Blockchain and cryptocurrency is an industry that has seen exponential growth since its inception in 2008. Much like other financial industries, crypto has one main commonality amongst its audience, it is male-dominated. According to Coin Dance, men make up 87% of the Bitcoin community. Why the huge adoption disparity between men and women?
The volatility of these digital assets and the uncertainty of participating in this new financial infrastructure play a factor. However, much of this divide comes down to early information flow. Bitcoin and crypto first became popular amongst the technically-savvy members within the tech and finance industries, both male-dominated. The early word of crypto was spread mainly through Reddit and forums that were used to discuss video games, again, forums that had a larger male presence. For example, Mt. Gox, once the largest crypto exchange before it was hacked, started as a platform for trading playing cards for a fantasy game called Magic: The Gathering. It wasn’t until after the first crypto boom that Bitcoin began making headlines in publications and gained wider media attention.
As cryptocurrencies become more mainstream, they attract more diverse investors: more women and more people of color. Though women make up just roughly 12% of the industry, they are making significant contributions at executive levels. As a weekly feature on the Cred blog, we have started a new series, Women In Crypto, where we will spotlight pioneering women in the industry, our first feature spotlight, Alena Vranova.
Alena Vranova entered the crypto industry in 2013 when she founded SatoshiLabs, a highly regarded company within the Bitcoin space. SatoshiLabs introduced several products that significantly changed the landscape of the Bitcoin ecosystem, starting with their flagship project, the original hardware wallet TREZOR, which allows users to receive, securely store, and send cryptocurrencies. Additional pioneering projects to come from SatoshiLabs include the first Bitcoin map from CoinMap, the early Bitcoin mining pool, Slush Pool, and Tropic Square. In addition to SatoshiLabs, Alena is an advisor to INX Exchange, a crypto trading platform working to bring regulated security tokens and cryptocurrencies to retail and institutional investors.
Along with her crypto experience at an executive level, Alena speaks seven languages and is a published author of “The Little Bitcoin Book.” The book addresses issues with current financial systems and explains why Bitcoin was invented to provide an alternative to money.
Alena graduated in Diplomacy from the University of International and Public Relations, Prague, where she studied international economy, she also holds a Master’s Degree in Marketing Communications and German studies. Currently sitting as an advisor to numerous startups and established companies, Alena Vranova is continuing to educate and further the adoption of crypto and blockchain technologies.