Ripple CEO Advises Crypto Startups to Steer Clear of the United States

Brad Garlinghouse, the CEO of Ripple, has voiced his concerns about the United States as an unfavorable environment for cryptocurrency startups, even going so far as to suggest it might be the worst place in the world for such endeavors. Garlinghouse made these remarks during a panel discussion at Token 2049 in Singapore on September 12.

According to Garlinghouse, the U.S. lags behind countries like Singapore, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, and Switzerland in creating policies that foster cryptocurrency innovation while also safeguarding consumers’ interests. He directed criticism towards the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), accusing it of engaging in a political battle with the cryptocurrency industry through its lawsuits.

Garlinghouse expressed his belief that the SEC’s litigation strategy is ineffective, and he cited recent court victories by Ripple and Grayscale over the SEC as indicative of a shift in the courts’ sentiment toward the industry. While these court decisions are not legally binding, Garlinghouse argued that they offer more clarity to cryptocurrency exchanges and custody providers operating in the United States, at least temporarily.

Hong Fang, the President of OKX, acknowledged the political factors at play but urged cryptocurrency firms to focus on what they can control. He emphasized the importance of building robust products, technological advancement, and supporting responsible regulation in the industry.

Despite the United States being a significant market for Ripple, Garlinghouse revealed that his company is expanding its services to countries that he believes have a more progressive outlook and a better understanding of the potential benefits of blockchain technology.

During the panel discussion, Hong Fang also expressed skepticism about the readiness of investors for a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). He argued that the blockchain-based infrastructure supporting such custody solutions has not yet been tested widely by the masses. Fang acknowledged that a spot Bitcoin ETF could attract more institutional investment but questioned whether investors could withstand the volatility of Bitcoin. He also raised doubts about the industry’s readiness to build more applications on top of Bitcoin, given the need for a robust and reliable infrastructure.

In summary, Brad Garlinghouse’s comments shed light on his concerns about the regulatory environment in the United States and his belief that other countries are more conducive to cryptocurrency innovation.

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