THIS coming January 25, 2018 will be the Blockchain and Bitcoin Conference Philippines, the first major event of this kind in our country. Regular readers of my column know that I am an avid blockchain and cryptocurrency advocate and have written several columns about the subject.
The conference comes just at the right time when cryptocurrencies saw a huge surge of demand and interest for most of 2017. Before, I could only discuss bitcoin and blockchain with fellow techies, but suddenly, people who were not techies were already asking about it and becoming interested. Of course, most of them became interested because of the unbelievable gains in market prices.
Bitcoin, for example, started 2017 at only $960 and surged to $19,500 two weeks before the year-end where it tapered down and corrected to $13,100. Still, that is an impressive 1300 percent increase in one year. Ethereum started the year at $8 and ended at $720. That’s a 9000 percent gain. Ripple started at less than a cent, only $0.0065 and ended at $2. That’s an insane 30,000% upside.
If you had put in P10,000 on Ripple last January 1, that would now be worth P3,000,000. (And no, I sadly did not put money on Ripple).
My interest in this, however, goes beyond market prices because I see the blockchain as a fundamental game-changing technology. This is not just like a casino game where you bet your money and hit the jackpot and I see many people treat it as such. If you do, you might find that you will lose your money as fast as you make it.
The key to making it long term in this game is knowledge. I highly encourage those who are just getting in to understand as much about it as possible and that is why a conference like this is timely, relevant and important.
From the information posted on their website, the conference offers a wide range of topics that will cater to everyone from the beginner to the veteran. Headlining the event will be Zach Piester, one of Singapore’s largest venture investors and co-founder of Intrepid Ventures and he will be answering these 3 questions:
1. Will blockchain transform the Internet & the global economy or is it merely a fad?
2. What are Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and other investment schemes?
3. Should you invest in ICOs?
The Philippines' very own Luis Buenaventura, Chief Technology Officer of BloomSolutions, will talk about how the business of money remittances is being reinvented by cryptocurrencies. Zachary Kelmann, an adviser at Coins.ph, will discuss the technical legalities of ICOs.
Jimmy Nguyen, CEO of nChain Group, will talk about how we can transition from eCommerce to bCommerce (or bitcoin commerce). As a side note, this should be interesting as Nguyen is an advocate of bitcoin cash, of which I am not a huge fan -- but I’m willing to listen and learn from what he has to say about it.
Three international speakers will talk about the concept of tokenization, the token economy, and is it right for your business - namely, Ismail Malik (Editor in Chief of ICO Crowd), Kambiz Djafari (CEO and co-founder of Edgecoin.io) and Roger Haenni (CEO and co-founder of Datum.org).
Another international speaker, Vlad Sapozhnikov (CEO and co-founder of Deex.exchange) will explore the concept of decentralized exchanges and ecosystems.
Aside from all the lectures, you will also get to to meet suppliers and vendors of mining equipment and blockchain-based software and solutions, as well as network with other fellow blockchain enthusiasts.
Published in the SunStar Davao newspaper on January 05, 2018.
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