People of Blockchain: Steven Martins

Name and current occupation: 

Steven Martins, Blockchain investor and advisor

 

Describe your current activity: 

In addition to investing on upcoming and existing blockchain projects, I’m an advisor for a Switzerland-based, sports-related project and an informal advisor for a number of projects looking to launch their own funding via an ICO/STO.

 

Short bio: 

I have over 22 years of experience working in and around the tech industry. I started my own company at a young age and managed to deliver innovative products for both end users and leading institutions for over two decades.

 

When did you first hear about Bitcoin/blockchain and how? 

I heard of Bitcoin in 2015 when I deposited a small amount on Circle to pay for a service (don’t recall which) that offered a discount if paid via Bitcoin. At that time $13.37 where 0.0594 BTC!

 

What was the first crypto-related activity you did? 

Aside from buying a small amount of BTC in 2015, in 2017 I reconnected with the blockchain space and started mining (ethereum, monero and quite a few other coins over the course of a year). I’ve built a few mining rigs and at a point, I had over 20 GPUs mining 24/7.

 

What was the last non-blockchain related job/occupation you had? 

I was (and still am) the owner of a software company that develops and sells pc optimization and privacy protection solutions to end-users. I now dedicate myself almost exclusively to the blockchain space.

 

What made you migrate to the blockchain professional environment? 

When I looked deeper into the blockchain technology, I saw massive potential for disruption, decentralization and transparency. Just like I did back in 1996 with the internet, I decided this was the perfect time to dive deep into this new technology at an early stage.

 

How do you see your role in blockchain and crypto? How do you think you can influence the industry? 

I see myself educating people on the merits of the technology and supporting projects that aim at increasing awareness and ease-of-use of the technology for every day uses.

 

How do you see the actual situation with ICOs? Do you believe they should be regulated? 

The ICO concept was a novel idea of raising money that greatly decreased the difficulty and time while reaching a somewhat wide investor audience. Unfortunately, we saw a huge influx of investors looking to make quick profits which simply sold everything at exchange listing and moved on to the next “investment”. This created a significant initial sell pressure which made the token prices go (significantly) below the initial price (that and also the huge decrease in the value of BTC and ETH). I believe there should be some kind of regulation (and there are already talks on creating such regulation in Europe) so that companies have clear guidelines on how to (and more importantly how to not) run their fund-raising.

 

From your point of view, what are the main challenges of blockchain at the moment?

Reaching a wider audience, education and scalability.

 

How do you see the future of blockchain? How will it evolve? Where do you think we will be in ten years’ time? Do you see crypto as some kind of universal payment system? Do you think that bitcoin will still be king, etc?

 I envision a future where both FIAT and cryptocurrencies co-exist. There are multiple use-cases for crypto usage but the demand for a central bank backed currency will always be present as well. I see multiple cryptocurrencies co-existing, each aimed at specific use-cases. Bitcoin in 10 years will still have a dominant role but not as much as it currently has. We will have a significantly higher market cap with much more users and wider adoption.

Disclaimer: for the “People of Blockchain” section we have developed a short Q&A with relevant people of the industry. All answers are presented exactly as offered. The content of the answers is not altered in any way and is the sole responsibility of the respondent.