The direct listing of Coinbase (Nasdaq: COIN) on Wednesday has generated excitement in the cryptocurrency space, says Kathleen Breitman, co-founder of the smart-contracts blockchain platform Tezos.

The Coinbase stock price rose after its initial trade at $381 a share on Wednesday though has since settled back to about $320.

“It’s great to have Coinbase in the spotlight,” Breitman said in an interview on CoinDesk TV. “It’s fantastic they were able to do a direct listing.”

  • Asked about the decline in the overall crypto-market share of bitcoin (BTC) and the rise of altcoins, she said: "Bitcoin has been fantastic for getting people acquainted with the idea of a digital asset. I see smart-contract platforms as a movement forward."
  • "A lot of new projects tend to overpromise and under deliver," she said.
  • There is a lot of "hopium," she said, especially in decentralized finance (DeFi). "Yield farming looks more like gambling than financial innovation."
  • "Some lending protocols have negative NIMs, which you don't see in institutional finance." NIM stands for net interest margin, or what a lender collects in interest from borrowers minus what it pays out on deposits and other funding.  

The rapid growth in smart contracts has underpinned significant price rallies in ether, the native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum blockchain, and other alternative coins (altcoins) over the past year.

Many altcoins have appreciated in the lead-up to COIN’s direct listing, including Tezos’ token XTZ.

Tezos has lagged behind bitcoin over the past year however, tripling in price versus a nine-fold gain for BTC. Ether has increased 16-fold.

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