Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin believes the days of explosive growth in the blockchain industry are waning, now that the average person has some awareness of cryptocurrencies, especially bitcoin.
“The blockchain space is getting to the point where there’s a ceiling in sight,” Buterin told Bloomberg at an Ethereum and blockchain conference in Hong Kong.
“If you talk to the average educated person at this point, they probably have heard of blockchain at least once. There isn’t an opportunity for yet another 1,000-times growth in anything in the space anymore.”
Buterin, whose net worth reportedly tops $400 million according to Forbes, said the cryptocurrency ecosystem was focused on gaining mainstream awareness and adoption during the past few years.
Move From Theory To Real-Life Applications
But now that many people have heard of bitcoin and blockchain (the technology underpinning cryptocurrencies), Vitalik says crypto enthusiasts will focus more on developing the technology in-depth.
“[We have to] go from just people being ‘interested’ to real applications of real economic activity,” Buterin said.
Blockchain technology is already being used in some industries, notably for supply-chain management.
Samsung Electronics — the world’s largest manufacturer of semiconductors and smartphones — is considering using a blockchain ledger system to track its global shipments in a move that could reduce its shipping costs by 20 percent, as the Inquisitr previously reported.
In April 2018, Ripple — the blockchain-based payment network — invested $25 million of its XRP cryptocurrency into Blockchain Capital Parallel IV, a fund that will invest in blockchain startups, as the Inquisitr has reported.
“There are entire verticals — such as healthcare or identity management — that could benefit from blockchain or distributed ledger technology,” said Bart Stephens, co-founder and managing partner of Blockchain Capital.
Rockefeller Family Bankrolls Blockchain Startups
Similarly, the Rockefeller family (estimated net worth: $1 trillion) signaled its support for blockchain by announcing it will make long-term investments in blockchain-based businesses through its venture capital arm Venrock.
“We wanted to partner with this team that has been making investments and actually helping to architect a number of different crypto economies and crypto token-based projects,” Venrock partner David Pakman told Fortune.
Pakman underscored that Venrock isn’t interested in making short-term profits, but in investing long-term in the future of blockchain.
Billionaire Tim Draper Says Bitcoin Is 'Bigger Than The Internet,' Sets $250,000 Price Target For 2022. Tim Draper, an early investor in Skype, Tesla, and Hotmail, says bitcoin will be bigger than all three combined. #Economy #Business https://t.co/QJOHA8qlLo— INQUISITR (@theinquisitr) April 24, 2018
“There are a lot of crypto traders in the market,” Pakman said. “There are a lot of cryptocurrency hedge funds. This is different. To us, it looks a little bit more like venture capital.”
Despite a barrage of negative news recently, the cryptocurrency industry is definitely expanding. So while explosive growth may no longer be on the horizon, the ecosystem is quietly chugging away and moving forward.