The State of Bitcoin: a Look Back at 2014 in Numbers

Bitcoin

On January 20, 2015, President Obama delivered his State of the Union address: an annual report on the condition of our country.  Overall, the President concluded, while it is still “a hard time for many,” “the shadow of crisis has passed, and the State of the Union is strong.” In keeping with the spirit of looking back with an eye toward the future, digital currency news site CoinDesk recently released its State of Bitcoin 2015 report, featuring a 2014 year in review.  Calling 2014 a “ ‘tale of two bitcoins,’ ” the report finds that while the price of bitcoin declined during the past year, significant venture capital investment and wider adoption led to a growing digital currency ecosystem.  Early signs suggest that 2015 will bring even greater mainstream infrastructure, investment and adoption.  Thus, although the “shadow of crisis” may not have passed, from the looks of the past year, the state of bitcoin is stronger.

Here is a look at bitcoin in 2014 by the numbers according to CoinDesk:

  • $335 million: total bitcoin venture capital investment (up from $96 million in 2013)
    • 2014 investment shifted towards wallets, mining and financial services, with total investment in those ecosystems reaching roughly $88 million, $70 million, and $75 million, respectively
    • To date, venture capital investment in cryptocurrency startups totals $433 million
  • 83: number of venture capital-backed bitcoin startups (up from 30 startups a year ago)
  • 18: number of countries with bitcoin venture capital investment (grew from 8 in 2013)
    • New countries receiving investment for bitcoin companies in 2014: Japan, Netherlands, Panama, Denmark, Luxembourg, Sweden, Germany, India, Mexico and Argentina
  • 56%: total bitcoin trading volume increase since 2013
  • 82,000: total number of merchants accepting bitcoin by the end of 2014
    • Notable merchants that began accepting bitcoin this past year:
      • com: the first major retailer to take bitcoin, Overstock accepts bitcoin payments for all items sold on Overstock.com
      • Microsoft: allows consumers to add money to their Microsoft accounts using bitcoin, which can then be used to purchase apps, games and videos from Microsoft’s Windows, Windows Phone, or Xbox stores
      • Dell: accepts bitcoin payments for purchases made from Dell.com
      • Expedia: accepts bitcoin payments for online hotel bookings
      • Dish Network: allows customers to pay their monthly bill with bitcoin
  • 341: number of bitcoin ATMs around the world (up from just 4 in 2013)
    • In 2014, retailers overtook eateries as the most popular location to install a bitcoin ATM (visit the bitcoin ATM map to find one near you)

The full State of Bitcoin 2015 report can be found here.

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