Bitcoin has enjoyed a record-breaking year in 2021, but experts predict next year could see some of its rivals surge in popularity and price – and possibly even overtake it.
Speaking at a virtual event this week, leading figures within the crypto space discussed recent market developments and speculated on where things might be headed over the next 12 months.
Joining The Independent’s Anthony Cuthbertson was Fred Schebesta, co-founder of the financial comparison platform Finder.com, Dr Iwa Salami, an associate professor at the University of East London, and Will Harborne, CEO of the decentralised cryptocurrency exchange DeversiFi.
They were divided in their crypto market forecasts for 2022 but found common ground with certain predictions for the space.
Schebesta predicted that the bull run will continue into 2022 and that certain lesser-known cryptocurrencies will enjoy significant growth, as well as sectors like play-to-earn games.
“The good times are still rolling,” he said. “My one I’m looking at right now is Terra Luna. I think Terra Luna is a fascinating coin because it has a decentralised algorithmic stablecoin attached to it.”
He claimed that bitcoin has “a very good shot” of hitting six figures – currently it is hovering just below $50,000 – but that its price will begin to cool off at some point in 2022.
“I think we’re going to see bitcoin at $32,000 [this time next year], I think we’re going to pull down but we’ll stay sideways,” he said. “Ethereum I think is going to be around the $2,900 mark.”
Watch the full event recording below
Will Harborne, CEO of the decentralised cryptocurrency exchange DeversiFi, was also relatively bearish about the overall market but was hopeful about its longer-term trajectory.
“We are in a bubble,” he said. “There have been multiple bubbles through the history of cryptocurrency, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing, that’s because there is genuine value being created and people speculate on that and everyone gets way ahead of themselves.
“I wouldn’t think it surprising to see another market correction in the near future... That said, there is some really positive momentum.”
There is also the possibility that Ethereum could “flip” bitcoin by overtaking its market cap, according to the crypto boss, who cited the cryptocurrency’s overall utility in the decentralised finance space.
He concluded with the caveat: “Anyone who tries to predict the market gets it wrong.”