With the news that an Estonian invite-only entrepreneurs’ community has raised USD 2.3 million to develop a “founders to founders” skill-sharing platform, Estonia continues to make its mark on the crypto space in the region.
Estonian World reported that the new platform, Lift99, aims to “build an online community of influencers and startup talents to lead this revolution. As the E-residency program has shown, it’s in the local DNA to think outside of the box, especially in the startup world”.
The e-residency program, introduced in 2014, allows non-Estonians access to Estonian services such as company formation, banking, payment processing, and taxation. The program also allows anyone in the world to apply for a digital ID card and gain access to Estonian e-services when planning to start a company in the country.
“We’re working to make e-residency the best option globally for entrepreneurs launching a trusted ICO, while proceeding with three variants of our own ‘Estcoin’ under consideration,” Kaspar Korjus, managing director of e-residency at Enterprise Estonia, wrote in a Medium blog post.
Many crypto companies are now doing business in Estonia. According to Cryptovest, the Baltic region is becoming a “Northern crypto-paradise” with Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia experiencing an economic boom recently. Estonia’s widespread adoption of cryptocurrencies and fintech has become a breeding ground for new startups.
Estonia is a country with a significant internet penetration and now boasts its own Bitcoin ATMs established back in 2015 when the capital Tallinn saw the installation of its first machine. The government has also recently considered its own token, the ‘Estcoin’.
Another reason for Estonia’s raised profile in the region is due to the country’s proximity to Russia, where the future of cryptocurrencies continues to be uncertain, despite Vladimir Putin’s recent comments regarding adopting a state crypto-rouble, according to Entrepreneur Europe. Crypto adoption in Russia still remains at a punitive stage, until the country makes its next change of direction. This makes neighboring states an attractive proposition for Russian investment.
The region also has a relatively high concentration of Bitcoin full nodes, which strongly correlates with cryptocurrency knowledge and adoption. Along with a favorable tax policy, supportive regulators and safe ICOs, it appears that Estonia remains on solid ground in the crypto space.
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