2017 has been a year of many firsts for Zcash. Having launched only a couple months before the start of the year, the opportunities for growth and development were already flooding in. The foundations of a global Zcash ecosystem were being put into place by not only the Zcash Company engineers but also by businesses and individuals involved in the Zcash and greater cryptocurrency ecosystems.
For much of this year, our development team has been focused on security and stability of the Zcash network while third party developers continued to add support for Zcash to existing wallets and exchanges.
We’ve put out several State of the Network posts throughout the year which marked milestones like the distribution of the first 1 million ZEC (now approaching 3 million), the market cap reaching 100 million USD (now well over 1 billion USD) on the 6 month anniversary and Zcash’s first birthday.
Rounding out 2017, we put out a plan of action for upcoming network upgrades, Overwinter and Sapling. To meet this aggressive schedule, the Zcash Company has been in a hiring frenzy for engineers. And thoughout 2017, we’ve learned a lot about the variety of interests in Zcash from communities all around the world like Asia and Latin America. For 2018, we’re looking forward to establishing a development hub in Denver while expanding community outreach to new regions.
This has been a big year for many cryptocurrencies as a surge of interest drove up asset values exponentially. Several mainstream outlets like NPR’s Radiolab and Fortune put out in-depth stories on Zcash, introducing the technology and the founders behind it to millions of people. And enterprise partnerships like the Zcash collaboration with JP Morgan further fueled a wider interest in blockchains and zk-SNARKs.
In addition to work the Zcash Company and the Zcash community have put forth in 2017, Zcash Foundation established a list of values and a set mission for serving the users of Zcash. They were recently granted 501(c)3 status and successfully awarded grants to several well deserving projects. They also have been helping charities and organizations get set up accepting Zcash donations (so go ahead and use some of your Zcash towards organizations you support especially if you haven’t done so already!)
We’re excited about the prospects for Zcash in 2018: the Sapling usability and security improvements, further support and adoption of Zcash by third-parties, and future collaborations promoting more research around zero-knowledge proofs and utility behind the privacy they enable.
Happy New Year!