The Belgian Bitcoin Association or BBA, is an organisation which saw the light of day in November of 2013. This organisation is also legally registered with the Belgian government. Now who are on the board of directors of the BBA?
The so called board of directors consists of six people.
1. The first one is Thomas Spaas. He is a lawyer specialising in Belgian and International taxation and has a passion for Bitcoin. Mr Spaas focuses on the regulatory aspects of Bitcoin in general and on providing legal support to the association and its members.
2. The second person is Jérémie Dubois-Lacoste. The French born Jérémie is a post-doc researcher at IRIDIA, the artificial intelligence laboratory of the University of Brussels and is a Bitcoin enthusiast.
3. Up next is Chris D’ Costa. He is a native Brit living and working in Belgium. For the last fifteen years he has worked as an independent tech consultant. He writes a bitcoin blog “With this in Mind”.
4. The fourth member is Arne Brutchy. Arne is formally trained as computer scientist. Arne currently works as a researcher in artificial intelligence and swarm robotics for IRIDIA at the University of Brussels.
5. The fifth member of the board of directors is Jean Wallemacq. Mr. Wallemacq is an executive who has an impressive 20+ years’ experience in the financial sector. He specializes in Process Improvements, Organization and IT. Jean is a Bitcoin enthusiast with a strong voice in the Belgian Bitcoin community. He sees the potential Bitcoin could have for business in general.
6. Last and certainly not least is Filip Roose. Mr. Roose is a self-employed Belgian Entrepreneur working with various businesses including 3D printing, Bitcoin mining, Bitcoin payment processing and other projects.
At the national meet-up in Antwerp on the 18th of October, we met a lot of people, including most of the board of directors. It was great to see around 30 people showing up for the meet-up. This meet-up was great to get in touch with other people across Belgium that are Crypto enthusiasts and Bitcoin lovers.
We asked the board of directors: Now what does the BBA actually do? Is it the organisation that is representing Bitcoin in Belgium?
“No we do not represent Bitcoin in Belgium. We are a band of crypto enthusiasts and Bitcoin lovers that are uniting under a common banner. One of our main goals is to be a forum where people can get information concerning Crypto.
We also keep the dialog going between the Belgian government and the BBA because we want to be at the table when they make legislative decisions concerning crypto currencies. I know some people may not like this at all but at some point in the future the governments will have to make decisions that will focus on the digital currencies. We think it is better to keep the dialog going. So far this policy worked for us. We were asked to give our input at the recent discussions about Digital currency in Belgium.
However we were approached by the US Bitcoin Foundation on multiple occasions but we politely refused to be a chapter of the US Bitcoin Foundation.
The second question we asked was: If someone decides to become a member, what does he or she have to do?
“First you have to our website and choose the private membership, except if you own a business, then you have to click on the appropriate link. So you click on the “private member” link, which costs about 60€ per year. The first thing that will be asked is that you fill out your name, address, etc. and if you want your name published on our member’s page. After that it can take up to 48 hours,although most of the time it will be only be 4-6 hours, after which you will get a confirmation, a BTC wallet address and the amount of Bitcoin for your subscription. After transferring the Bitcoin you will get a confirmation and presto you are a member.
We do uphold a six month “evaluation period” which we call “adhering membership”. After six months members are converted to Full Membership status. Now the rights of the Adhering members are fairly limited. You have the right to come to all meet-ups but you do not have any voting capacity. This does not mean that you do not have any say whatsoever. We do listen to every member and what they have to say, even if they are just a recent member.
After the six months you get upgraded to full membership. This means that a member has the right to: determine the course of the association, voting in the general meetings, nominating directors and eligible to put themselves forward for membership of the board of directors, when a position becomes available.
We would encourage Belgians everywhere to join this association. Ladies and gentlemen are welcome to join as well as businesses. The Belgian Bitcoin Association provides excellent information concerning digital currencies in general and Bitcoin in particular without losing the Belgian hospitality and friendliness”.
When we were at the national meet-up in Antwerp we discussed a lot of interesting things concerning development and education concerning digital currencies and the general public. Of course brainstorming goes better with a fresh cold pint of beer in your hand so it was an extremely productive meetup