Wall Street Analyst Tommy Lee Says Retailer Adoption Could Lead to Bitcoin Price Surge


Ever the Bitcoin bull, Fundstrat’s Tommy Lee has today predicted a full recovery and then some in the cryptocurrency market within 2018. He cites crypto-related announcements from various international companies as contributing to the restoration of lost confidence.

Rakuten, Starbucks, Facebook, and Amazon Thought to be Looking Towards Crypto

Lee, the co-founder of Fundstrat Global Advisors, maintains his earlier price prediction of $20,000 by mid-2018 and $25,000 by the end of the year. In a report issued today, the strategist cited the increasing interest of various companies in blockchain and cryptocurrency. It read:

“The announcement by Rakuten is another example of positive developments in crypto in 2018, suggesting the large sell-off in bitcoin and others at the start of the year was an overshoot to the downside.”

Rakuten is a large Japanese e-commerce platform. According to a CNBC report, the company are planning to launch their own cryptocurrency called “Rakuten Coin”.

In addition, Lee mentions three other large corporations that are considering entering the space. For him, this, combined with the fact that institutional money is yet to arrive into cryptocurrency, will surely drive prices up:

“In 2018, we forecast at least 3 major publicly-traded corporations to issue native digital tokens… Already three major companies have announced efforts within crypto-currencies, which demonstrate that corporations may be moving towards crypto-currencies before Wall Street has embraced them.”

One of the companies that Lee refers to is the Japanese messaging service LINE. They announced earlier this year that they’d be launching their own exchange service focusing on digital currencies. This would be known as LINE Financial.

Starbucks is also considering how blockchain and cryptocurrency technology could be beneficial to their business model. Howard Schultz, their executive chairman, stated on Tuesday:

“I think blockchain technology is probably the rails in which an integrated app at Starbucks will be sitting on top of.”

Lee also speculated on some even bigger companies making moves within the space. In his Wednesday report, he mentioned both Amazon and Facebook. Referring to the later, the Fundstrat strategist wrote:

“Facebook, we believe, likely announces a crypto-strategy this year.”

Lee is amongst those who are speculating that the social media giant may be preparing an initial coin offering of their own. This would flip the traditional funding model on its head, rewarding individual users instead of just accredited investors backing the company.

Whilst the mention Lee makes to Facebook is currently based on little more than speculation, the CEO of the social media company did hint that they’d be investigating how cryptocurrency could benefit his platform in an online post this January.

Today’s report is far from the first time that Tom Lee has expressed optimism for the future of the cryptocurrency space. The Fundstrat founder and strategist stated in July last year he believed a target of $55,000 per Bitcoin was achievable by 2022. This would represent an increase of over 5x today’s prices.