China’s blockchain scene explodes with 35,000 companies

Two years into China’s crackdowns on crypto fraud and tightening regulations, more than 35,000 “blockchain” companies are in business on the mainland.

Scores of new blockchain companies are popping up daily. In fact, even the coronavirus hasn’t been able to keep them down.

In the first three months of 2020, as Covid-19 shut down factories, office parks and entire cities across the nation, 2,383 brand-new “blockchain” companies formed in China, for a total of 35,010 companies as of April 1, according to Tianyancha, a business data company.

Blockchain’s momentum in China appears unceasing even in the face of the current global pandemic and government lockdowns. But is it really all that it seems?

The endorsement that added fuel to the fire

Towards the end of last year, blockchain became a hot topic in China. In a meeting with senior cadres in October 2019, President Xi Jinping praised blockchain as breakthrough technology and urged a national strategy to foster more research, development and investments to accelerate this “core” technology.

Xi’s hearty endorsement of blockchain fueled enthusiasm over this technology that on the mainland, was already catching fire.

The number of “blockchain” companies in China have been surging in the past five years. In 2019, there were about 32,600 Chinese companies with “blockchain” as part of their corporate name or describe their major business as being blockchain-related, according to Tianyacha. That’s a 13-fold increase since 2015.

Blockchain’s rise in China

The number of blockchain-related companies in China first rose sharply in 2017, when newly registered companies claiming this technology as a major part of their business more than tripled compared to the year before.

Number of Blockchain-related Companies in China

Two significant events that year likely helped intensify business interest in blockchain and fertilized the soil for more startups.

In 2017, more than 20 global…

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