The technology allows bitcoin users to send funds across borders quickly at a low cost. However, bitcoin has run into challenges such as handling high transaction volume.
Cohn expects the digital coin of the future will be simpler than bitcoin.
“It will be a more easily understood cryptocurrency,” he said. “It will probably have some blockchain technology behind it, but it will be much more easily understood how it’s created, how it moves and how people can use it.”
A surge of interest in bitcoin, and expectations for large-scale institutional investment, helped drive prices up more than 13 times last year. Bitcoin traded near $9,100 Tuesday morning.
Cohn’s former employer, Goldman Sachs, is one of a few Wall Street firms making a deliberate foray into cryptocurrencies. Last month, the investment bank hired former trader Justin Schmidt to be the first head of digital asset markets in Goldman’s securities division.
“They should do what they think’s in the best interests of their shareholders,” Cohn said of Goldman. He said he no longer owns any shares of the company.