Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao believes that traditional financial players’ reluctance to adopt cryptocurrencies in the short term may backfire over the next two decades. He argues that traditional institutions that slow down on crypto adoption will be placed way behind the curve in the long run, and that it may have “existential implications” for them. CZ also believes that the recent collapse of major crypto companies and accusations of insider trading have set the industry back by a few years and will lead to increased scrutiny from regulators. Despite this, he and other crypto entrepreneurs remain optimistic about the long-term potential of the crypto market, as evidenced by the current bull run and the recovery of Bitcoin prices.
The collapse of FTX, a $32 billion crypto exchange, has led to concerns about the stability of the cryptocurrency market. FTX’s former CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried, was arrested and charged with wire fraud, securities fraud, and money laundering. The company allegedly dipped into client accounts to make risky trades through its sister firm Alameda Research. The FTX incident could lead to changes in the crypto industry in the following ways:
- Regulation: The lack of regulation in the crypto industry means that investors don’t have the same protections as they would with a licensed bank or broker. Governments in the U.S., EU and U.K. are taking steps to clean up the market, with the EU’s MICA being the most comprehensive regulatory framework to date.
- Consolidation: The collapse of FTX could lead to fewer firms and coins existing in the future, as many new companies and projects emerged in the years following the 2018 crypto winter. The contagion from FTX’s failure is already impacting other trading and lending firms, such as BlockFi, Gemini, and Genesis.
- Centralization and decentralization: The biggest lesson from FTX’s bankruptcy is that “you cannot have complete centralization and lack of oversight,” according to Kevin de Patoul, CEO of crypto market maker Keyrock. He believes that there needs to be a balance of power and proper oversight when centralization is present.