This wiki is locked

Welcome to the Liquidity 2015 project notes

This event was hosted at Bloomberg, Finsbury Square, London

10.00   Arrivals, Tea & Coffee

Welcome from the Ven Currency Board and Bloomberg: Stan Stalnaker, Hub Culture and Christopher Lowe, Bloomberg

10.15 Welcome Remarks

10.20 Nature & Evolution of Money

Moderator: Edie Lush, Executive Editor, Hub Culture

Jordan Macleod, Author, New Currency, How Money Changes the World As We Know It

Joseph Lubin, Co-Founder, Ethereum

Notes: Jordan outlined the idea that China's RMB joining SDR status could undermine the USD as a reserve currency, Joe covered the use case for Ethereum in smart contracts and how their scripting technology can unlock new financial models. 

11.00 New Rails for Big Finance

Moderator: Jesse McWaters, Project Manager Financial Services, World Economic Forum

Jason Mitchell, GLG Partners

Nicolas Cary, Co-Founder, Blockchain

Notes: Jason presented the difficulties larger institutions have in adopting new rails for financial transactions and outlined the drive for efficiencies in firms that trade assets. Nicolas called Blockchain technologies fundamentally transformative for finance and outlined how they are poised to reduce cost and improve efficiency at all levels. There were gaps in the two perspectives, with skepticism on how easy it will be for legacy banks and taders to adapt to new technologies, with optimism that new companies would lead the charge to efficiency, distributed systems and lower costs.

11.40 Refreshment Break & Networking

12.00 Exchanges: New Horizons

Moderator: Stan Stalnaker, Hub Culture

John Booth, CEO, Midpoint

John Edge, Advisor and Shareholder, National Stock Exchange (NSX)

Scott Moffat, Chief Operating Officer, LMAX Exchange

Notes: Here we have three types of exchange businesses - with Midpoint focused on P2P transfers for SMEs, NSX building a brand new technology stack for equity trading in the US market, and LMAX completing reinventing the forex business.  A focus on two aspects of an exchange emerged - matching engines, which are getting better by the minute, and trading interfaces, which are being recreated to become more user friendly.  In all cases, the interfaces are being reinvented to focus on core audiences, but its the matching engine that is driving down costs for trading.

12.40 Lunch at Bloomberg

14.00 Authorities and the Digital Currency Ecosystem

Moderator: Stan Stalnaker, Hub Culture

Andrew Tarver, Partner, CAPCO & Bold Rocket

Chris Kelly, CEO, SDKA Diamonds DMCC (Dubai Multi Commodity Center)

Pat Carroll, Chairman, Validsoft

Notes: Ven Authorities are institutions that have gained trading and distribution priveleges, enabling the creation of vertical business lines in digital currency. CAPCO and Bold Rocket are focusing on rewards and trading capabilities between rewards that will utilize Ven.  SDKA International is a commodity company working on asset trades for gold and diamonds denominated in Ven, and Validsoft if working on security and authentication technologies that involve micro-payments using Ven. In all three businesses, the ability for digital value stores to enable moentization are of interest, and the creation of digital assets to mirror physical assets are a priority.  SDKA outlined joint gold/ven and diamond/ven products in development.

14.40 Stability, Reliability and Service in the Crypto World

Moderator: Patrick Murck, Board Member, DATA – Digital Asset Transfer Authority

Akif Khan, Chief Commercial Officer, Bitnet Technologies

Avish Bhama, CEO, Mirror (formerly Vaurum)

James Smith, CEO, Elliptic

Preston Byrne, Founder, Eris Industries

Notes: These Bitcoin 2.0 companies discussed the importance of blockchain technologies in the evolution on Bitcoin, with a wide ranging discussion on mining, the price, new technologies and more. Smart contracts and the ability to write information to the blockchain dominated, with a look at what each company does uniquely.  For Bitnet this means insitutional merchant acceptance and B2B trading of bitcoin, for Mirror its about building authentication and contract services on the blockchain, for Elliptic is about vaulting assets and for Eris its about evolving the bitcoin protocol into a set of tools others can plug into their technology stack.

15.20 Refreshment Break and Networking

15.40 Legal Implications Crypto Financial Innovation

Fireside Chat with Grant Fondo, Goodwin Procter and Roger Tym, Hogan Lovells led by Siân Jones, UK Digital Currency Association

Notes: The global impact of regulation on digital currencies was the main topic of this conversation, with Grant focusing on the impending New York and California rules, Roger focusing on the UK, as Sian outlined the European perspective. General conclusions that a 'race to the efficient' is in play for jurisdictions, with the UK currently in the lead for creating an environment suitable for fintech innovation.  The New York rules, especially the 10% ownership disclosure terms outlined in the pending BitLicense, do not bode well for digital currency companies that wish to operate in the New York market, because these rules can and will stifle VC related investment.

16.10  Funding Growth at all Levels of the Pyramid

A conversation with Amit Pau, Ariadne Capital, Harry Briggs, Balderton Capital and Miles Kirby, Qualcomm Ventures

Notes: A stimulating conversation on Unicorns vs. Pixies - the billion dollar exits vs. the smaller plays - resulted in the shattering of a number of stereotypes about European vs. Silicon Valley startup leadership.  In 2014, Miles pointed out, there were 30 European unicorns compared to 40 in the US, as Harry and Amit laid out success after success in the European space: Asos, Inditex, Skype, Ocado, Rovio, Net-a-Porter and many others showed that Europe has a leadership edge in more areas than are commonly acknowledged.  In the UK, fintech money is rushing in to position London as the fintech and startup capital of the world.

16.40 Sovereign Currencies in the New Age

Moderator: Stan Stalnaker, Hub Culture

Dave Shepherdson, Hull Coin, Hull City Council

David Simmonds, Vice Chairman, Entropia Universe

Edgar Kampers, Community Currency Officer, Qoin

Notes: Looping back to sovereign currency - a discussion about the rapidly evolving world of community currencies - digital or not, with Hull Coin as an example of how governments are embracing new finance to create radically awesome models of engagement. David outlined the virtual world economies of Entropia - generating over 1 billion micro-transactions a month, and providing wealth and livelyhood for gamers around the planet.  Edgar discussed how national governments and the EU are encouraging the growth of local currencies to foster financial diversity in local economies and to embed social values into transactions. Hull Coin outlined how their proposed benefits reward currency will incentivize community involvement and local business spending, funded by discount gaps provided by merchants.

17.10 Workshop Discussions focused on various aspects of digital assets

Workshop Discussions:

1. Microfinance and Financial Inclusion

2. Identity and the Intelligent Web

3. Fraud and the Dark Web

4.  Financial Singularity

18.00  Closing Remarks – Ven Currency Board and Cocktail Reception

19.00  Evening Finishes