepreneurs, there needs to be a strong back-up plan. Wealth-creation is a process, but solving customer problems and impacting lives positively is the true purpose.”

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