• Brian D. Evans Brian D. Evans Founder/CEO, Influencive.

A decade ago, the concept of a decentralized currency was nothing more than an idea. It went by the name of Bitcoin.

Today? A single Bitcoin is worth over $1,200.

Those who saw the vision for the idea many years ago invested, and have since made fortunes for themselves. Since then, many other entrepreneurs believing the future of cryptocurrencies to be bright, have pushed their chips forward in favor.

Now? There’s a new name in town: Ethereum, a blockchain-based platform extremely similar to the one operating Bitcoin. The difference? According to IEEE Spectrum, “Some of the biggest names in the sectors of finance and software—including Intel, Microsoft, J.P. Morgan, and Accenture—finally stepped into the fray, announcing their intention to work together on a private version of the Ethereum blockchain. Their efforts will be coordinated under the auspices of a new nonprofit organization called the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance, which will guide the engineering of a standard blockchain technology based on the Ethereum blockchain and customized for the needs of all enterprise members.”

In short? Ethereum has an alliance of more than 30 companies, extremely influential and powerful each in their own right, supporting the future of cryptocurrencies by building a highly specialized platform with the intention of self-executing peer-to-peer contracts.

Over the last two years, I have come across more than a handful of extremely intelligent entrepreneurs that swear by the potential of cryptocurrencies—and who are now swearing up and down about Ethereum being the next Bitcoin. Considering I missed the ball on Bitcoin (even though a friend of mine told me to buy 1000s of coins back when it was under $50), I am listening more closely this time.

I have come across many people who are buying Ether by the dozens as a long term play.

Then, just this last week, Dan Fleyshman and Branden Hampton, two super stars in the world of digital influence—started talking about the future of Ethereum and began making big purchases themselves. These are guys that have made some very lucrative investments over the years, so again I took note.

Dan Fleyshman is the youngest founder of a publicly traded company, Author and Angel Investor in 24 companies. I asked him what his thoughts were on the future of cryptocurrencies, and he said, “I have been active in Bitcoin since 2014 when I got the first BITCOIN ATM placed into a Las Vegas casino by introducing the owners and sitting through the intense vetting processes with city officials, attorneys and mountains of paperwork to make sure the BTC ATM was fully compliant for the Nevada Gaming Commission’s rigorous rules to protect people. Over time, I noticed that the only other coin on the Coinbase platform was ‘ETHEREUM,’ I started researching it. Then once I heard about the ‘Ethereum Alliance’ being backed by 30 major corporations, I decided it was time to go all-in. Ethereum is a cryptocurrency much like Bitcoin, but for a variety of technical reasons, arguably better.”

On March 4, 2017 Fleyshman told his followers on Facebook and Twitter to keep an eye on Ethereum and that he was heavily investing. It was then at $19. Since then, as of the time of publishing, it has gone on to increase to nearly $30, which is over a 150% increase. “I’m all-in,” said Fleyshman, referring to Ethereum.

Branden Hampton, the largest independent social media publisher in the world with over 31 million followers across all social media platforms, weighed in as well: “I feel like I have a great eye for trends and emerging markets. Ethereum has my radar going crazy. It’s revolutionary in both the b2b and b2c markets and the applications have unlimited potential.”

These two entrepreneurs aren’t the only ones looking ahead at what sorts of opportunities could unfold from the development and integration of cryptocurrencies into mainstream culture. But one thing is for sure: if you get in early, you could be sitting pretty a few years down the line.

Brian D. Evans
Brian is the Founder/CEO/Editor-in-Chief at Influencive and the Founder at BDE Ventures. Brian is an Inc. 500 Entrepreneur, who built the 25th fastest growth marketing and advertising company in America. Brian is an advisor to many startups and mentor to many entrepreneurs. He is a columnist at Inc.com, Entrepreneur.com, Huffington Post, Forbes and others.