Jeff Sprecher’s FOMO On Bitcoin Profits Might Have Helped His Decision To Create Bakkt
Jeff Sprecher, ICE, and Bakkt have become common names in and around the crypto ecosystem. The Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) announced the launch of Bakkt, a new digital asset platform. The move, which represents one of the biggest moves by a Wall Street firm into crypto, swept financial news.
Jeff Sprecher sat down for a podcast for with Joshua King, VP Communications of ICE a couple of months back.
Early on in the interview, Josh mentioned that the only common denominator between all the trading systems that Jeff has disrupted in his eventful career had one thing in common. Sprecher had very little to no knowledge about the particular system when he got into it.
“I think as an entrepreneur, if you go into an industry that you don’t know a lot about, it forces you to ask a lot of questions and take a fresh perspective. Because you have no other perspective. That’s what we have done at ICE for the last 20 years.”
This is the same attitude with which Sprecher is diving into the bitcoin business.
In Dec 2017, at a Goldman Sachs conference, Jeff Sprecher famously said, “We may be stupid if we are not being first on that (bitcoin.)” Of course a lot of things have changed since he made that statement. Bitcoin has had a rollercoaster ride in these few months. When asked if his perception of bitcoin has changed since then,
“There are many people in the world that are going to trust mathematics over a government or central bank. It’s interesting in the case of bitcoin itself. Nobody has ever met Satoshi, no one has ever seen him. Yet there are a lot of people who are willing to put their trust in his idea than they are willing to trust institutions.
The blockchain technology is going to be indelible of the truth. In other words, all history can be written to some mathematical infrastructure and ledgers and cannot be erased. At this moment we are having a public debate over whether it is right to let computers have the ability to mine our identities or we have a right to be forgotten. It’s an interesting oxymoron. At the same moment of time, we are fascinated by an indelible record, we are also asking how can we be forgotten.”
To explain this further, Jeff gives an example of Uber.
“To drive a Taxi in New York, you have to have a license, get your car insured, registers with unions and so on. However, for Uber’s driver, all he needs is a few thumbs up and people will trust those thumbs up over traditional taxis anyday. Technology has reached a point today that many of us can trust it, more than many of us trust each other.”
“I don’t know what the future holds but I do know that there is something happening here that we can’t ignore.”
Jeff’s FOMO of Bitcoin has not only created ripples around the crypto ecosystem but can help permanently shape it.