BARONESS Michelle Mone (pictured), co-founder of cryptocurrency-based investment platform EQUI, has backed Bank of England Governor Mark Carney’s calls for regulation of the sector.
Carney said in a speech on Friday that cryptocurrencies must be held to the same standards as the rest of the financial system and said that regulation would “combat illicit activities, promote market integrity, and protect the safety and soundness of the financial system”.
The safety of cryptocurrencies for investors came under the spotlight last month when the value of Bitcoin plunged by 70 per cent. There are also fears that the anonymity of the asset class can be used for the benefit of illegal activities such as money laundering.
Read more: Cryptocurrency providers eye P2P lending
“Cryptocurrency has millions of people invested in it and it’s not going away,” said Mone. “Carney says that the underlying technology has a place in the future of money.
“I believe that cryptocurrencies are the future – the first Bitcoin was mined only nine years ago and now the governor of the Bank of English has a speech dedicated to it, just imagine where we’ll be in another nine years!
“Everybody who believes in cryptocurrencies agrees that we need regulation to move forwards, nobody wants this to be the Wild West anymore. With regulation comes stability.
“What is clear that a huge amount of innovation is happening and this new technology is going to change the way we do things. It’s not just about digital money.”
Mone, who founded lingerie company Ultimo, and her billionaire venture capitalist partner Doug Barrowman teamed up to launch EQUI, which enables investors to lend to or acquire stakes in innovative businesses using EQUItokens.
The firm recently bolstered its advisory board with the appointment of Duncan MacInnes, an early-stage backer of tech giants Facebook and Deliveroo.