Crypto Valley Association – Q2 2017 Newsletter

Newsletter #1: Q2 2017
News from the Association
  • Message from the Board: Welcome to the world’s new center of crypto innovation
  • Getting to work: Meet the CVA’s new working groups
  • Getting together: First CVA general assembly to be held in June
News from the Valley
  • Big bucks: Your blockchain InsurTech startup could win $100,000
  • SICTIC: Smart money looking for smart projects
  • The Internet of Blockchains: Gavin Wood introduces Polkadot
  • Crypto Mountain: Blockchain hits the slopes at Davos
  • Crypto Valley Forum: What you missed at the last meetups

News from the Association
Message from the Board
Welcome to the world’s new center of crypto innovation

On March 8 we officially launched the Crypto Valley Association with the goal of building the world’s leading blockchain and cryptographic technologies ecosystem here in Switzerland. The announcement made waves, being picked up by over 100 media outlets around the world within the first 24 hours. The same day the first new member registered via our new website, paying the membership dues – appropriately – in Bitcoin.

The CVA marks an important milestone in the Swiss tech innovation scene. We aim to build on Switzerland’s natural advantages as well as the efforts of the many dedicated individuals who laid the groundwork for our Association. I am extremely honored and excited to be involved as President of the CVA and to do my part to further this effort. I believe we have a chance to accomplish something special here.

If you are a blockchain or cryptographic technology startup, an established firm, or an interested individual, I encourage you to get involved as well. It’s easy to become a member, and at CHF 100, not very expensive.

We look forward to welcoming you to the valley.

Oliver Bussmann, President Crypto Valley Association

Getting to work
Meet the CVA’s new working groups
Having now launched the CVA is starting to get to work. First step has been to set up 6 working groups, all volunteer-led and run, to define and carry out the Association’s objectives. The Groups are:

  • Events. Will develop the CVA’s event and conference schedule (including the monthly meetups) as well as the Association’s yearly general assembly.
  • Communications. Will develop and implement the CVA’s communications strategy and plan.
  • Investments. Will establish CVA as a medium through which startups can distribute requests for investment to appropriate venture capital / private equity contacts.
  • Policy / Regulation. Will define and establish a regulation and policy framework and setup for the ecosystem.
  • Technology. Will provide regular overviews of relevant technology developments, establish a CVA Living Lab for pilots and prototypes, invite technologists to the Valley for talks, and establish connections with academic institutions.
  • Startup Onboarding. Will develop the framework for startup support functions e.g. legal, finance, building a local network.

Each working group will regularly report on its activities through the CVA website, including the blog and this newsletter.

We need your help to grow Crypto Valley so visit this page and apply to join a group.

Getting together
First CVA general assembly to be held in June
Please save the date for our first general assembly, which will happen on the evening of:

June 9, 2017

More details will follow in a separate announcement.

News from the Valley
Big bucks
Crypto Valley competition offering $100,000 to the best blockchain InsurTech idea
The insurance industry has lagged in blockchain, but that is changing quickly. So we are glad to report that the largest blockchain startup competition for InsurTech will be taking place right here in Crypto Valley.

Initiated by CVA member organizations Lakeside Partners and inacta, the first prize in the competition includes $100,000 cash, one year free office space in Zug, Switzerland, and professional coaching. All participants also get to share their ideas with some of the biggest names in Swiss insurance.

Call for entries opened on April 10, and submissions will be accepted through July. More at

Smart money looking for smart blockchain projects
The Swiss ICT Investor Club (SICTIC) is a non-profit connecting smart money investors to Swiss early-stage tech startups. On May 2 the 35th SICTIC Investor Day will take place at the Thomson Reuters office in Baar.

The focus this time will be blockchain. That makes this is a very interesting opportunity for Crypto Valley and Swiss startups looking for venture capital and advice from some of Switzerland’s leading private investors.

The window is still open for submissions from startups. Individual CVA members who want to attend the event can get a 50% discount on tickets by using the code SICTIC50. There is a limited number, so register early.

Startup submissions and tickets at

The Internet of Blockchains
Gavin Wood introduces Polkadot
On March 22 Gavin Wood, one of the founders of Ethereum and currently Founder and CTO at Parity, presented his Polkadot project at a meetup hosted by the Institut für Finanzdienstleistungen (IFZ) in Zug.

Polkadot is a project to enable interoperability between distributed ledgers by building a scalable, extensible framework to allow existing blockchains to exchange transactions. Together with the Cosmos project, Polkadot is part of an exciting vision for a true Internet of Blockchains.

You can view the slides as well as a YouTube video of Wood giving the same presentation at a Meetup in Berlin.

Crypto Mountain
Blockchain hits the slopes at Davos
The Swiss mountain village of Davos is best known as the home of the World Economic Forum. With the success of the inaugural Crypto Mountain, held in Davos on the third weekend of March, it may soon be known for blockchain too.

Conceived and organized by CVA member Reto Gadient (B.ACADEMY), the event centered on two “talk battle” panel discussions at the Hotel Europe:

  • CVA Board member Vasiliy Suvorov (Luxoft) faced off against Dr. Sebastian Bürgel (Validity Labs) on the subject of “Consensus about Consensus?”
  • Richard F. Zbinden (CoreLedger) went up against Luzius Meisser (Bitcoin Association Switzerland) on “Is cryptocurrency the future of money?”

The four-day program also included a Thursday networking soiree at the Davos residence of Luis Molina, inventor of Fermat, and a networking drinks, dinner and midnight sledding at the legendary Schatzalp hotel, setting of Thomas Mann’s famous novel Magic Mountain. During the days participants hit the slopes of the equally famous Jakobshorn, led by CVA member and ski maestra Olga Feldmeier.

Watch the video, and register for next year’s event, at

Crypto Valley Forum
What happened at the last meetups
The brainchild of CVA Board member Søren Fog, the monthly meetups of the Crypto Valley Forum have established themselves as one of the most important community events in Crypto Valley. Started in 2016, the First Tuesday Drinks and Networking now regularly attracts up to 80 people for presentations and chit chat. Here’s what you missed at the most recent meets:

  • January 3: A presentation by Orbit, a digital market place disguised as a file sharing solution. The platform runs without advertisement and is politically neutral.
  • February 7: A talk by Luis F. Molina, founder of the Fermat project and the Internet of People.
  • March 7: Presentation and discussion of security and regulatory issues in cryptocurrencies with CVA member Olga Feldmeier who led the market entry of Xapo in Switzerland.
  • April 4: Introduction by Crypto Valley member Mona El Isa to Melonport, a very interesting Ethereum-based start-up in the asset management space.

Join the Meetup to make sure you don’t miss the next events.

We hope you enjoyed your reading. For questions and comments, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

With best regards,
The Crypto Valley Association Board