India, the second most populous country has recently awoken to cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. Until last year, the country’s cryptocurrency community was made up of only a handful of people. Now, the rapidly growing ecosystem has witnessed not only an increase in Bitcoin and altcoin users but also blockchain technology developers and adopters.
In the past year alone, some of the leading banks in the country have forged partnerships with blockchain platforms like Ripple, Hyperledger and Stellar to develop and implement blockchain solutions for cross-border fund transfer and other operations. Recently, Bajaj Electricals became the first company to include cryptocurrency technology for settling vendor/supplier payments through Yes Bank. As the interest in the sector continues to grow, there is an upsurge of events related to various blockchain platforms.
The demand for such events, mostly among the C-level executives of various companies has also seen an increase in the entry fees. A comparison to earlier events to the ones happening this year shows the rising trend, moving from “free entry” to almost $1000 per ticket, which is a bit unrealistic in a cost-conscious market like India where blockchain technology is expected to help the unbanked and underbanked.
While few events do mint money in the name of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology, there are few occasional “invite-only” events and regular free for all meetups that happen as well. Either held in small event spaces or restaurants, these events allow people to interact with like-minded cryptocurrency enthusiasts and industry experts to understand the technology better.
Blocksmiths recently organized one such “invite only” event in association with IBM Bluemix. Held on May 5, 2017, saw top management executives, CxOs, start-up founders, independent consultants and journalists in attendance. Organized with the intention of spreading awareness about cryptocurrencies and distributed ledger technology, discussions during the event revolved around blockchain’s various use cases in banking, manufacturing, logistics, IoT and cybersecurity.
The shifting trend in the Indian startup ecosystem towards cryptocurrency technology shows the country’s readiness to be part of a revolution that is expected to generate about $110 billion in impact by 2021.