Some Argue Blockchain Enthusiasm Is Fading Quickly

Some Argue Blockchain Enthusiasm Is Fading Quickly

For a technology that was supposed to transform and solve seemingly every problem in the world, the enthusiasm is fading pretty quickly.

Blockchain, the underlying technology that powers cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin, is getting its last rites read at the Invest: NYC conference in New York, where hundreds of crypto true-believers have gathered Tuesday to discuss the latest trends in the still-nascent digital assets market.

The decentralized technology records and verifies transactions and has been adapted by companies including Walmart Inc. and Microsoft Corp. But after only a decade in use, some are already saying it’s perishing.

“Blockchain is dead,” Meltem Demirors, chief investment officer of CoinShares Group, said on the sidelines of the conference in Times Square. “After two, three years of spending a lot of money on this and a lot of investment dollars going into this, I think the bigger question as an investor is: What’s the scalable revenue model and is there equity value that’s created in these businesses? And arguably the answer is: not yet.” For evidence, Demirors points to early adapters including R3, Digital Asset Holdings and Chain, which she says are pivoting into new business models. “Most of the companies that raised massive amounts of capital in 2016, 2017 to build blockchain, they don’t exist anymore or they’ve pivoted into cryptocurrency and tokenization,” she said.

As cryptocurrencies caught fire in 2017 and early 2018, a raft of firms — including cigar manufacturers and sports-bra makers — cashed in on the market’s love affair with the underlying blockchain […]