Big surprise, women are underrepresented among blockchain startups. It’s a trend that’s pervasive throughout technology and Silicon Valley in particular. But blockchain, the technology underpinning cryptocurrencies, has the potential to be better, considering its mission is one tied to decentralization and a level playing field for all. In some ways, however, women have struggled to compete in a male-dominated culture whose fortress is reportedly protected by cliques like the “blockchain bros,” according to a recent New York Times article. The trend does not appear to be limited to startups, as evidenced by research suggesting women only represent between 4% and 6% of blockchain investors. While it’s still early innings for blockchain, that makes this gender imbalance that much more concerning, as it’s during the early days of an emerging market that new wealth is created and influencers born, setting in motion of chain of events ranging from investments to hiring behavior.
Bitcoin may be off limits, but the coffee chain is not overlooking the technology that underpins cryptocurrencies. Howard Schultz, Starbucks executive chairman and the face behind the brand, suggested blockchain could very well be part of the coffee retailer’s future, pointing to the possibility of a “proprietary digital currency integrated into our application.” It’s interesting because Schultz on the company’s latest earnings call suggested they weren’t developing their own cryptocurrency nor investing in any blockchain startups. But he did at that time point to the blockchain for eventually delivering a “consumer application” for cryptos. If you’re thinking Ripple’s XRP would have been ideal, consider that Ripple chief Brad Garlinghouse doesn’t consider XRP a cryptocurrency. Starbucks, which is spearheading its maiden “cashless store” in Seattle, has embraced mobile tech payments. “Over the last four-to-five years, Starbucks has created a proxy for a mobile digital payments system,” said Schultz on Fox Business, pointing to the fact that 50% of the company’s tender is paid for with people’s smartphones. Meanwhile, in China, which is a leader in mobile payments, nearly three-quarters of the business is cashless.
Big things are happening over in Zuffenhausen, Germany, headquarters of Porsche. According to a Porsche press release, the automobile powerhouse is making a major push towards integrating blockchain technology into its cars. In a partnership with XAIN, a tech startup located in Berlin, Porsche is reportedly working on developing blockchain applications with its cars. Things like locking and unlocking a vehicle, parking, or even enterprise usage such as loaning out the company car to an employee are all made easier by way of the blockchain. Especially useful is the fact that blockchains are essentially public ledgers. Because all transactions (in this case, actions involving the vehicle) are recorded in an immutable ledger, gathering data about driver behavior and vehicle performance will be much easier to track. Car owners would theoretically be able to monitor who accessed their vehicle, by whom and when. This could play a major factor in expanding the “sharing” economy which has exploded over the past few years. Furthermore, it opens up a world of possibilities with P2P transactions between vehicle owners. Instead of using a credit card to refill their gas tank or recharge their car battery, drivers could send each other the equivalent of “PorscheCoins,” to pitch in for a night out on the town.
JPMorgan Chase, the largest bank in the US, has formally acknowledged that cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology could disrupt banks. The firm made this admission in its annual report, which was dated Feb. 27 and filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Deep in the 301-page document, JPMorgan — which manages $2.53 trillion in assets according to recent estimates — listed cryptocurrencies and peer-to-peer technology as potential disruptors to financial institutions and payment processors. Notably, the report was signed by JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon, a noted Bitcoin skeptic who has repeatedly lambasted the flagship cryptocurrency as a “fraud” and once threatened to fire any employees caught trading cryptoassets, although he recently walked back some of these comments. JPMorgan is at least the third major financial institution to cite cryptocurrencies as a business risk in its annual report for 2017. Last week, Bank of America — the second-largest US bank — admitted that cryptocurrencies and other blockchain-based financial services present a threat to its business model, adding that it fears it anti-money laundering systems will need a facelift to account for cryptocurrency-related transactions.
The Crypto Investor Show is proud to be launching the first crypto and blockchain investor event of this scale in the UK. The show takes place on 10th March 2018 between 9.00am and 6.00pm.
Our aim is to put on a well rounded and innovative event that reflects the buzz and excitement created by 2017, whilst giving investors the chance to fully understand the key elements driving blockchain technology forward, how and why the industry has got to where it is now, and what could be in store for 2018 and beyond.
The best thing about the crypto world is it’s community, and we’re excited to bring together seasoned crypto investors with more traditional investors who would like more information on why blockchain is disrupting so many industries, and help with navigating wallets, exchanges and the different types of coins and tokens.
The Origin of Bitcoin:
Where did it come from and why was it created?
Deciphering the Crypto and Blockchain industry for investors:
The ins and outs of how to navigate exchanges, wallets, altcoins and blockchain technology
The Rational and Motivation behind the Crypto Sector