MicroStrategy founder Michael Saylor says Bitcoin could grow to 80% of crypto market after SEC suits against Binance and Coinbase – Fortune


MicroStrategy founder and executive chairman Michael Saylor believes the crypto industry will consolidate around Bitcoin following the Securities and Exchange Commission’s lawsuits against Binance and Coinbase.
In an interview with Bloomberg TV, Saylor said regulators “don’t have any love for crypto tokens” and have taken a narrow perspective on what a crypto exchange should be.
“Their view is crypto exchanges should trade and hold pure digital commodities like Bitcoin,” he told Bloomberg. “And so the entire industry is kind of destined to be rationalized down to a Bitcoin-focused industry, with maybe a half a dozen to a dozen other proof-of-work tokens.”
Bitcoin’s dominance has grown in recent months, with it now making up about 48% of the crypto market, compared with 43% at the end of February, according to CoinMarketCap. Saylor thinks Bitcoin’s dominance could eventually reach 80%.
That could put exchanges in a tough spot. U.S.-based Coinbase has been trying to diversify revenue streams away from an overreliance on trading fees as regulatory pressure has decreased investor interest. If Bitcoin’s dominance grows, trading alongside a smaller stable of peers, that could further depress top-line numbers.
Coinbase reported just $374 million in trading fees in the first quarter, compared with $1.013 billion in the same quarter last year, a decrease of nearly two-thirds. But in stark contrast to last year, when trading fees made up 86% of first-quarter revenue, this year it was just under half.
Saylor brushed off any potential threat to exchanges should there be a consolidation around Bitcoin, insisting they’ll still have a key role to play in the industry—and in the U.S. Already, though, several exchanges and companies in the crypto space are looking abroad. Coinbase in May launched an international exchange in Bermuda, and other companies have said they’re looking for a foothold in Hong Kong as China may be warming to crypto.
Many institutional investors, Saylor continued, are confused or put off by the vast array of cryptocurrencies available, and they’re more likely to invest in the sector if it becomes more Bitcoin-focused. Despite the cryptocurrency’s 4.5% slump, to below $26,000, since the SEC lawsuits were announced last week, Saylor, long a proponent of Bitcoin, remained firm.
“Eventually, I have confidence that the crypto exchanges will come around to realizing that Bitcoin really is the dominant asset in this space, and their business models are fine when Bitcoin goes up by a factor of 10,” Saylor said.
The MicroStrategy founder has led the company’s strategy of accumulating billions of dollars in Bitcoin, even as he stepped down as CEO last year. As of April, the company owned about 140,000 Bitcoin, bought at an average price of $29,803, according to Saylor. Those holdings are worth $3.6 billion as of Wednesday, down about $1 billion from their value in April.
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