Cryptocurrency exchange BitMEX has joined the ranks of companies lending a hand amid the coronavirus pandemic. Earlier this week, the Seychelles-based derivatives exchange announced that it had launched a dedicated COVID-19 Response Fund, as well as a donation of $2.5 million in grants to four separate recipients.
Fighting to Find a Cure to the Pandemic
As the company explained, its management believes a FinTech firm could contribute to the global response to the pandemic by providing “strategically directed funds [that] can fill gaps in the global response and rapidly empower well-equipped but under-resourced organizations.”
HDR Global Trading, BitMEX’s parent company, has decided to donate to OpenMinded, the Biosecurity program at the Nuclear Threat initiative, and Our World in Data, an online scientific publication that focuses on significant global problems and which has been conducting research on the pandemic for a while. The company also donated to the two Gates Philanthropy Partners COVID-19 Funds.
The research organizations have been focusing on capacity-building projects and policy analyses that can help to provide a vaccine and reduce the biological risks that the coronavirus poses.
HRD Global Trading also confirmed that all the contributions it makes via its COVID-19 Response Fund are independent of the philanthropic efforts of its co-founders and management officials.
Crypto Steps Up to Help Out
BitMEX is joining a long list of crypto and FinTech companies that ah e committed to providing some form of relief at this time. Last month, popular exchange Binance, through its Binance Charity subsidiary, announced the launch of the #CryptoAgainstCOVID campaign, where it raised $5 million to help purchase medical supplies for countries that had been affected the most by the virus.
The company explained that it would be kick-starting the donation process with a $1 million pledge. It also promised to match all public donations up to another million. The funds will be used for medical supplies, which will be sent to countries such as Italy, the United States, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and Germany, amongst others.
The United States government also recently made a watershed decision by allowing non-bank FinTech firms to participate in its $2 trillion relief program for American citizens.
The program was necessitated by the government, as notable Capitol Hill figures advocated for a stimulus program that will help to prop up individuals and companies whose jobs and economic activities will be hit the most by the virus and authorities’ stay-at-home orders.
Earlier this month, the United States Small Business Administration (SBA) published an application form that allowed non-banking FinTech firms to register as lenders under its Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).
As part of the government’s plan, it has earmarked about $350 billion for small business loans. While there was some initial doubt over FinTech firms’ ability to qualify for the loans, John Pitts, head of policy at San Francisco-based FinTech firm Plaid told crypto news site Cointelegraph that this is a step in the right direction.