What bitcoin businesses most fear right now


Prominent venture capitalist Fred Wilson says that the New York Department of Financial Services introduced itself to him by way of a “punch in the gut.”

Wilson, a founder of Union Square Ventures, was speaking at an intimate roundtable discussion last week over breakfast at Aquavit restaurant in Manhattan. The topic? BitLicense, the forthcoming regulatory policy from New York State that will govern digital currency businesses deemed “money transmitters.” Spearheaded by NYDFS superintendent Benjamin Lawsky, the policy has gone through multiple revisions, but will be finalized by the end of May. And it has bitcoin businesspeople and policy pundits very concerned.

“You have to remember,” Wilson said early on in the discussion, “My first introduction to BitLicense was a subpoena from the NYDFS. Usually you don’t introduce yourself with a punch in the gut.” He added that other bitcoin businesses and venture capitalists, too, were subpoenaed by Lawsky and the…

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