What is Ethereum?
Ethereum is a digital ‘currency’ that exists purely online. Although, the more accurate way to view it is as a network infrastructure. Its token, ‘Ether’ (ETH), is what powers the network.
Ethereum has only been around since 2015. In its ‘initial coin offering’ (ICO), you could pick up one ETH), which is the token of Ethereum, for just US$1.
Today, one Ether is worth over US$225. And Ethereum’s market cap is north of US$20 billion. The long-term potential of Ethereum is almost impossible to gauge. Some are calling it ‘the next Bitcoin’, or ‘bigger than Bitcoin’. And, considering its speed of growth, that could be a real possibility.
Why has the price of Ethereum gone sky high?
Since the start of 2017, the price of Ether has gone up from US$7.98 to a high of US$225. That’s a rise of 2,719%. Quite simply, it’s one of the biggest opportunities to make money that we’ve ever seen. And it’s not slowing down anytime soon.
What now for the price of Ethereum?
Earlier this year, the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance was formed. This is a collective of major global corporations such as JP Morgan and Microsoft. Their aim is to:
‘…learn from and build upon the only smart contract supporting blockchain currently running in real-world production — Ethereum — to define enterprise-grade software capable of handling the most complex, highly demanding applications at the speed of business.’
When the EEA started in February, it sent the price of Ether parabolic. Then, recently, in May, another 86 companies joined the EEA, including Toyota and Samsung.
The speed at which Ethereum is moving is nothing short of astonishing. We have people ask us every day whether it’s a bubble, and if it’s too expensive. But considering the total coins in circulation are worth only US$20 billion, we think that it might actually be cheap.
Long-term forecasts could see the value of Ethereum match, if not outstrip, bitcoin. Ethereum and its blockchain technology has the potential to change industries all over the world. Already, companies such as Shell and ING are experimenting with Ethereum solutions.
Even the Royal Chinese Mint is experimenting with Ethereum to digitise the yuan on to the Ethereum blockchain. This is massive in terms of its development. In our view, the way Ethereum is designed, we think of it more like the early stages of the internet rather than a digital ‘currency’.
Think about it like this: Imagine if you had a chance to invest directly into the internet in the early 80s. Think about today…what that would look like in terms of investment returns? That’s the situation we see Ethereum in; it’s the beginning of a global network that can revolutionise the world. And that has immense potential for industries and early investors alike.
Importantly as well, Ethereum crossed a massive milestone today. It is creeping closer and closer to the price of bitcoin. Earlier this year, Ethereum was the equivalent of 0.01 bitcoin. Today it crossed the 0.1 bitcoin barrier. How long until it is at parity with bitcoin? It’s hard to tell but, at the pace it’s moving now, it could be as soon as the end of the year.