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Alibaba bans bitcoin; Overstock now accepts bitcoin and more

Laxmicoin’s launch deferred due to lack of clarity from regulatory authorities

The launch of the first Indian virtual currency, Laxmicoin, has been deferred as the founders seek clarity from regulatory authorities. The announcement came via a tweet on LAxmicoin’s Twitter page.

@NDTVProfit http://t.co/6eh6AGM0fn @Laxmicoin launch delayed due to regulatory clarifications, Hope we have clear guidelines from govt soon

— Laxmicoin (@Laxmicoin) December 29, 2013

Named after the Hindu goddess of wealth, the creators tweeted on December 24th that it was going to be launched soon. On the same day, RBI came out with its warning against risks that such digital currencies possess. Amidst that, several bitcoin operators have closed down their operations, hence the newly formed company doesn’t want to take a risk by launching before any formal guidelines are laid down.

China’s eCommerce giant Alibaba has banned Bitcoin

After Chinese search engine Baidu, now Alibaba has banned usage of bitcoin on its Taobao marketplace. Starting from January 14, it would stop its users from doing any deals in Bitcoins and other virtual currencies, and would also bar merchants from selling any Bitcoin mining software or offering any related products.

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According to the press release, this is being done in order to promote the healthy development of Taobao trading market more effectively protect the interests of members of the same. The value of bitcoin, which makes up roughly 70% of the total valuation of all virtual currencies, is going to fall, since a similar trend was observed after its ban on Baidu.

Overstock becomes the first major online retailer to accept Bitcoin

American online retailer Overstock is accepting bitcoins as a payment mode, thus becoming the first of its kind to accept this volatile currency. According to Wired, in just a week’s of striking a deal with Coinbase, the company has launched its system to accept bitcoin.

“I felt I had tipped my hand,” said Overstock’s CEO and chairman, Patrick Byrne “I didn’t want someone else to beat us.” The website is accepting Bitcoin as a payment method for all the categories, including electronics, apparel, household appliances etc. There are several other eCommerce sites which already do accept and trade in bitcoin, but this is the first time a major retailer has made such a move.

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To contact the author, write to sugandh@iamwire.com

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