The growth of blockchain companies, and cryptocurrencies in general, has been one of the defining trends in the technology and finance sector. Once aspiring to obliterate the finance industry, technology and finance companies are beginning to work together on innovating how people use and spend money. As the industry shows signs of maturing, here are the top five most influential blockchain companies to keep an eye on for the next year:
LedgerX has taken the lead on so-called “derivative swaps” on digital currencies. The first company to receive United States regulatory approval back in July 2017 for the practice, the company reported it had begun trading derivative swaps for cryptocurrencies in November of the same year. While only dealing with the digital bitcoin currency right now, the LedgerX CEO Paul Chou has indicated the company’s ambitions extend far beyond bitcoin. As the only company with current regulatory approval in the United States, its ambitions may become a reality in the next year.
QUOINE is another innovative blockchain company seeking to stir things up in 2018. The company is seeking to solve a very simple problem in the world of finance – liquidity. As QUOINE notes, traditional markets look to large financial institutions for liquidity – a problem that had been without a solution for cryptocurrency users. Enter QUOINE LIQUID, the newest product from the company which is a “single globally-sourced trading platform with an associated suite of services.” The trading platform consists of a matching engine, cross currency conversion engine, and smart order routing – enabling traders to locate buyers and sellers quickly and efficiently. The suite of services will provide a traditional set of tools tailored to cryptocurrencies and blockchain companies.
Olympus Labs will be launching its own blockchain-tailored “financial ecosystem” in January 2018. According to Olympus Labs, its comprehensive marketplace of financial products and protocol is one of the many reasons the company is attracting its big name partners, a team of Yale graduates and industry vets. Its financial ecosystem will include a diverse range of fintech products and hedging tools with seamless wallet and payment integration. The company hopes that its new suite of products will encourage more fund and asset managers to include cryptocurrencies in their asset allocation models, by offering user-friendly tools to create custom products to sell within the Olympus marketplace. The company is also looking to expand into the lending and payments space, offering the same set of tools and protocol for easy integration and more user-friendly experience.
Switzerland-based Shapeshift is one of the original digital currency trading companies, and still one of its most innovative. With applications for iOS and Android, Shapeshift allows users to trade in over 40 different digital currencies. Also unique to Shapeshift, the company allows digital currencies to be traded without first collecting the funds into company accounts – part of a broader company strategy focused on discretion and privacy. The company’s established position as a market leader has also allowed it to expand the use of cryptocurrencies. In a change announced just this year, Shapeshift users can now use their digital currencies to pay on Overstock.com which is part of the company’s wider push to expand the use of cryptocurrencies into the consumer market.
Coinnest is a cryptocurrency exchange that introduces promising crypto currencies and blockchain technology into Korea and aims to provide a stable cryptographic trading environment. In July of 2017, we have acquired more than 30,000 members within three months after its first launch and the transaction volume is growing at a rapid rate of nearly four times. We are linked with the World’s leading exchanges, BTC Trade, Jubi.com, BTC-Box, etc., as family groups and ranked 4th in Korea and 18th in the world in Coinhills ranking. With the investment from Bitmain and the Quantum Foundation, the enterprise value was estimated to be over KRW 100 billion.
In 2018, the world of finance will be quickly evolving to accommodate the growing momentum of blockchain companies and cryptocurrencies. It is likely these five companies will play a large role in that evolution.