Entrepreneurs in nascent industries often face challenges that seasoned entrepreneurs might not have. In the blockchain industry, these challenges have included education, adoption and external forces like global regulation. Just "selling" a new technology to clients can be a challenge.
But in the case of blockchain and crytocurrency, these challenges are less and less of a problem, as the technology has already become a mainstream phenomenon: Consider just the fact that a company as influential as Facebook has launched the digital currency Libra.
Today, in fact, entrepreneurs around the world are asking how distributed ledger technology can help optimize their businesses. This has led to a blockchain revolution, with experts predicting the industry will grow to $60 billion by 2024.
The following founders and CEO are entrepreneurs working day by day to build out companies and solutions that will help the blockchain industry grow. For most, this is not their first entrepreneurial endeavor, either. So, if you're an entrepreneur wondering what blockchain can do for you, consider what these entrepreneurs have already done in the blockchain sphere:
1. Yubo Ruan, 8 Decimal
Yubo Ruan is the founder of 8 Decimal Capital, one of the leading blockchain investment firms in Silicon Valley and Beijing. He invested in more than 40 companies across five countries with many unicorns. Yubo was the co-founder at Skylight Investment, an early-stage tech-investment firm, backed by Taiyou Fund and New Oriental. Previously, Yubo started two highly successful companies, held four national patents and won multiple tech innovation awards.
2. Robert Küfner, Advanced Blockchain AG
Robert Küfner is Germany’s best-known blockchain pioneer; he's been active in the space since 2010. He founded the country’s first publicly listed blockchain company and helps with research, education and development of the technology, globally. Advanced Blockchain AG builds real-world solutions for corporations and was recently selected to participate in the Silicon Valley chapter of the German Accelerator. With peaq.io’s DagChain, Küfner is preparing to usher in a new revolution of innovation in the blockchain space.
3. Jag Singh, Vid Camera
Vid.Camera is a blockchain-based social media app that empowers users to create beautiful videos, control their data and monetize their memories. Vid has already partnered with influencers with more than 250 million-plus followers; those individuals will be creating daily content on the platform. Having already founded and been at the helm of a company that grew to $30 million-plus in revenue before his successful exit, Singh, as CEO of Vid, is well positioned to take on the social media giants.
4. Ali Ayyash, Lumeos
Ali Ayyash is a leading software engineer who's worked at Google and Amazon. He has designed and built multiple decentralized systems on Ethereum and aunched his latest platform, Lumeos.io, a data analytics platform, on the EOS blockchain. Lumeos fosters an open forum environment that enables users to manage and monetize their online persona while ensuring their privacy. Having partnered with Cint, an Audience Insights Exchange, Ayyash aims to allow millions of users to generate income for their valued time and posts online.
5. Aries Wang, Bibox Digital Asset Exchange
Aries Wang is a serial entrepreneur and seasoned investor in the blockchain space. Founded in 2017, Wang's Bibox Digital Asset Exchange grew to be a top exchange averaging over $200 million dollars per day. Today, it provides users with financial products that include crypto trading, margin trading, perpetual contracts and bonds. Wang is also a partner at the largest digital asset fund of South Korea, BlockWater Capital. His 2018 book Crypto Economy, has been acquired by numerous college libraries and companies such as Deutsche Bank.
6. Kyle Lu, Dapp.com
Kyle Lu is the founder and CEO of Dapp.com, the world’s largest distribution and analytics platform for decentralized apps (dapps). The company focuses on facilitating blockchain use cases and adoption by creating easy access and entry to use dapps. Prior to Dapp.com, Lu incubated over 10 dapps for the Achain ecosystem as a partner and vice president and brought the Asian-based blockchain company to a global top 80 market cap. An evangelist for dapps, Lu is a writer at Hacknoon and a regular speaker on blockchain adoption and market analysis.
7. Andrew Romans, 7BC.VC
Andrew Romans is a well-known venture capitalist who has successfully raised and managed two funds focused on emerging technologies. His latest fund, 7BC.VC, includes a blockchain element and looks to invest heavily into the emerging asset class. Prior to venture capital, Romans was a serial entrepreneur who raised more than $48 million for his startups before the age of 28. He is also an author, with the recently released Masters of Blockchain.
8. Adam Jiwan, Spring Labs
Fresh off of a $23 million fund-raising effort, Spring Labs is using blockchain technology to reinvent credit and data identity. CEO Adam Jiwan brings 15 years' experience starting and building fintech companies. His track record includes working as a seed investor in Avant; as the co-founder of Future Finance, which raised more than $325 million; and as someone who's served in various high-finance positions at Goldman Sachs and Soros Fund Management. With this experience and a team with a similar caliber, Spring Labs looks to change how data is shared and accessed.
9. Colin Pape, Presearch
A serial entrepreneur, Colin Pape founded ShopCity in 2011, which made headlines when the company battled Google in an antitrust lawsuit. This experience led to Pape's realization that the world needs a new and reformed decentralized search engine. That's how Presearch was born. Today, the company has over a million users and rewards users for their search engine activity. The Presearch community helps align interests and avoid any monopolistic tendencies by giving users full control over how their data is used.
10. Gleb Nikitin, MetaHash
Before #MetaHash, Gleb Nitikin developed ad buying tools, based on machine learning, which could instantly process enormous amounts of data. In 2016, to address the clients’ requests, his team began researching various blockchains but none of them could match those clients' business needs, and were slow and expensive. That’s how #MetaHash came to be -- as a way to turn the blockchain's status from niche to one of mass adoption. With know-how in data synchronization, #MetaHash today has a running network which processes more than 50k TPS with less than three seconds for transactions -- a rate that exceeds what Visa or Mastercard need. In addition, it claims its fees are 100 times lower than that of any other blockchain.
For entrepreneurs, taking note of the unique ways these people are utiliziing blockchain technology may help inspire them to find new ways to innovate, no matter what the size of a client company.
Three years ago, had I told a small business owner to think about how to incorporate blockchain into his or her business, that owner would have thought I was crazy. Today, the same statement is being taken seriously and being actively considered by entrepreneurs all over the world.
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