Tushar Agarwal

Ep. #48: Growing the Crypto Ecosystem with Ella Zhang (Binance Labs)

We managed to catch the very busy Ella Zhang, Head of Binance Labs, on the sidelines of a conference in Singapore to get all the scoop about Binance Labs, what her team has been up to and what they plan to achieve going forward.

Tune in to hear about:

Ep. #47: Layer 2 Scaling with Jack O’Holleran (CEO Skale Labs)

Following our discussion with Matic Network, we speak to the CEO of Skale Labs which is also trying to build a layer 2 solution to solve the problem of Ethereum Scalability.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Evolution of enterprise software – on-premises > cloud > open-source
  • Importance of community for open-source software
  • Implications of AWS going down and how Blockchain technology plays in ensuring 100% uptime
  • Ethereum Scalability
  • Why Skale Labs chose to go down the side-chain path
  • What is a network of side chains and what are elastic side chains?
  • Consensus mechanism for each of the network of side chains
  • Interactions between the side chains and the main chain
  • DApps building on Skale Labs and Skale Innovator Program
  • Plans for Asia
  • Competitive landscape for scalability projects

Ep. #34: Fireside chat with Anthony ‘Pomp’ Pompliano – Binance Blockchain Week 2019

Anthony is the Founder and Partner at Morgan Creek Digital. He also writes a popular daily newsletter analysing crypto news for institutional investors called Off The Chain (http://offthechain.substack.com)

Prior to founding his fund, Pomp spearheaded Growth and Product at Snapchat and Facebook respectively along with a 6 year stint as a Sergeant in the US army.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Background, how he got into crypto and what that journey’s been like
  • About Morgan Creek Digital, who are LPs, fund structuring etc
  • Investment thesis – Bitcoin, tokenised securities, infrastructure
  • Lessons from ‘traditional’ for crypto-investing
  • Thoughts on Stablecoins
  • How he grew his Twitter following

Ep. #33: Fireside chat with Michael Arrington (Partner at Arrington XRP Capital)

We speak to the former founder of TechCrunch and CrunchFund, Michael Arrington on the sidelines of the #BinanceBlockchainWeek in Singapore.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Background, how he got into crypto and what that journey’s been like
  • Thoughts on Singapore!
  • Investment thesis
  • Thoughts on different kinds of founders and what he looks out for
  • Thoughts on the dot-com bubble and lessons to be learnt for crypto-investments

Ep. #32: Former builder of Internet and early Amazon employee – Jonathan Kochmer (APAC Head RChain)

In this episode, we speak to Jonathan Kochmer, who is the Founder of RChain Asia. Beyond his fascinating life story and career trajectory, he has in his own words:

  • helped create a new treatment for palliative care of mesothelioma (extending his father’s life several years);
  • had two original songs reach the top 40 on US AAA broadcast radio;
  • discovered a species; and
  • had the unusual honor of Jeff Bezos referring to him as “a genius… and a gentleman”.

Tune in to hear about:

  • His fascinating life story – he’s been an evolutionary biologist, helped to build out the internet, was one of the first 10 employees at Amazon.com, started a music record label and now works with a Blockchain project
  • We go deeper into each of the different phases and work in his life –
  • One of the last guides to the Internet written by Jonathan – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0963528106
  • How it was to work with Jeff Bezos in the early days of Amazon, what the recruitment process was like
  • Parallels between the Internet and Blockchain technology in terms of user adoption

Quick note: Around the 42nd minute mark, Jonathan mentions that he thinks that mass Blockchain adoption is one month away. He meant one year away.

Ep. #30: Cryptocurrency/Blockchain Fund with Czhang Lin (MD JRR Crypto)

In this episode, we speak to Czhang Lin who is the Managing Director at JRR Crypto. JRR Crypto is a Swiss Cryptocurrency/Blockchain Fund with a Chinese team which invests in both Crypto projects and the Crypto Ecosystem. They are the second biggest equity shareholder in the Crypto Exchange with one of the highest trading volumes – Binance!

Czhang is a Taiwanese Canadian who grew up in Poland and took his family business public on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. He is an alumnus of INSEAD and Tsinghua University.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Czhang’s very interesting background and how he got involved in Crypto/Blockchain
  • JRR Crypto – structure of the fund, investment thesis, areas of focus etc
  • Crypto ecosystem investments (70% of portfolio): Incubation, Consultancy, Investment banks, Media, Exchanges, Wealth Management, Fund of Funds
  • Crypto projects reperesent 30% of portfolio
  • JRR is the 2nd biggest equity shareholder in Binance
  • Quick overview of the Chinese Crypto/Blockchain ecosystem
  • Reason for the success of the Chinese Exchanges (OKEx, Huobi etc)
  • JRR’s acceleration arm: Super advisor (light involvement) and Co-founder (heavy involvement)
  • JRR’s roadmap
  • Views on a dual token system (utility + security tokens)

Ep. #29: Regulations, Compliance, Security Tokens & Stablecoins with Patrick Tan (General Counsel, Compton Hughes)

In this epsiode, we speak to Patrick Tan (https://www.linkedin.com/in/patricktankoontat/), General Partner and Counsel at Compton Hughes. Patrick is a self professed ‘entrepreneur first and a lawyer second’. He has previously practiced law, founded companies and in his most recent role founded a Statistical Arbitrage Crypto Hedge Fund.

Tune in to this episode to hear about:

  • Patrick’s journey in the Blockchain and Cryptocurrency ecosystem
  • Regulatory environment in general – SEC, China, Malta, Gibraltar etc
  • Regulatory arbitrage
  • ETFs
  • How does a company approach an ICO from a legal perspective? An STO?
  • Patrick’s new venture: A Statistical Arbitrage Crypto Fund and his role as General Counsel
  • Strategies that his fund is deploying and what makes them unique
  • Process for client onboarding into a Crypto Fund in a compliant manner
  • Security tokens and Stablecoins: https://medium.com/predict/security-tokens-versus-stablecoins-2d33b91e2fd

Ep. #28: Hedera Hashgraph, a novel Consensus mechanism with Edgar Seah (APAC Head Hedera)

The Hedera Hashgraph platform provides a new form of distributed consensus – it is a fast, secure, fair ‘Blockchain’ with a novel Governance mechanism. In this episode, we speak to the APAC Head of Hedera, Edgar Seah. Edgar has a very eclectic background with stints in Investment Banking, NGOs and corporates aroud the globe. Tune in to hear about:
  • Edgar’s background and how ended up as Hedera Hashgraph’s Asia’s head
  • History of Hashgraph (consensus mechanism)
  • Hashgraph is leveraged in a private manner by a company called Swirlds and in a public manner by Hedera
  • Background on Swirlds and Enterprise clients on Swirlds (e.g. Credit Union Consortium)
  • Motivation behind creating a public ledger in addition to the private ledger
  • Properties of Hashgraph – Speed, Security (aBFT – Asynchronous Byzantine Fault Tolerance), Fairness
  • Governance and a deep dive into how Hedera is trying to solve this problem – Council Governance (off-chain governance) and Consensus Model (on-chain governance)
  • Discussion and views on the claim that Hedera is a private Blockchain and not a public one
  • Regulatory compliance and the path Hedera is taking to achieve mainstream adoption
  • Hedera Hashgraph’s roadmap and the 20 or so projects building on top of it etc
  • Specific areas of focus in Asia
  • Twitter: https://twitter.com/hashgraph
  • Website: https://www.hedera.com/
  • Hedera 18 Hackathon website: https://www.hedera18.com/

Ep. #27: Email on Blockchain with George Hartley (Co-founder Sendy)

Our guest for this episode is George Hartley, co-founder of Sendy. Sendy is aiming to bring about improvements to emails by rewarding the attention of email receivers through cryptocurrencies. The attention is rewarded in Sendy tokens which can be purchased by advertisers.

George comes from a mixture of marketing and product background having worked with several startups and marketing agencies.

Tune in to hear about:

  • George’s background and journey in the blockchain/crypto space
  • Views on email marketing
  • What Sendy is about (https://sendy.network/)
  • Problems that exist in email marketing today and how Sendy is trying to address those
  • Stakeholders in the Sendy ecosystem and role of the token
  • How the current business (https://www.smartrmail.com/) is going to be leveraged/affected?
  • Sendy’s roadmap

Ep. #26: Infinite cash, monetary policies and synchronicity with Andrew Pantyukhin Pt. 2/2 (CEO Tangem)

In the second part of the interview with Andrew Pantyukhin, we speak about certain topics that occupy a great deal of his mindshare beyond the company that he is trying to build (Tangem – https://tangem.com/)

Tune in to hear about:

  • Concept of money as a means of communication
  • Making cryptocurrencies ubiquitous – infinite cash for everyone (along the lines of Universal Basic Income)
  • Optimistic and pessimistic views how the world looks like in a few years
  • Subsistence economies and monetary policies
  • Synchronicity in the world
  • Why speculation in crypto could be a good thing?