Blockchain technology captured a lot of attention in 2015, stealing some of the spotlight from Bitcoin, the most “famous” crypto-currency built on blockchain tech. Investors such as Mark Blandford of Burlywood Capital have noticed blockchain technology potential and investment dollars are now being poured into the sector.
Coinsilium is an incubator for blockchain start-up companies and Eddy Travia is the CEO, a professional with quite a few years of experience in the Bitcoin industry behind him. Travia had the foresight to get involved with blockchain at an early stage and now appreciates the growth of the industry and the millions of investment dollars that have been poured into it as of late.
“We started back in 2013 and at that time there were only a few start-ups you could actually invest in, the whole sector was not that large”, Travia explained.
“The investment has been growing a lot, mainly coming from the US so we were trying to raise funds initially from the Asia area and now in London because we feel that London as a global FinTech hub is quite interesting for us”, he said.
When is comes to pure numbers, Travia cited some impressive examples of investment.
“We have seen recently some large raises, for example Coinbase has raised 75 million dollars, Circle has raised 50 million dollars and the largest one which is more of a hardware play called 21 Inc. has raised 116 million dollars”, he shared.
With so many investors eyeing the blockchain sector, Travia and the Coinsilium team have identified exactly what type of companies they are looking to invest in.
“We are looking for companies who are creating blockchain solutions and relevant use cases because lets say that in the industry we see a lot of pure technology players, but we’re really interested in those that can be commercially viable and that can help solve real life problems”, said Travia.
Factom is just one example of a blockchain company Coinsilium has chosen to work with.
“Factom build solutions for large organizations, for example even the public sector or banks, to move their data onto the blockchain or to anchor data to the blockchain”, Travia shared.
“In Honduras they have asked Factom to help them with the land title register in order to make sure that no one can go and tamper with the register. There are many countries where actually a lot of the land titles are not really properly maintained and can give a lot of problems when you’re trading, buying or selling land”, he explained.
Coinsilium provides funding, but there are a number of other services they can offer either directly or through their accelerator program called “Blockchain Space”. Such services include mentorship and various educational courses for the entrepreneurs to come and participate in.
“Most of the companies in this industry are seed stage companies or early stage companies, so the entrepreneurs mostly coming from the tech world may need other skills like regulatory help, like accounting, finance, even presenting for their demo days, a pitch, so there are many services that we bring”, Travia said.
A parallel has been drawn between the internet years and Bitcoin which runs on blockchain, hence the term “bubble” has been used to describe what’s happening right now with blockchain.
“[Blockchain] has been one of the fastest growing ever technologies in terms of investment, but my feeling is in terms of adoption or in terms of the way people are going to use it and the whole potential, we’re still at a very early stage”, Travia said.
In order to push the industry forward, Travia and anyone involved in the sector knows general education is key.
“There is still a lack of awareness, a lack of knowledge even in the basic features of blockchain, so there is still tremendous work for us to do in the education department”, explained Travia.
Being in the early stages of a massive game-changing technology is certainly exciting and we’re all looking forward to seeing what the future has in store for blockchain and its related companies.
“I think the technology itself has potential to change so many industries in a deep way that there’s still many, many years ahead of high growth in this sector”, shared Travia.