“You would think that after 11 years, you might start to feel comfortable with your business, but it has basically been wartime in crypto since day one.”

In 2011, Kraken CEO Jesse Powell set out to build a cryptocurrency exchange that customers and regulators could trust. Despite headwinds and market uncertainties, Jesse has led Kraken through more than a decade of ups, downs, frenzy and FUD to establish Kraken as a leader in the crypto asset industry.

Kraken Managing Editor Pete Rizzo sat down with Jesse to commemorate Kraken’s 11th anniversary. Get a first-hand account of how Kraken carved its own path through the stormy waters of the crypto market time and time again, and find out where we’re headed next.

Building through bear markets

As we celebrate 11 years in the crypto space, Jesse reflected on the early days of Kraken and what it was like to build an industry in its infancy.

“We were building all this technology, and the cryptocurrency industry could have been shut down at that point. It wasn’t thoroughly tested at the time and we didn’t know what the regulators were going to do. We weren’t even able to raise venture capital until 2014.”

Recognizing this uncertainty, Jesse set out to build Kraken as a safe haven for early crypto investors. with the motto safety above allearned trust with this unique and uncompromising first priority: the protection of client funds.

Kraken was not just built on resilient and adaptable technology for an asset agnostic environment. These same principles could just as easily be used to describe the company. Kraken has remained dedicated to its mission: accelerating cryptocurrency adoption so that you and the rest of the world can achieve financial freedom and inclusion… no matter how long it takes or what challenges we face.

“In [2011], Bitcoin went from $1 to $10 to $1000, and then back to $100. It’s been a long road. I thought we would all be using Bitcoin by now, but it looks like crypto adoption will be like smartphone adoption,” Jesse said, reflecting on how both industries have matured and grown through similar innovation cycles and iterative generations.

Jesse added that Kraken is evaluating acquiring other crypto exchanges and platforms to accelerate our roadmap during this bear market, as we have during previous crypto winters. No stranger to mergers and acquisitions, Jesse expressed his interest in acquiring culturally similar companies with strong crypto values. He also talked about the different features that make Kraken the ideal environment for crypto visionaries to continue developing their cutting-edge ideas.

Financial inclusion is our main motivator

Jesse discussed the unique features of cryptocurrencies that help them empower some of the world’s most vulnerable people and how Kraken continues to solidify its position at the forefront of this movement.

Jesse also highlighted the financial benefits of NFTs, cryptocurrencies, and blockchain technology for artists. By using NFT to verify ownership, he outlined how artists can connect with their fans in unique ways and monetize their creations within the digital economy.

Kraken is proud to participate in this exciting intersection of creativity and commerce. The next release of Kraken NFT The marketplace will feature our industry-leading security, enabling more secure NFT custody with gas-free trading on the platform.

Jesse also spoke about the transformative power of blockchain technology in relation to people’s ability to access information.

“Crypto is what the internet was to information. Before the Internet, you had to go to the local library or use your own encyclopedias to find information. If you couldn’t do either, you simply didn’t have access to the information. I think something similar is starting to happen with money and cryptocurrencies. Crypto is giving unbanked people access to financial services they might not otherwise have.”

Thinking in the future

There is no shortage of work to be done while the Kraken mission is accomplished. Jesse detailed some of the ways Kraken is breaking down barriers to adoption that will help promote financial freedom and inclusion. He called on the industry to continue taking steps to allow people to buy and spend their cryptocurrencies to support the widespread adoption of cryptocurrencies in the coming years.

Beyond some gaps in usability and accessibility, Jesse named FUD regarding Bitcoin’s power consumption as one of the key obstacles to widespread adoption. While many continue to see Bitcoin as a strain on our energy supply, recent studies have shown that more than two-thirds of the Bitcoin Mining Council and more than 59% of global BTC miners use a sustainable energy mixadding that the critique of power consumption is “totally discredited at this point”.

As Kraken continues to build through the bear market, with over 500 roles to fillJesse is also focused on the future and accelerating Kraken’s progress on our mission. Jesse concluded: “I want to thank the Krakenites, this wouldn’t be possible without all of you and we definitely couldn’t have done it with the small team we had 11 years ago. I also want to thank those who have been in crypto for a long time and made it through some of these cycles, as well as those who are experiencing their first bear market, thanks for sticking with us.” Together, we look forward to what is to come.

Here are the next 11 years of Kraken!

These materials are for general information purposes only and are not investment advice or a recommendation or solicitation to buy, sell or hold any digital asset or to engage in any specific trading strategy. Some crypto products and markets are unregulated and you may not be protected by government compensation schemes and/or regulatory protection. The unpredictable nature of the crypto asset markets can lead to loss of funds. Taxes may be payable on any return and/or on any increase in value of your crypto assets and you should seek independent advice on your tax position.

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This post We Turned 11: Kraken CEO Jesse Powell discusses how we stood the test of time

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