Bitcoin has the potential to become ‘digital gold’, but the currency will first have to be used more in daily life, says the CEO of the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE).
“Too early to call Bitcoin digital gold”
The CEO of the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), named Jeffrey Sprecher, says it is important that more transactions are handled with Bitcoins in order for the currency to actually become a long-term value mark-up.
There is absolute potential and the ICE is also trying to give BTC more use cases. The ICE subsidiary, called Bakkt, is developing an app for consumers to buy goods. Bakkt already has 1 important partner who supports the project, namely Starbucks.
A large part of the Bitcoin community already sees the coin as digital gold, but according to the CEO of the ICE that is too premature.
“Because I am old, I think back about how gold became a value store. This happened because at some point it was a means of payment,” he says. “We had gold coins that were in circulation, and over time it became a value store. Today, during a crisis, we all accept gold as a form of payment. “The Bitcoin can follow the same route,” says Sprecher, and adds:
We don’t think that the entire crypto space is relevant and will grow unless there are real use cases. I think the most important use case will be the digital transfer of value via payments.
“Using BTC as a payment method is not a utopia”
According to Sprecher, Bitcoin becoming a payment method is not a utopia. “It is quite possible that Bitcoins are used directly to buy things,” he says.
Parties that carry out transactions with Bitcoins will avoid exchange costs and transaction costs. Bakkt intends to serve this market with a digital platform.
The intercontinental exchange (ICE) has around 50 people working on the payment infrastructure for Bakkt. The company wants to launch the app in early 2020.
Financial institutions are wary
Bakkt recently announced the release of the first regulated BTC option contracts on 9 December. According to Bakkt, Bitcoin options have a number of important features, namely: efficiency, cash or physical handling, low costs, and instant messaging.
The Bakkt Bitcoin options will be based on the monthly Bitcoin futures contracts on the Bakkt exchange. According to many, the volume of the Bakkt exchange is disappointing. But according to the CEO, that is easy to explain:
Financial institutions are still wary of entering the crypto world. Large institutional institutions are waiting to see how regulators approach crypto, he said. Bakkt hopes to tackle this problem by offering a more regulated environment in the bitcoin ecosystem.