What Matters More, Bitcoin or Blockchain?

From Bitcoin to Ether and lots of others, we’re looking at where cryptos are headed and what they mean for market participants and global economics. This is part two of our conversation with Don Wilson, founder of DRW.

Wilson told a Chicago event in February 2018 that cryptocurrencies would “change the world.” But go back a few years and Wilson told us his firm had an internal debate about why Bitcoin was important. One side suggested the underlying technology was what mattered, while another stated that moving value in a frictionless manner was what is important.

Explaining the latter point of view, he told us in late 2017, “It’s really the network effect that creates the value. And since Bitcoin is the first mover in that space, the first instrument to leverage that technology, then Bitcoin is the important thing.”

It’s insight into the thinking that led to Cumberland, a unit of DRW focused exclusively on cryptocurrency that launched in 2014. The firm was an early entrant into the Bitcoin space and has since expanded into dozens of other cryptocurrencies.

Though Cumberland has firmly established itself as a force in crypto markets, the debate over blockchain vs. bitcoin as the more meaningful technology goes on, as seen on stage at Consensus this week. 

Watch Wilson’s remarks in the video above. Watch part one of our conversation here.

Evan Peterson is director of corporate marketing at CME Group and managing editor of OpenMarkets.

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