Overstock, the e-commerce company which has invested a lot of development effort into integrating with cryptocurrency, announced that their blockchain research division tZero would see $270m of investment from Hong Kong private equity firm GSR Ventures over the coming years.
Ramping up Blockchain Research
Overstock expressed early interest in cryptocurrency and blockchain technology, being one of the first major platforms to accept Bitcoin in 2016. Last year their stock price saw a huge pump as they announced their rebranding and associated strategy of becoming a blockchain company, with the ICO of their tZero token.
tZero CEO Saum Noursalehi gave his views on the investment:
“We are honored to have GSR Capital as a strategic investor. The tokenization of securities has the potential to disrupt global capital markets responsible for moving hundreds of trillions of dollars. Together with our partners, we will globalize our blockchain-based platform, bringing more efficiency, liquidity, and trust to capital markets.”
While the company was previously mocked for its rebranding efforts (with commentators characterizing the move as an empty gesture intending to court the hype around crypto-technology), CEO of Overstock Patrick Byrne seems to have proven the genuine belief the organization has for the technology’s potential. Recently he told FOXBusiness that he is confident blockchain can solve world poverty:
“When we first started taking bitcoin I said back then four years ago, the main event of bitcoin isn’t bitcoin it’s this thing called blockchain. We are going to change the world with blockchain […] Hernando [Peruvian economist] and I intend to use blockchain technology to empower and enfranchise the five billion people who live outside formal economies within five years.”
Overstock is an e-commerce platform in competition with the likes of Amazon. They also recently announced their intention to move into the real estate industry with a blockchain-based solution.