“My hope is for us to take away from this that Bitcoin doesn’t have a home. It doesn’t have a home in New York or San Francisco. There’s a lot of interesting things happening around the globe,” said Cary.
Bitcoin’s reach is global, and eventually beyond planet Earth. Next stop – the Moon!
The conference was full of influencers, bankers, startups, enthusiasts, and more. With over 90 speakers and participants from 26 countries, the event was comprised of two seminar tracks and 36 sessions and is considered to be the largest Bitcoin exhibition to date.
Some other speakers & panel participants include:
Dan Held, Product Manager, Blockchain.info
Jeremy Allaire, Co-Founder & CEO, Circle
James D’Angelo, Co-Founder & Host, World Bitcoin Network
Kyle Drake, Founder, Coinpunk.com
Bruce Fenton, Founder & President, Atlantic Financial
Karen Gifford, Chief Compliance Officer, Ripple Labs
Jaron Lukasiewicz, Chief Executive Office Coinsetter
Jonathan Mohan, Founder, BitcoinNYC
Jesse Powell, Co-Founder & CEO, Kraken
Barry Silbert, Founder & CEO, SecondMarket & Creator, Bitcoin Investment Trust
And many more. We didn’t leave any one out on purpose, we promise!
Circle CEO, Jeremy Allaire’s keynote address, seemed to create the most emotions from the crowd. Allaire talked about how Bitcoin will get to the mainstream market, which he said would be through the use of regulation, which the audience agreed and disagreed with. According to Allaire, better governance, more commercial development of Bitcoin businesses and coordination with regulators is precisely what is needed to put Bitcoin on a growth path similar to the one the Internet enjoyed after the development of the Netscape browser in 1994.
Regulation continued to be a hot topic as the conference went on. Discussions around Wall Street getting involved in Bitcoin showed to be a positive sign of big players getting into the space. Gil Luria, Stock analyst at Wedbush Securities, said “Wedbush has decided to embrace bitcoin […] and we plan to continue being involved”. The talk of Wall Street entering the Bitcoin space continued, many questioned when Bloomberg will cite Bitcoin in their World Stock Index, which appeared to be a significant factor in getting others on Wall Street positioned to invest in bitcoins. Luria went on to say that he “called my Bloomberg rep to ask when they’d start quoting Bitcoin. The answer was soon.” If and when this happens, it could be yet another telling sign of big things to come for the digital currency.
Many at the conference were also happy to hear when news came about of Texas Congressman Steve Stockman, who is going to introduce a bill that aims to reclassify Bitcoin as currency. As the conference went on, we were able to meet and speak with a lot of great people inside the Bitcoin community.
The overall feeling of the event was positive and inspirational. Security and regulation seemed to dominate the discussions, with side sessions ranging from user adoption, to mining, and challenges we face as Bitcoin grows at a tremendous pace.