5 Of The World’s Best Countries to Start Your Blockchain Business in 2019
Bitcoin is about to celebrate its 10 year anniversary, launching cryptocurrencies into their teenage years. The industry has grown substantially in the last decade. Where should companies set up shop with all the new players in the space? Where are the top countries for blockchain companies in 2019?
Part of the benefit to expanding innovation in blockchain technology is to decentralize and manage digital assets. So, if blockchain companies operate in a global network of participants – does it matter where in the world their business lives?
Yes. In fact, it matters a lot.
The country where blockchain companies domicile and grow their business matters as much as companies that sell goods and services to customers located in that country.
There are two main factors to consider for locating a blockchain business:
- What is the best location to start and domicile the business?
- Where should we build and grow the business?
These are two different considerations–and don’t always end up leading a business to the same geographical location. All companies that domicile in a particular country do, of course, have a presence there. They may operate their business from a number of locations or remotely, but remain present in their headquartered country.
They may have staff present in another area of the world. Many factors influence where companies choose to grow and staff. Factors like an educated talent pool, quality of life, favourable immigration policies, and a strong innovation economy. These factors align with where most people want to live as well. It’s no surprise that blockchain companies grow their businesses in tech hubs like Silicon Valley, New York, Toronto, Singapore, Zug, or London.
One of the challenges facing the industry is regulatory uncertainty. Rightly so. Companies prefer to operate their business in places that understand their work. Imagine if you had to educate your legal team about your industry before they could work for you.
The government and its policy are also relevant. Does the current legislation make it simpler or more complex to build your business?
The next factor for selecting an ideal location to start a blockchain business is fundraising. Where might the business have most access to capital? Where are the greatest assets and opportunities for growth?
As you can see, there are some desirability considerations between domiciling and growing. So where should companies base in 2019?
Here are the top 5 places to start a blockchain business in 2019.
A small town in Switzerland called Zug is known as Crypto Valley.
It may have been the Ethereum Foundation to first put this tiny Swiss town on the map.
It attracts foreign investments, which makes it popular among blockchain startups. For that reason, it’s become a cryptocurrency community. Companies like iProtus, Bancor, Melonport, ShapeShift and Status operate there.
Sometimes called “The World’s Blockchain Island”, Malta is on a mission to make things easier for blockchain businesses. The country recently passed several laws designed to create a holistic regulatory framework for distributed ledger technology.
New policies deal with digital currencies, ICOs, exchanges, and legal frameworks. (1)
Despite being a small island state (only 65,000 inhabitants), Bermuda used their small and nimble government to their advantage. They’ve created regulatory certainty around cryptocurrencies and have attracted a large number of blockchain businesses to their sandy shores.
They also launched a blockchain taskforce with the Bermuda Business Development Agency. The country now has legislation on ICOs and partnered with BitFury to move the island’s deeds
system to the blockchain.
Estonia is committed to finding innovative ways to attract blockchain companies. First, they established an e-residency program. This allows entrepreneurs to be considered digital citizens. (2)
The country has also made efforts to design friendly cryptocurrency regulations. You might even be seeing an Estonia’s own currency – the estcoin – sometime soon.
Singapore is ready to transform. Over the last decade, the country has become a technology hotspot. By passing Smart Nation Singapore, the country signaled its commitment to creating a pro-business environment. It has a high number of startups and ICOs present, perhaps because of its low taxes and no capital gains tax.
If you’re a new business or digital nomad and you need a place to work – it’s got you covered. Several new co-working spaces have popped up, including NPower and Longhash. (3)
Regulatory certainty is important to tech companies that work in the blockchain industry. These 5 countries haven’t left their ICO regulation in a grey area. They’ve made it clear.
Next, companies look for quality of life, an educated talent pool, favourable immigration policies, and a strong economy. Countries not on this list, take note. Blockchain technology will transform industries everywhere. When it does, it will have been better to lead rather than lag on blockchain regulation.
(1) Wolfson, R. (2018). Silvio Schembri explains how Malta has become the world’s blockchain island. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/rachelwolfson/2018/07/31/silvio-schembri-explains-how-malta-has-become-the-worlds-blockchain-island/#20de4cfa2cad
(2) Bitcoin Exchange Guide News Team. (2018). Top 10 Friendliest Blockchain Countries for Starting a Cryptocurrency project. Retrieved from https://bitcoinexchangeguide.com/top-10-friendliest-blockchain-countries-for-starting-a-cryptocurrency-project/
(3) Cohen, B. (2018). These are the top 10 blockchain cities. Retrieved from https://breakermag.com/these-are-the-top-10-blockchain-cities/