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Israeli startups dream of a Bitcoin world

11
Feb
2014

By Ari Rabinovitch TEL AVIV (Reuters) – Welcome to the new economy, boasts a sign at the entrance of the self-styled Bitcoin Embassy in the heart of Tel Aviv. The sparely furnished property opened a few months ago to support a community of Bitcoin fanatics, perhaps the most active in the world, who are out to build just that – a next-generation trading system based on the digital currency. At least two dozen startups have popped up in Israel over the past year with a view to creating tools that will allow the currency to be used in almost any kind of transaction – from buying shoes to sending remittances or issuing company stock. That makes the country as much of a Bitcoin hotspot as Singapore or Californias Silicon Valley, says Eli Novershtern, principal of Israels biggest venture capital firm Pitango, which manages assets worth over $1.6 billion.

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