Ryan Van Wagenen of Global Private Equity is no stranger to the movements in Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrency. Since being promoted to Director at GPE in 2011, Van Wagenen has been focused in the technology sector and has making a name in the space. In recent years as the firm has invested in products tied to the blockchain, he has enjoyed spending more and more time learning about crypto and following the growth very closely.
Bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies have become extremely popular over the last few years. The adoption of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies is changing how people transact daily. The financial industry is not the only sector affected by this phenomenon.
Blockchain technology might also directly or indirectly affect the healthcare, entertainment, messaging and insurance industries. For instance, blockchain technology could allow patients, hospitals and other parties to share access to their networks without putting data integrity and security at risk. Entertainment entrepreneurs are resorting to blockchain to make sharing of content fairer to creators. Profit on purchases can be automatically distributed according to agreed licensing agreements.
One of the main reasons for the popularity of cryptocurrencies is media coverage. On one end we have all the positive bulls and on the other we have extreme bears like Jamie Diamond and Harvard Economist Kenneth Rogoff who are calling for the fall of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency. What it comes down to is most people didn’t know what Bitcoin or cryptocurrency was until it received attention from the media and information about this technology started to circulate. As people learned more about this technology and became more eager to join the network, the value of cryptocurrencies also started to increase. New exchanges allowed people to trade local currency for their desired cryptocurrencies.
Having a healthy community around cryptocurrencies can help everyone take advantage of these innovations. Decentralized networks and applications can be used to complete transactions and allow for more scalable products. These technologies will have a significant economic impact on the economy of developing countries as they can become an alternative to inefficient and expensive systems.
Blockchain is also changing the way value is stored for the long-term. Companies offer cards and other kinds of accounts to pay for medical expenses and save for retirement. People usually have a bank account where they store their money. This can change as people store their assets in digital wallets distributed across various places. There are already countries that are exploring ways to digitize their currency. Small businesses may choose to use cryptocurrencies for their transactions. Large companies might be replaced by decentralized autonomous groups that run on smart contracts. This kind of contract can be programmed to do most of the tasks that traditional organizations do, but in a more efficient and transparent manner.
Ryan Van Wagenen expounded on the blockchain technology and how it can used to help companies find new talents and job seekers find work easily. Verifying employment histories and performing background checks can be time-consuming. Storing criminal and employment records in the blockchain ledger would prevent the risk of falsification. HR staff could also simplify and speed up the screening and hiring process. This technology could help with gun tracking as well.
Blockchain’s distributed ledger provides various opportunities around gun usage and ownership. Storing gun possession-related data in the blockchain could offer a linked infrastructure for weapon tracking. Blockchain can also be used for flagging certain types of transaction patterns, providing law enforcement officers with a heads up when a person engages in illegal financial activities. Those who are making charitable donations could also benefit from blockchain technology. It allows them to precisely track where their donations are going and when they arrived. Blockchain can deliver the transparency and accountability to deal with the grievances around charitable donations. This includes the financial misconduct or organizational inefficiency that can prevent donations from reaching those who should get it. Charities that are Bitcoin-based use blockchain’s transparent and secure distributed ledger to provide donors with better visibility into fund use.
Ryan Van Wagenen has become a cryptocurrency guru over the years. Recently he has noticed that the effects of blockchain and cryptocurrencies can reach anyone. As new users participate in various networks and realize the potential of these technologies, the effects of blockchain and cryptocurrencies will continue to reach every corner of the world. These technologies may help inspire solutions to societal challenges and provide help with everything from maintaining health records to reducing business risks.
Ryan Van Wagenen Cryptocurrency: Bitcoin 101