2021 was an amazing yr for Blockstream and the Bitcoin ecosystem on the whole. Thanks to our proficient and devoted staff of Bitcoiners, we proceed to be on the vanguard of most of the business’s most influential and cutting-edge tasks.
In the spirit of the brand new yr, we needed to replicate on a few of our most bold undertakings in 2021 their influence, and the place they at the moment stand.
Growing With Bitcoin
This yr, bitcoin achieved new highs, grew to become authorized tender on a nation-state degree and reached one other leg up in its quest for worldwide adoption. We at Blockstream had an analogous breakout yr, with the profitable shut of $210 million as part of our series B financing on a valuation of $3.2 billion, formally reaching unicorn standing.
The acquisitions of Adamant Capital and Spondoolies helped additional our mission of constructing monetary infrastructure on Bitcoin by spawning a number of new initiatives, together with our new ASICs division that may launch the business’s first enterprise-grade miner and the introduction of Blockstream Finance that’s serving as an on-ramp for Bitcoin-focused monetary merchandise just like the Blockstream Mining Note.
We proceed to combine Bitcoin Layer 2 options just like the Lightning Network and the Liquid sidechain, farther into the Blockstream product and repair suite (i.e., Elements, Green, AQUA, Jade, Satellite, c-lightning), all free and open to builders.
Solving Energy Inefficiencies With Proof Of Work
During the primary half of 2021, our Blockstream Mining division scaled at a formidable tempo, signing high-profile shoppers to colocation companies and asserting a slew of partnerships targeted on various vitality options. The most notable had been collaborations with Macquarie to pilot a carbon-neutral Bitcoin mining facility and with Square (now Block) to develop a $5 million open-source, solar-powered Bitcoin mine in the U.S.
Ultimately, the Macquarie and Block mining services will show how we are able to incentivize the creation of extra zero-emission energy infrastructure by Bitcoin’s progressive proof of labor and assist drive the transition to cleaner vitality. Contrary to the mainstream narrative surrounding Bitcoin and vitality use, we consider it will possibly present a market-oriented answer to most of the vitality sector’s issues immediately. For instance, lots of of 1000’s of megawatts of electrical energy go unused and wasted in West Texas alone. Bitcoin fixes this.
We consider in being a part of the answer, so we launched a brand new service, Blockstream Energy, which leverages our modular mining models (MMUs) with Blockstream Satellite to ship scalable vitality demand to energy producers. The service is ready to faucet stranded and in any other case wasted vitality to maximise vitality manufacturing effectivity and, in flip, enhance the economics of renewable tasks around the globe.
Championing Lightning Network Scaling And Decentralization
Layering performance and complexity on high of a minimal base layer permits Bitcoin to stay a decentralized type of onerous cash. In 2021, BTC capability and the variety of cost channels on the Lightning Network have greater than tripled year-over-year, laying the groundwork for the wide-scale use of P2P funds on Bitcoin’s second layer. We count on the speedy adoption of Lightning and different Layer 2 protocols to compound within the close to future, particularly as nation states like El Salvador depend on them to onboard their residents to the brand new Bitcoin economic system.
We consider our Greenlight service and different Lightning infrastructure tasks will play an integral half in assembly the scaling and onboarding calls for of hyperbitcoinization. Greenlight, particularly, permits on a regular basis residents and small companies to simply entry the Lightning Network with out having to run a node themselves and achieve this with out handing over custody to their personal keys and funds.
Low price, on-demand node administration may also assist streamline the event and innovation of Lightning-enabled apps by eradicating technical boundaries. Apps reminiscent of Sphinx and Lastbit are already operating Greenlight, and we count on an extra rollout to most people in 2022.
c-lightning remained an innovator and chief within the house, from opening the first dual-funded channel to decentralizing the liquidity offering panorama to simplifying payment routing for Lightning app builders. One of the hallmarks of c-lighting is its wealthy set of options and plugins, lots of them BOLT12 specs, which permits customers and builders to experiment firsthand with new Lightning instruments not out there or extensively used within the ecosystem. And with the latest introduction of PeerSwap, an atomic swap plugin for nodes that permits on-chain channel rebalancing for a sooner, cheaper, extra dependable community, the Lightning Network is poised for an additional leg up within the coming yr.
Building The Financial Layer Of The Bitcoin Economy On The Liquid Network
Last yr, the Liquid Network noticed spectacular ecosystem development by a variety of buying and selling venues, pockets suppliers and integrations that leveraged the sidechain, together with Hodl Hodl, SideSwap, TDEX, WooCommerce, Specter Wallet and plenty of others.
2021 was additionally the yr Liquid grew to become the platform of selection for firms and, sure, even nation states in search of safe asset issuance on Bitcoin.
In September, El Salvador made bitcoin legal tender and rolled out a nationally-sponsored Lightning Network wallet to onboard its citizenry. A number of months later, on stage at Feel The Bit, El Salvador President Nayib Bukele, alongside Blockstream CSO Samson Mow, proposed a $1 billion bitcoin-backed bond (EBB1) tokenized on the Liquid Network to increase the nation’s vitality and Bitcoin mining infrastructure.
Like its Bitcoin law, El Salvador’s deliberate digital securities regulation will pave the way in which for added bitcoin-backed monetary devices and create new markets and exchanges for buyers to commerce safety tokens on.
Our Blockstream Mining Note, launched in July, is a Luxembourg-regulated safety that gives buyers publicity to Bitcoin hash fee at our mining services. Through seven tranches, it has raised a complete of €33.5 million (about $38 million) and mined practically 2.5 BTC per BMN in 170 days.
As a tradeable safety token issued on Liquid and managed utilizing our asset platform Blockstream AMP, buyers can simply modify their publicity by buying and selling the BMN on secondary markets or peer to see. From a Bitcoiner perspective, the BMN creates a win-win for buyers and the broader ecosystem by increasing investor participation in Bitcoin’s proof of labor.
Going ahead, we’re optimistic concerning the mainstream adoption of safety tokens, their additional regulatory readability and their subsequent reformation of capital markets. The BMN, the EXO token, and different Liquid safety tokens are slated for launch on new STO platforms Bitfinex Securities and MERJ Exchange, and the EBB1 is predicted as early as Q1 2022.
Note: As the El Salvador Bitcoin Bond (EBB1) proposal matures and will get wonderful tuned, Blockstream will stay a technical marketing consultant, with Bitfinex as bookmaker taking over the first duties of distribution and issuance.
We at the moment are practically 13 years ahead from Bitcoin’s genesis block and greater than 4 years from the activation of SegWit. Looking again over time is a humbling reminder of how far Bitcoin has come and the unimaginable tempo at which we’re transferring nearer to hyperbitcoinization.
We need to sincerely thank the group and every Bitcoiner for his or her unwavering perception in a greater future.
With your assist, we look ahead to persevering with our firm mission of constructing out progressive Bitcoin infrastructure, with Layer 2 options Lightning and Liquid as cornerstones of the brand new Bitcoin economic system.
Donʼt belief, confirm.
This is a visitor put up by Fernando Nikolic. Opinions expressed are completely their very own and don’t essentially replicate these of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.