Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong envisions a future in which every business in the world is in crypto.
According to Armstrong, every business of the future will be integrated with cryptocurrency the same way it is on the internet today.
The comments came in a rare interview with CNBCin which Armstrong outlined his vision for the future of the exchange, including subscription services and regulatory compliance.
Crypto and the web
Predictions and the future figured prominently in the half-hour interview. Armstrong was asked to predict where the industry was heading on several occasions.
On one such occasion, Armstrong was asked if big tech would play a role in the future of the crypto ecosystem.
“I hope so, I mean we want every business in the world to integrate with crypto,” said Armstrong, who likened today’s crypto ecosystem to the Internet of Things. beginnings.
“That’s like saying we want every business to have an internet presence or use the internet in some way, even if it’s not an internet business, it’s going to have a homepage or maybe bringing in new customers through the internet or accepting payments. And so crypto is the same way, I think, and big tech is going to have a role to play,” he said.
According to Armstrong, cryptocurrency and its various offshoots, including non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and Web3, will eventually become ubiquitous. At this stage, however, these industries are still far from mature. Armstrong called the current state of the industry “Web2.5,” which is easy for critics to dismiss as too centralized among other issues.
“I see this as just an opportunity to continue moving in this direction towards Web3,” says Armstrong.
The Coinbase of tomorrow
Armstrong was also asked about the future of Coinbase. The company recently changed its business model from a trading fee model to a subscription model with no trading fees.
Armstrong explained the rationale behind the move which will make the company more resilient to market shocks and “make our earnings more predictable over the long term.”
Armstrong also explained why the company recently pulled out of a proposed high-yield interest staking product. The CNBC the host told Armstrong that problems at Voyager and Celsius are what caused the company to turn around. Armstrong responded that it was regulatory concerns that caused them to reconsider, rather than the credit risk profile.
“We want to be the most compliant, most regulated and most trusted product on the market,” he said. “It’s been our strategy for 10 years, and so if there are any regulators who have a challenge with what we’re doing, you know we’re going to have a dialogue with them. Unless we strongly disagree with that, I think 90% of the time we’re just going to take the advice. »
In the shadow of sanctions against Tornado Cash, such adherence to compliance and regulatory oversight may worry Ethereum users. What would happen if regulators relied on Coinbase to censor transactions on the Ethereum blockchain?
According to an August 17 Armstrong tweet, Armstrong would rather shut down Ethereum staking on Coinbase than censor the network.
Presumably then, such a request for censorship of the network by OFAC or another body would fall within the 10% of times Coinbase would violate regulatory oversight.
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