Bitcoin, released to the world in 2009 by a person or people called Satoshi Nakamoto, is not backed by a central bank or a government and is seen as an alternative payment system. In February 2013, Bitcoin went into the mainstream as a monetary crisis threatened to bankrupt Cyprus, seen as a safer bet. Early adopters of Bitcoin have been richly rewarded as the price has soared – in one case, a young Norwegian bought a house from an $850,000 windfall on a US$22 investment.

Entrepreneurs say unclear regulations have harmed their businesses. Photo: Edward Wong

Dwindling support for bitcoin businesses in Hong Kong

Enthusiasm among Hong Kong’s bitcoin entrepreneurs has waned since its peak in 2013 and they blame regulators and banks for making it difficult for their businesses to gain traction in the city.