PayPal Exec Excited About NFTs, Stablecoins and Digital Identity

Despite crypto’s notorious volatility, PayPal’s leaders are confident in the future of blockchain tech

article-image

Source: Shutterstock

share

key takeaways

  • Regulation will be critical for cryptocurrency adoption, PayPal CEO says
  • Underserved communities are most likely to benefit from the development of blockchain technology

The future of our financial system is being redesigned in front of our eyes, PayPal CEO Dan Schulman said at CoinDesk’s Consensus 2022. Rethinking the underlying rails of the existing financial system by taking out intermediaries, so that money can be moved faster and cheaper, has the potential to provide a more inclusive future.

The multinational online payments platform recently enabled its customers to transfer cryptocurrencies from its app to external wallets and exchanges. 

“We built a bridge between the fiat universe and the crypto universe,” said Jose Fernandez da Ponte, the company’s general manager for blockchain, crypto and digital currencies. Consumers will now have access to the wider Web3 network through their PayPal wallets, Fernandez da Ponte said at the conference.

Addressing the volatility of cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrency is more volatile than many mainstream markets, and consequently, some fund managers have urged consumers to not invest in cryptocurrencies. 

Schulman says the key to managing market volatility is to have regulators protecting consumers. “Doing responsible innovation with the blessing of regulators is extremely important,” Schulman said. “You may not want it to be that way, but it has to be that way in order to evolve.”

Many people who sit outside the existing financial system or are underserved by the financial system are likely to benefit from money being moved on blockchain rails, Schulman said. Although Schulman believes that PayPal is not yet serving these communities, he is optimistic that it will.

“We are playing the long game, but you’re going to start seeing some significant changes over the next five years.”

Fernandez da Ponte says he is most excited about three things in the coming years: NFTs, stablecoins and digital identity.

As NFTs (non-fungible tokens) move to become a digital property right, they will gain a significant number of use cases, Fernandez da Ponte said. “Now I have a way to prove that I own something on-chain, that is a very significant development that we will see in the future.”

In the case of stablecoins, he believes merchants desiring large-scale sales operations must be willing to use digital currency — stablecoins could provide reliability for these future transactions. “I think we are close to having stablecoins at scale.”

Finally, digital identity will be critical to “prove who you are.” Despite the “really great work being done by the community, that one is probably a little bit further out,” Fernandez da Ponte said.


Start your day with top crypto insights from David Canellis and Katherine Ross. Subscribe to the Empire newsletter.

Explore the growing intersection between crypto, macroeconomics, policy and finance with Ben Strack, Casey Wagner and Felix Jauvin. Subscribe to the On the Margin newsletter.

The Lightspeed newsletter is all things Solana, in your inbox, every day. Subscribe to daily Solana news from Jack Kubinec and Jeff Albus.

Tags

Upcoming Events

Salt Lake City, UT

MON - TUES, OCT. 7 - 8, 2023

Blockworks and Bankless in collaboration with buidlbox are excited to announce the second installment of the Permissionless Hackathon – taking place October 7-8 in Salt Lake City, Utah. We’ve partnered with buidlbox to bring together the brightest minds in crypto for […]

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research

Unlocked by Template.png

Research

With the spot ETH ETF approval, the institutions are coming. stETH - given its dominance in marketshare, existing liquid market structures, and highly desirable properties - is poised for institutions.

article-image

The QT taper begins this month…but what does that mean for markets?

article-image

Plus, the rise of RWAs could bring about a significant shift in how real-world investments are managed and accessed

article-image

The distributed cell plan provider started selling its own hotspots in October 2023

article-image

The Brazil-based asset manager’s filing comes during a year of milestone bitcoin and ether fund approvals

article-image

The purchase of five sites in Georgia set to help CleanSpark hit its mid-year operating hash rate target of 20 EH/s

article-image

Plus, it’s beginning to look like we may be in for a cruel summer