Unveiling new partnerships at the International Tech Summit in Bermuda – NEAR Protocol

Unveiling new partnerships at the International Tech Summit in Bermuda

May 3, 2024

The NEAR Foundation announced a slew of partnerships and developments at this year’s International Tech Summit in Bermuda, organized by Penrose Partners.

The new collaborations will leverage Bermuda’s unique crypto-friendly regulatory environment to accelerate the integration of digital assets into global markets. They’ll also enhance NEAR’s role in advancing blockchain applications across sectors. From NFTs to insurance, here’s the full rundown.

NEAR Foundation and Penrose: A strategic alliance at the Tech Summit

As the presenting partner of the International Tech Summit, the NEAR Foundation cemented a significant relationship with Penrose Partners, a leading international digital asset advisory firm. It’s part of NEAR’s strategic effort to tap into Bermuda’s thriving crypto scene, supported by progressive regulations under the island’s Digital Asset Business Act.

During the summit, NEAR Foundation’s executive team and leaders from the institutional business segment were active participants, supporting various digital payment activations and Bermuda’s first-ever NFT art gallery. This engagement highlights NEAR’s commitment to exploring substantial business opportunities in Bermuda, particularly within its vast insurance sector, and strengthening its ties with local government and regulatory bodies.

Nayms and NEAR: Innovating on-chain insurance

NEAR Foundation announced a partnership with Nayms that marks a pioneering step toward revolutionizing the insurance industry through blockchain technology. Nayms, a regulated marketplace for on-chain insurance, aligns with NEAR Foundation to develop innovative web3 products linked to insurance pools.

NEAR Foundation and Nayms aim to address the challenges of pricing and securing insurance for blockchain ventures, crucial to the legitimacy and growth of digital assets. As not only a leader in the regulation of digital assets but a massive global hub for insurance and reinsurance, Bermuda represents fertile ground for the collaboration.

The partners are setting out to transform traditional insurance models by enabling novel ways to underwrite risks associated with NEAR-based companies. The goal is to disrupt a multi-trillion-dollar market and offer institutional investors the chance to engage with new, attractive risk-adjusted investment opportunities in the field of on-chain insurance.

Mountain Protocol and NEAR Foundation: Expanding digital dollar use

The partnership between NEAR Foundation and Mountain Protocol introduces the integration of Mountain’s USDM, a leading yield-bearing stablecoin, onto the NEAR protocol. This collaboration is set to transform how local businesses in Bermuda manage their treasuries by leveraging the stability and efficiency of digital dollars.

This strategic alliance enhances Bermuda’s capacity to utilize digital dollars, like USDM, within its extensive insurance and reinsurance programs. It taps into a $150 billion stablecoin market, reflecting Bermuda’s advanced digital asset regulation and its thriving financial ecosystem.

Additionally, NEAR Foundation will explore the potential of USDM in everyday applications, notably in partnership with HITCH, Bermuda’s leading transportation app. It’s about demonstrating how stablecoins can streamline transactions, reduce costs for drivers and riders, and showcase the practical benefits of blockchain technology in daily consumer interactions.

Expanding digital transactions with HITCH and NEAR

As mentioned, NEAR Foundation also announced a partnership with HITCH to further embed digital assets into everyday transactions. The goal is to reimagine how local businesses and consumers handle transactions by adopting US digital dollars—USDC and USDM—within HITCH’s payment systems.

This initiative is expected to enhance cash management for businesses and streamline payment processes, offering greater efficiency and cost savings. By reducing transaction fees, HITCH can reinvest these gains into the local economy or offer enhanced rewards to drivers and riders.

Beyond improving ride-sharing transactions, the collaboration is set to broaden the use of digital dollars in Bermuda. HITCH plans to enable payments for government services like vehicle licensing and payroll taxes through its app, demonstrating the broad potential of digital currencies to simplify and secure routine financial activities.

Following the NEAR Foundation partnerships with Mountain Protocol and HITCH, the International Tech Summit also featured a significant venture into the world of digital art, powered by Mintbase. This event marked the debut of Bermuda’s first NFT art exhibition, curated by local art consultancy Mazar-Fox Art Consulting. 

Aptly named “Redefining the Boundaries Between Art and Technology” and set in the iconic cruise passenger terminal at Hamilton’s Pier Six, the exhibition featured a mix of international and Bermudian artists, as well as educational workshops on NFTs conducted by Mintbase to deepen attendees’ knowledge and engagement.

These sessions included practical onboarding for attendees that enabled them to create and interact with digital art firsthand. Special edition NFTs were also offered as exclusive rewards for those who purchased limited edition merchandise, further integrating the digital art experience into the summit’s framework and enhancing the interactive nature of the gallery.

Closing thoughts: Bermuda as a nexus of digital innovation

The International Tech Summit highlighted Bermuda’s pivotal role as a hub for digital asset regulation and innovation—and it set the stage for significant advancements in blockchain applications.

The partnerships announced between NEAR Foundation and key players like Penrose, Nayms, Mountain Protocol, HITCH, and Mintbase are important steps toward integrating digital assets and the open web into everyday business and consumer practices.

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