Crypto firms take over main street in Davos, even after market crash

DAVOS, Switzerland — Cryptocurrency-related tech companies will kick off at the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, even after the recent market crash that wiped billions of dollars in value. from the digital currency market.

The Promenade, a main strip where companies and governments take over shops and bars during the week of the forum, is dominated by crypto companies, which are located among the big ones like Sales force and Facebook owner Meta.

“It’s a big step for the crypto industry, they’ve always been against Davos,” one delegate told CNBC.

On Sunday, Tether, the company behind stablecoin USDT, set up a free pizza stand on Promenade for Bitcoin Pizza Day. On May 22, 2010, a programmer bought a pizza with bitcoin and this is considered the first transaction using cryptocurrency. The day is celebrated annually by the crypto community.

Another delegate commented that crypto companies are “splashing money”.

Non-fungible tokens are a big topic in discussions around the World Economic Forum. RollApp, which operates an NFT store, has set up a location in Davos to advertise digital collections.

Arjun Kharpal | CNBC

Fernando Verboonen, co-founder of RollApp, a non-fungible token (NFT) store that has taken over a store on Promenade, estimates that about 60% of the places on the street are crypto-related companies. death.

“They are basically taking over Davos,” he said.

Non-fungible tokens are digital collectibles. RollApp is trying to turn real-world assets like cars into NFTs.

‘Crazy weeks’

The strong industry performance at Davos comes despite the recent market crash. More than $500 billion was wiped off the crypto market in the last month, because The collapse of stablecoin terraUSD sent shockwaves throughout the industry.

The folks at Davos were likely committed to grabbing a space on the Promenade in the Alpine ski resort before the recent market crash.

“It’s been a crazy couple of weeks in crypto. We’ve been committed to getting here a long time ago but that’s not going to change. We’re in a position to withstand a bear market and there’s going to be a bull run. price back,” Clifford Sarkin, COO at blockchain startup Casper Labs, told CNBC.

Circle, one of the companies behind stablecoin USDC, has taken over one of the stores on Davos Pedestrian Street.

Arjun Kharpal | CNBC

Casper Labs has a blockchain product geared towards businesses. Blockchain became famous along with bitcoin but its definition has expanded. Proponents say it is actually a shared ledger of operations that could underpin business applications like cross-border money transfers.

Sarkin said the crash is positive for a company like his, which is focused on selling blockchain to enterprise customers, rather than consumers.

“It’s easier to do business in a bear cycle. A lot of people who came last year and were trying to make money in crypto have left because they said crypto is dead, now no longer working more and we’re going to get into real business,” he told CNBC.

According to CNBC International on Twitter and Facebook.

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