Bitcoin in China and an episode of The Good Wife. What’s the connection?

 
Guy Bentley
Follow Guy
Xu's interest in Bitcoin was first sparked by an episode of The Good Wife (Source: Getty)

CEOs of some of the world's largest Bitcoin exchanges are meeting in Beijing at the Global Bitcoin Summit to discuss the future of the cryptocurrency.

At an off-conference event, digital currency news website Coindesk, interviewed the founders of OKCoin and Huobi. Amid the discussion of China's regulatory clampdown and plans for the future, OKCoin's founder Star Xu revealed how he first developed a passion for the cryptocurrency.

At the beginning of 2012, Xu watched an episode of the American TV series The Good Wife called Bitcoin for Dummies. The episode featured Jason Biggs of American Pie fame playing Dylan Stack, a lawyer for the creator of Bitcoin, which is under the scrutiny of Treasury Department agents.

However, as the episode progresses, it turns out Stack is the creator of Bitcoin along with two others. The episode ignited Xu's interest in Bitcoin, after which he conducted his own research into the field.

Xu found his feet in the Bitcoin world by trading at the now defunct MtGox exchange and then later at BTC China. OKCoin was founded in 2013 and later received $10m in Series A funding from venture capital firm Ceyuan. The VC company's investment was followed by Mandra Capital and VenturesLab earlier this year.

“The most important thing is, your investors should believe you, trust you, and support your business. My investors also believed in bitcoin, he bought a lot of bitcoin himself, and he thought I was the right person to run the business. We made the deal in 10 minutes”, Xu told Coindesk.

The issue overshadowing the Global Bitcoin Summit has been regulation. Bitcoin has been on the receiving end of several regulatory clampdowns in China over the past year. However, Xu is more optimistic than most about the prospects for Bitcoin in the world's second largest economy.

"Actually it’s easy to run a bitcoin exchange in China. There are only two exchanges in the US, but in China we have 10 or 20 Bitcoin exchanges", said Xu.

Indeed, OKCoin's ambitions are not limited to China. The company plans to cooperate with overseas startups and says that more competition is needed.