On November 6, 2019, Olga Kharif of Bloomberg reported on the resounding potential for crypto commerce in an article entitled “From Online Gambling to Pot, Crypto Commerce Takes Off This Year”. Kharif’s opinions and findings were made available through Yahoo Finance. The article illustrates a few things. First, crypto for finance is increasing as a hot discussion topic. Secondly, it is being taken seriously; as demonstrated by reputable news sources like Google News, Yahoo Finance, and Bloomberg giving it the time of day and search rankings with other major news stories.
Kharif expects crypto commerce to demonstrate how significant the technology can be as early as this year. While many experts believed that the crypto industry and blockchain would one day become a regular part of online life, few have gone out on a limb to state precisely when it would become relevant.
A Chainalysis report provided the statistics for the conclusions that Kharif reported in this article. For example, according to Chainalysis, digital money sent to select merchants (i.e. BitPay) grew by 65% over the first half of the year. Other statistics that centered around the first half of the year which Kharif points to include entities and blockchains such as:
- Intercontinental Exchange Inc
Kim Grauer is Chainalysis’ senior economist. After looking at popular cryptocurrencies Bitcoin, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash and Tether, he suggested that there is growing trust in the crypto industry. Maybe the most apparent impact of this is the announcement of Intercontinental Exchange Inc. plans for a Starbucks app. This would connect the exchange’s annual processing of crypto commerce of more than a billion dollars with Starbucks’ daily sales of $70 million.
Bitcoin still maintains its hold on digital transactions for merchant services at nearly 90%. The great use of Bitcoin can be attributed to its popularity. It is still cumbersome to use which leaves a lot of opportunity on the table for more practical coins. Tether is a stable coin that is respected and easy-to-use. In the first half of this year, Tether accounted for nearly 10% of all commerce. This was a five-fold increase.
Crypto and blockchain are about so much more than the few statistics outlined in Kharif’s article. They are about empowering individuals to take control of their money through decentralized systems of finance.