Blockchain Association boosts lobbying power with $4m funding injection

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Fin is an editor at TechForge Media and University of Bristol graduate. He wields an impressive knowledge of the latest technologies and has interviewed leading industry figures from companies like CBS, Rakuten, and Spotify. You can follow his Twitter @FinStrathern or connect with him at https://www.linkedin.com/in/finstrathern/.

The Blockchain Association, a lobbying group for improving public policy towards crypto and decentralised ledgers, has raised $4 million (£2.97m) in new funding.

A decentralised web advocate group, the Filecoin Foundation, provided half the funding with the promise of an additional $2 million (£1.49m) if the Blockchain Association can match it through outside funding.

Crypto exchange Kraken and Digital Currency Group – the parent company of CoinDesk – contributed the remaining $1 million (£744,450) each.

The funding comes at a potentially crucial moment in US policy on cryptocurrency, as politicians are considering a number of regulations for the burgeoning sector.

In an interview with CoinDesk, Kristin Smith, the executive director of the Blockchain Association, said that the latest provisions on cryptocurrency in President Biden’s bipartisan infrastructure deal were a major catalyst for the funding.

The Blockchain Association plans to use the funds to hire more staff members, boost its events presence, and match the influence of similar lobbying groups from other industries.

“Given that it has been such a wild ride this past year, and that the industry is just exploding, we think that now is the time to mature the lobbying effort in Washington,” Smith told CoinDesk.

“We want to grow the Blockchain Association to the level we need to be so that we can go from being reactive to government action to actually proactively moving policies forward.”

The Blockchain Association was founded in 2018 with a budget of less than $2 million. With this newfound funding, the group has been able to hire senior executives for the first time. On November 9, Jake Chervinksy joined as a crypto lawayer and Dave Grimaldi signed on as head of government relations.

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