With a market cap of more than $90 billion, Cardano has displaced Binance Coin and Tether as the third largest cryptocurrency after Bitcoin and Ethereum.
It (along with Polkadot) has been described as the ‘Ethereum killer’ for its purported ability to do what Ethereum can do, only better.
As the table below shows, Cardano has delivered extraordinary gains over 12 months compared to most other assets, including cryptos.
Had you invested R1 000 in Cardano a year ago, it would today be worth more than R21 000, putting it multiples ahead of the returns delivered by Bitcoin, Ethereum and the stock market.
Cardano is up 115% since the start of August in anticipation of a major upgrade next month known as Alonzo which will allow self-actualising smart contracts to be written on its blockchain (which is a detailed ledger that records and validates transactions).
Cardano is being promoted by some as a rival to Ethereum and a platform that will revolutionise the way we transact and do business, essentially by eliminating agents and go-betweens (such as banks, stock exchanges and insurance agents).
Returns after investing R1 000 in different assets over 12 months:
So, what is Cardano exactly, and why is there so much buzz around it? We asked Brett Hope Robertson (BHR), investment analyst at Revix, to sort through some of the confusion and misunderstandings around crypto.
What is Cardano?
BHR: Cardano is a proof-of-stake blockchain platform that is designed to accommodate a vast number of applications in a secure and sustainable way. Proof-of-stake (PoS) is a modification to the Proof-of-work (PoW) model Bitcoin uses. Rather than rely on computers racing to mine the block, the idea behind a PoS protocol is that participation is determined by ownership of the coin supply that you are staking on the network. Users who want the opportunity to be selected to add blocks to a PoS blockchain are required to stake a certain amount of the blockchain’s cryptocurrency in a special contract. The amount of coins staked determines their chances of being selected as the next block producer. Yet, if users behave maliciously, they may lose their stake as punishment.
PoS is the future of blockchain technology, the key benefit being its ability to scale at speed without using vast amounts of electricity – as is the case with the original Bitcoin blockchain.
What’s interesting about Cardano is that it was started in 2015 by Charles Hoskinson, one of the co-founders of Ethereum, with the express purpose of solving some of the key problems identified with Ethereum – such as poor scalability, and network congestion resulting in high ‘gas’ fees.
How does Cardano work and what does it do?
BHR: Cardano was the first blockchain technology to be founded on peer-reviewed research and evidence-based methodologies. In September it is supposed to be enabled for smart contract functionality. Smart contracts are pieces of computer code that allow people to transact safely in a ‘trustless’ environment. For example, you can already borrow money at relatively low interest rates on decentralised finance (DeFi) applications using your crypto assets as collateral. No credit vetting by a bank clerk, no KYC (Know Your Customer) obligations, and in many cases, you don’t even get asked for your name.
That’s just one use of smart contracts. Think of insurance and financial products that eliminate the go-between and cut down on costs, or supply chain management, where payment for delivery of a consignment of goods is tied to the fulfilment of certain conditions, such as delivery of the goods of a pre-determined quality by an agreed-on date.
Is there a business case behind Cardano?
BHR: There is a promise of a business case, but Cardano has yet to deliver on milestones such as smart contracts. That means it has yet to deliver any meaningful use cases outside of being a transfer of value. The Cardano (ADA) price is being moved more on hype than fact. If Cardano delivers on its smart contract functionality, then the price is likely justified and could go on to greater highs. If it doesn’t, we could see a pullback in price. The fact that it is a strong competitor to Ethereum means a case can be made for including it in a crypto portfolio.
Where can I buy Cardano and why should I own it?
BHR: As of Friday (August 27), Cardano can be purchased as a standalone cryptocurrency at Revix. The launch of Cardano as a standalone cryptocurrency has come due to the overwhelming demand from our clients.
Due to the new release, Revix is offering a two-fold promotion:
- If you purchase Cardano using ZAR or GBP over the next week (August 27 to September 2), your purchases will be free of fees.
- The first 600 new sign-ups to the Revix platform will receive double their initial deposit up to R500 when using the promocode: DOUBLEUP – this promotion is valid from August 17 to 31, 2021.
There are a couple of reasons you may want to purchase Cardano, but the two main reasons would be that it is trying to solve scalability and high fees in the smart contract space. Secondly, it is trying to solve blockchain’s energy consumption issue by relying on vastly less energy to secure the network.
What else does Revix offer?
At Revix, we now offer Bitcoin, Ethereum, Uniswap, PAX Gold, USDC and Cardano as standalone cryptocurrencies. And we offer a USDC Savings Vault, similar to that of a savings account.
These bundles allow you to own an equally-weighted basket of the world’s largest and, by default, most successful cryptocurrencies.
The Top 10 Bundle spreads your investment equally across the 10 largest cryptocurrencies as measured by market cap, the Smart Contract Bundle spreads your investment equally across the Top 5 smart contract cryptocurrencies, and the Payments Bundle spreads your investment equally across the Top 5 cryptocurrencies focused on payments – giving you balanced exposure to these crypto sectors.
Revix brings simplicity, trust and great customer service to investing. Its easy-to-use online platform enables anyone to securely own the world’s top investments in just a few clicks. Revix guides new clients through the sign-up process to their first deposit and first investment. Once set up, most customers manage their own portfolio but can access support from the Revix team at any time.
For more information, please visit www.revix.com
This article is intended for informational purposes only. The views expressed are not and should not be construed as investment advice or recommendations. This article is not an offer, nor the solicitation of an offer, to buy or sell any of the assets or securities mentioned herein. You should not invest more than you can afford to lose, and before investing, please take into consideration your level of experience, investment objectives and seek independent financial advice if necessary.
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