Slovenia, the blockchain heaven

Zenel Batagelj
Oct 16, 2017 · 3 min read

By making some wise and future-driven strategic decisions, Slovenia can become one of the most desirable destinations for global blockchain startup companies.

These were my thoughts about the future of blockchain industry in Slovenia. I published them in May in the first true Slovenian blockchain community manifesto. That was 5 months ago.

In the blockchain world, 5 months feel like 5 years. But in the context of politics, government and regulators, five months are nothing. Friends from the startup and blockchain community were continually provoking me, saying that my efforts to convince the government about the potential of the blockchain were just a waste of time and energy. But things quickly started to change.

The first clear signal the government was making some serious moves was July’s Blockchain meetup Slovenia 2017 in the Noordung Centre with more than 300 blockchain enthusiasts in attendance. And the rest became history.

This week, 5 months after I wrote the manifesto, Miro Cerar, the Slovenian Prime Minister stated:

Successful Slovenian companies in the field of the use of blockchain technology are already ranked among the world’s leading developers of digital investment platforms, and therefore we want to position Slovenia as the most recognised blockchain destination in the European Union.”

A few days later Slovenia’s president, Borut Pahor said:

The government’s role regarding the blockchain world is to introduce the benefits and the dangers of the new technology to its citizens. Regulation must exist, but in a form that does not stifle Slovenian blockchain companies while simultaneously protects the consumers from risk.

At together with Nejc Novak, a blockchain legal specialist working with most prominent EU blockchain projects — Cashila, Iconomi,, Aragon–we have spent the last 5 months intensively working with all the relevant stakeholders, such as the Securities Agency, the Financial Administration, Office for Money Laundering Prevention, the Central Bank, Ministry of Public Administration, Ministry of Finance, the Cabinet of the Prime Minister and others, in order to clarify numerous regulatory uncertainties. Consequently, we are now able to provide legal advice to blockchain projects with a high degree of certainty, enabling the easier running of a blockchain business. Entrepreneurs can focus on their products and their user communities.

Slovenia is an ideal hub for running a blockchain business due to the high level of legal safety, knowledgeable regulators, easy access to the EU and global markets, experienced advisors and developers, and mostly due to the crypto community already based here which has led to the rise of companies like Iconomi, and Bitstamp.

Now, 5 months later we can act! We are proud to announce that the project DataFund, a solution for personal data management in compliance with the upcoming EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), will be launched later this year, leading the way as an example of blockchain utilisation and regulatory compliance.

And a personal note… I come from the country from where the most significant EU blockchain brands originate: Iconomi, and Bitstamp, with the highest blockchain projects market capitalisation per capita, a country where politicians and regulators understand the opportunities and act quickly.

I come from Slovenia, the blockchain heaven!

Written by

True believer in distributed economy and disruptive power smart-contracts. Datafund & Iconomi advisor on business model development, strategy and branding.

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