Romanian cryptocurrency hits $1 billion in market capitalization

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The cryptocurrency space has arguably been the most talked-about and interesting space in the world of technology and finance in many years, with more and more people and businesses looking to understand this space and even enter it in some form, either by investing in cryptocurrencies or starting their own crypto ventures. This has become a worldwide phenomenon, fuelled by the rise in price of Bitcoin, Ethereum and other crypto assets over the last 12 months, with those rallies showing no sign of slowing down. Cryptocurrencies are here to stay, and will form a huge part of the way in which economies will evolve over the next few decades or so, and therefore it is not surprising that there are a number of startups, all over the world, looking to grab some sort of foothold in the crypto space as soon as possible. One of the best examples of this comes from Romania, where a cryptocurrency launched by a startup has managed to reach $1 billion in market capitalization.

The Romanian startup Elrond, which launched a cryptocurrency EGLD, has seen its market cap reach $1 billion, making it only the second Romanian ‘unicorn’, after UiPath, a leader in the robotic process automation space. Unicorns are startups whose valuation is over $1 billion. According to the people behind Elrond, the blockchain used to underpin this cryptocurrency is the most advanced in the world, and will be used as the standard by other developers to create their networks and processes. Of course, owners of EGLD are only entitled to benefits arising from the increase in value of the cryptocurrency itself, and not from the company’s revenues, since they do not own shares in the company.

This development is quite interesting, since it comes at a time when cryptocurrencies have begun to be adopted in various sectors as a way of improving their prospects and providing customers with better experiences. One of the biggest examples of this is the online gambling space, where many operators have begun offering players the opportunity to place bets using cryptocurrencies. This has proved to be extremely popular, as transactions are quicker, safer and more efficient, while also appealing to both crypto users as well as fans of online gambling. A crypto casino would have seen a number of new sign-ups and users as a result of such offers and initiatives, and therefore there is a lot of potential for similar partnerships in other sectors as well, which will also increase crypto usage as a result.

Elrond has also recently launched an app, called Maiar, which allows users to buy EGLD as well as Ethereum and Bitcoin through their phones, through participating exchanges, and receive and send EGLD to other people based on their phone numbers or herotags. Thus, the app is aimed towards improving and simplifying cryptocurrency transfers. According to Elrond management, over 37,000 unique accounts were opened on the app within 12 hours of its launch, and that this was still just a ‘soft’ launch, as the team were working on improving transaction speeds and increasing the registration bandwidth limit for users.

The stated aim of the company is to reach 1 billion users on the app, although this is extremely ambitious, and will require a growth rate of 10 accounts/second for over 3 years. For comparison, Revolut, one of the most popular money management and transfer apps in the country, had only about 12 million users in 2020, showing the scale of adoption which Elrond is attempting to reach. Time will tell if this will be successful, but it is already quite impressive to see the growth that EGLD and the app have already achieved.

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