Bitcoin – backers and cynics


Coin Currency Digital Money

Photo credit: Creative Commons Zero – CC0.

At the Superyacht Investor, Corporate Jet Investor and Helicopter Investor conferences in London at the end of January, there were two topics that kept coming back, China and Bitcoin.

Everyone wants to know where Bitcoin fits into the market right now and whether it has a future in the market. However, people are cautious.

Shipyards and sellers are testing the waters. One of the largest yacht brokers in the US, Denison Yachts has done three deals with Bitcoin so far – its first in December last year.

At the Superyacht Investor London conference, only three of people raised their hands when the question was asked: “who here owns Bitcoin”. Two of them were on the panel, and one of them was Denison shipyard CEO Bob Denison.

The Miami-based brokerage is one of the industry’s biggest backers of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. On Friday, it reiterated its faith in Bitcoin as a serious alternative currency, announcing at the Miami Boat Show that it is now accepting direct Bitcoin payment for its yachts (as well as two other cryptocurrencies Ethereum and Tron) – CNBC reported.

The brokerage CEO Bob Denison is one of the most outspoken backers of cryptocurrency, being a Bitcoin investor himself.

Denison Yachts’s most recent Bitcoin deal was for a Leopard 48’ sailing catamaran in the Virgin Islands. The buyer used Coinbase to exchange bitcoins into dollars to purchase the boat.

Off the back of this transaction, Denison released a statement saying: “Bitcoin is not just a ‘millennial’ fad,” said Bob Denison. “There are Bitcoin users of all ages, across all continents buying and selling luxury goods, including cars and villas. There’s absolutely no reason why a seller should be wary of accepting Bitcoin.”

Denison Yachts has had its eye on Bitcoin for longer than most in the industry, having accepted Bitcoin from customers to be converted into dollars since 2014. It has now doubled down and is now accepting Bitcoin directly for its in-stock inventory – which includes a number of new Beneteau, Dufour and Fountain Pajot yachts.

If Mr Denison currently represents the minority of people in the industry that are investing heavily in the future of cryptocurrencies, his fellow panellist at the Superyacht Investor 2018 conference – Jim Simpson from the First Republic Bank – represents the majority.

Mr Simpson took a more cautious approach, showing a definite interest in Bitcoin but is holding off right now due to its volatility.

The number of Bitcoins is extremely limited, with only 21 million Bitcoins ever to exist. The realistic number of those Bitcoins in circulation is realistically around 16.7 million, meaning there are only 4.3 million coins set to enter circulation – according to Coin Central.

This means that any large-scale transactions or cash-out trends will have a significant impact on Bitcoins overall value. We have seen the volatility of Bitcoin in full swing over the past few months, hitting its peak value of approximately $17,500 per coin back in December and falling off drastically to $7,500 less than two months later on 11 February.

With a new influx of US dotcom billionaires, it could be a sensible decision to be looking at Bitcoin very closely in the superyacht market. Whether you are making transactions using cryptocurrency or not, knowing your blockchains from your Bitcoin cash is more important than ever.

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