24 Feb Member spotlight: BTC.COM (former Blocktrail)
BTC.com is currently headquartered in the city center of Amsterdam. Back in the day, the three founders Ruben de Vries, Boaz Bechar and Jop Hartog met in an online bitcoin chatroom and decided to settle down in the Netherlands to launch their first bitcoin adventure. In 2013 they developed a platform to explore all bitcoin transactions on the blockchain. Additionally, the entrepreneurs offered an API where businesses and individuals could build bitcoin products with. Nowadays, BTC.com is growing into a full-service bitcoin firm with a popular bitcoin smartphone wallet to manage your bitcoin payments.
Alejandro de la Torre, Business Development Manager at BTC.com illustrates the challenges and beauty in the unique world of bitcoin: “BTC.com was created as Blocktrail long before bitcoin and blockchain were a thing. After developing different bitcoin products aimed at businesses as well as consumers, we are now fully committed to the bitcoin wallet available to consumers all over the world. After the acquisition by the Chinese bitcoin giant Bitmain last year, we rebranded into BTC.com and are expanding rapidly ever since!”
The virtual currency bitcoin and the distributed ledger technology blockchain on which bitcoin is built, have evolved into widely discussed topics and have to be taken seriously. As one of the first in the Netherlands, BTC.com has obtained an important role in the Dutch fintech community.
Alejandro explains the unique advantage of bitcoin in a nutshell: “Bitcoin is more than just a currency. It represents a new system that is completely trustworthy. The fact that bitcoin is built on a decentralised ledger (blockchain) means that no third party (e.g. bank) is required for the transfer of wealth. It is the first time in human history where money is created through open source software infrastructure. We can only speculate what this will mean to the future of human finance. We already see that in countries with high inflation the demand for bitcoins is enormous.”
Having said this, business must go on as usual. Concretely speaking, bitcoin payments can be made instantly from one peer to another across every country in the world. Fees are incredibly low and thus create large benefits for business transactions and individual payments. Bitcoin usually are held in an online wallet which enable the user to send and receive bitcoin payments through their unique ID. BTC.com has developed such a wallet for Android and iOS completely free to use (Android & iOS).
Alejandro: “We are expanding globally with an emphasis on emerging markets that have a strong affinity for bitcoin. Markets which face high inflation and capital controls are prime markets for us. Our goal is to be the number one wallet in the market. Also, we would like to promote our brand name to become a well-known Dutch scale up company. We had a great year and are experiencing growth. That means our team of coders and commercial talents will grow soon. We have a very exciting partnership to announce in Q2 for the Dutch market. Let’s just say that our users will be able to navigate all their bitcoin needs within the app.
Also, we are glad to keep on working together with Holland Fintech. We became a member of Holland Fintech very early on and knew that there was a potential for both parties to expand our knowledge, networks and business opportunities. Hitherto, this has turned out great!”