The highly publicized bankruptcy of cryptocurrency platform FTX has sounded alarm bells for crypto executives to act more professionally, says one of the crypto industry’s most prominent North Texas leaders.
Chad Harris, Chief Commercial Officer, Riot Blockchain, said: Construction of the largest Bitcoin mining facility in North America In Corsicana, I advised crypto entrepreneurs at the Texas Blockchain Summit in Austin last week.
“I might hit your heart when I say this,” he told the crowd. There is a possibility.”
His comments come after FTX, once the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency exchange, filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this month, raising further questions about the legitimacy and long-term viability of the cryptocurrency industry. It was done.
“Mismanagement, poor financial planning, all the bad behavior that leads to bankruptcy…every time it happens, it makes the rest of us difficult,” he said. making it difficult to trust again.”
In his speech, Harris said the audience for this year’s summit was thin for the first time since the November 2021 crypto crash. Bitcoin’s price fell 73% last year to $15,786.
“Two years ago, this audience was full,” he said. “Today, this is an audience full of enthusiastic people, and I believe they can actually facilitate speaking to the public. I think it’s important because it affects all of us in
Advice for crypto readers
Harris said bad actors, poor cash management, and a difficult business environment will continue to keep crypto industry players like FTX out. Digging deeper into FTX, which owes more than a dollar, he said his company was smart enough not to take on debt.
“Some of the things other people didn’t do was we were very skinny along the way,” he said. We built a team of passionate people who believe in the core values of our business.”
Harris also attributes Riot’s success to employing more than 500 people. FTX founder and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried, who resigned on November 11, resisted hiring more team members, the same day FTX filed for bankruptcy. He preferred to keep a staff of around 300.
Harris said tax cuts and sales tax credits have allowed Riot Blockchain to hire a large team. He also said that Rockdale, which has a 700-megawatt facility, is collecting more sales tax than ever before.
According to Harris, cryptocurrency executives must also stop making overly inflated claims about facility capacity. “If we don’t start offering expectations that are actually factual, that we can support and actually deliver on, we’re going to continue to make elected officials very concerned.
Companies should strive to involve local communities in their projects, including by obtaining support At least one local elected official, he said.
Admitting that this doesn’t always work, Harris said: Corsicana groups continue to protest Construction of new facilities. The 265-acre site, located about an hour south of Dallas, is scheduled to begin operations in July and has an initial capacity of 400 megawatts. Opposition parties say the facility is taking resources away from a community of about 5,300 people.
“You’ll hear jokes about the Chad Harris Haters Club,” Harris said.
But Harris says his company continues to donate to the community and employ local employees, so the pressure from “haters” is lessening.
Finally, Harris told the entrepreneurs to do their homework and take advantage of worker incentives offered by the state of Texas, including funding to create training programs.
leaders need to grow
The outspoken leader said the bankruptcy of FTX is a clear demonstration that the crypto industry has changed and needs to change rapidly.
“If you look at the industry today, it’s unraveling at an almost unimaginable record pace,” he said. “Bitcoin was over $60,000 and everyone was driving Lambos, flying planes, hanging out on yachts. Let me tell you, this is a whole different world.”
Harris said the industry should go beyond the early startup stage. He said cryptocurrency companies should pay rent and salaries like all legitimate companies and behave as such.
“Beer caps and T-shirts, those days are gone,” he said. “We should wear slacks and sport coats. We should wear suits. This is a professional business. I am producing.”