Image: Lotte World Tower, Seoul, South Korea, Pixabay
South Korea is already a key player on the global cryptocurrency stage but a new report by blockchain intelligence startup Cindicator suggests that this is only the beginning.
South Koreans are estimated to account for 30% of all cryptocurrency trading in the world and about 30% of locals are said to have invested in them. That figure could be as high as 50% among white-collared professionals.
Steve Lim, CSO of South Korean crypto exchange Coinone, told Forbes in an interview last year that “people were crazed over it.”
“Grandpas and grandmas come to our office lobby and say they want to put [in] half a billion won (US$447,000). We ask them how they heard about us, and they say, ‘I heard about you through a friend who invested a couple thousand and made a killing, and I want to do it too’ … but they have no idea how to use the app or email.”
According to the Korean Market Analysis paper, released on Thursday by Cindicator, South Korea is poised to play a major role in embracing cryptocurrencies.
“Our research indicates that the role of South Korea in the global blockchain industry will continue to increase,” said Simon Keusen, head of analytics at Cindicator.
“The country is very open to new technology. The enthusiasm for crypto assets is palpable. Latest legislative initiatives show that the government understands the potential of blockchain technology. We believe South Korea will play an important role in driving the adoption of cryptocurrencies globally.”
Cryptocurrencies exploded as a mass phenomenon through a combination of factors, the report notes, including an inherent openness to innovation,