I’m involved in quite a lot of start-ups, ICOs and funds these days, and recently started a mini-series of interviews with them, as I think it will be of interest to readers of my blog.
In the second of this series, I’m interviewing Andrew Zimine, CEO and founder of Exscudo.
Hi Andrew, please introduce yourself and how you came to be involved with Exscudo?
I am CEO and founder of Exscudo, innovative financial ecosystem, and also owner and CEO of Clarus, developer of exchange systems, security and ERP-systems. Programming was always a bit magic for me: I was passionate with computers since I was twelve. In 2012 I discovered Bitcoin and that was another turning point in my life. During the first year I studied the blockchain technology from every angle and discovered that it has some limitations such as the Bitcoin network speed. This is how the idea to create EON was born, simple and usable, with fast and decentralized network. Exscudo infrastructural solution became the logical development of the idea, because the technology without applicable solutions risks to remain the game for geeks.
What is Exscudo, what problem do you solve and what are you trying to achieve?
Exscudo is the new bridge between the traditional financial system and the cryptocurrency market. We want to make finance borderless. The company’s main goal is to create a single gate to the cryptocurrency market for everyday users, professional traders, investors and financial institutions. Exscudo’s ecosystem consists of a Stock exchange, merchant, trading terminals, cards and the Exscudo Channels app - a mobile wallet and messenger. All of them are connected to one single liquidity center, the Stock exchange.
Exscudo solves current blockchain problems by implementing EON Blockchain. We have solved the size problem by using the blockchain ‘scaling down’ method without any loss of integrity. Also we solved trust problem of products and teams behind them. To ensure the qualitative services, we are directly involved in the development of each of them, which guarantees the quality of the outcome and solves many problems for developers as well. We are trying to solve everyday problems. We do not disrupt the existing order, we just implement maximum seamless integration to improve characteristics of service or product using EON technology. It means, not technology for technology, but technology for people.
How far have you got so far in terms of customers and investors?
Our team made a huge step in terms of project and cryptocurrency assets perceptions by EU institutions. We managed to show the banks and authorities that we can think “outside the box”, that the project has all the chances to come to life and to become more effective than the majority of existing solutions. We acquired the first license, we launched EON testnet and we are extending our team, but the most important achievement, I say it again, is to change the way of thinking in the heads of those who regulate the industry, make them consider blockchain note as hype, but as a next step of evolution.
What are the early lessons of talking with people about Exscudo?
Unfortunately, we are facing the typical post-ICO problems of all the projects which did not give the investors a tool for quick earnings. Nonprofessional investors is a bad thing, because they cannot estimate when the project will bring profit and understand the potential of the technology. They often have a destructive impact both on the team and on thought leaders. But not everything is so sad, and we also have some sound suggestions from our users, such as KYC on EON technology. I also want to notice that one of the earliest mistakes is the complexity of the product. It is not easy to explain the users what we are doing and very often people do not want to bother. But as soon as the curious person gets the essence of the project he or she is amazed.
Are you finding it easy to get funded?
Truly speaking I don't. I was worrying a lot when we were preparing the ICO, I was testing hypotheses on my friends, which was not a good idea, by the way, because they knew how deep I am into the project and that I literally live in it so they could give not very objective evaluations of these or those tools. All 8 months we were preparing for ICO I barely slept, was very nervous and almost didn’t spend time with my family. So I cannot say we managed to raise funds and attract attention to the project easily.
What would you like readers of my blog to learn from this interview?
Very good question! We are making the project not because we believe in its profitability or because we are united by the cryptoanarchy spirit. We understand that it is the future and Exscudo can help millions of people in the world. Our goal is to become more secure and convenient, superior to the existing financial solutions. So follow what we are doing, criticise, advise, but don’t remain indifferent - we are doing it for you.
Finally, at a macro level, what do you think are the most interesting FinTech things that are happening today?
In my opinion it is quite interesting that financial institutions do not consider blockchain as a geek stuff anymore.
Find out more by checking out Exscudo's website.
Chris M Skinner
Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, TheFinanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal's Financial News. To learn more click here...