EXCLUSIVE: Where Will The Next 1 Billion New Crypto Users Come From, Following FTX Disaster? Okcoin, CoinFlip Execs Have An Idea

Zinger Key Points
  • Expert crypto panelists discussed the path to onboard one billion global cryptocurrency users.
  • "You need a bit of a brush fire to have the new, stronger trees grow," one expert said.

Okcoin COO Jason Lau, CoinFlip CTO Rory Herriman and Columbia University Lab to Market Blockchain Accelerator advisor Art Malkov discussed the path to onboard the next one billion global cryptocurrency users at the Benzinga Future of Crypto Conference in New York on Wednesday.

Herriman said the key to increasing mainstream crypto use is accessibility.

"We are dogged believers in self-custody. We believe that when you hold your keys, you hold your crypto, and you inherently minimize the risk," Herriman said.

A Different Kind Of Crypto User: Herriman said one of the challenges of onboarding additional crypto users is that the next wave of adopters will not be technically savvy in the same way the first wave of crypto users were.

According to Malkov, crypto marketers need to focus on educating potentially skeptical new crypto users and making them understand that, despite the wave of negative headlines during crypto winter in 2022, crypto is not an inherently scary technology. The average investor likely does not have an in-depth understanding of blockchain technology, but they may be aware that the prices of Bitcoin BTC and Ethereum ETH/USD have crashed 63.8% and 65.7% in 2022, respectively.

"Dealing with the recent blowbacks of large exchanges going under, I think there is also going to be how do we mend the trust of the people because for people to rejoin and regrow into the space they have to feel comfortable," Malkov said.

Related Link: Block Is The Most Shorted Crypto Stock: How Do Coinbase, Microstrategy Compare?

For Lau, one message the crypto community needs to convey to the rest of the world is that crypto's underlying technology did not falter whatsoever throughout the volatile and chaotic crypto winter.

"It worked flawlessly, [it] did exactly what it's supposed to do," Lau said. "Crypto is a solution for trust, and the irony is now we've run into all these trust issues despite the technology itself solving exactly that."

Sources Of New Crypto Users: Another major issue the crypto market faces is to determine where the next billion crypto users will come from and what it will take to get them interested in the technology.

Herriman said gaming and social media have been (and can continue to be) two major sources for onboarding new crypto users.

"It's about bringing different use cases. I'm a firm believer that once you're on the blockchain, once you get that wallet, it's easy to traverse all of the possible use cases," Herriman said.

Related Link: BofA Is No Longer Bullish On Coinbase: 'Fallout From FTX Clouds Outlook'

Malkov said that, after the FTX bankruptcy, it may take a while for the average person to realize the crypto market and its technology is still functioning properly.

"It's like a forest fire–you need a bit of a brush fire to have the new, stronger trees grow," Malkov said.

Lau said there are still billions of people around the world who do not have access to banking or even a stable internet connection that could benefit tremendously from access to crypto.

"There's a long way to go, but one way we've identified is making sure crypto is inclusive right from the start," Lau concluded.

Learn more about this and other upcoming Benzinga Crypto events at this link.

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Posted In: CryptocurrencyM&ANewsEventsExclusivesMarketsInterviewArt MalkovCoinflipColumbia University Lab to Market Blockchain AcceleratorJason LauOKCoinRory Herriman
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