Fred Wilson: Coinbase and Other Crypto-Companies Are Like Wall Street Banks in Its Early Days


The cryptocurrency ecosystem, created with the launch of Bitcoin in 2009 has gone mainstream, sans the recognition as legal tender by most governments in the world. Bitcoin and other altcoins like Dash are on the verge of creating a global economy without geographical barriers. Similar to heavyweight financial institutions like Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan in the conventional fiat economy, few cryptocurrency platforms and businesses have established themselves as recognized, trusted organizations/institutions. According to a renowned venture capitalist in cryptocurrency circles Fred Wilson, Coinbase is one such company.

According to a leading business news outlet, the managing partner at Union Square Ventures, Fred Wilson equated Coinbase to the likes of leading Wall Street institutions while speaking at a conference organized by StockTwits on Thursday. He was quoted saying,

“They (Coinbase) are like J.P Morgan or Goldman Sachs for blockchain. “

Fred’s speech at the Stocktoberfest is an indication of his trust in the cryptocurrency ecosystem and its portfolio company. Founded by Brian Armstrong and Fred Ehrsam, Coinbase is among the early Bitcoin businesses to provide online wallet service. The company eventually expanded to offer Bitcoin exchange service and merchant solutions. Now, under the brand GDAX, Coinbase also operates a trading platform supporting multiple cryptocurrencies.

Continuing, Wilson also spoke about the advantage of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies over conventional financial instruments like stocks and bonds. The suggestions Wilson offered is also something he practices. Wilson has made a significant investment in the likes of Coinbase and other crypto-startups through Union Square Ventures. He also personally holds cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin. In Wilson’s words, he owns a small percentage of his net worth in cryptocurrencies. Wilson further said,

“If I were a trader, a stock trader or hedge fund person, I might think of having 5% of my assets in something like this; it’s still early days; I don’t think you want to go all in on it, but I think you want to be in it.”

Coinbase has had its problems with the platform, operations and even the IRS. Wilson believes that the company represents security, trust, safety, etc., but at the same time, doesn’t discount the chances of theft, fraud and other challenges that continue to remain, just like in the early days of Wall Street.

The comparison ultimately means that the cryptocurrency industry is gaining the much-deserved traction from the investor community and it is going to rise in the coming years to hold a commanding position in the global economic system. The benefits, challenges, and opportunities remain the same for all established cryptocurrency platforms and are not limited to Coinbase alone.

Ref: Fortune | Image: NewsBTC

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