Over at AltFi, we’ve been incrementally increasing our coverage of the crypto space. It’s important to say that I think our attitude is one of very cautious optimism. I’m not sure I see any sign at the moment of the digital currencies themselves coming out of their relationship downward swoon. But I do detect a growing interest amongst bigger institutions and the authorities into how the whole digital currency movement and DLTs will evolve. In a sense I think the negative price momentum has served as a boon – its pushed away most of the day trading speculators and left the serious players to contemplate what might emerge from the wreckage of a giant Bubble. Steve Bellotti at TCM Global Asset Management has put together a nice list of ‘converging events’ as he calls them which signify this growing institutional interest: these include

  • Yale University Endowment – allocated USD 300m to a crypto fund and recently released a research paper stating that investors should have between 1% – 6% of their investable assets allocated to this space
  • Fidelity – have built a digital asset custodian & execution service
  • NASDAQ – listing a Bitcoin ETF
  • JP Morgan – announced the JPM Coin (for settling payments between counterparties)
  • ICE exchange – launching a security token exchange
  • Fairfax County (Virginia) Retirement Funds – allocated USD21m to a blockchain VC fund
  • Ohio State Government – approved Bitcoin for payment of business taxes
  • BNP / CitiBank / SocGen – built a blockchain driven commodities trading platform, called Vakt
  • Perth Mint – listing a Perth Mint Gold Token on the public blockchain
  • Cambridge Associates – stated support for their clients to build crypto exposures

So, at AltFi we’re going to focus pretty much exclusively on how the institutional world is getting to grips with crypto and blockchain. We’ll also have a specific interest in how blockchain could revolutionize the back-office world of fund administration.

But before we take these baby steps, we think there’s a huge need for investor education. There’s way too much jargon being thrown around in the world of crypto, and to help investors navigate through this my colleague at AltFi, Oliver Smith, and I have started a regular podcast. Its called Crypto for earthlings and the first edition went live yesterday.

Here’s the blurb from AltFi on this exciting new venture….

“The new six-part series is designed to unpack and explain the ever-more confusing world of crypto.

Join co-hosts Oliver Smith and David Stevenson as they explore different crypto concepts, abbreviations and acronyms every fortnight.

The series starts on Monday 25 March with a deep-dive into the background of Bitcoin, as Oliver and David are joined by Dr Garrick Hileman, head of research at Blockchain and a research associate at the London School of Economics.

Future episodes will tackle concepts like, why crypto mining is so important, whether the Bitcoin boom is over, and if “Stable” coins are all that stable.”

You can  listen to the podcast on all your favorite podcast platforms and directly at www.altfi.com – the specific link page is here: