The near-demise of Kodak is a famous parable in business circles, illustrating the need for deeply-entrenched organizations to adapt in the face of evolving technology.
Financial service firms like Western Union and MoneyGram aren’t far behind, according to noted Bitcoin advocate and investor Barry Silbert. “You should be able to move money and value instantaneously and it should basically be free,” Silbert told Entrepreneur at this year’s Inside Bitcoins conference in New York City.
Though leading players in the space currently have the opportunity to incorporate Bitcoin into their businesses, they likely won’t, Silbert believes, which will eventually precipitate “a slow death.”
Silbert is much more hopeful about a new breed of startups founded around the cryptocurrency -- of which he has personally invested in 48. One of his favorites is Abra, a remittance service that uses blockchain technology (a public ledger of all Bitcoin transactions ever made) in the backend so that users have no sense that Bitcoin is involved in each transfer.
For more from Silbert, including what it will take for Bitcoin to go mainstream, check out this short video.