Invest “no more than they can afford” in bitcoin, says Bitcoin Foundation

Llew Claasen, the head of the Bitcoin Foundation, has recommended people to invest “no more than they can afford” in the crypto-currency.

He recently explained how billions lack access to formal banking, but taking up mobile money embraces alternatives, whilst speaking at the TEDGlobal conference in Tanzania about the potential for bitcoin in Africa.

Digital currency has been adopted in Nigeria, South Africa and Kenya, and “offers people a chance to protect their savings from government abuse of monetary policy,” according to Claseen.

“A lot of people in Zimbabwe are interested in it as an alternative financial system, but that is not an easy thing to do formally as we don’t want to be perceived as wanting to disrupt economies,” he told the BBC.

Although he admitted to the BBC bitcoin was not great as an alternative to cash.

He added: “Currently the network has a transactional input of three to four transactions per second, which isn’t great if you want to use it as cash.

“But once the upgrade goes live, effectively there will be no limit to the transactions the network can handle.”

He also noted bitcoin recently hit an “all-time high”, with the value of one bitcoin reaching US$4,500.

Written by Leah Alger