New York’s BitLicense an ‘Absolute Failure’ Says Erik Voorhees CEO of ShapeShift
During Manhattan’s Consensus conference last week, Erik Voorhees CEO of cryptocurrency exchange ShapeShift described BitLicense as an absolute failure in the cryptocurrency industry stating:
“Let’s call the BitLicense what it is, an absolute failure.”
The New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) awarded the fifth BitLicense to Genesis Global Trading, following Voorhees’ comments on “Get rid of BitLicense.”
Genesis had waited almost three years to be approved, having submitted its application in August 2015. Circle, Ripple, Coinbase and BitFlyer are in the exclusive club of BitLicense holders.
Voorhees had withdrawn his company from New York when the state established BitLicense in June 2015. In the almost three years since, only four companies had managed to secure a license from NYDFS.
One theory for the glacial pace of BitLicense approvals is that the regulators have simply been inundated with new applications, creating a delay.
However, several industry experts say that the line is not as long as it seems. “What I have heard is that there may be far fewer active applications than New York would like people to believe,” says Alex Kern, a research analyst at Fundstrat Global Advisors who covers cryptocurrency and macro equity.
He and others estimate that there are less than 15 BitLicense applications currently before the NYDFS, maybe less, considering rejections and withdrawals from the application.
In the light of an increasingly smaller pool of applicants, the progress of NYDFS in its BitLicense approval portfolio seems grimmer. A rate of five approvals per three-year period, the NYDFS won’t get through the estimated 15 pending applicants until 2027
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