WCC 2019 With Adam Williams of Evolv Events

VEGAS BLOCKCHAIN WEEK 2019 WILL BRING THOUSANDS OF DIGITAL CURRENCY AND BLOCKCHAIN TECHNOLOGY PROFESSIONALS INTO THE HEART OF THE LAS VEGAS STRIP FOR A MULTITUDE OF EVENTS AND EXPERIENCES.


THIS YEAR, WCC’S 2ND ANNUAL BLOCKCHAIN AND DIGITAL CURRENCY EVENT TAKES OVER TWO LEVELS OF THE COSMOPOLITAN OF LAS VEGAS MEETING SPACE.


WCC WILL HOST MULTIPLE TRACKS ON 4 STAGES WITH OVER 125 HAND-PICKED SPEAKERS, INCLUDING A MAIN CONFERENCE, MULTIPLE BLOCKCHAIN DEVELOPER CONFERENCE, MINING CONFERENCE, EDUCATIONAL WORKSHOPS, ALLOCATION LOUNGE, NETWORKING EVENTS AND MORE…


THOUGHT LEADERS FROM NOTABLE COMPANIES WILL DESCEND ON LAS VEGAS TO DISCUSS THE IMPLEMENTATION AND REAL-WORLD USE CASES OF BLOCKCHAIN, DIGITAL CURRENCY, AND THE MANY WAYS OUR EMERGING TECHNOLOGY IS DISRUPTING GLOBAL ENTERPRISES. TOPICS OF DISCUSSION WILL FOCUS ON DISTRIBUTED LEDGER TECHNOLOGY, BLOCKCHAIN USE CASES, DIGITIZED ASSETS, DISRUPTION, AND DEVELOPMENTS IN THE ADOPTION OF DIGITAL CURRENCY. WHAT PROBLEMS ARE WE AIMING TO SOLVE? WHAT ENTERPRISE COMPANIES ARE LEADING THE CHARGE? HOW ARE MAJOR FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS ADAPTING? WHAT FORMS OF ADOPTION WILL WE SEE IN 2019 AND 2020?


What is your goal/purpose in hosting this event?

Our primary focus is to deliver high quality, relevant content to blockchain and digital currency enthusiasts in an upscale atmosphere. We expect everyone that attends our events to leave with something valuable such as new relationships, industry knowledge, partnerships or hands on education they can put to use.


What makes your event special and sets it apart from other events of its kind?
I would say quality and attention to detail. We do not allow companies to pay to speak on our stages or pitch products. This year we will have 4 stages with over 125 carefully selected speakers. The content is purposeful and driven by what’s happening right now in this ecosystem. People attend WCC because it’s the one event each year where they can get valuable insight without the sales pitch. It’s where major announcements are made and companies come to showcase what they’ve been working on all year.


What part of your event are you most excited about bringing to attendees?
This year we’re launching WCC DEV CON, a first of its kind, multiple blockchain developer conference. So many developer conferences are blockchain centric, meaning they only focus on one blockchain. We wanted to create an environment that encompassed all blockchains that want to participate. Everyone is welcome and we encourage blockchains to work together to reduce tribalism amongst each other. We all need to work together to solve problems and overcome challenges. We figured the best way to do it would be to get everyone in the same room for three days and share ideas, work on solutions and overcome challenges.


Who can attendees expect to hear/see while at your event?
We have a long list of speakers that really bring something for everyone. If you’re into trading you may want to check out Charlie Shrem, Joe McCann, Jon Najarian and several others during the Crypto.IQ Trading Event. If you’re looking for insight on the regulatory environment you’ll be interested in sessions with Jeff Weninger, Adam Healy, Sanja Davidovic and Caitlin Long amongst others. Developers will look forward to hear from speakers like Brendan Eich, Brian Behlendorf and Tron Black. Anyone interested in mining will get two jam packed days of content from some of the most successful pioneers in the space. The list goes on and on, but I can assure you there will be no disappointment if you came for content!


What makes this event different from events you’ve hosted in the past?
We’ve really expanded this year to lock arms with some of the most notable event organizers in the space. Vegas Blockchain Week will host 15 events over 7 days. Some of the most notable are Michael Terpin who brings his 5th CoinAgenda Global, Charlie Shrem with his Crypto.IQ Trading Event and Charlie Lee and the Litecoin Foundation are hosting their second annual Litecoin Summit. We also have several fun events happening including our Ultra VIP Topgolf Networking Event, our first ever Lightning Cup Series eSports Event, and our annual CryptOween party. There really is something for everyone. It’s going to be an incredible week to be in Vegas for anyone that’s in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space.

VESA – The Crypto Artist

By Gabriel Negrín - 

Crypto artist, performer and keynote speaker V E S A is best known for working with Bollywood actress Veena Malik in a world-changing collaboration, which was seen by around 300 million people through BBC World, The Independent, IBT, Times of India, VICE, etc. His innovative mixed media platform Artevo soft forked in 2017 to Art For Crypto, which is rapidly establishing new creative standards in the blockchain art space. We caught up with him in the run up to WCC 2019 to learn more about his experience in the space and what he is currently working on.


What was the first serious exchange you had with art? Was that the moment you decided to dedicate your life to it, or is there some other experience that is the foundation stone of your artistic life?


The first conscious moment, outside of music, was a photograph I took of a street dog with a Fisher-Price kids camera in Singapore as a 5-year-old. Even if it was a toy camera, it had a tower flash and the recording medium was film, so the emotional grain, and abandonment seeping through the frame - had me return to the image time and time again. It still serves as a good reminder that you don't need the highest end of tech nor massive budgets to reach hearts.


What lead you to crypto initially?


It was a gradual process, connected to experiences as far back as I can remember, but seeing some documentaries in 2008 certainly propelled it forward in leaps. First, it was about the system of money around 2006 and in 2017 more crypto awareness. In between those, the art side is that I've made 350 museum grade digital original artworks across my two sites. They are now becoming a valuable asset finally via blockchain tech. Many who love Bitcoin feel digital assets are inferior in art still. At some point soon, people will start to realize that authentication tools for digital works are beginning to make them more secure as an investment than physical works. They are more convenient to collect, trade, transport, and showcase too.


How was the process of connecting art with bitcoin and crypto? Do you have any creative process that you follow religiously when creating crypto art?


It goes beyond just crypto art to a whole mindset. Coming across the work of the philosopher Ken Wilber and his integral theory gave me an ambitious framework in my early twenties. It ultimately allows minimal comfort zone due to being so all-encompassing. Real creativity is a performance on a scale of pro athletes, and each discipline requires tremendous effort. Most of my art is storytelling with a purpose. I don't mean that in the sense of making things up, but discovering useful truth about our world and packaging it into a form that can be conveyed and utilized by others. The function, not form, is essential. This perspective has allowed me able to make art, film, photography, and writing on a professional level.


What is it like to create art about the blockchain space?


It's full of relevance, drama, and hope for the future. Much of the political polarization of today stems from nothing being fixed about the financial system since the 2008 crash. We learned that banks and big corporates have socialism, and for the rest of us, there are crony capitalism and tribal propaganda wars. It was the worst thing for any meritocratically thinking and justice-motivated person. Crypto is providing a way forward to many, who only saw corrosion ahead without it. I get to ride shotgun as a creative telling this story and discovering new solutions every day. That alone is worth coming on this half-rekt planet. This is why some of the current in-fighting is so disappointing, even if in part, absolutely necessary. Art is allowed to keep the focus on the big picture while offering support to integrity.


Art tied to Bitcoin: how did this proposal come up?


If you go to Art Basel, you will see hundreds of very average works going for about $50K. There is not much cross-referencing in crypto and the legacy art world, making value propositions tricky. It's meeting the market more than halfway. The understanding of what gives art value becomes comfortable with something familiar to the space. The popular re-paints are limited to three pieces only, so the scarcity tied to 1 BTC makes it ROI easily digestible. Personally, I think top crypto art is far more valuable than average Art Basel, so I'm assuming those who collect me now, will soon be quite happy they did.


Art is a vehicle of expression, and it is usually born as a protest expression, what is your art protesting against? Can art be both a protest expression and a philanthropic endeavor?


We can do better than just philanthropy on the positive side. We still run the global education system with the values of the industrial revolution, where creativity is still at the bottom. Sir Ken Robinson has great TED talks about that. Now that low-end white-collar jobs are already being automated by AI, the ratio of losing 9/10 startups is about to get worse. We either start to take creativity seriously or bleed trillions. That being said, I want to evolve people's perception of substantial art as protest alone. I aim to get art to remember that it can also show what possible in the future. Our brains function with problems much better once we have a goal. If we transform our educational values, perhaps 9/10 of startups will start to succeed. It really isn't a mystery to me why most fail. If we were educated into creativity, instead of out of it like now, perhaps climate change would not be so hard to solve on a collective level.


Can you tell us a bit more about “The Million Dollar Art in the Making”?


I had the privilege of being a guest of Joel and Travis on The Bad Crypto Podcast. I wanted to make something special for it, so I made this art piece called Blood On The Podcast Floor, which was just about fun. Live on stage at World Crypto Con, Charlie Lee, Maxine Ryan, Vinny Lingham, and Ronnie Moas signed it for charity - as well as Joel and Travis. It soon started gathering more support, and now Andreas Antonopoulos, Brock Pierce, Jeremy Gardner, Vitalik Buterin, Peter McCormack have also signed it.


I'll keep asking for more signatures until someone offers over a million dollars to the HAWC charity. It has been providing shelter for women and children, against domestic violence for 40 years. The crypto payment process was set up by Blake Rizzo, who is the lawyer for Tour De Crypto, as well as the Litecoin Foundation. The charity will receive the payment directly. It really should be in a museum already, and won't change ownership before we make it the most expensive crypto art piece ever sold at $1MM+. Who knows what it will be worth in 20 years with those signatures?


What art pieces are you taking with you to WCC 2019? What is the price you have set for them?


Most of them are re-paints, which means high-end 80x40in canvas prints with acrylic painting on top. They are limited to three only, and the price is tied to 1 BTC. I'll also bring with me some more affordable signed prints. I look forward to seeing how the Litecoin Foundation commissioned INVISIBILITY piece will do.


The optimal deal right now is the Fork And Flip re-paint. It is the 3/3 version. It is the only one close to the original digital form without company logos, and available for only 1 BTC. It frontlined the article on the whole movement on Forbes, went to half of London via City A.M and has a mini-movie about it. I currently feel like a person standing in the street corner handing out a bag full of money with it, and people just walk by.


The attendees of WCC 2019 will also be taking part in a giveaway for one of your pieces, “Beyond Moon”. How could you describe this unique piece of art?


It was a lot of fun to make combining the history, present, and future of Vegas to crypto, and to World Crypto Con. There is a mini-movie explaining the piece further to those interested. We will raffle a big 80x40in unique print of it to those who collect the digital NFT version - for free also. There are now multiple companies helping out to make this thing happen. Codex Protocol is there to verify and help people collect the NFT's. They are printing an instruction note in the goodie bag. Bravocoin, the Yelp for blockchain, will help people locate us physically, verify that it is downloaded only from location, and also will organize a digital treasure hunt via their app. The Fomo Hunt team will promote the works, as they have many listed on their site. CoinGenius collected an augmented print, for which we agreed they are a part sponsor of the exhibit.


Why Artevo (Art Evolving)? What has been the evolution of your art since you first started?


The same bizarre engine that drove it from the beginning is still there. What has evolved is the substance and clarity. After music, film was the first discipline that I took on professionally. I got educated as a director and managed a production company making documentary films, music videos, and various photography for seven years before entering contemporary art. The bodypainting process I innovated in 2008 naturally transformed into a collaboration with a Bollywood film star Veena Mailk, which led us to change the world and reach about 300-million people. This is now shifting to a repeatable process with a western star, that can integrate crypto companies and help mass adoption.


Now that we are talking about your art and its evolution, what’s the next step for VESA’s art? What’s the next big thing on the to-do list for you?


I'm looking for investors to back a multi-level blockchain media company that incorporates art, celebrity collaborations and high-end advertising under one roof. It will be backed by the 350 digital museum grade art pieces and direct access to the market via conferences, writing, and other media appearances. Basically, I've been building products and the next evolution of art for a decade, which can now become a full force of nature. The vision is ambitious but achievable with the right support. We are in preliminary negotiations with a couple of people about the sectors of responsibility within it.


Since we continue to focus on the evolution of art, is there any future art proposal you're working on right now?


I'm working on a platform that will keep me busy for the rest of my life. It is ambitious, for sure, but also just the next logical steps on where art is going - after having thought it through. AI, VR, and blockchain are all merged in it together. Art will soon go through its own AlphaGo phase, and I intend to ride and direct, for my part, that wave. If successful, it will eventually change what we think is possible with art.


As an artist, what is your take on the registration and authentication of works of art on blockchain?


As soon as I got to know it was possible, I started doing it. Blockchain verification solves many of the problems with living artists that we now have with the dead ones. Those problems have made many wealthy and powerful. Through new solutions, many of the current middle-meddlers become unnecessary. The artists, by enlarge, are at the bottom of the hierarchy of the legacy art world. Currently, the innovators are attempting to adapt to the conditions and ideas of those without them. With these solutions, we get to create decentralized opportunity and market places that did not exist yesterday. Much of the world of the old masters will justifiably remain, but the contemporary market gallery fiat will be harshly re-evaluated soon.


Which artists do you look up to? Are there any other crypto artists you would recommend to us?


I don't look up to people anymore, but appreciate many others. Crypto Graffiti has a very classy operation going on. Trevor Jones is prepping for a cool London show for 2020. Tom Badley has an interesting skill set to bring to this space. Nanu Berks's new work is taking a fresh shape. Shamanic Harmonics has a great combo of tech and spirituality. Hodl.Rocks is experimenting with laser cut depth pieces. Lucho Poletti is using propaganda art well. Crypto Brekkie is great at BTC education through creative solutions. There are many depending on the flavor you are into.


Tokenizing the art: is it a big yes or a big no for you?


A big yes, but it is complicated for now. The new market is starting to emerge, as creatives are jumping on board, but it certainly is a jungle out there for evaluating worth. I've been doing museum-grade, high-resolution art pieces for a decade, which can now finally be monetized via blockchain. Some of these images have taken years, crews of people, and tens of thousands of dollars to become a reality. The prices that make sense to ask, simply don't exist in terms of collectors, who aren’t willing to pay that much for NFT's at the moment. I'm collaborating with Blockchain Art Exchange with a few unique $30-60K pieces as a test, and also started making much more affordable new ones - ranging from 1.5ETH to $2000. I'm getting into it, but carefully.


Is there anything you would change in the crypto space right now?


For now, art in this space is seen mostly as a luxury item instead of an investment. Your Lambo's, watches and boats are 30% less when out of the shop. The art I'm making, I intend to be 10-100x in value sooner rather than later. In film school, I realized that the course that had been running for 20-years wasn't going to put us emerging filmmakers in touch with actors, musicians, set builders, artists - all of whom were in the same building or the one next to us. It was a good lesson. If this is true inside of the creative field, how bad is it elsewhere? What are we losing not having these conversations? My coming podcast called WE LOVE DECENTRALIZED aims to change this paradigm. It is me as a creative talking to high-performance people traditionally not seen as creatives. This includes founders, CEO's, and thought influencers of many sorts.


Other than art and crypto, are there any other activities you enjoy?


I listen to podcasts a lot, work out, take saunas, relax with movies, and sometimes drink late with friends in blockchain meet-ups and conferences. As my fiancee will testify, I'm a fairly intense and mission-focused human, but now at 41, better at balancing these days than before. You get more done with good sleep and remembering that life can be great just listening to music.


Any final words you would like to share?


I just locked down a show through Max Studennikoff for the London CC Forum. It takes place a week before the Vegas Blockchain Week and hopefully lands me the primary sponsor for World Crypto Con. A company can have it by just collecting a 1 BTC re-paint from me. We will also auction a piece called HELLO for charity, as well as try to find me a 5-minute lightning spot to talk about the merger of creativity and tech. I hear Roger Ver is in town, and the BCH logo on the Blood On The Podcast Floor piece is still unsigned. Adam Williams is already aligning some amazing new ones in Vegas, so can't wait to land to McCarran, and get this show back on the US road. London is becoming significant, but 85% of the traffic to my site comes from the states.

 

Michael Terpin – Transform Group

By Hugues Bugilimfura - 

Michael Terpin is founder and CEO of Transform Group, whose divisions include Transform PR, a global public relations firm that has served more than 200 clients in the blockchain field and helped launch more than 100 ICO’s, including Aion, Aeternity, Augur, Bancor, Dent, Ethereum, Factom, Golem, Gnosis, Lisk, MaidSafe, Neo, Qtum, SALT Lending, VideoCoin, and WAX Token; CoinAgenda, a global event series for cryptocurrency investors and blockchain innovators since 2014 (including the first blockchain conferences in the Caribbean), and Transform Strategies, the company’s advisory division. Transform Group is headquartered in San Juan, Puerto Rico, with offices in Santa Monica, Las Vegas, Silicon Valley, New York, Toronto, Cape Town and Seoul.

Terpin also co-founded BitAngels (www.bitangels.io), the world’s first angel network for digital currency startups, in May, 2013, and serves as its managing director; the network now also holds physical pitch events and angel meetings in two dozen cities globally, with a goal of reaching 100 city chapters by the end of 2020. Terpin is also co-founder of Aspire, a new asset creation blockchain platform scheduled to launch its main net in early 2020.


Previously, Terpin founded Marketwired, one of the world’s largest company newswires, which was acquired in 2006, later sold to NASDAQ for $200 million, and ultimately to West Corp, a division of Apollo Global Management (NYSE: APO). He also co-founded Direct IPO, one of the earliest equity crowdfunding companies, and founded his first PR firm, The Terpin Group, which represented many of the early Internet leaders, including America Online, Earthlink, Match.com and the Motley Fool. The Terpin Group was sold in 2000 to Financial Dynamics, now part of FTI Consulting (NYSE: FCN), the same year he received venture funding from Sequoia Capital and Hummer Winblad for Marketwired’s predecessor, InternetWire. He is co-founder of Blockchain Wire, a blockchain newswire partnered with the combined Marketwire/GlobeNewswire news distribution platform.

Terpin holds an MFA from SUNY at Buffalo and dual BA in journalism and English from Syracuse University, where he serves on the board of advisors at the top-ranked Newhouse School of Public Communications. Terpin is also an investor and advisor to many blockchain, media and technology companies, including Aion, Polymath, Purse.io, ShapeShift, VideoCoin and WAX. He is a general partner and heads up the ICO investment committee in Alphabit Fund (www.alphabit.fund), a Cayman Island registered digital currency fund with $400 million assets under management and a first-year return on investment of more than 750%. Terpin lives with his wife, Maxine, and three dogs in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where he received the first Act 20 investor decree granted to a blockchain industry investor. He, along with Gabriel Abed and Roger Ver, co-founded the Caribbean Blockchain Association in 2015.

We caught up with Michael in the run up to WCC 2019 to look back over some of the key experiences of his career, to discuss his latest projects, and get his overall opinion on the market.


You’ve had an illustrious career in PR working with America Online, Earthlink, Jupiter, Motley Fool, Match.com, Shapeways and many more. What made you make the shift to start promoting ICO’s?

I’ve prided myself on recognizing important new technologies, often years before they’re in vogue (this can be both a blessing and a curse – the old saying is that you can tell the pioneers by “the arrows in their back”). My first agency launched the first consumer digital camera for Chinon (back when it was $1000 to take eight tiny black and white images at a time), the first national ISP (Earthlink), the first online financial advice site (Motley Fool), etc. Shapeways, which we launched through our work with the Philips digital incubator, was a true innovation in bringing 3D printing to the masses.


When I first discovered bitcoin in early 2013, I could see it was another massive innovation, and when I was given the chance to work with the first ICO, Mastercoin (and then MaidSafe, Ethereum and Factom in fairly rapid succession), I could see the disruptive appeal of having a “kickstarter” for a digital token, funded by its community of developers and enthusiasts.

Through the Transform Group, you have represented some of the crypto heavy-wieghts like Ripple, Ethereum, Tether and NEO. What do you think is the most important factor that is going to determine whether or not a project survives the current altcoin bear market?

There’s not a simple answer, as all projects have their own strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Once again, I’ll return to community. If there are ten new projects trying to become the “next Ethereum” for creating smart contracts or digital assets, they’d better get the developers and users onboarded and excited early on. When we helped launch Lisk, it was very helpful to have Charles Hoskinson as an advisor and to stay true to their vision of simplifying smart contracts through the use of JavaScript, as well as going after a more consumer market instead of business-to-business.

What gap in the marketplace are you hoping to fill with BitAngels?

BitAngels was started by me and David Johnston in early 2013 as an online network of angel investors from around the world who were looking to support bitcoin by funding its infrastructure of new wallets, exchanges and applications. When BitAngels members funded the bulk of the Mastercoin ICO, its mission evolved a bit and I started the CoinAgenda conference series in 2014 to allow for more investors to meet in person with projects. This has now evolved into the BitAngels City Network, where early-stage blockchain projects can apply to present for free at any of the dozen current city chapters holding monthly meetings, with a goal of 100 cities by the end of 2020.

What qualities are you looking for in a cryptocurrency project founder and
management team?

Vision, experience and the ability to hire and make decisions quickly and well. Without vision, projects follow rather than lead (all great companies and tokens were first-of-their kind in some fashion). It’s also a deal-killer if they don’t know their industry and competition intimately; if I know more about their competitors than they do, I would not consider investing.

How would you suggest a new project should raise money in 2019?

We are at an awkward moment in time, when jurisdictional arbitrage is in full bloom and many countries who in five years will become hotbeds of blockchain innovation (I still have hopes for my native New York state, but it’s more likely that my current home, Puerto Rico, will be more of a leader in this regard, as Wyoming has already become to their great benefit).

Can you tell us a bit more about the project that you are actively working on with
BitAngels?

BitAngels isn’t a venture fund (although there was a BitAngels Fund 1 in 2014, which has since been fully distributed and did very well); it’s an angel group with ongoing events in multiple cities around the world. We plan to offer global memberships by the end of the year to investors who want to see the presentations prior to the events, as well as some VIP dinners and events (including the first BitAngels VIP during World Crypto Con).

After starting a very successful cryptocurrency pr agency, what made you decide to
launch the CoinAgenda Global Conference?

I’m a serial entrepreneur, and at times I’ve been crazy enough to be a “parallel, serial entrepreneur” – I incubated two companies while running my first PR firm in the 1990s: DirectIPO, one of the first equity crowdfunding companies, and Internet Wire, which became Market Wire following our partnership with NASDAQ and is now part of Globe NewsWire, which is owned by NYSE giant Apollo Global Management. I decided to start CoinAgenda because I thought there was a need for a global conference on blockchain investing – not just technology, investing.

How does the work involved in organising and hosting a huge conference like
CoinAgenda Global compare to the promotional work at Transform Group?

We have separate teams for CoinAgenda and Transform PR. Both disciplines take dedicated teams of talented people, but the needs of PR clients are year-round (albeit with “spikes” around product launches), whereas our conferences take place over a defined period of days and take months to plan, but when they are completed, you pack up and then start planning the next one. PR campaigns are more fluid.

What is the easiest and hardest thing about getting the best speakers in the industry to gather in one place?

The hardest thing is coming up with themes and panel topics that will be relevant to days of the conference months ahead. Another key ingredient is getting the initial rock stars to commit (this year, we have Jed McCaleb and Brock Pierce as early lynchpins). The “easy” part are the fireside chats that I love to conduct; asking questions of brilliant minds creating innovation in an ever-changing sector is a fulfilling task.


You have been in this space since 2013, what are the biggest lessons you have learnt from the last bull market ATH?

Don’t blink or you’ll miss something important. Both ATH’s happened pretty quickly, as did a few of the rapid crashes. This need to always be vigilant also goes for innovation and shifts in regulation, not just pricing.

Which project would you say isn’t doing enough promotion considering the work they are currently doing?

Bitcoin. Because it no longer has a particularly active foundation, it’s up to the leaders in the decentralized community to call out FUD coming from the banks and regulators when they see it, and to help support one another with consistent messaging. Kudos to folks like Trace Mayer, Max Keiser and Tim Draper for always staying on point in this regard.

How would you describe the change in attitude amongst institutional investors towards cryptocurrencies?

We are still very early. The vast majority of technology and financial investors have still not read the Satoshi white paper, much less own any cryptocurrency. There’s also a lot of confusion among angel investors not used to our space between equity-backed venture opportunities and investing in listed tokens, which tend to behave more like commodities. Simplistic FUD like “love blockchain, hate bitcoin” doesn’t help.

What is the worst idea that you’ve seen pitched to the BitAngels?

I hate to call out any well-intentioned entrepreneur, but a big beef of mine is when a founder can’t answer detailed follow-up questions about their growth, competition, path to profitability (if it’s an equity play) or why the world needs them.

Last year's CoinAgenda Global Conference was a huge success. What can we expect from the upcoming conference in Vegas?

This year, CoinAgenda Global is October 26-28 with a special focus on the rise of security tokens, enterprise applications, changes in the digital currency funding vehicles, and digital currency exchanges. Featured speakers include Jed McCaleb, Brock Pierce, Alex Mashinsky, Anthem Blanchard and more.

What do you think about Ethereum’s scaling issues?

To quote David Johnston, I’d never bet against Vitalik over the long term.

What are your thoughts on Bitcoin maximalism?

It’s a distraction. Bitcoin has differentiated itself as the best, “uncorruptible”, “unconfiscatable”, portable store of value, and it can certainly be useful in making large transactions, but it’s not the best way to buy a cup of coffee. Public blockchains are exploding with innovation, and just because the vast majority will fail (probably a similar percentage of failure as any other category of startups) does not mean that several hugely important ecosystems will not prevail. People laughed at the dotcom bombs, but the survivors included Amazon, eBay, eTrade, Google and Priceline.

How do you think the current global uncertainty is going to affect cryptocurrencies?

It’s still a big question mark. Any credit crunch has consumers and businesses alike fleeing to their native currency and the US dollar. If the dollar loses its role as world reserve currency, we will be facing a truly global economy, complete with sovereign digital currencies and gold-backed stablecoins. The more familiar people become with using digital assets, the better is it for the market cap of all public blockchains, and bitcoin in particular.

What difference has the bear market made, if any, on the atmosphere at the last
CoinAgenda Global Conference?

Last year’s CoinAgenda was about half the size of 2017, in large part because the price of bitcoin was on its way up to $19,000 in late 2017 with a free-for-all in ICO investing verses a year later when the price was tanking on its way down to $3,200 and investors were both afraid to invest in tokens, as well as not particularly interested in early-stage equity. We expect this year to reflect the recovery of the bitcoin market (up 3x since last December) and the slow recovery of investment into new entities, including innovations like the IEO and STO.

What kind of projects would you like to see more of at BitAngels?

New paradigms. I personally get excited by a new platform that is looking to do something that has never been done before – and has a concrete plan and experienced team to execute that plan. Early-stage investors don’t get rich on 20 percent returns; they get rich on having one of their portfolio companies or tokens return 100x or more (as Ethereum and bitcoin did).

Litecoin Summit 2019 With David Schwartz of The Litecoin Foundation

FROM TECHNICAL AND BUSINESS EXPERTS WITHIN THE CRYPTOCURRENCY SPACE TO ENTERTAINMENT, ART AND PERSONAL INTEREST, THE LITECOIN SUMMIT OFFERS TWO FUN, JAM-PACKED DAYS WITH SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE.

What is your goal/purpose in hosting this event?
The Litecoin Summit is the perfect opportunity to bring together a rabid and devoted user/investor base. Litecoin has matured enough as a cryptocurrency to have this type of engagement at a high level, but this year especially has brought in many new supporters. To be able to provide a high quality engagement of technology, social impact and adoption in one place is wonderful.


What makes your event special and sets it apart from other events of its kind?
The Litecoin Summit encapsulates everything a person who follows the coin may want to see. From technology, to pro sports figures who are involved in the space, artists like VESA and even wonderful organizations like code.org and UNICEF USA’s Kid Power. It has something for everyone. We understand Litecoin supporters’ interests are diverse. Our Summit should, and does, capture that.


What part of your event are you most excited about bringing to attendees?
I can’t speak for anyone else, but for me, it is a tie between 3 things: The Magical Crypto Friends, VESA and the sports figures giving their testimonies of how they got into crypto. I love the technology aspects like Lightning Network and the potential for Confidential Transactions. And I am interested in hearing from Pomp and Caitlin Long as well. But my heart is with the creatives and the backstories behind how people got into this space.


Who can attendees expect to hear/see while at your event?
As I mentioned earlier, we run the gamut. Pomp, Caitlin Long, Bobby Lee, Alex Machinsky, Ron Paul, 75% of the Magical Crypto Friends, Ben Askren, and other athletes. Charlie and the other Board Directors, of course.


What makes this event different from last year’s Litecoin summit?
This year, we are in lovely Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. That alone is a must see! We have an after party again, but this one will be sponsored by BTSE. Sandwiched in between the first day’s speakers and the after party is the first ever eSports tournament with winnings given out in cryptocurrencies. The Litecoin Foundation is a partner in this, and the charity organizations we teamed up with will benefit from these activities as well. So lots of fun things going on. Every attendee is able to go to all of these events when they purchase a Summit ticket. The ROI for attendees is incomparable by crypto conference standards.


Is there anything else you would specifically like us to share about your event?
Tickets are incredibly well priced for the amount and quality of speakers, swag and peripheral events, and the location is literally full of wonderful activities. Not only that, but we get to show our support for the entire crypto space by being a part of Blockchain Week, put together by Evolv Events. We are excited to make Las Vegas the home for the 2nd Annual Litecoin Summit, and we hope to see everyone there!

Dominic Hrabe – Evolv Events

By Crypto Advocate - 

Dominic Hrabe is one of the Co-Founders of Evolv Events and World Crypto Con.


In the run up to this year’s WCC at Vegas Blockchain Week, we sat down with Dominic to discuss how he got involved in the space, and what it has been like organizing such a large scale event.


What’s your background in crypto? How were you introduced to it? I learned of blockchain in 2014 when two friends had notified me of bitcoin in a matter of a few weeks. I realized I should pay attention so, without really knowing much at the time, I bought my first bitcoin. But it wasn’t until 2016 that I really began to study blockchain.


Two years ago you co-founded Evolv Events. What was your background prior to that? I hold a degree in Pharmacy and had been working in that field until starting WCC and Evolv.


Coordinating an event like this must involve a ton of help. Can you tell us a little bit about your role in organizing WCC? It is an enormous task and I could not do it without the help and dedication of my partners, Adam and Eric. I am tasked with speaker outreach and agenda design, which is a tall order, considering how fast this ecosystem evolves.


What advice would you give to someone looking to get more involved in the crypto scene? Start now. Study a little bit every day and don’t get overwhelmed. I was overwhelmed by blockchain in 2014, otherwise I would have dove headfirst into the ecosystem then but I waited. I wished I would have taken more action and became more involved in the space then. Don’t make the same mistake I did.


It was nearly 2 years ago that WCC began. What was the vision behind it? The vision is to become the CES of the blockchain and distributed ledger technology industry. The amount of innovation that will develop in this industry will be incalculable.


Now with the 2nd WCC about to begin, has it fulfilled that vision? Although we are moving closer to actualizing that vision, we are not yet there. The vision of becoming the CES of the blockchain ecosystem requires a much greater degree of blockchain and digital asset mass adoption.


What do you foresee for WCC in the coming years? Is there a particular goal or milestone you’re aiming for? We will continue to grow the product offering of Vegas Blockchain Week and continue to enhance the experience of WCC. As the industry grows, we will mature along with it. We’re certainly very excited for what the future holds in this space.


What was the biggest success of WCC 2018? Learning from not only our successes but our mistakes. We baked our first cake in 2018. We identified the ingredients we need to keep and the ones we need to eliminate. A lot of valuable lessons were learned that will help us make WCC and Vegas Blockchain Week one of, if not, the top industry event in North America.


What did you learn from 2018 that you’ve applied to this year’s event? We expanded. We recognized the thirst for companies and communities to host their own events inside of VBW. By attracting these organizations we can concentrate the product offering and keep the prices low without compromising on quality.


How far in advance did planning for WCC 2019 start? Immediately after WCC 2018. 🙂 The planning never stops.


What are you most looking forward to about WCC 2019? I’m looking forward to seeing everything we’ve worked for come together in just a few days. It takes an enormous amount of effort to pull off an event of this scale. But most of all, I’m excited for the content we have assembled. We have some of the top industry voices coming to share their brilliance on stage.


If you could give someone a one sentence pitch to convince them they have to go to WCC this year - what would it be? What are you waiting for? Where else can you go to see this many top-notch blockchain professionals in such a short period of time AND have the opportunity to meet and speak with them?


Any plans to expand the Evolv Events portfolio beyond WCC? Absolutely. Did I say the planning never stops? 🙂