Twitter, Square Stock 20% Price Surge Boosts Bitcoin Lightning Network

Twitter stock (TWTR) appreciated by close to 20%, while Square (SQ) hit local highs of $81.65, almost 10% up on last week and nearly 25% since Jan. 1. The former recently revealed that it had turned its first quarterly revenues in excess of $1 billion.

Perhaps the two most prominent supporters of Bitcoin’s (BTC) Lightning Network have seen their share prices rocket this week as the technology gains fresh recognition.

Data covering the share prices of Twitter and sister company Square, the payment gateway which directly supports Bitcoin, shows both companies sealed major gains in recent days.

Cash flows towards BTC, Lightning

“2020 is now officially an investment year, and in return, investors should expect Square to exit 2020 at an improved growth rate”, investment media outlet Investor’s Business Daily quoted a JPMorgan analyst as saying on Thursday.

Square share price (year-to-date)

Both companies share the same CEO, Jack Dorsey, a figure who has become synonymous with the growth and increasing popularity of the Lightning Network.

Lightning is a so-called “layer 2” technology for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It is designed to make payments instant and practically free for the user via transactions that are made off-chain.

Dorsey has remained committed to introducing the technology to both Twitter and Square. Last month, Square gained a patent dedicated to real-time crypto-to-fiat currency swaps.

Square interest keeps climbing

He has also invested directly in Lightning Labs, the company developing the Lightning protocol and related products. Earlier in February, the firm confirmed it had raised $10 million in a Series A funding round.

“If you think of the Visa network as this payment layer for, say, when people are transacting with dollars, Lightning is doing that for Bitcoin”, CEO Elizabeth Stark told Yahoo! Finance on Feb. 5.

Even prior to Lightning-based events, Square garnered considerable praise for adding Bitcoin to its Cash App wallet, which currently has an estimated $15 million users. According to data from Google Trends, overall interest in “Cash App” has also steadily increased over recent months and years, driving attention towards both BTC and Lightning.

Google search interest in “Cash App.”

The number of Bitcoin buyers using the Cash App doubled in Q3 2019 alone, statistics showed at the time.

Currently, the Bitcoin Lightning Network is made up of over 13,000 nodes and 36,000 channels with almost $8.5 million in locked-up BTC, according to monitoring resource 1ml.com.

Australian Government Eyes Business Benefits in New National Blockchain Roadmap

The Australian government recently unveiled plans to ramp up innovation through blockchain technology with an updated national roadmap, released Feb. 7.The Ministry for Industry, Science, Energy and Resources has formulated a new national strategy aimed to capture the potential value generated via business-related blockchain activity, with a particular focus on supporting global supply chain management systems and tracking.

The 52-page roadmap focuses on three main areas including «regulation and standards,» «skills, capability and innovation» and «international investment and collaboration.»

The plan comes as a revision to March 2019’s blockchain objectives, which intended to prioritize blockchain standards related to terminology, governance, security and identity.

Australia’s interest and investment in blockchain as a decentralized, peer-to-peer solution have been gaining ground, with the tech’s promise to deliver significant cost-saving across a number of industries including finance, energy and manufacturing.

Gartner, as cited in the new roadmap, predicts that blockchain will generate a global annual business value of over US$175 billion by 2025 and in excess of US$3 trillion by 2030.

As reported by The Sydney Morning Herald last Friday, Karen Andrews, Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, said the potential for blockchain to strengthen export opportunities was “exciting”, with its ability to help Australian producers track their goods and services across the global supply chain.

Within finance, the focus will be on identity checks as part of know-your-customer procedure, while within education the plan eyes «trusted credentials and facilitating trusted information about an individual’s skills and capabilities.»

The roadmap was developed in collaboration with industry experts, universities and government which formed an Advisory Committee that comprised representatives from each of those three sectors.

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