Pippa Malmgren – Digital Currencies Will Drive the Next Industrial Revolution

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Advisor Perspectives
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Cryptocurrencies and digital finance (“DeFi”) will catalyze an economic transformation on a par with the Industrial Revolution, according to Pippa Malmgren.

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Philippa “Pippa” Malmgren is an economist and is the founder and CEO of IndraNet.ai, a Wisdom Exchange. She is a senior partner to The Monaco Foundry, a start-up incubator, and a special advisor to Avonhurst, a legal and consulting firm in the UK specializing in deals, policy and capital raising.

Malmgren was a keynote speaker at the Exchange ETF conference in Miami on April 12.

We are at a historical moment, she said, and about to adopt a new standard of money and a new financial system. That last happened in 1834, when British moved from “tally sticks,” which were a primitive physical record of assets and debt, to paper currency.

The British government was in debt and introduced paper money to pay it off. That scenario parallels the challenges facing the U.S. and its mounting fiscal deficits, she said.

“We are doing the same thing now,” Malmgren said. In Britain, it led to the Industrial revolution. “We are the same point, with blockchain or something like it and digital money.”

Unfortunately, Malmgren did not back up those predictions with a thesis that connected digital currencies to innovation on a par with the Industrial Revolution. Americans already operate in a society where transactions are routinely conducted electronically, via credit and debit cards, PayPal, Venmo and electronic transfers. That technology has made transactions convenient, but there is no evidence that it has been a driver of innovation – except among the providers of the payment technology.

Not only will digital currencies be transformative, but they will also happen at breakneck speed, according to Malmgren.

Buckminster Fuller documented that the growth of information in 1900 was doubling every century. By 1945 it was doubling every 20 years, in 1980 annually, and in 2020 it doubles every 12 hours, she said. “Images are driving our society, and in the future, we won’t look at paper annual reports.” Apple glasses, she predicted, will “put us in metaverse spaces where we experience an annual report.”

Maybe so, but virtual reality is unlikely to make annual reports more valuable to investors. That was achieved by making the underlying financial information digitally accessible through databases – the opposite of the entertainment that virtual reality provides.

But, according to Malmgren, “imagination is more important than analytical skills.”

“We have to understand how clients will receive information,” she said, “which may be different from how we [as advisors] view it.”

The key to the metaverse is that Mark Zuckerberg does not have a monopoly, Malmgren said, and “we need to think laterally not linearly.”

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