The Rise of Binance Coin (BNB) & Exchange Driven Tokens
Binance Coin (BNB), Cryptocurrency, Exchanges–As the crypto markets show a slight recovery from yesterday, with Bitcoin climbing above $4000 again to show a tentative trading range, a little talked about coin is leading the pack in 24 hour gains.
Binance Coin (BNB), the fourteenth largest currency by market capitalization, is up 13 percent as of writing, leaving some to wonder if the model of cryptocurrency is shifting away from the once stalwart approach towards transactions. Most investors have become familiar with stablecoins throughout 2018, with the high profile–and often controversial–Tether USDT holding the eighth largest position in terms of market capitalization. Compared to traditional cryptos, such as Bitcoin, Litecoin and XRP, Tether and the cadre of stablecoins offer relative price stability by pegging their value to an external source. In the case of USDT, the value of of one token is backed by that of a single U.S. dollar. Other stablecoins have experimented with gold and other precious metals, but the reliance upon familiar fiat choices has been the more popular route.
Binance Coin (BNB) operates in a similarly alternative sphere of the crypto-verse. Unlike Bitcoin, which was minted with the sole purpose of operating in the open market, BNB is a growing class of exchange-created and exchange-driven tokens. Like many other currencies minted within the last year, Binance Coin operates as an ERC-20 token built on the Ethereum foundation. While BNB can be bought, spent and traded just like any other crypto, it has the added benefit of providing greater utility on its native platform, such as a more popular trading pair than traditional fiat, and being used to pay trading and exchange fees.
In July, outspoken Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin blasted the current state of cryptocurrency exchanges as being profit-focused as opposed to promoting the principles of decentralization, leading him to utter the now famous phrase,
“I definitely hope centralized exchanges go burn in hell as much as possible.”
In some respects, Buterin is justified in his criticisms of exchanges which have become the focal point for cryptocurrency and crypto-based adoption. Binance is on pace to top $1 billion in profits by the end of the year, with most exchanges reporting similar record revenues despite it being an abysmal year for cryptocurrency investors and the market in general.
However, currencies such as BNB–despite their close association with the conflicting nature of exchanges–are providing a broader glimpse at the function of crypto in the right context. In lieu of widespread and mainstreet adoption, the microcosm of exchange marketplaces show that crypto does hold a fair amount of utility when given a use. The price of BNB is on the rise, good enough to land in the fourteenth position by market capitalization, because of a recognition by customers that they are not only investing in price speculation for the coin, but that it will continue to deliver value on the established platform of Binance.
Other cryptos could find a similar following and benefit just the same as BNB. While most traditional media outlets have focused on the woe of the following prices for cryptocurrency into the final month of the year, industry stalwarts such as Mike Novogratz have pointed out the contradiction in value: that crypto adoption is broadening throughout 2018 despite the falling price. With real use-cases and an incentive to buy and use, transactional coins like Bitcoin will find their footing in the coming years.