Decentralized Finance (DeFi): A Primer for Professional Investors

San Francisco • November 16, 2021

Decentralized Finance (DeFi) is one of the most exciting corners of crypto. The goal of DeFi is to create a more accessible, efficient, and transparent financial system by leveraging one of crypto’s greatest breakthroughs: programmable money. In this white paper, we put the DeFi movement into context, contrast it to the incumbent alternative, and explore how much market share the disruptive technology could capture. We find that if DeFi were to attain the same penetration relative to its incumbents that other successful disruptive technologies like e-commerce and electric vehicles have achieved (50-70%), it could become a $15 trillion industry over the next 5-15 years.


About Bitwise

Bitwise Asset Management is the largest crypto index fund manager in America. Thousands of financial advisors, family offices, and institutional investors partner with Bitwise to understand and access the opportunities in crypto. For six years, Bitwise has established a track record of excellence managing a broad suite of index and active solutions across ETFs, separately managed accounts, private funds, and hedge fund strategies. Bitwise is known for providing unparalleled client support through expert research and commentary, its nationwide client team of crypto specialists, and its deep access to the crypto ecosystem. The Bitwise team of more than 60 professionals combines expertise in technology and asset management with backgrounds including BlackRock, Millennium,, Meta, Google, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Bitwise is backed by leading institutional investors and has been profiled in Institutional Investor, Barron’s, Bloomberg, and The Wall Street Journal. It has offices in San Francisco and New York. For more information, visit

  • Matt Hougan

    Matt Hougan

    Chief Investment Officer
  • Ryan Rasmussen

    Senior Crypto Research Analyst
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