• What the San Francisco company isn’t yet publicizing is the precise nature of its operations. Chief Executive and co-founder Matthew Pauker will only say there will be “several interesting developments over the next weeks and months” about software and hardware products designed “to drive mainstream adoption of bitcoin.”
  • 21’s lead investors include U.S. venture-capital heavyweights Andreessen Horowitz and RRE Ventures, along with Chinese private-equity firm Yuan Capital, with a strategic stake going to chipmaker Qualcomm Inc.QCOM -0.65% through its venture-capital unit.
  • Qualcomm’s involvement could spur speculation that 21 has its sights on the so-called “Internet of Things.” That’s the idea that a myriad of smart, Internet-connected appliances will in the future communicate with servers, networks and each other to optimize their operation, maintenance and energy usage without direct human involvement.

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