The Business Review magazine organized the „Focus on Blockchain” conference on July 19th. Is was an industry event committed to bring together tech driven companies, entrepreneurs, crypto and blockchain aficionados and investors to explore the wealth of opportunities that blockchain unveils, learn about its use cases and understand how they can apply technology to better the world.
Below are some of the most interesting statements made during the event.
Thibault Verbiest – Partner |DS Avocats: „A big challenge to regulating blockchain is GDPR – the super legislation for the internet – there’s a big problem because the blockchain is decentralized and the legislation is based on the assumption that there’s always a central entity responsible for processing data and making sure that all the rights of the data subjects are being preserved – but you don’t have that with blockchain. There are thousands of miners processing the data (assuming there’s personal data on there) – who is the data controller? Either it’s everyone, all the miners, or it’s no one! If it’s no one, how can we apply GDPR? If it’s everyone, who’s actually liable?”
Vidal Chriqui, Co-Founder BTU PROTOCOL | ERC-808 Inventor: „The bitcoin will be able to become the alternative financial system (…) We can bank the unbanked and unbank the banks. We are just at the beginning and an alternative financial system is coming where we will have machine to machine economy”.
Ioan Iacob, Founder and CEO | QUALITANCE: „I’m a huge fan of blockchain because it represents something fundamental – it’s about decentralized freedom and trust. I think blockchain can truly disrupt the banking, financial systems (…) Cryptocurrencies are just one way of using the blockchain, I can see the whole world running on crypto in 10-20 years.”
Cristian Orasanu – Product & Strategy | Emro Ventures: „In 1990, nobody knew what the internet was. The same thing is happening today with blockchain – we’re not in a boom yet (…) Just because ICOs are used for scams doesn’t mean that all of them are useless and illegitimate.”
Dan Dumitrescu – CIO | End Of Waste Foundation USA: „Remember how websites looked in the 1990s? Ugly, slow, etc. Only a couple of geeks knew how to program a website. Now we have wordpress – everyone can build an option. That’s when we’ll have mass adoption of these new technologies – when it’s easy enough for our grandfathers to understand it (…) I strongly believe that bitcoin is a new form of money, a better form, I would even say the best form – it’s solving the problem of eliminating intermediaries when we need to exchange value. (….) Non-fungible tokens are the missing link – Fungible means interchangeable – We can exchange one bitcoin for another because they only store value. A non-fungible token doesn’t just store value, but also information, and can’t be split. In the future, our non-fungible tokens will be associated with our identity and they will be really useful.”
Valentin Necoara – CTO | certSIGN, about identity in blockchain – certify identity using KYC procedures – similar to what banks are using right now: „We can create a blockchain environment with multiple parties guaranteeing the identity of a person – so it’s not necessarily to be identified by me, but via third parties it can be certified by others (…)
All use cases will require proving identity between to individuals — using the blockchain, I can sign a contract electronically with someone else and we don’t need to meet face-to-face to match the physical identity with the electronic one. The information linked electronically will be enough to, say, go to the financial institution and show that you sold your car to another person, whose information has been confirmed through the blockchain as well. This ensures that if I use that information in legal papers, it would be enough (…)
There is a lot of interest in banking regarding blockchain as well, because of the ability to have traceability of all actions – focus on delivering money to customers without the need of those customers being identified by going to the bank. If the bank can identify you via blockchain they will be more than happy to give you credit based on it.”
Antonio Eram, CEO Netopia (photo speaking): “We are at the intersection between old school and new school. Most ICOs are building a product just for the sake of the ICO, which is not a good idea. 99 percent of the companies I’ve met that want to do an ICO think they’re going to disrupt everything and in fact they don’t even have a business model, a legal approach – this is the wrong way of doing it”.
“ICOs are just a way of exchanging value that is not there, sorry to say that but it’s the truth. We’re playing with something that’s only making some banks and lawyers very rich(…) 90 percent of the ICOs fail, and half of the remaining 10 percent fail in another 4 months.”
“Nobody doing an ICO is going to say ‘I’m going to raise 10,000 ethereum or anything like that’ – they say they’re going to raise 10 million euros – it’s like using monopoly money – you need fiat (regular currency), not anything else”.
„Going back to ICOs – they are a bunch of kids who are very technical and have no understanding of business, convincing other technical guys who think they have money because they own cryptocurrency to invest in something.”
“The world out there is not yet prepared – the average Joe is not even able to use a credit card properly, so you expect them to pay with bitcoin? I’m a huge fan of cryptocurrency, but I’m not a fan of ICOs. All these ICOs are doing a huge disservice to business – this is not the way to go”.
We offer bitcoin payments to 6,000 merchants in Romania – but only about 50 of them actually signed up for it – because people need money now.
„Tendinţele pe care le-am remarcat înainte de începerea pandemiei s-au accelerat pe perioada stării de urgenţă. Am văzut acest lucru ca o oportunitate, un tipping point pentru bancă. Post-pandemie nu avem cum sa ne întoarcem la comportamentul financiar pe care îl aveam până în februarie a.c. Relaţia românilor cu online-ul s-a schimbat. In plus, cardul fizic se va dematerializa. Vom asista la o scădere a cererii pentru cardurile fizice, respectiv la o creştere a preferinţei pentru componenta digitală a acestora.”