Crypto Predictions for 2020: Who Got It Right?
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At the end of 2019, dozens of major figures in the crypto and blockchain industry made predictions on price, the market’s state, and more.
We took predictions from TokenDaily’s 2020 Crypto Crystal Ball post to find out who was right, who was wrong, and who was downright dreaming.
2020’s Top Crypto Predictions
Bram Cohen, Chia/BitTorrent
BitTorrent creator Bram Cohen kept it short and sweet with his prediction last year, saying, “Tether takes over the #3 position by market cap.”
He was right! Tether is currently at #4 but did indeed rise to become the third token by market cap earlier this year, and it stands poised to regain the position at any time.
Katherine Wu, Notation Capital
Notation Capital investor Katherine Wu predicted that “2020 will be a breakout year for better and more human-centric designs.”
With the increased focus on UI in products like Status as well as PayPal integrating crypto, it’s fair to say that the industry has become more user-friendly over the last year. Wu foresaw an increase in better tools for “non-crypto native designers who may want to build something on a decentralized web alternative.”
On the regulatory side of things, Wu said, “I think there have been enough SEC/IRS/CFTC predictions and tensions to properly strike fear in founders/ investors in the US,” predicting that more crypto projects would geo-fence U.S. users and customers at launch. Full marks to Katherine Wu for 2020.
Ari Nazir, Neural Capital
Managing Partner at Neural Capital, Ari Nazir, said “exchange tokens will continue to be the strongest performing non-vaporware investments in Crypto. Specifically, FTX will take even more trading volume market share from the current exchanges and move into the Top 5 in total volume.”
FTX did indeed have a good year but is sitting at #28 for spot markets and #6 for derivatives at the time of writing, making this prediction a fail.
Jacob Horne, Coinbase
Coinbase Product Manager Jacob Horne had several accurate predictions, saying, “if 2018 was the year of stablecoins, and 2019 was the year of DeFi, I think that 2020 will be the year of ‘Crypto-banks’ building consumer and institutional products that utilize both.”
2020 saw all U.S. banks receive the green light to offer crypto custody services, making this prediction a solid win.
Horne also correctly estimated that USDC supply would exceed $1 billion (it’s now above $3 billion).
A final prediction was a mixed bag, however. While his estimate that there would be 10,000 DAOs fell way short of the 88 currently active, he was correct in saying that at least one DAO would manage assets worth over $10 million.
Joey Krug, Pantera Capital
Speaking to Crypto Briefing in November 2020, Krug said, “the last couple days have been >$1M volume days on the election market,” so it looks like Joey nailed his brief prediction for the year ahead.
Charlie Noyes, Paradigm
Paradigm partner Charles Noyes forecast a hostile takeover of a major DAO, predicting that “at least one DAO is taken over by overtly malicious colluding voters for >$1mm in profit” by the end of 2020.
Fortunately for the DAO community, this has not happened — yet.
Nic Carter, Castle Island Ventures
Nic Carter issued a number of predictions, all of which came true. Carter foresaw Binance being forced out of Malta, as well as fiat-backed stablecoins facing “considerable regulatory scrutiny” in 2020.
The SEC won its case against Kik, just as Carter predicted, although this didn’t cause “dozens of similar tokens to instantly dissolve and settle,” as even the Kin token survived that ordeal. Carter also believed a major U.S. exchange would roll out a user-facing proof of reserve protocol, which has not yet come to pass.
Dani Grant, Union Square Ventures
USV analyst Dani Grant predicted that “someone is going to build and launch a breakout crypto consumer product.” This one’s a bit tricky — Grant suggested that the product would be something “fun, social, and game-like.”
While we haven’t seen that kind of product emerge specifically, PayPal’s crypto integration definitely fits the bill of a breakout crypto product.
Grant also suggested that the launch of networks like Polkadot would “capture some of hearts and minds of developers currently building on Ethereum and ignite new active ecosystems of developer tools and apps,” which has absolutely come to pass.
Topping it all off with a safer prediction that Bitcoin would remain #1 by market cap, Grant had a firm grasp of what was to come in 2020.
The Winklevoss Twins
The Gemini founders insisted that the Bitcoin halving wouldn’t be priced in, leading to a major bull run.
Of course, 2020 was the year of the bull run, but the halving most likely did not play a major role in price action.
“NFTs aka ‘nifties’ will be one of the most exciting areas in crypto and renew excitement for mainstream use-cases,” said the twins. “The opportunities for unlicensed exchanges will start to shrink globally, whereas they will continue to grow for licensed operators. China will launch their own stablecoin, which will be a boon for the entire crypto industry, even decentralized cryptos like bitcoin.”
NFTs have indeed generated interest, although the market has stagnated. China has not yet moved past an initial trial of its stablecoin, with the launch date likely over a year out, making these predictions mixed at the very best.
Su Zhu, Three Arrow Capital
Su Zhu of Three Arrow Capital hit the nail on the head with his first two predictions, saying, “Bitcoin breaks ATHs at some point in the year. Transacting BTC on sidechains such as Ethereum, Liquid, etc., gains traction as BTC is added to DeFi and as avg tx fees increase.”
However, his prediction that BTC options trading volumes would increase “10x-100x as CME and Bakkt’s options products bring in substantial institutional interest and liquidity” did not come to pass. Maybe next year.
Johnny Dilley, Mempool Partners
Mempool Partners founder Johnny Dilley predicted that in 2020, “everyone forgets the halving. As we head into the halving, FOMO will kick in.”
This, of course, did not come to pass. The halving was highly publicized in the months and weeks leading up to the event, and the price remained flat during the halving and for months afterward.
Bringing 2020 to a Close
Predicting the various outcomes of this chaotic industry is often a fool’s task. Those in this list who earned a firm “pass” deserve close attention as we usher in a new year.
Who knows who will populate this list in 2021 within even bolder, more ambitious predictions. In crypto, anything can truly happen.