“Bitcoin is the first global monetary system”: CEO meeting in bullish mood
The who’s who of crypto celebrities came together at the Bloomberg Crypto Summit. The general tenor: bullish.
Digital conferences are booming in pandemic times. Just a few weeks ago, MicroStrategy presented the World 2021 Summit. Now it was the turn of the renowned media company Bloomberg, under whose patronage the elite of the crypto industry met. Topic No. 1 at the Crypto Summit? How could it be otherwise: Bitcoin.
The genie is out of the bottl
The three-and-a-half-hour summit resembled a teleshopping event, only instead of promoting necklaces and hoovers, the drum was beaten for the largest digital currency. The list of participants was quite impressive. In addition of the Crypto Bank app to BitGo CEO Mike Belshe, Silverlake co-founder Glenn Hutchins, ARK Investment CEO Catherine “Cathie” Wood and Coin Metrics co-founder Nic Carter, Avanti Bank founder Saitlin Long, Grayscale CEO Michael Sonnenshein, WEF blockchain expert Sheila Warren and CMT Digital CEO Colleen Sullivan were also present. Michael Saylor, CEO of MicroStrategy, also made an appearance.
In various thematic blocks, the conference gave an all-round view of the most important market developments. However, all speakers agreed on one thing: The Bitcoin bandwagon is unstoppable, or as Colleen Sullivan put it, “the crypto genie is out of the bottle”.
The Bitcoin Triad
But even as Bitcoin matures as an asset class and more investors get into the digital gold, Silverlake co-founder Glenn Hutchins says there is still a lack of use cases. The broad masses are still critical of the asset. But this is due to a lack of understanding of network effects, he said.
We need to show consumers use cases for this technology, then they will understand what it is.
So investors are still fixated on the asset, he said. But Bitcoin is more than “just” a currency or a store of value. Rather, it is the unique symbiosis of asset and network. To illustrate this, Hutchins quoted his favourite metaphor: Bitcoin can be thought of as a railway network, where the protocol is the rail, Bitcoin is the freight wagon and the blockchain is the freight list. This perfectly aligned network revolutionises the global distribution of money.
The primary purpose is not the storage of value, but use cases that make it valuable.
The actual value of Bitcoin therefore only emerges through use cases. As an example of a practical blockchain use case, Hutchins cited the digital collectible cards of the NBA Top Shot. The collectible market is experiencing enormous demand and is already generating daily revenues of around one million US dollars for the NBA. In addition, investors are noticing secondary markets where the collectible cards continue to be traded.
Bitcoin, the better gold
One thing also became clear at the summit: the narrative of digital gold is no longer a steep thesis, but a commonplace. According to Cathy, Bitcoin is the “most secure network in the world” and also the “first global monetary system”. As such, however, the comparison to gold is a little misleading. Bitcoin can do more than the precious metal. The cryptocurrency is a store of value and a money transmitter at the same time. Or as Nic Carter put it: “Bitcoin combines all gold functions and introduces new properties”.
This opportunity came at the right time for the man who has since become a Bitcoin advertising figure: Michael Saylor. The MicroStrategy CEO once again took it upon himself to vent his Bitcoin enthusiasm. As the CEO of a publicly traded company that consistently shifts cash into the reserve asset, he reiterated the importance for companies to invest in Bitcoin for economic reasons. In the face of expansive monetary expansion by central banks, he said, companies need to look for alternatives to “preserve shareholder value”. While all assets “collapse when the dollar collapses”, “BTC is the most liquid, uncorrelated asset”.