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Opinion

Why partnerships are vital for the success of cryptocurrencies

By James Tennant

June 2018

5 Min Read

Shaking Hands

Strategic partnerships have long been a vital element of a business's growth strategy.

The old adage that 'two heads are better than one' is never truer than in the example of two (or more) businesses coming together to form strategic partnerships.

Great examples include:

Spotify and Uber – These two relatively young companies (very young in the case of Uber) recently formed a strategic partnership that provides Uber passengers with stereo control. Spotify offers something with its 'Premium' package that other streaming services do not, and likewise, Uber can provide its customers with an opportunity to 'customise their ride' and have a more enjoyable customer experience. All the while they're cross-promoting each other's products and services – brilliant.

Starbucks and Barnes & Noble – What a match-up this has been. While many brick and mortar bookshops continue to close down due to decreasing number of customers, Barnes & Noble continue to buck the trend. But why has the company been so resilient? Because pretty much every Barnes & Noble shop contains a Starbucks. And Starbucks, love them or hate them, is extremely popular with coffee drinkers. Where other bookstores were only offering one thing - books, Barnes & Noble have given their customers two reasons to shop there. Browse the latest bestsellers and enjoy some reading time with a coffee.

As you can see, strategic partnerships are vital to the success of businesses. And it's the same in the world of cryptocurrency.

For cryptocurrency projects to grow at the rate they need to and convince the world that they're big enough and strong enough to be adopted, strategic partnerships will be key.

Below you'll find what we consider to the be TOP THREE benefits that strategic partnerships bring. After that, we'll look at one particular cryptocurrency project that has been creating some noise regarding the partnerships that it has developed.

Increased market share and market access

Probably the biggest benefit of a strategic partnership, at least to your bottom line, is the potential to acquire new customers in different markets.

Entering into partnerships with established companies, that have huge numbers of users or customers, is a sure-fire way to greatly increase the number of people that know about, and can access, your product or service.

Expand reach

Want to reach customers in different geographical locations? Partner with a leading business in the locations you want to establish your own brand. It's far quicker than trying to reach new customers in new locations from scratch.

Expansion is the first step towards growth in new markets.

Share resources/knowledge swap

Perhaps an underrated reason for entering into a strategic partnership is to combine the resources of companies, or to gain more knowledge and expertise in a particular area.

Leading the way with strategic partnerships

There are many amazing companies in the crypto space that are creating useful and powerful strategic partnerships to increase their likelihood of success (and there are many that just resort to 'announcements of announcements' for some short-term PR hype too), but we feel that there are a few companies doing it better than UTRUST and Ethos.

UTRUST

UTRUST, creators of the leading cryptocurrency payment platform (more on them here), have been regularly announcing exciting partnerships. We'll break some of them down below.

PUNDI X – Creator of the market-leading blockchain-based point-of-sale

Announced on the 20th of June 2018, this partnership will see UTRUST and Pundi X join forces to “build an offline cryptocurrency payment platform for mainstream adoption.”

As part of the deal, UTRUST will acquire 1,000 units of Pundi's XPOS technology, while Pundi X will, in turn, deploy UTRUST as a liquidity provider for transactions on its devices.

As mentioned above, this partnership is all about mainstream adoption - vital to the success of cryptocurrencies. With two of the biggest companies in the space making this long-term commitment to each other, mainstream adoption moves one step closer.

Gambio – Germany's largest E-commerce solution

With over 25,000 merchants as clients, generating billions in annual revenue, partnering with Gambio will help UTRUST enter Europe's largest economy, representing over one-third of total European online sales.

Gambio, in return, will now be able to enter the new, multi-billion dollar cryptocurrency market. It's a win-win situation.

The partnership, which commences in September, will “enable over 25,000 merchants to effortlessly and securely accept cryptocurrencies as a means of payment.”

Getting more people access to cryptocurrencies will increase the numbers of people actually using cryptocurrencies - something that's a rarity right now. 

UMT AG – One of the largest mobile payment solution providers in Europe

Announced on the 23rd of March 2018, this partnership will help UTRUST build “a bridge into the traditional point-of-sale market, with UMT currently reaching over 14 million users and 66,500 individual cash points in Europe.”

This partnership will see UTRUST and UMT work together to make it easier for people to make and accept cryptocurrency payments in the German and European market. Again, this is huge for getting cryptocurrencies more and more integrated into everyday life. 

Ethos

Ethos, a company “developing a dynamic Multi-Sided Investment Platform and Global Ecosystem”, have aligned themselves with companies that are providing complementary services, strengthening their overall offering.

While there have been a few partnerships announced by Ethos, we thought we'd focus on the two below, as we feel they are two of the most important.

Taxfyle – The number 1 on-demand, tax prep company

Ethos has partnered with Taxfyle to offer crypto investors the first viable tax preparation alternative for supporting the crypto community with access to responsible tax preparation and filing.

Taxes and cryptocurrencies don't mix particularly well right now. And the waters are muddy to say the least on what has to be declared, what doesn't, and how you go about declaring at all. With Ethos building an investment-based product, having a partnership that will help its customers navigate the tax issue properly is a massive bonus.

In their own words; “Together, Ethos and Taxfyle aim to provide crypto investors the best solution in resolving their tax worries, in an effort to be fully compliant in this ever-changing industry. As the multi-sided features of the Ethos ecosystem mature, Ethos and Taxfyle see a significant opportunity to streamline the ability for users to locate, find and engage with tax professionals anywhere anytime.”

Crypto investors rejoice.

Fusion - Internet-only based investment adviser

Ethos's partnership with Fusion is another big win for its users. As Fusion is a Fiduciary (meaning they are legally obligated to act in the best interests of its customers), Ethos continues to prove that it is looking out for the best interests of its community.

In their own words, “Fusion is the first federally registered investment advisor regulated in the United States, offering diversified portfolios consisting of cryptocurrencies.”

This means that by partnering with Fusion, Ethos will be able to offer regulated advisory services to its users – a major part of the Ethos platform and a huge step forward for cryptocurrency investors everywhere.

Partnerships are key

As you can see, all of the above include one or more of the three benefits of proper strategic partnerships that we laid out earlier in the article. Each one will strengthen the offerings of UTRUST and Ethos, giving them access to a huge number of potential users in markets all over the world, and will see them work alongside experts in various sectors, helping them create a better business and a stronger proposition for their customers.

These partnerships are also massively important for the wider blockchain industry as well – the stronger the use cases, and the more people who are aware of crypto, and who use crypto, the faster the rate of adoption will be. Simple.

While there is no shortage of partnerships announced in the crypto world, many of them are just announcements made for the sake of a PR boost, and rarely do they have the same substance behind them than those highlighted in this article.

The only way cryptocurrencies and crypto projects will succeed is through the creation of strong products and services that are adopted by people all over the world. To create those products and services - ones that will succeed, at least - crypto projects will need to create the right strategic partnerships.

We hope you enjoyed the article. As ever, we want to know your opinion on what we've written. Do you agree with us? Disagree? What do you think of the partnerships UTRUST and Ethos have entered into? Let us know in the comments below.