The Etherbridge team wishes all our readers a Merry Christmas! We hope you have had a good festive period with family and loved ones and wish you a great new year!
2020 Market Recap
Crypto Stands Tall
2020 has been a tipping point for both digital assets and Etherbridge. The market is beginning to understand the potential transformative power of this new technology. This can be seen not only in price performance but in network growth and adoption.
This year we have seen companies like PayPal adopting crypto, publicly listed companies like Square and Microstrategy have included bitcoin in their treasury reserve policy, heavyweights like Paul Tudor Jones and Stanley Drunkenmiller have realised the potential for digital assets and have added them to their already famous funds.
Bitcoin is now the largest financial service in the world by market capitalisation at $540 billion.
“Among the top 10 financial service companies following Visa ($460 billion), as of December 27, 2020, were JPMorgan Chase ($379.56 billion), Mastercard ($334.96 billion), PayPal ($279.61 billion), Bank of America ($259.17 billion), Industrial and Commercial Bank of China ($257.97 billion), China Construction Bank ($185.31 billion), Agricultural Bank of China ($163.92 billion), SoftBank ($140.75 billion), and Bank of China ($129.82 billion).”
Bitcoin now processes, executes and settles over $45 billion dollars a day and the global army of miners who make this service possible are earning north of $25 million per day.
Whilst the decentralised networks of bitcoin and ethereum slowly penetrate the world of finance, we at Etherbridge have also reached some milestones. After two years of full time research we are pleased to inform our readers that we have had a successful fund launch.
The Etherbridge fund is catered toward high net-worth individuals, family offices and institutions. It aims to invest in the infrastructure of the digital economy from monies like Bitcoin, smart contract platforms like Ethereum, Oracles like Chainlink to exchanges, derivatives markets, lending facilities, markets for computational power and storage.
This infrastructure will enable a decentralised world. Everywhere we look we see the evidence that this world is becoming a reality.
Below is a collection of our written pieces and some additional reports from Messari and Delphi Digital. These companies have proven their worth in 2020 and we recommend giving their content a read if you wish to better understand the space.
The Money Series
Notable Articles and News Stories This Week:
What The SEC Charging Ripple Means For Cryptocurrencies
Last week the SEC filed an action against Ripple Labs Inc. (the company behind the digital token XRP) with raising $1.3 billion in what it calls unregistered “digital asset securities”. Yet what does this mean for the broader crypto industry? Currently, we know that the SEC doesn’t view either bitcoin or ethereum as securities, having stated: “when I (SEC) look at bitcoin today, I do not see a central third party whose efforts are a key determining factor in the enterprise.” This sentiment was extended to ethereum and lies in their degree of decentralisation, there is no CEO or head of the organisation directly directing the enterprise. Going forward we may see stricter control and rules emerge around token offerings and other ICO like fundraising operations.
Read the full explainer here
Jerome Powell Wins Forbes’ Crypto Person of the Year
Forbes in its inaugural crypto awards has for the first time named a person of the year. This year it went to none other than the Head of the Federal Reserve Jerome Powell. The reason cited was the “$3 trillion marketing campaign for bitcoin”. In order to try keep the American economy afloat, the Federal Reserve purchased $3 trillion in treasuries, effectively printing money. This year the Reserve nearly doubled its balance sheet with these purchases. It also for the first time made crypto sceptics such as Paul Tudor Jones and Stanley Druckenmiller start to take the asset class more seriously and allocate within their own funds.
Read about more of the awards here
BlackRock Seeks VP Blockchain Lead to ‘Drive Demand’ for Firm’s Crypto Offerings
Blackrock, the worlds largest asset manager, has posted a job vacancy for a VP of blockchain. The prime purpose or requirements of the job will be creating “strategies designed to drive demand for the firm’s offerings,” as well as “enhance the value proposition [...] of the firm’s investments and technology offerings.” This is a sign that they are perceiving a greater demand for digital asset products in the future and are positioning themselves as such.
Read about it here
MicroStrategy Splurges Another $650M on Latest Bitcoin Investment
This week MicroStrategy increased its bitcoin holdings by a further 29 646. This brings their total to 70,470 BTC worth over $1.596 billion in its treasury reserve. To make this investment a reality MicroStrategy held a $650 million convertible senior note sale in early December to raise funds. This is the first time a publically listed company has done this and it remains to be seen if it will pay off.
Read the story here
IBM Launches Test Service Using ‘Holy Grail’ of Data Privacy Technology
Tech giant IBM announced a trial service for a privacy tech called fully homomorphic encryption (FHE), designed to vastly reduce the likelihood of sensitive data being exposed. According to IBM “While current encryption techniques allow data to be protected during storage and in transit, data must be decrypted while it is being processed or analyzed – creating a window of opportunity where data is more vulnerable to theft or exposure”. FHE has been touted as the ‘holy grail’ for data privacy and should greatly improve our own ability to protect our personal data.
Read about it here
Whilst we all have the option to look, to seek to understand, it’s often easier not to. Bitcoin, Ethereum and distributed ledger technology are complex systems that require significant due diligence. At Etherbridge we aim to lower the barriers of understanding this fast-growing digital economy.
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This is not financial advice. All opinions expressed here are our own. We encourage investors to do their own research before making any investments.