Forbes announced their Fintech 50 For 2019 list Tuesday, highlighting the fifty companies they think will have the biggest impact in 2019 in the world of financial technology. Cryptocurrency and blockchain has its own category in the list, and this year’s entrants were all well-known names in the space. Here we look at who was recognized by Forbes and why.
Bitfury, who just recently teamed up with the Commons Foundation to launch a Bitcoin project in Paraguay, has grown from being a mining hardware provider to launching their own blockchain and developing software to help identify illicit Bitcoin activity. Having closed an $80 million funding round in November last year, they also launched a Lightning Network payments channel last month.
Circle, which is backed by heavy hitters such as Breyer Capital and Goldman Sachs, increased their exposure into the crypto landscape last year by purchasing the Poloniex exchange and teaming up with Coinbase to launch the USDC stablecoin. Clearly, Forbes feels that these enterprises bode well for the company and more is to be expected in 2019.
The crypto giant, founded in 2012, has become the go-to crypto gateway for new entrants into the space. Coinbase built on their reputation in 2018 by adding “institutional grade” cryptocurrency custody and professional and institutional trading platforms, aiming to compete with the biggest exchanges such as Binance. They also purchased earn.com last year, which Forbes sees as another sign of Coinbase branching out in the right direction.
It was a busy 2018 for the Winklevoss twins, and 2019 seems as if it will be just as busy. Having obtained a New York trust company license they are now a qualified custodian and a fiduciary under New York Law, able to do business in 49 states. They also achieved a major coup of getting funds on their exchange insured, as well as launching their own stablecoin. What 2019 holds we will have to wait and see, but Forbes thinks it might be just as dramatic.
Ripple continues to makes huge claims about its partnerships, counting Santander, Bank of America, and American Express among its customers. The details of these partnerships have been called into question, but it cannot be denied that Ripple is by far and away the best chance crypto has of revolutionizing traditional banking, at least for now. 2018 saw more new partnerships and even more rumors, but perhaps 2019 will be the year of the ‘big one’ that silences the doubters once and for all.
Behind the Scenes Work Reveals All
With the crypto bear market showing no signs of reversal, it seems that the work being done under the hood is going to mark out the genuine contenders from the pretenders. It will be interesting to see how 2019 treats the above projects and if they can live up to their new billing as one of Forbes’ Fintech 50.