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In the world of cryptocurrencies, explosive growth is a well-known phenomenon. With tens of thousands of digital assets, identifying the next high-growth crypto with untapped long-term potential can be challenging. 

However, amid the many options, one cryptocurrency stands out as a strong contender for the next big player in the market: Stacks (STX 7.50%). Let’s explore why Stacks has the potential to be the next high-growth crypto and how it could reach a multibillion-dollar valuation. 

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Image source: Getty Images.

Bringing unique functionality to Bitcoin

Stacks, currently ranked as the No. 47 most valuable cryptocurrency by market cap with a valuation of about $880 million, has made significant strides since its mainnet launch in 2021. However, the project’s ultimate goal is to achieve something revolutionary — making Bitcoin (BTC 2.52%) programmable by integrating smart contracts. 

As the flagship cryptocurrency, Bitcoin has always been known for its robustness and security. Still, its lack of programmability has driven developers to other blockchains to explore decentralized finance (DeFi) applications, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and more. Stacks aims to change this narrative by unlocking the potential of Bitcoin’s underlying technology and creating a bridge between the world of decentralized finance and the world’s original cryptocurrency.

Stacks, as a Layer-2 solution, operates independently from Bitcoin’s blockchain yet remains fully compatible with it and offers support for smart contracts, which form the backbone of decentralized applications. This unique architecture enables all transactions conducted on the Stacks network to eventually settle on the Bitcoin blockchain, creating a powerful connection between the two. 

Moreover, Stacks can read and interpret transactions happening on the Bitcoin blockchain, allowing developers to build applications that execute based on Bitcoin-based criteria. This integration opens up a new realm of possibilities, combining the security and stability of Bitcoin with the flexibility and functionality of smart contracts, paving the way for innovative and robust decentralized applications on the Stacks network.

Fully programmable Bitcoin is within reach

Stacks’ Nakamoto Release represents a significant leap forward in its mission to make Bitcoin programmable and unleash its full potential. With this upgrade, developers will gain full write access to Bitcoin, and users can seamlessly utilize their native Bitcoin within the Stacks ecosystem, eliminating any counterparty risk. This groundbreaking feature is not currently in existence but once unveiled, it will represent a landmark development in Bitcoin’s move into finance. 

Furthermore, the Nakamoto Release enhances transaction speed and security. Bitcoin’s slow transaction speeds have been a limitation, but Stacks aims to address this by introducing fast blocks that can process transactions in just five seconds. In addition, the Nakamoto Release will back Stacks’ blockchain with the unmatched security of Bitcoin itself. Any attempt to compromise Stacks would require hackers to breach Bitcoin’s security, an incredibly formidable challenge that safeguards the Stacks ecosystem and its users.

The bigger picture

The potential of Stacks is clear, as it offers unprecedented opportunities to expand Bitcoin’s use cases. Considering the immense value of Bitcoin, Stacks’ impact could be monumental.

By comparison, Ethereum, one of the most popular blockchains used for application development, has about 10% of its market cap used in decentralized applications. If Stacks achieves a similar level of adoption for Bitcoin, it could create an economy valued at around $60 billion in today’s prices. Although Stacks’ total market cap may not reach 10% of Bitcoin’s, it will serve as the supporting blockchain for this new economy.  

A more likely target is 3% of Bitcoin’s market cap, which is one of Stacks’ key objectives. A 19-fold increase from today’s prices would be necessary to accomplish this, leading to an impressive total valuation of nearly $17 billion. While such progress may require some time, the innovative and transformative vision of Stacks has the potential to revolutionize the world of finance.

As things stand, Stacks already represents a solid investment choice, yet with the highly anticipated Nakamoto Release on the horizon, this cryptocurrency could move to the forefront of the industry.

RJ Fulton has positions in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Stacks. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Bitcoin and Ethereum. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.