China’s top cryptocurrency exchange Huobi announced that it will support Ether staking ahead of the launch of the next network’s version.
According to a Nov. 30 announcement, Huobi announced that it will launch a one-click Ether (ETH) staking feature for its users. The announcement explains that the users will be able to change their Ether into Beacon Ether (BETH) and receive staking rewards for securing the new blockchain:
“With this function, you can pledge ETH as BETH with one click and participate in ETH 2.0 proof-of-stake mining. Huobi Global will open BETH’s transaction at any opportunity according to the network status.”
This is just the latest announcement by what appears to be an aggressively expanding exchange in the cryptocurrency space. Recent rumors even indicate that Huobi is in talks with Japan’s largest exchange Bitflyer and Korea’s largest exchange Bithumb to acquire them. Still, the same rumors also indicate that the deals are on hold because of an ongoing investigation by Chinese authorities.
Huobi’s Ether staking support announcement comes as the launch of the beacon chain—Ethereum 2.0’s so-called Phase 0—is set to take place on Dec. 1. As Modern Consensus reported nearly a week ago, the funds staked on the new chain just recently reached the minimum of 524,288 ETH staked for launch. The vast majority of the required ETH was staked on Nov. 24—the last day to meet the Dec. 1 scheduled launch date. It went well past the minimum, and is currently well above 800,000 ETH, according to Etherscan.
The launch of Ethereum 2.0’s proof-of-stake blockchain was delayed numerous times, so its launch is a long-anticipated event in the market that will have far-reaching consequences for the network. The majority of the funds came from large investments, such as a 25,000 ETH stake by crypto lending firm Celsius Network. The firm’s CEO Alex Mashinsky commented:
“We thought it would be appropriate to contribute to the launch of ETH 2.0 and place some of the last ETH needed into the pool to make sure it launches on time and on schedule.”
Huobi seems to be quite invested in the blockchain ecosystem at large. As Modern Consensus reported the firm partnered with Protocol Labs, the firm behind the decentralized web hosting system IPFS, to launch an incubation center aimed at advancing Web 3.0.