Did Blockchain Peak In 2019?

To separate hype from hope, and to separate both from reality…

To quote a line from the Watergate scandal movie, “All the President’s Men:”

Follow the money.

And for blockchain, a few warning signs have been flashing that all may not be as rosy as some observers may have hoped, had wanted. And so, for a jumping-off point to examine whether the peak has been seen: Follow the money.

The headlines in recent weeks may have trumpeted China’s push toward becoming a world leader in the blockchain space, with government (and thus likely unlimited financial) backing stirring excitement, and where crypto prices (cryptos, of course, run on blockchain) rose, and then proved, to put it mildly, as volatile as ever.

But in business, money is oxygen, and when the flow of money, from venture capital and private equity firms, or investment from companies willing to commit research and development dollars to a sector starts to dwindle, then several projects do not make it beyond concept to the land of reality.

Thus, a peak.

What Goes Up….

This is not to say that blockchain is doomed.  It’s merely to say that sharp excitement of years gone by, when simply attaching “blockchain” to, well, anything, was enough to attract dollars from private firms or from Wall Street.

Exhibit A, of course, would be Long Island Iced Tea, which back in 2017 said it would change its name to Long Blockchain Corp., a move that sent its shares soaring by more than 400 percent to more than $400. (Incidentally, the firm said earlier this year that it would sell its drinks business to focus solely on blockchain). Similarly, Net Element which also said in December 2017 that a new business unit would focus on blockchain (for merchants and consumers), saw its stock leap by 300 percent to a bit more than $18.

Shares in those respective companies are trading at about 14 cents and $3.50 headed into the end of December.

To be fair, at least some of the initial…

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