The regulations set the table for more talent, capital and growth in the crypto industry

The sentiment in the crypto and decentralized finance space has changed and evolved. The industry is also becoming more scrutinized and inevitably more organized. A few weeks ago, United States President Joe Biden signed an executive order to accelerate and focus regulatory oversight of the $3 trillion industry.

The order will spur the government to review the risks and benefits of cryptocurrencies, with a particular focus on consumer protection, financial stability, illicit activities, US competitiveness, financial inclusion and responsible innovation. While the results of this arrangement are yet to unfold, this moment helps set the table for more clarity, predictability, certainty, and stability for decentralized finance (DeFi).


As in any industry, clarity on how DeFi and crypto should work is important. US government regulatory oversight will ultimately be helpful and should be welcomed by participants and organizations in the DeFi community.

Related: Powers On… Biden embraces blockchain technology, recognizes its benefits and is pushing for adoption

In the meantime, there are plenty of signs that the DeFi and crypto ecosystem is teeming with talent, creativity, energy, and capital to get involved. Denver recently hosted one of the largest Ethereum conferences and hackathons of the pandemic era. Over nine days in February, ETHDenver welcomed more than 12,000 people to the in-person event to share ideas, create and unveil new protocols, curate investments and network.

Word spread around town during the conference that a group of brilliant youngsters in their late teens and early twenties had started a hacking house in Denver. Some of the world’s most talented, brightest and youngest hackers were there and welcomed visiting venture capitalists. The ticket price for an on-site talk was $3,000 each. Events like ETHDenver and the upcoming involvement and oversight of regulators point the way for a vigorous, meaningful and proactive year in the crypto industry.


Talent meets creativity meets money

Denver encompassed an interesting and diverse ecosystem of players, investors, and builders. Culture and industry strengthen and deepen. When thirsty venture capitalists (VC) pay $3,000 just to talk to the brightest 19-year-olds in the country, that’s a bold sign of life in the industry. Denver showed us that space is a lot less fringed than it used to be.

These young people, in some cases, are leaving top schools to join DeFi teams or develop protocols and products, and there is plenty of investment capital to launch big ideas, tools, and decentralized applications.

Related: In the mind of blockchain developers: creating truly free-to-use DApps

Meanwhile, members of the first crypto wave have evolved into a so-called old guard, offering stability, caution, and experience to initiate projects, decentralized autonomous organizations, and protocols. The VCs, gigabrains, and old guard continue to be supported and energized by the legions of crypto troops whose enthusiasm for investing, discussion, and participation in space continues to be the lifeblood of DeFi.

A blending is taking place that is creating a healthier ecosystem of brilliant ideas, expertise, money and enthusiasm that will bring longevity to the industry as Web3 matures and evolves.

The battle for talent escalates

A common talking point in Denver was that everyone is hiring and struggling to maintain a pipeline of talented, experienced, and dedicated developers, engineers, and technical experts. We can expect this trend to continue as the mainstream world becomes increasingly interested in crypto and DeFi.

It’s likely that Web2 talent will be increasingly drawn into Web3 by the likes of Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google – and that’s a good thing.


There is a lot of experience and know-how in traditional tech companies that can and should help build DeFi protocols, services and systems, thereby decentralizing funding. Not everyone will be open to the risk or uncertainty of the crypto space, but that sense of risk is diminishing as Web3 organizations continue to receive large investments that offer plenty of runway and breathing room to create stability and comfort.

Web3 is beginning to show its relevance, and it looks like we’re turning a curve toward more robust talent recruitment and retention.

Related: Web3: Onboarding the Next Billion Users – The Way Forward

A bear market offers room for top builders

Anyone who paid attention to TradFi and DeFi markets have seen volatility in prices and tokens over the past few weeks and months. Entire markets have ebbed and flowed for many reasons and could remain so for the next year or more. This scenario is probably one of the many reasons the US government is interested in evaluating (and regulating) the industry.

But true crypto builders don’t retreat into bear markets — they thrive. A crypto bear market can be more productive, especially for teams focused on bright ideas and creativity. Bull markets tend to be more consumer- or dealer-centric, and the noise can often drown out or slow down significant advances.

Good ideas within the developer community tend to surface during bear markets and deserve more airtime, visibility, reflection and development. The DeFi space is becoming more academic in both team building and recruitment, and this intelligence will be crucial as it focuses on new ideas and solutions to existing problems.

This article does not contain any investment advice or recommendation. Every investment and trading move involves risk and readers should do their own research when making a decision.

The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed herein are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

Hart Lambour is co-founder of UMA and Across. UMA is a decentralized financial contracts platform where Hart leads a team of researchers on financial contracts and oracle design. He is also co-founder and CEO of Risk Labs, the company behind the UMA protocol. Previously, Hart was CEO of Openfolio, a personal finance tracking platform he co-founded in 2013. He also worked for Goldman Sachs providing liquidity in US Treasuries to a variety of clients including central banks, managers and hedge funds.