Cryptocurrency usage and adoption is gradually growing as many expect this to be the final volatile cycle in the market. While many speculate as to which country needs crypto most, where people buy bitcoin and use it in their day to day lives, we decided to read up on the research. This should help merchants understand if there is demand for crypto payments, as retail buyers see the percentage of people that choose to “opt out” of the system.
For this article, we read the 2020 report of Chainalysis with regard to crypto geography. Note that we are now 6 months into 2021 and the stats might be a little different. For one, we saw a huge spike in the use of BTC across Nigeria, who is now entering into a state of hyperinflation after banning bitcoin earlier this year. We also see countries adopt bitcoin as legal tender with El Salvador leading the way.
As of this year, the average ownership of crypto across the globe amounts to 2,8%, or a little more than 200 million users. Nearly 20.000 businesses have built some sort of system to accept crypto payments, while exchanges like Binance release crypto payment cards to make transactions even easier. With that said, let’s take a look at the numbers.
The marketcap of Bitcoin reached $1 trillion in February this year and has since returned to the $700 billion mark, after coordinated FUD that led to a decrease in the price of bitcoin. At the moment, Bitcoin’s dominance in the market is rather low, at 43%; many claim that the reason for this is the expected Ethereum upgrade EIP1559, which makes the ETH more attractive for mid and long-term investors.
1. United States – 27 million: Official numbers indicate that at least 27 million individuals have an account in cryptocurrency exchanges, or a whitelisted cryptocurrency wallet. Due to the regulatory landscape, we can assume that the number is actually larger.
2. Nigeria – 13 million: According to data from Paxful, Nigeria is not only the second-largest Bitcoin user in the world but also the second highest traded volume globally, defying the banking ban imposed earlier this year. This goes to show how difficult it is for the government to influence the public narrative.
3. Vietnam – 5.9 million: Vietnam is the third largest, with nearly 6 million crypto users worldwide. We expect a lot more Asian countries with poor economies to join this direction in the short term future.
4. United Kingdom – 3.3 million: Even though the uk is working hard to prevent its citizens from investing in bitcoin, mainly due to the recent banking ban, people seem not to bother. The UK is also one of the countries with a large number of registered cryptocurrency exchanges.
5. Turkey – 2.4 million: Turkey seems to fit right into this list, as the TL has inflated massively over the past year. People from Turkey, who are known to invest in physical gold, seem to have discovered the true value of bitcoin.
- From the report of Chainalysis, we can derive that 79% of cryptocurrency holders are male, and only 21% female.
- The majority of market participants belong to the millennial generation, as 58% of users are under the age of 34.
- The crypto markets are prefered by highly educated individuals, with 82% having at least a Bachelor’s degree.
- Finally, we notice that 36% of investors are making more than $100.000 in annual income.
Crypto is infiltrating many industries, and there is some interesting data we can derive by the adoption of the alternative payment method by merchants.:
- Retail: Up to 40% of consumers that pay with crypto are first time buyers. The number of cryptocurrency payments on a global scale increases by an average of 12,5% annually. Finally, merchants that chose to accept bitcoin as a form of payment saw their holdings appreciate an average of 327% over the past year.
- Luxury: Luxury markets not only accept crypto but also provide tracking and authentication solutions through blockchain technology. Crypto is accepted mainly for limited edition items that come paired with unique experiences, due to the small size of the market.
- Remittance: Cross border transactions are probably the most disrupted industry, since cryptocurrencies are sent on average 388 times faster and nearly free of cost, compared to traditional remittance methods. This is also one of the primary reasons behind El Salvador’s decision to make bitcoin legal tender.
- Gaming: More than 40 million gamers own cryptocurrency in 2020. This industry is the one that will see the highest innovation, primarily due to Ethereum, NFTs, and Metaverse-related experiences. For more, make sure you read this article.
It’s safe to say that crypto is here to stay and ready to grow exponentially. Will you be part of the greatest wealth transfer in the world?