There is one trend which likely will continue into 2016 in the banking world, and that is the trend of Wall Street executives defecting from the mainstream banking industry into the Bitcoin industry. With consortiums such as R3 – and thus the biggest banks in the world – investigating blockchain technology, individuals from Wall Street will enter into the Bitcoin space in order to learn more about the technology.
Of course, Blythe Masters entered the space. The creator of the BitLicense, Benjamin Lawsky, also started a Bitcoin advisory company. They’re not the only individuals to leave Wall Street for Bitcoin.
While we will hear about many of these individuals from reports of their leaving a Wall Street firm and seeking an executive status in Bitcoin, there are many we won’t hear about. Still some will have one foot in and one foot out of the Bitcoin industry. They will be the Wall Street figures who enter into the Bitcoin space to learn as much as possible about the crypto-technology, in order to bring the information back to their bands, such as UBS, Santander, and many others.
The reason why this trend began in 2015 is because of the added focus on the blockchain. Once banks learned about the underlying technology to Bitcoin, they became more comfortable with entering into the space and ultimately learning more about the process.
In part, banks’ determination to learn the blockchain could stem from their experience with law enforcement. As law enforcement became more familiar with Bitcoin technology in 2014, and especially in 2015, they were able to assuage the fears of the banking industry.
Therefore, there is little doubt that 2016 will in part be defined by more defections of individuals from the banking industry. They will mostly take on advisory and organizational roles and they will allow developers in the Bitcoin space to focus on what they do best: develop.
This continues to be a welcomed change because it is too much to ask for a young millennial to not only be Chief Technical Officer, but also CEO, CFO, and so on so forth – especially in an industry with as low margins as most Bitcoin technologies.
This trend, of people defecting from Wall Street to Bitcoin, will continue to be accompanied by big banks investing in blockchain related startups, as we saw happen in 2015.
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