Ethereum, which allows apps to be built on top of it, will be a key driving force for the wide adoption of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology, Jeremy Allaire, CEO of Goldman Sachs-backed digital currency exchange Circle, told CNBC on Thursday.
In the blockchain industry, the focus has begun to shift from “core commodities” such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) to applications and higher-level utilities developed on top of Bitcoin, Ethereum, or other protocols, Allaire said in an interview for CNBC’s Fast Money program. He stressed the importance of these blockchains, pointing out they provide “a new infrastructure layer of the internet that we can all build on top of.” Allaire went on to add this view is shared by Jihan Wu, CEO of Chinese crypto mining equipment producer Bitmain.
“Any kind of trust-oriented record keeping application in the world can be improved with crypto assets and blockchain technology, and we believe it is just going to be a fundamental horizontal technology as broadly adopted as the internet is today,” according to Allaire.
Circle’s CEO sees the Ethereum protocol at the forefront of this development. He said: “One of the things that really catalyzed the [virtual currency] market last year was actually that Ethereum, in particular, kind of got to a place where you could build apps on top of it, you can issue new tokens on top of it, you can create new kinds of financial contracts using the smart contract technology.”
What is more, the Ethereum blockchain has facilitated the execution of initial coin offerings (ICOs), which are fundraising campaigns utilizing digital token sales, Allaire noted, adding that the success of this protocol has led to the creation of infrastructures such as EOS, NEO, and Cardano.