Cryptocurrencies may have taken a battering this year, but there are brighter times ahead according to Cashbet President Ed Brennan, who predicted that 2019 will be the year in which the concept achieves mainstream adoption for igaming.
SBC: What movements and tech advances have defined crypto for igaming in 2018?
EB: There were a lot of ICO’s in 2018. The challenge has been to turn these tokens into broadly useable means of exchange inside and outside of the industry – both as a bespoke gambling chip and a currency.
In line with these advances, CashBet has been working to get our crypto tools deployed to enable the inevitable adoption of blockchain in the gaming vertical for the year ahead.
SBC: This year we’ve seen the Malta Gaming Authority adopt its own sandbox framework; are any other countries doing the same?
EB: Malta and Japan are leading the way by adopting blockchain, crypto and regulatory changes. The regulatory part is really the key enabler for everything else to happen. By creating a framework for all DLTs and blockchain based protocol, Malta is in effect creating a legal environment that can include everything underpinned by this technology; from ICOs to crypto assets to the regulation of crypto exchanges, all decentralised.
The success of Malta is likely to influence key decisions made by EU lawmakers in 2019 as they do not yet have a framework in place. While Malta may not carry the same regulatory weight as the EU, which does not yet have a framework in place, Malta will serve as a fantastic example for the EU’s regulators and the rest of the world.
SBC: What hurdles stand in the way for mainstream adoption of crypto in igaming in 2019?
EB: There are still regulatory hurdles to clear. As markets become regulated, the adoption by players (and operators) in those markets increases exponentially. We are working very closely with multiple regulatory bodies to help them better understand how crypto works and how to better regulate it. We think this will yield the best regulatory in the long run.
SBC: In terms of crypto adoption, where do you think we’ll be this time next year?
EB: I think we will see several gaming companies become fully crypto-enabled on a global scale. One of the few hurdles left for crypto to go mainstream is regulatory adoption, and once that happens, the take-off will be unprecedented. We are currently working with several of the top gaming providers globally to bring our token into their igaming and land-based casinos and can tell you that there are some incredibly exciting developments lying ahead.