• by William Mougayar
    Venture advisor, 4x entrepreneur, marketer & strategist. I live in Toronto, curate a lot, blog a bit, and help startups.

The Crypto-Technology and Bitcoin Landscape

bitcoinHow many companies are shaping the future of crypto-tech computing, decentralized services, cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin and the Blockchain? Who are they?

I spent the last month combing and classifying through the crypto-technology market, and what started like a 3-day spreadsheet project with an expectation of reaching 100 companies, mushroomed into a large publishable database of 425 companies, spread across 64 sub-categories. The data now resides in an open “Silk”, a powerful Web service for publishing data.

The various companies are classified into 4 major categories, as depicted by this graph:

Screen Shot 2015-03-02 at 12.43.56 AM

Here’s how the company count distribution stacks up, according to this donut graph.


Data from crypto.silk.co

The top 3 categories with the most players are:

In the Explore mode, you can drill-down by any of the 4 categories (Applications, Middleware Services, Ancillary Services, Infrastructure & Platforms), by sub-categories (e.g. wallets, exchanges, etc.), or you can search directly for a given company.

This is a short post because the main thing about it is the database of companies. So, instead of reading a long post, feel free to visit the Crypto-Silk site and explore these companies and categories. And if you’d like to be notified of updates to the database, you can click the FOLLOW link on top of the page, and choose to receive a Daily or Weekly email.

Finally, please leave comments here if you have feedback or suggestions. I plan on making regular updates.


Data from crypto.silk.co
  • sidney zhang

    This is an excellent compilation and market landscape. Are there ways for us to contribute to the data set?

    The list is interesting and I have found a bunch of projects that I haven’t heard of before. For example, the category “healthcare” was interesting, turns out it is http://genecoin.me/ which stores a copy of your DNA onto the blockchain. Although, obviously, Bitcoin isn’t really suitable for storing data like this. But that’s a long discussion for another day.

    • http://www.startupmanagement.org/ William Mougayar

      Thanks Sid. I’ve asked Silk if they support a submission/approval workflow.
      That’s a great idea.

  • http://www.pointsandfigures.com/ pointsnfigures


  • http://technbiz.blogspot.com paramendra

    This looks like a LOT of work over a long period of time. “)

  • Matt Kruza

    Awesome work William. Still a massive skeptic of bitcoin for sure and even really the value of blockchain, but have huge respect for what you have done with this and no doubt will lead to your further developing a reputation as one of the “go to people” for this topic. Will certainly send any deals / entrepreeneurs that I know in this space to talk with you.
    Piggy-backing a little about sid’s comment about contributing, if you can contribute something I think that would be really helpful to add is amount of capital raised (I mean revenue would be even better.. but realistically we won’t get that). I say that as amount of capital as a sort function by company and sub-sector serves as a great heuristic to determining how much traction (as investors perceive it), see in the ideas. Any yahoo can start a company (you are looking at one :) – and yes bootstrapping for now and maybe permanently), but still always useful for some financial quantification of market trends and where the “minds of the investor masses” who have more intimate knowledge inside these companies are at. Thanks again for the contribution on this new market!

    • http://www.startupmanagement.org/ William Mougayar

      Thanks Matt for your kind words, and yes please email me anytime wmougayar AT gmail if you have any referrals.

      Good idea re: adding the funding data. I’ve also started to add countries, so we can see them on a map. This was a v1/MVPish version. I’m looking for a mechanical turk that can help make some updates.

      • Matt Kruza

        Love the idea of the map too. Makes sense. I am curious, but has the bitcoin / blockchain advocate role come about accidently? (ie you were passionate and just talked bout it and it grew). Or was it a deliberate intention to become a household name in the movement to help with deal sourcing? Either way it is great that you are doing it, but if it was the plan from the “beginning” I think it would be fascinating to understand the journey / plan. It would be helpful for others I think in establishing a following / expertise. If now is not a good time to share totally understand (could be further part of your strategy to wait :) ), but it interests me and I suspect others at well.

      • Matt Kruza

        Also I was under the impression you are either an angel or seed stage venture investor? Wasn’t sure from reading your bio at startupmanagement.org. Don’t want to keep referring to you as such if I am mischaracterizing what you do. (my apologies if I have been incorrect up to this point!)

    • ZekeV

      Problem is data about private companies is hard to sample. The figures I’ve seen floating around about VC-backed bitcoin companies are based on deals reported in English-language news. This medium leaves out Chinese mining partnerships and chip foundries, un-announced deals, etc., but perhaps that does not result in a systemic distortion. The real shortcoming of the VC market figures is that all of the real bitcoin deals (real bitcoin in the sense of being conducted *in* bitcoin using GPG contracts) happen elsewhere and are not part of what anyone considers venture capital. For example, if you lurk on http://log.bitcoin-assets.com/ then you may have seen multi-million$ deals happening *in bitcoin* as early as 2012. Half of those companies have already made their founders wealthy, and half (partially overlapping the first group) have already closed down!

      • Matt Kruza

        Are these “shady” or illegal deals? I see no VC ever making an investment with BITCOIN themselves and frankly can’t see any somewhat credible angel doing s either. Feels very drug deal / mob / money washing scheme? Who that isn’t in the illegal world would do a deal in bitcoin instead of cash?

        • ZekeV

          The answer to who wants to do a deal in bitcoin is, people with a lot of bitcoins. Mostly early adopters who ended up with significant bitcoin wealth but did not buy their stash with hard currency. Non-shady examples include funding for multiplayer games such as Eulorum and War of Life (the latter now defunct), secure cryptography products produced by No Such labs, and bitcoin news on qntra.net (which apparently now gets over 30k uniques / mo.). These businesses were all funded generously in bitcoin. There’s also an alternative bitcoin foundation working on a significantly improved implementation of bitcoin (ie, not an alt coin or side chain, but just a much better software node). The “real” bitcoin foundation is funded in bitcoin with a voluntary tithe paid by companies that do business on the #bitcoin-assets channel.

          There have been some shady deals, to be sure. But no drug dealer or mafioso would use this structure to conduct business b/c inherently, the contracts and finances of these native bitcoin companies ARE ALL PUBLIC RECORD. So no, while there may be some projects that are illegal under US law (e.g., non-exempt public offerings of securities; unlicensed gaming websites) on the whole, the projects launched via bitcoin-assets are much less shady than most bitcoin-related “startups” you may read about in the mainstream blogs.

          Also would note that while I don’t expect to see mainstream VC’s investing in bitcoin soon, even some partners of USV have at leased mused publicly about the idea that they may eventually invest in digital assets produced by their portfolio companies (e.g., buying appcoins) rather than purely in the conventional manner with a preferred stock offering. So, stranger things could happen!

  • Juan Garavaglia

    Interesting way to organize data.

  • http://www.swarm.co Swarm

    This is a great compliation, William, thank you for your efforts!

    We’d love to update the link for Swarm (swarm.fund).

    • http://www.startupmanagement.org/ William Mougayar

      Done! Thanks Joel.

  • http://www.sunstonecommunication.com Kenny Fraser

    This will be a very valuable resources. Thanks for being open with it.

  • Sebastian Wilson

    the list is awesome, but I think you are missing Xapo, aren’t you?

  • ZekeV

    abridged version:
    [amusing novelties]

    Being a bit tongue-in-cheek of course!

    • http://www.startupmanagement.org/ William Mougayar

      haha…actually, there’s a section “Dead pool” in the works.

  • Bit Coiner

    Bcoiner – free International wallet in 9 languages on the Web, iOS and Android http://Bcoiner.com Please add us to the list!!

  • s0n3such

    please add newcomer cambiouno.com in the application space

  • acanidio

    Thank you for the very interesting post, which we have re-posted on our blog: “If you follow our blog, you know that we really like Bitcoins, and, especially, we like the technology behind Bitcoins: the Blockchain. In short, the Blockchain allows applications that normally run on a centralized server, to run in a completely decentralized way. This is not a new idea. If anybody remembers, before the internet there were central hubs like “newspaper” and “TV” from which most people were receiving news and content”


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