New York Opens Blockchain Center Despite Crypto Price Woes


New York has placed a bet on blockchain with the unveiling of the new Blockchain Center.

The City of is betting on the blockchain market and the related crypto industry, all at a time a year-long bear market continues its relentless match into 2019.

The new center is a 4,000-square-foot facility opened by the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) on January 10.

Despite the ongoing crypto winter, the NYCEDC is doubling down on crypto for one primary reason: it believes in its future potential. And the Blockchain Center is likely to play a pivotal role in enhancing New York’s growing reputation as a blockchain destination.

According to one of the development body’s chief strategy officer Ana Arino, the EDC is “playing the long game.”

She acknowledges that the industry is still in its infancy and thus is bound to experience uncertainty “from year to year,” but adds that while no one can predict its evolutionary path, the city needs to have “a seat at the table shaping it.”

Microsoft and IBM join as corporate partners

New York’s Blockchain Center is situated in the Flatiron district, Manhattan and now forms part of the city’s Silicon Alley hub- reminding you of the grandeur of California’s Silicon Valley.

The NYCEDC developed the facility in partnership with GBBC Labs (an arm of Global Blockchain Business Council) and FuturePerfect Ventures. New York City provided the developers with a one-time investment fund of $100,000.

Microsoft and IBM joined the venture as corporate partners, and are said to have contributed to the funding.

Accordingly, the center is set to serve as a vital resource center for professionals. It will also offer lectures and coding classes and mentorship, with the aim of promoting blockchain and crypto adoption efforts.

The downturn in crypto prices saw pessimists declare bitcoin dead all through 2018. However, blockchain technology, which underpins virtual currencies, continues to receive massive attention and there have been calls that it could become mainstream within 2019.

Blockchain going mainstream

It’s not just governments that have realized that blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) is set to have a significant impact on fields like finance, education, and health.

That idea has permeated most sectors of the society to a point perennial anti-crypto publication MIT Technology Review. The review recently noted that blockchain use would become so widespread and “boring” within 2019 that it will become mainstream.

Microsoft Cities’ John Farmer, commenting on the potential impact of New York’s Blockchain center, referred to blockchain as an essential technology. As it goes mainstream, its extensive use will help the Big Apple in terms of creating job opportunities.

And IBM Blockchain’s general manager Marie Wieck called New York “the capital for blockchain.”

These sentiments are already in practice around the world, and Wall Street is getting onto the bandwagon at a high tempo.

Online retail giant Walmart has announced it’s ready to use its blockchain system that has been under development for several years.

The Rockefeller family, among the wealthiest dynasties with an estimated net worth of over $1 trillion, is also investing in the blockchain. David Pakman, who is a partner in Rockefeller’s investment arm Venrock, has reportedly earmarked a $2.6-billion fund to help nurture blockchain-based startups.

Disclaimer: This is not investment advice. Cryptocurrencies are highly volatile assets and are very risky investments. Do your research and consult an investment professional before investing. Never invest more than you can afford to lose. Never borrow money to invest in cryptocurrencies.

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