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Book Review: “Blockchain Prophecies” By Tal Elyashiv

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Blockchain Prophecies” is the inaugural book by Tal Elyashiv, who is renowned in the realm of digital securities and is a founding and managing partner at SPiCE VC, the pioneering fully tokenized venture capital fund. He is also a co-founder of Securitize, a leading global platform for digital security issuance and management. With a storied career as a CIO at Bank of America and Capital One, Elyashiv bridges the gap between traditional finance and the innovative world of Decentralized Finance (DeFi), positioning him as a key authority in the blockchain and tokenization sectors.

This book showcases a selection of Tal's writings that have appeared in international outlets such as TheStreet. It kicks off with his forte: digital securities, also known as security tokens, and explores their multifaceted applications. Elyashiv delves into the concept of digital securities, their current trajectory, and his belief in their potential to revolutionize traditional financial practices by enabling more efficient fundraising and workflow processes. He envisions a disruption in the finance industry, forecasting a trend where an increasing number of mainstream assets will become digitized.

Digital Securities

What exactly are digital securities, and why aren't they on the radar of the average investor? The book delves into these questions. It explains the industry's current growth, its present state, and the author's perspective on why digital securities are set to expand and be utilized in various ways, from fundraising to streamlining traditional workflows. He is convinced that the traditional finance industry is poised for disruption and anticipates that a growing number of mainstream assets will be securitized and issued as digital securities.

The book guides us through several use cases, including the tokenization of real estate.

NFTs

NFT stands for “Non-Fungible Token,” a unique and non-interchangeable unit of data stored on a blockchain, which is a type of digital ledger. NFTs can signify ownership or proof of authenticity for various digital items, such as artwork, music, videos, and items in video games, among other forms of creative work.

“The Blockchain Prophecies” effectively explains this technology and its diverse applications while acknowledging the subpar quality of some previous NFT projects. The author conveys his insights on what constitutes a successful NFT project, focusing on providing value, establishing a brand, and fostering a community. Particularly intriguing are his nuanced views on the potential uses of NFTs in healthcare and supply chain applications.

Cryptocurrency

Of course, a book on blockchain must address its most popular use case: cryptocurrencies. The author, Tal, is particularly optimistic about the future applications of cryptocurrency, such as Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDC) and stablecoins. Blockchain technology has the potential to solve many issues associated with digital transactions, and companies that position themselves effectively to address these problems will benefit the most.

Also discussed are some lesser-known use cases, such as MiamiCoin. The book explores its early adoption and how it succeeded in generating a significant amount of tax revenue for the city of Miami.

MetaVerse

When discussing the Metaverse, he aligns with Mark Zuckerberg's perspective that it represents the convergence of augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), blockchain, and 5G technology, creating a digital twin of the physical world. He places particular emphasis on the role that digital finance will play in this future, such as the purchasing of digital avatars and virtual land. He anticipates that NFTs will capitalize on the wave of innovation the Metaverse provides, with decentralized finance becoming an integral part of this digital world.

This integration will be realized through gamification, with NFTs acting as a conduit between the physical world and the Metaverse, enabling seamless experiences. He explores various applications, such as gaining access to real-life events and augmented realities. Essentially, he views Web 3.0 as the amalgamation of the Metaverse and blockchain technology.

He doesn't stop there; he also shares statistics and insights that argue for the inevitability of this future.

Investing in the Future of Blockchain

Once the foundation is established with cryptocurrencies, digital securities, and NFTs, the book shifts its focus to investment strategies for this burgeoning future. It discusses various methods of investing in cryptocurrencies, including direct purchase, ETFs, and other avenues. The book includes articles on how to strategically position oneself to benefit from decentralized finance, as well as delving into DeFi staking, lending, and yield farming.

It also presents another investment avenue: purchasing shares in companies that are laying the groundwork for blockchain and cryptocurrency infrastructure. Tal provides a detailed list of companies that are modernizing their processes through blockchain technology.

His insights into ETFs suggest that their emergence as a mainstream investment vehicle is imminent. He clarifies the current excitement surrounding them and outlines the distinctions between Futures-Based ETFs and Spot ETFs.

The book also delves into the varied investment approaches of different institutional investors in the space, such as family offices and hedge funds. Tal, with his profound understanding of the venture capital market—the primary source of investments—offers an insider's perspective on how venture capital is paving the way for the future of blockchain and the Metaverse.

For venture capitalists, he highlights the hypercompetitive nature of the industry, emphasizing the short window available to invest in top-tier companies.

Furthermore, Tal provides a clear rationale for investors lacking blockchain exposure to consider diversifying their portfolios to include it, while also cautioning against the pitfall of focusing solely on one company.

Current State of the Industry

Tal addresses some of the contemporary challenges, such as the fallout from the FTX exchange collapse and the tendency of investors to succumb to groupthink, which leads to a herd mentality in investment strategies, causing them to flock to a limited number of companies, regardless of foundational issues. He articulately argues that venture capitalists should invest thoughtfully rather than recklessly.

He provides a thorough overview of regulatory landscapes in various regions, including the USA, Japan, and Europe, and offers his forecasts on the evolution of these regulations. He emphasizes his belief that clear and coherent regulation is essential for the industry to progress beyond its current ‘wild west' state.

Tal's insights into the global blockchain competition are particularly compelling. He elaborates on his perspective regarding how China, Europe, and the USA are each strategically poised to shape the future of finance.

Summary

Overall, this book offers a refreshing take on blockchain, cryptocurrency, DeFi, and provides Tal's insider perspective on digital securities. It concludes with various thought leaders sharing their insights on the industry's current state and its trajectory, from purchasing cryptocurrency to investing in ETFs, while emphasizing the future advantages of digital securities.

Readers who wish to learn more or to buy the book should visit the Blockchain Prophecies website.

Antoine is a futurist and the founding partner of Securities.io & a member of the Forbes Technology Council.

He is also the Founder of Unite.ai a news website on AI & robotics, the generative AI platform images.ai, & is he is currently working on launching genius.ai a platform that will offer users the ability to configure and deploy autonomous agents by breaking prompts into sub-tasks.