TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – A Chicago-based cryptocurrency firm is opening a crypto experience center in Tampa. The focus is on educating the public on digital currencies.
The news comes as the cryptocurrency market has plummeted nearly $2 trillion. The currency Luna is nearly worthless, and Bitcoin has lost more than half its value within the past six months.
Despite the crypto crash, CoinFlip is bringing a crypto experience and innovation center to Sparkman Wharf, choosing Tampa based on the top-tier tech talent.
“There’s so much tech talent in Tampa and it’s going to be, not just our engineering hub, but a place where the public can come in and learn about cryptocurrencies,” said Ben Weiss, CoinFlip’s CEO and founder.
Jordan Hayes, who lives in Tampa, has been building his crypto portfolio for the past four years. He said he relies on managers to help guide him.
“It’s obviously really volatile right now recently, so it’s having these conversations with the right people, learning and being educated,” said Hayes.
Education is the focus for Coinflip.
“Our goal is to make crypto as tangible as possible and accessible as we can to everyone,” said Weiss. “How to properly set up a wallet, how to properly store your recovery seat, what are the basics of Blockchain. It’ll be open to the public.”
Weiss says CoinFlip is most known for its bitcoin ATMs, which convert cash into cryptocurrencies. When the experience center opens this summer, Weiss says it’ll be a gamechanger.
“At the experience center, it’s going to be a first, sort of in the nation, physical experience with cryptocurrencies,” he said. “I don’t know where else right now in the U.S. you can have a live person across from you when you want to purchase or do a transaction.”
While the falling market could be uncertain for some, Weiss offers some advice.
“I think it’s so important to do research and feel comfortable before you purchase anything – whether it’s Bitcoin or stocks,” said Weiss. “If you don’t believe in crypto and you make purchases and it goes down, that’s when people get nervous and they sell things for a loss only to see it go up in the future.”
CoinFlip plans to hire 40 people in Tampa. The experience center is expected to open at Sparkman Wharf in the summer.