Barry Silbert Explains Why Central Bank Digital Currencies Boost Bitcoin
On Feb. 12, Barry Silbert, the founder and CEO of Digital Currency Group (DCG) and Grayscale Investments, spoke about his positive perspective on Bitcoin in a Grayscale investor call. He discussed various topics related to digital assets, such as Bitcoin’s role in the generational shift of wealth, stablecoins, decentralized finance and central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).
CBDCs are virtual currencies that are issued and controlled by a federal regulator. Unlike Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, CBDCs are fiat money in the digital form. So far, no global jurisdiction has launched a CBDC, but many governments have been exploring and developing such projects. China is reportedly preparing to test its CBDC soon, while at least 10% of central banks are likely to issue a CBDC for the general public in the short term.
He claims to have acquired his first Bitcoin in 2012, three years after the creation of the first block on the Bitcoin blockchain. Silbert stated that by developing the infrastructure for institutional interest, central banks that make their own digital currencies might be strengthening Bitcoin. He thinks that the same infrastructure that is used by the widespread adoption of CBDCs could benefit Bitcoin and other non-central bank cryptocurrencies: He said: “In the future we may have 80 different CBDCs. And if that occurs, it would spark a huge amount of investment in operators of financial systems where basically every financial institution would then need to be able to securely store and transact CBDCs and, you know what, if they actually construct that infrastructure, that same infrastructure could be utilized for non-central bank digital currencies like Bitcoin.” He also stated that he was sure that central banks will require users to use and engage with the existing financial systems and will not restrict the supply of the digital currency. “Central banks love to print money,” Silbert said, highlighting Bitcoin’s limited supply feature.
Silbert is one of the most influential figures in the cryptocurrency industry, since he leads two major companies that are involved in various aspects of digital assets. Grayscale Investments is the world’s largest digital asset manager, with over $40 billion in assets under management as of Feb. 12. Digital Currency Group is a venture capital firm that invests in various crypto-related projects, such as Gensis Trading, Foundry and CoinDesk.
Silbert has long been vocal about his bullish views on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Some projects, such as Ripple (XRP), which he regards as centralized and not genuine cryptocurrencies, have also been criticized by him. He has also forecasted that most altcoins will go bankrupt in the long term, while Bitcoin will continue to dominate the market.
To sum up, Barry Silbert is a prominent figure in the cryptocurrency industry who thinks that central bank digital currencies are beneficial for Bitcoin. He argues that CBDCs will create the infrastructure for institutional interest in non-central bank cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. He also points out that Bitcoin has a limited supply feature that makes it superior to fiat money. He leads two major companies that are involved in various aspects of digital assets: Digital Currency Group and Grayscale Investments.