Bitcoin is a bit of a head-scratcher. Its US dollar value has fallen about 30% year-to-date, and has sunk about 80% since peaking in late 2013. The digital currency is a long way from mainstream consumer adoption. Yet, its enthusiasts have had some reasons to be optimistic about bitcoin’s long-term prospects.
Coinbase, a bitcoin wallet provider, made headlines earlier this week when it closed on a $75 million private financing deal. Several prominent venture capitalists, including Coinbase investor Marc Andreessen, retain their faith in bitcoin’s future. Coinbase gained further legitimacy with the participation in its latest financing round of several mainstream financial institutions, including the New York Stock Exchange (Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (ICE)).
The disconnect between bitcoin’s lousy recent trading performance, and its long-term potential to support a new payments infrastructure, has attracted media attention. An article published by CoinDesk nicely summarizes the 2015 outlook for bitcoin by underlining this seeming paradox: “Ecosystem Grows Despite Price Decline.”
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