The Bitcoin space in New York has many hangers-on and would-bes/wannabes who buy, sell, and invest in the cryptocurrency.
But Bitcoin is much more than just a fancy currency and there are significant players here in the city, who are working across the spectrum of Bitcoin-related technologies, and who are quietly but surely building the future of the Internet, marketing and investing.
Meet the Real Players and the up-and-coming in the NYC Bitcoin Movement. It’s a brave new world, and these are the people who are making sure that it gets built.
Founder’s note: AlleyWatch does not have a financial relationship with any of those included. This list is in no particular order nor is it a ranking. In fact, the =RAND() function on excel was used to determine order.
Founder, Bitcoin Investment Trust
Founder of SecondMarket, Barry Silbert also created the Bitcoin Investment Trust, a private open-ended trust invested exclusively in Bitcoin and enables investors to gain exposure to the price movement of Bitcoin without the challenges of buying, storing, and safekeeping bitcoins.
He is also one of the most prolific angel investors in the Bitcoin space via his Bitcoin Opportunity Corp, with over 30 Bitcoin-related Bitcoin investments in companies including BitPay, Coinbase, CoinLab, Gyft, BitPremier, Coinsetter, itBit, Ripple Labs, Korbit, UnoCoin and BitPagos.
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Marco Santori is the head of the Regulatory Committee of the Bitcoin Foundation, and recently joined the industry-leading Blockchain.info. Author of the Bitcoin Law series of articles available on CoinDesk, he is considered one the world’s foremost authorities on Bitcoin regulatory issues and has been profiled as a thought leader on distributed finance by the Washington Post, Forbes, the New Yorker and the Wall Street Journal.
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Chief Strategy Officer, Bitreserve
Juan Llanos is Chief Strategy Officer and Chief Transparancy Officer for Bitreserve, a digital payments platform that addresses Bitcoin volatility and provides real-time transparency, transaction traceability, and proof of solvency.
Considered one of the foremost authorities in the world on Bitcoin compliance issues (AML & KYC), Llanos has a strong background in the remittance field and has been a certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist (CAMS) since 2003.
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Founder & CEO, MintCombine
Founder and CEO of MintCombine, a company that launches concepts, companies and products in the emerging P2P/Cryptocurrency Sector, including cryptocurrencies, analytics and Blockchain applications, Rik Willard is the first Bitcoin entrepreneur to popularize the idea of using cryptocurrencies for enlightened consumer engagement with global brands. He also advances crucial touchpoints of the digital currency value chain, including education and consulting, asset creation and strategic planning for large corporations and SMB’s.
Willard is a featured speaker on panels and on national television (from the Harvard Business School and Kaufmann Institute to CNN and CNBC) concerning entrepreneurship and digital matters. He is also the founder and Moderator of the ON:21 Vision Series, exploring digital interconnectedness, entrepreneurship and finance opportunities in the emerging digital currency movement.
Image credit: Mediabistro
COO & Co-Founder, Ethereum
Joseph Lubin is one of the Founders and core developers of the Ethereum Movement. Often called Bitcoin 2.0, Ethereum is less about currency and more about using the blockchain as a platform for a whole new Internet. It’s also a programming language that makes it possible for any developer to build and publish next-generation distributed applications. Ethereum can be used to codify, decentralize, secure and trade just about anything: voting, domain names, financial exchanges, crowdfunding, company governance, contracts and agreements of most kind, intellectual property, and even smart property thanks to hardware integration.
Lubin graduated cum laude with a degree in electrical engineering and computer science from Princeton. Prior to Ethereum, he worked in autonomous mobile robotics, machine vision, and artificial neural networks, as well as the hedge fund industry.
Ethereum recently completed a raise of over $15 million.
Image credit: CC by Duncan Rawlinson
Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss
Co-Founders, The Winklevoss Bitcoin Trust
The Winklevoss twins – Cameron and Tyler – are the Founders of Winklevoss Capital and the Winklevoss Bitcoin Trust, an exchange-traded fund. They have also launched Winkdex, a financial index that tracks the price of Bitcoin.
You might recognize the name from their Facebook lawsuit, when they sued Mark Zuckerberg (there was a $65 million settlement). The brothers also both competed in the Beijing Olympics
Image credit: CC by TechCrunch
Founder & CEO, Coinsetter
Jaron Lukasiewicz is Founder and CEO of Coinsetter, a Wall Street-built Bitcoin exchange for firms and individuals that reportedly “puts the power of institutional bitcoin trading at your fingertips.”
The venture capital-funded Bitcoin exchange that dedicated to making bitcoin safe and reliable for active users, and offers a transparent and institutional-class platform with easy-to-reach customer support.
Founder, Film Annex
Francesco Rulli is President and CEO of bitlanders, a Social RPG (Role Play Game) that merges Bitcoin, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and WordPress into one content platform that pays users based on their Buzz Score, a proprietary algorithm that measures the users creation of and engagement with quality content, and the reach and influence to broadcast this content to a larger audience. The payments made to the bitLanders community is in Bitcoin.
He is also the Co-founder of Women’s Annex, a website for financing women’s empowerment in developing countries and which pays women in Afghanistan for social media content… in Bitcoin.
Image credit: Wikipedia
Entrepreneurial investor and globally renown analyst Reggie Middleton is CEO of Veritaseum and creator of the UltraCoin. UltraCoin is less a coin, and more of a Fintech platform invented to harness the abilities of recent discoveries in cryptographic science to enable programmable money. The UltraCoin wallet, a patent pending technology that allows users to create their own “smart contracts” – unbreachable contracts based upon Bitcoin technology that enables money to be programmed and mimic the business functions of nearly any company or employee.
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Bitcoin Strategist & Programmer, Co-founder at Coin Apex
Alex Waters is one of the big thinkers for technology-fueled privacy in cryptocurrencies. He works in a number of capacities, mostly having to do with the programming end of Bitcoin.
Waters has been heavily involved and an active member of the Bitcoin ecosystem since its inception. With a background in programming and management, Waters worked on Bitcoin itself with the core development team, and has since worked in several managerial roles with many tech startups, including Bitinstant. He currently serves as an adviser to businesses, journalists, attorneys, and other major players in the Bitcoin space and has committed to building technology designed to create and drive positive global impact.
He is also the cofounder of Coin Apex, a software, technology, and
cryptography incubator, providing an environment with some of the top minds, expertise and experience in the industry.
Image credit: Twitter
NYC Bitcoin Meetup
Jonanthan Mohan is a founder of the NYC Bitcoin Meetup, BitcoinNYC, which is the largest such Meetup not only in New York City, but in the US. He provides insight and education in Bitcoin, so if you’re just getting started in the space, or want to know more about it, this is the place!
Singer/Songwriter/Bitcoin Activist and Founder, TatianaCoin
The “Artist Coin” is a new kind of biz model for Artists or anyone with talent and audience looking to interact with their supporters and raise funds for their projects. Similar to IndieGogo, the “Artist Coin” is easier to use with instant transfer at no additional fee. TatianaCoin will use a Bitcoin-driven platform to contribute to Tatiana’s 3rd album release & tour.
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Joe Fiscella is widely considered in Bitcoin circles as the core developer for so-called “Color Coins” which – among other things – use a derivation of the cryptocurrency ledger to create instances of indelible communications. He’s a big proponent of Florincoin.
Keep up with Joe:
Joe on Bitcoin
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COO at itBit Pte Ltd
He was also a founding partner at Liberty City Ventures, a seed stage fund focused on Digital Currency/Bitcoin startups and visionary entrepreneurs with disruptive companies in the digital currency arena.
He was also formerly an associate at TechStarsNYC for the Spring 2012 program.
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