Scandinavian countries are looking forward to the development of Bitcoin and blockchain technologies. Jaakko Hynynen, CEO of the Startup Sauna Accelerator, told Cointelegraph at the Slush conference that Nordic countries are ready to adopt Bitcoin and blockchain. However, there is a lack of market research which is causing the technology to develop slower. Nevertheless, Viking descendants realize the disruptive potential of Satoshi’s invention, which could change many aspects of life beyond currency.
Jaakko Hynynen expressed that Bitcoin and blockchain technologies have a great potential for integration into many spheres of business, beside cryptocurrency. And insurance is just one example.
“I believe the future of the blockchain lies not only in the sphere of digital currency. The system can be used in the field of insurance and other fields. The technology can be integrated by big Scandinavian banks and insurance companies. People who work in those establishments are really technically aware so they are ready to adopt this innovation,” said Hynynen.
However, the path of cryptocurrency to Scandinavian markets wasn’t easy. Only recently was Bitcoin accepted as a currency with 25% VAT tax for converting local currencies to bitcoin removed. History shows that people still treat Bitcoin suspiciously, especially in Norway. Nevertheless, Sweden and Finland are accepting it much more readily than their neighbor.
It is worth mentioning XBT’s BTO bitcoin-based asset, which can be traded through NASDAQ. It is the first time a digital asset could be traded through a traditional, regulated stock exchange.
Another breakthrough came from Finland with Kryptoradio, a live blockchain TV which allows the broadcasting of the Bitcoin blockchain via a national television network. The project was launched in late 2014, thanks to the partnership of Koodilehto, FIMKrypto and Finnish national television broadcaster Digita.
Despite all this, Bitcoin and blockchain development is slower than it could be. Jaakko Hynynen thinks this is due to a lack of market research. He also advises developers to explore consumer needs more thoroughly to provide exactly the products they would need:
“Blockchain and Bitcoin are technically difficult. So people who create products and technologies around Bitcoin and blockchain are technically savvy. What usually happens is that they create great products but they don’t think about what’s the use case, who are potential customers and what’s the right market for that. So the developers should always bear the customer’s needs in mind. They should do the legwork and go talk to potential customers and figure out if their product is actually something that people or companies would need.”
Startup Sauna, founded in September 2012, has received wide national support. The startup was created to build a strong ecosystem of companies in the Nordic region, Eastern Europe and Russia. The Startup Sauna Accelerator operates on the basis of helping companies to develop. In addition, the startup holds a Slush conference for Europe’s leading startups and investors.