IOV Labs, the parent company of Bitcoin smart contract platform RSK, has announced the acquisition of Taringa. As a result, the Hispanic social media network’s 30 million users and 1,000+ active communities will be exposed to dapps, tokenization and P2P trading. Crypto companies acquiring traditional businesses, before introducing tokenized features, is now a growing trend.
RSK to Roll Out Tokenized Services to 30 Million Latin American Users
Taringa is a Spanish language social network that feels like a cross between Reddit and Facebook. It’s particularly popular in Argentina, Spain, Colombia, Chile, Peru and the U.S. Spanish-speaking community, and is the second most popular social network in Argentina after Facebook. It is now the property of IOV Labs, best known for creating RSK. Given that senior RSK team members hail from Argentina, and are looking for ways to increase the utility of their RIF token, the move makes a lot of sense.
RSK’s smart contracting solution is anchored to the the Bitcoin network, creating a secure environment in which to deploy decentralized applications. The company has recently been striving to establish itself as a leading smart contract solution for defi projects. The acquisition of Taringa will serve as a testbed for the sort of applications RSK envisions being created by third parties. There are plans to integrate a P2P token exchange into Taringa, create a decentralized marketplace for applications, and introduce incentivization for content sharing, in a move reminiscent of Steemit.
Taringa Welcomes RSK Into the Fold
Announcing the news, Taringa CEO Matías Botbol said: “We are already building our first tool to allow Taringa users to get rewarded by being active participants in their communities. Once this is in place, we envision adding more features … our ultimate goal is to create a new open, decentralized Internet that respects individual’s freedom of speech and privacy.”
IOV Labs CEO Diego Gutierrez Zaldivar said: “This acquisition puts us at the forefront of adoption in distributed ledger technologies. Having access to such a large community will also be invaluable for gathering quick feedback from users of all the RIF-powered tools and protocols we are launching in the near future. We see Taringa as the first step towards massive adoption of both RSK and RIF platforms, and a great step forward for our long term vision of empowering individuals through decentralization.”
The deal seems like a good one for both parties, giving RSK a platform for showcasing its smart contract and blockchain capabilities, while revitalizing a tired Taringa. The social network is known for welcoming crypto assets: in 2015 it paid $76,000 in BTC to its users, allocating a total of 195 bitcoins to content creators.
Crypto M&As of Traditional Companies Ramps Up
IOV Labs’ acquisition of Taringa bears obvious parallels with Tron purchasing Bittorrent in a reported $126M deal and tokenizing the file-sharing network. The price IOV Labs paid for Taringa has not been disclosed but will be significantly lower the Bittorrent. Last year, Coinbase paid a similar price as Tron when it purchased Earn.com and integrated cryptocurrency, enabling users to earn modest amounts of crypto for completing tasks. In Japan, meanwhile, messaging app LINE is attempting a similar strategy to Taringa by adding crypto features to its smartphone application. Through a deal with fraud-proof payment processor Simplex (which is also integrated with Bitcoin.com to enable BTC and BCH purchases), LINE users can now buy crypto using credit card in-app.
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