According to CB Insights' Blockchain 2020 report, unregulated ICOs were replaced by DeFi products with cryptocurrency in 2019. This report of 19 March says that businesses on decentralized financial platforms grew by more than 200% from January 2019 to February 2020. At the same time, ICOs in 2019 increased by less than 5% compared to 2018.
Although DeFi is still a highly experimental and unstable space, some companies have taken concrete steps to protect their users, all signs of a maturing sector that is starting to take itself seriously.
According to the report, an increasing number of cryptocurrency services, including Ledger, Anchorage and Knox, now maintain or plan to implement insurance policies to protect their clients' holdings. Coinbase and Gemini now insure customers for more than $ 200 million against criminal activities.
Towards East …
The CB Insights report also notes that the United States and China have dominated funding for blockchain projects since 2015, making up nearly 70% of all funding offered in those years. But the financial center of gravity continued to move eastward in 2019.
30% of funding agreements came from the United States in 2019, down from 41% in 2017, while China captured 22% of 2019 deals, up from 10% in 2017.
... But changing plans
The CB Insights report says that the Investors of the blockchain have constantly directed less funding to corporate blockchain solutions (CB Insights defines corporate blockchains as those designed to improve business efficiency and reduce back-office expenses).
2019 was no different. CB Insights highlighted payment facilitator Celo and mining manager Bison Trails as examples of big winners in the development of crypto infrastructure and protocols.
Governments ever closer to Defi
Across the world, CB Insights reports a growing interest from national central banks in developing their digital currencies. China is leading the way and plans to launch its digital currency in 2020, while France, Turkey and the Bahamas have started or will shortly launch their pilot programs.
Other countries are at various stages of research and development on central bank digital currencies. The United States in particular has indicated less urgency than its main rival, China. But economists think that the United States should accelerate if it wants to make sure that the dollar remains the reference currency in the world.
ICO: finished forever?
ICOs seem to have gone out of fashion but are they really gone forever? CB Insights finds hope in a small selection of fundraisers conducted under new government regulations in France and Thailand and recent advances in developing legal frameworks in the United States.
The report indicates that these dynamics could be supported by the continuous development of blockchain monitoring services such as Chainalysis, Elliptic and CipherTrace which raised over $ 68 million in 2019.