Chicago Kicks Off Support for Leading Blockchain Companies

Look around you and think, “Where do I go to learn more about cryptocurrencies?”

I have visited weekly meetups — two to be exact — in Chicago. My favorite, The Chicago Blockchain Project (CBP), recently organized a blockchain conference to illuminate the leading tech companies that are making a splash in the crypto world.

It’s inspiring to set up my own booth and watch others aspire to become leaders in spearheading the cryptocurrency revolution. Utilizing blockchain technology, the peer-to-peer distributed ledgers permit decentralized applications like Pitch Investors Live and a dozen more to create a buzz in a community of 250+ crypto enthusiasts, experts, traders, and investors who showed up at the event.

“I liked the exhibitor hall the best,” said crypto enthusiast Joshua Herman, who is working on a “system where people will be able to buy and sell their own personal data to companies and other people using the blockchain” with his company “I love seeing who is in the ledger tech space.” The gentleman from the Fintank booth next to mine shared a similar sentiment. “Distributed ledgers will change the world,” one of the men said, looking over his shoulder at the Pitch Investors Live banner.

Pitch Investors Live is the only platform that allows entrepreneurs and startups to do just that. The benefits are tremendous for all parties, including access to talent and capital in an entrepreneurial ecosystem that is both educational and entertaining.

“Pitch solves the entrepreneur’s problem,” said Derek Huyser from H6 Partners, who briefly reviewed our flyers. Huyser works with blockchain companies can create a secure digital identity reference and a system of secure record keeping which has become increasingly attractive to consumers in the digital age. “Did you know that bots will cost marketers $50 billion in 2025?”said Huyser, advocating for more secure systems.

With Derek Huyser

From entrepreneurs to seasoned professionals, the conference had something to offer all in attendance. Investors scouting for opportunities walked from one booth to the next. Two men, investor and software developer, helped Omisego (OMG) raise over $1 billion during their ICO.


Inside the auditorium, I took a sneak peek at Nicole Villa, the entrepreneur who won the community prize of $1,000. “I created coin sailor (formerly CryptoDossier) after hundreds of hours of research. I didn’t have a tech background which was a huge barrier to getting started. But then again, anyone can get started now with the resources available,” she said.

I saw Dan Novaes present briefly only to learn that he is hiring! As CEO of Current, the multimedia blockchain platform that raised close to $40 million for its ICO, Noaves said, “The crypto community is growing, especially here in Chicago, and I would like to help out not just businesses, but the city as well.”

Dan Noaves

I checked back with Villa on CryptoChiTown, the Telegram group that serves as the backbone for the CBP. “It is paramount for entrepreneurs such as myself (to have the outlet)”, said Villa. “The war on crypto is real, and I’ll need to talk to the community to get messages out.” Recently, she ran into some troubles with her bank who “persecuted” her on having the “word crypto in my LLC,” she said. “ISP is banning my website,” meaning people who are try logging into crypto sites at Wi-Fi may find they are blocked as they are automatically labeled as ‘gambling.’

Co-founder of Blank, Kim Parnell added, “CBP did a fantastic job showing off the high quality network they’ve built. Speakers, panelists, and attendees were equally well versed in the space and there was something to be learned from everyone I spoke to. As a speaker travelling in from Toronto, Canada I felt very welcome.” Parnell felt excited to return to Chicago and see companies “care about our decentralized future”.

ChryptoChiTown began as a grassroots efforts by Joe Hernandez and Hannah Rosenberg. “Build a community so anyone can get a piece of the pie,” he says, referencing cryptocurrencies where anyone can share the bite.

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