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Ashton Addison – EventChain on Blockchain

Ashton Addison, CEO of EventChain, discusses with Rob McNealy their blockchain powered ticketing and event management system.

Ashton Addison EventChain Transcript

Ashton Addison, CEO of EventChain.io

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy
Hey, today we are talking to Ashton Addison of EventChain. How are you today?

Ashton Addison
I’m doing well Rob yourself.

Rob McNealy
Good. So where are we talking to you from today?

Ashton Addison
We are in beautiful Vancouver, Canada.

Rob McNealy
Beautiful, beautiful area up there. I live in the mountains too. So it’s like I totally I don’t think I can ever go back to flat ground after living out west. And and people in the Midwest. Guys, you got to come out. It’s just so amazing out here. And even in Western Canada, it’s just very different than you know, the mid sections in the mid you know, the eastern parts of the country. So as to tell me a little bit about Tell me about yourself. What are you up to? How’d you get here?

Ashton Addison
Yeah, well, in terms of event chain and also the crypto coin show which is the show that I’m running, both revolving deeply around cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies. first got interested in the space through my father. Ironically enough, Most people’s fathers are not tech savvy, but might happen to be a tech founder as well. So we helped co found my media channel crypto coin show in 2014. When, you know before the Ethereum token craze and we wanted to help grow the industry, by making a magazine at first that switched more into a YouTube channel, and just highlighting news highlighting projects that are showcasing good use cases of blockchain technology and business. Ran that for a few years. My mainly focusing on interviews, you know, that sort of seems to be the sweet spot right now. So have about 500 videos on my channel. And then in 2017, we realized, hey, we should really make our own use case, because there’s a big problem in the ticketing industry, which is one of the industries that I’ve been working in, I’d run an event production company back in 2012. And I’ve been to show us and I’ve been ripped off by tickets. Not only just on this Secondary Market paying for tickets, but also buying tickets that were completely fake and getting ripped off and not being able to even go to the show. And we realized, hey, these tickets, if they’re on the blockchain could be, you know proven that their authenticity is real and that they’re scarce and that, you know, you’re not going to be ripped off when you go to a show. So we started event chain and in 2017 to create a self service event ticketing platform that puts the tickets on the blockchain cruiser authenticity. And that’s what we’ve been working on ever since. And it’s live in the market right now. People are able to create events that have enchained audio and our ticketing around the world. And it’s not only just paying with cryptocurrencies, we’re also paying with credit cards and PayPal, it’s we understand, be tough to find a room of even of crypto people that that all want to pay with cryptocurrency, nevermind a music festival. So we’ve designed it in a very user friendly way to try and bring awareness to crypto currencies and show people that you can use blockchain in a non financial industry to solve real problems.

Rob McNealy
Well, I think the important thing here is that you guys aren’t just accepting cryptocurrency you actually have a blockchain ticketing component built into your project.

Ashton Addison
You got it So, and we realized that with music festivals and sports arenas, you know, a music festival person, they’re an event person, they don’t necessarily need to know how the blockchain works and how transactions are verified and consensus mechanisms and technical stuff. They just want to know their tickets are real, their tickets are valid. They’re scarce, no one’s going to create counterfeit tickets, and there’s negative externalities of the event organizer are removed, and the blockchain is all on the back end, right. You don’t need to be a mechanic to be a good driver.

Rob McNealy
So is this like an ERC 20 project? Is this based on the theory and platform or did you develop your own platform or your own blockchain to support this?

Ashton Addison
Yeah, so We originally built on the Ethereum platform, just because it was very easy to do. And but as we continue to grow the platform, and we started ticketing larger music festivals, we realized that buying tickets to a festival or concert is sort of like an Ico. Everybody wants to buy tickets in the first second, and then it sells out. And then nobody buys tickets, they have this huge influx of transactions all in in a five minute span. And for a festival that has like 10,000 people, that is too many transactions to what is currently capable on the Ethereum network. So we didn’t build the full platform on top of the theorem protocol directly, although we did utilize that to store the tickets and transfer them to attendees. And because of that, once we realized that we were surpassing the scalability of aetherium, we actually pivoted through the gold chain blockchain, which actually is it’s a competitor to aetherium, but it’s actually so compatible that you can still Run a theory of node and just verify the transactions on the goshi network instead. And they could do you know, 13,000 transactions per second, with very, very similar infrastructure. So that’s what we’re currently doing.

Rob McNealy
So right now, with your system with Todd is a an event organizer, how do they verify when someone comes up to the front desk? Is it just is there a paper ticket involved at all with a hologram on it? Or is it just you show your iPhone or what have you with, you know, a QR code?

Ashton Addison
So, the ideology that we have for the system is that event organizers and artists know it’s their event so they can put as many restrictions or options as they want. Now, we don’t want to limit their capacity and what they want to do. So if they want to have paper tickets, and you know, there’s an older crowd or non technical crowd that just wants to print out their paper and come they have that ability. However, You can’t prove that that ticket hasn’t been printed out twice and resold. So in that case, you can use the system as a fully functional event ticketing system. But you’re not proving the authenticity of the tickets with paper tickets. If you do want to have those security measures, you can do digital only tickets on your phone. And we’re even coming up with extra security functions like smart qR dynamic QR codes that change and limits of when tickets become available. You know, for example, 24 hours before 48 hours before to limit scalpers. And then with those digital only tickets, because they’re scarce, because when you transfer them, it’s almost like digital money, right? It’s like like Bitcoin once you transfer it, you no longer have access to that ticket yourself. Whereas currently with PDF tickets, once you send it to somebody email, you still have a copy. How can you prove when you’re buying a ticket from somebody off of Craigslist or a secondary market that that person doesn’t still have the ticket after you buy it from them? Right. So

Rob McNealy
So that was I was talking about the chain of custody. So the question is, and I don’t know the economics of events and in especially sporting events and scalpers, but my understanding is some places that scalping is actually part of that business model ecosystem. So does this completely lock the scalper types out of the market? Or is that an optional kind of thing that the event organizer can allow? Like, for instance, Can people resell tickets once they have them early?

Ashton Addison
So again, goes back to the same ideology that the organizers if they want to have that they can allow that right. And currently, we’re just running a primary ticketing market. And if people have PDFs, they can do whatever they wish with them. But as we build out our unified secondary market, you have the ability for example, if you know Ed Sheeran wants to have no markup on his tickets, and they want to have face value only through the digital only tickets, you can put those pricing variables into the smart ticket. So as it goes to the secondary market, you cannot Mark it up. But if they want to have unlimited markup and scalpers or if the artist wants to have a kickback from that, and like say people can resell them for whatever they want, but at least the artists and the organizers are getting a portion of that, you can also program that into the tickets. So if they want to have scalping they can. And if they want to cut they can if they don’t want to have scalping the can, right. It’s all about providing the tools to allow them to do what they want with their own tickets.

Rob McNealy
So the secondary markets really interesting. So the question is, and just from a legal standpoint, does that start becoming a lot like a Securities Exchange at that point? I don’t know the legalities. There’s like Canada, but I’m wondering you know how that would work. I mean, the the SEC doesn’t look at BB Beanie Babies on eBay as a security. So the The question is, if these things aren’t sold as security, is there any kind of concern about that secondary market or auction or trading between ticket holders like that, legally speaking?

Ashton Addison
I don’t know for sure what I would say def, you know, I don’t believe so because how it works with StubHub right now is, you know, there’s they actually just they’re just selling to via gogo right now for $4 billion. And they trade millions of tickets every year. And they have, you can put whatever limits they want. And on Viagogo, you can do face value only if you want. And those are, you know, it’s just a paper ticket. It’s not a security, it doesn’t have any ownership of the event or that, you know, anything to do with that. It’s just an entitlement to go to that event. So I would say definitely, you know, we’d look into it, but I’m guessing not.

Rob McNealy
So how did you guys fund this?

Ashton Addison
Yeah, so we actually did a private equity round in Canada, we raised about $2 million Canadian and through through local investors that were very involved in the blockchain industry. And that allowed us to bootstrap the development of the application. And from there we started chargeable system sort of getting revenues and then just raising money. additional funds for growth, marketing and driving the sales team and trying to create a traditional business. You know, a lot of these blockchain companies, they are very blockchain focused. And we realized that with event organizers especially you need to be very business focused and cater towards their industry. And through for that, you know, have sales people that, you know, they don’t necessarily need to know about blockchain. It’s a selling feature. But there’s so many other functions needed to create a successful event that it’s a competitive advantage, but it’s definitely not the only thing that’s needed to create a successful event.

Rob McNealy
So are you looking to do an exit say in three to five years and for your investors? Hmm.

Ashton Addison
Definitely. In the works, you know, the ticketing industry right now is full of acquisitions. Event bright has made seven acquisitions in the last five years, including the Vancouver ticketing company. They haven’t done anything with blockchain yet. But Ticketmaster acquired a blockchain startup last year called upgraded and I feel like the other ticketing company They’re all they’re all sort of looking to acquire and grow their businesses through acquisitions. So that’s one route. And, of course, you know, the, when people invest in the company, we want to give them a return and give them an exit. So, definitely want to give back to our investors who, who believed in the project since the beginning.

Rob McNealy
So are there a specific niche you’re looking at? Are you going after sporting, you’re looking at music, you’re looking at conferences, where do you see yourselves fitting into the market?

Ashton Addison
Yeah, so right now we’ve been targeting the high growth industries. There’s, there’s multiple facets to that. First of all the industries which are prone to counterfeit ticketing, you know, music festivals, high price tickets, concerts in sports are often resold and and often people are counterfeit from that. So those industries we’ve been targeting as well as the sports industry and the tech industries where people want to use blockchain technology, they’re advocating for the use of it. If they can use it and showcase that it is an actual thing in a in a non financial industry, they’re willing to do that. So, yeah, we’ve been ticketing, music festivals eSports. But the system being a self serve system and allowing anybody to create events without even talking to us. We have every kind of event on there from, you know, art shows, fashion shows, business meetups, anything that can be posted on meetup. com can be posted on event chain. If you’re doing a free event, it’s completely free. Whereas on meetup, you actually have to pay as an organizer for for free events. And you don’t even get your attendees data. And on event chain, you can so we’ve opened it up to all those different types of events. And similar to event brights business model, there’s all of these different types of industries. But we’re focused our business development on the high growth industries, high price tickets, high capacity, prone to counterfeiting, and technical people. Wow.

Rob McNealy
So you kind of are competing with both meetup and event right then technically

Ashton Addison
Definitely, yeah, but meetups functionality sort of limited in terms of what you can gather, you know, and data is everything nowadays. And with event chain, we’ve built the system out. So you can ask custom questions and not just your traditional Now, what’s your company and title if you’re going to a conference, but you know, your dietary restrictions, your investing habits, whatever kind of questions you want to ask, you can ask that and then have we have the integrations to deliver those email addresses directly to your MailChimp, for example, or into your CRM, so you can target those attendees and help them come to your future events, or use them as a lead generation tool for whatever other business you’re running.

Rob McNealy
Wow. So do you have the ability to have multiple like one organization can do multiple recurring events in different locations under like one master account?

Ashton Addison
Totally. Yeah, you can create as many events as you want. You can also assign other people to be your checking people and they can have access to the attendee list and checking in but not have access to the sales reports and things like that. And we’re working on even more functionality to create, you know, promoter list and resellers that can help facilitate sales but have limited access to, to the back end of the master account for the events.

Rob McNealy
So when did you guys first launch into the market?

Ashton Addison
So we first launched the product, more of an MVP in about 12 months ago, so around Christmas time, and since then just piloting about 800 different events in about 28 countries. A lot of that was just, you know, organic growth of people that wanted to have been waiting for the system to launch and tech, you know, early tech adopters. You know, we’ve done everything from music festivals in Bermuda to events in Italy, in London to Hong Kong blockchain week and in Hong Kong, to events in Canada, you know, small, small networking events, so sort of a little bit of everything, and getting user feedback. And no, I was I was just reading A book they’re saying, with software as a service, you know, if you are if your system is like fully ready, and you and you’re completely competent with it when you launch, you’ve almost launched too late, right? You need to launch right away, get the feedback from your first customers. We’ve already had lots of repeat customers, you know, for example, anarcho Vegas conference, if you know Aaron, in Vegas, now they’re early advocates of the system. They thoroughly enjoyed using event chain for their 2019 conference that they put up the 2020 conference two days, two days after. So we’ve had great feedback so far. And we’re continuing to grow and target larger events.

Rob McNealy
So for instance, right now, you not only are based on blockchain for the security, anti fraud elements of this, but you also accept crypto currencies or some crypto currencies as payments. Say I wanted to set up an event through your system and accept crypto. Do you guys pay the people that are organizing and crypto Or do you just pay them a piece of the ticket? How does that the payment system work?

Ashton Addison
Yeah. So it goes back to our ideology that the organizers should be able to do what they wish in terms of accepting payments. So if they want to turn off credit cards, they do that if they use PayPal to do that. And if they want to accept just Bitcoin, they can do that if they want accept, you know, the top 50 coins, and they hope that it’s a cryptocurrency event, and people are going to have smaller coins or stable coins, they can accept that. Our system right now is set up on the flip side to just accept the top five currencies, Canadian American, Euro pound and Australian dollar. As we grow, we’re getting a lot of traction in Southeast Asia. So we’re looking at building in more payment processing and our own payment processing system so that people aren’t paying the merchants, you know, an extra 3% outside of the system, we can cut those costs for them, and possibly accepting more international currencies there. And then, generally, if you’re one of those five fiat currencies, We will Well, actually how it works right now is that because you are connecting to your PayPal or stripe directly, when somebody buys a ticket, you get the money right away. Right? So whereas with some systems, we have a payment gateway, if you do an event, you don’t get the money for the tickets until after the event or you know, each month and sometimes you need to pay artists or pay the venue and things like that before the event starts. So you know, where do you get that money from? So currently with invention, you get the money right away. And then we actually just bill for the ticketing fees afterwards in whichever those top five fiat currencies that they were using.

Rob McNealy
So someone bought a ticket with crypto though the event organizer right now would receive the crypto itself or would they.

Ashton Addison
They would receive the crypto directly into their wallet and the system because we’re not a money transmitter. We don’t have a system to like track. You know, settle that into cash for them. So if they pay with Bitcoin, they’re collecting Bitcoin, hopefully they hold on to it and the price goes up or maybe they want to manage their funds right away and and sell it. And in that case, you know, the fees are are just in American and it’s a very small percentage. So it’s just easier for us because we have to pay our expenses right away to keep it in fit.

Rob McNealy
So what, where do you see the biggest growth like geographically Canada, North America, Asia?

Ashton Addison
Yeah, um, well, with our system so far, you know, besides our marketing efforts have been targeting North America and Southeast Asia. Southeast Asia seems very progressive on the cryptocurrency, you know, legislation, adoption of it. There’s huge numbers of people there. So yeah, we’ve had events in Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, Tokyo, Taiwan, Hong Kong. It seems to be growing very rapidly. And so that’s been pretty But also just throughout America and Canada as well, since we’re based in Canada, you can’t forget about the homeland here. And we want to make sure that everyone there is doing great events on event chain as well. So those have been the top two spots so far.

Rob McNealy
What are your goals are how many events do you want to do in 2020?

Ashton Addison
I would say we need to nail down a bunch more large size festivals that have you know, 10,000 plus attendees. If we can get a handful of those, and then some eSports arenas, we’re already ticketing some sports arenas that do smaller events. But the scale of the sports is growing so quickly right now that some of these events have 10s of thousands of people. And as well, we’re working on a streaming integration platform, so that if you have people that are watching the esports event from from their home, they can know the organizers have the ability to pay well that and sell a ticket to exclusive content, which can open it up to hundreds of thousands of people. There’s no capacity proceeding. So that’s another thing that we’re working on for 2020.

Rob McNealy
Wow, that’s really kind of cool. I’m, I’m really interested in what you’re doing. Do you guys have your own token?

Ashton Addison
We do have an EventChain token as well that we’ve created. Right now it can be used to pay for tickets. And we’re working on building an incentivization and rewards platform for that, where if you create events, you’re incentivized with the token. And if you share content, go to events, engage with the event organizers, after or during the event. You’ll be incentivized. So that’s something that’s supposed to be coming in in 2020 as well.

Rob McNealy
Is your token currently traded anywhere?

Ashton Addison
Yes, traded on a couple third party exchanges, some smaller exchanges like murca talks to live coin and decentralized exchanges as well.

Rob McNealy
So what’s the symbol

Ashton Addison
EVC. It’s on coin market cap and you can check it out there.

Rob McNealy
Very cool. Passion. Where can people find out more?

Ashton Addison
The easiest way is to go to event chain.io or go to go dot event chain.io, which is where all of our corporate information is. And we do have information on each category of events, everything from festivals, to nonprofits to, to eSports, or join our telegram t.me slash event chain. And our whole team is there to help support and answer any questions that you guys have. And, you know, feel free to create an event. Even if you’re just a local Bitcoin meetup organizer in your country, you can create events on event change.io for free for free events and you don’t even have to talk to us. But of course, come into the chat and we will be there for support. And you can accept cryptocurrencies, if you want to accept Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Ripple any kind of crypto, we’re one of the only systems that accept crypto and fiat all together in one package, and we would love to support people’s events moving forward.

Rob McNealy
Ashton, thank you so much. I’ve enjoyed this conversation a lot.

Ashton Addison
Thank you so much Rob.

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Dirk Lueth – Upland Blockchain Game

Dirk Lueth, CoFounder of Upland.me, talks with Rob McNealy the development and features of their new blockchain based virtual property trading game.

Dirk Lueth – Upland Game Transcript

Dirk Lueth, CoFounder of Upland.meNote: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy
Today I’m talking to Dirk Luth. He is with upland, which is this really interesting new blockchain property development game? virtual property development. And I just wanted to talk a little bit about what they’re doing. So welcome to the show. How are you today, Dirk?

Dirk Lueth
Yeah. Hi, Rob. Thanks for having me here today.

Dirk Lueth
I’m really excited to you know, speaking on your podcast.

Rob McNealy
Well, I appreciate you having me It says your Are you calling me today from Germany or from San Francisco?

Dirk Lueth
No, actually from San Francisco Bay area to be precise from from Mountain View, which is a little bit on the peninsula.

Rob McNealy
Wonderful. What part of but you are originally from Germany. What part of Germany are you from originally?

Dirk Lueth
I am. You know, I always lived in two cities in Germany was was Frankfurt in Hamburg. Lots of people know Frankfurt because everybody passes through the airport there but otherwise, it’s a beautiful city as well.

Rob McNealy
Well, that’s very cool. What brings you to the United what brought you to the United States?

Dirk Lueth
Well, you know, the thing is, I’m what you call them. Entrepreneurs started two companies in Germany. And back in 2008 2009. I said, Well, what’s the next thing I can do start another company. But in Europe, things are different, obviously, than in Silicon Valley. I’ve been in Silicon Valley before. And I think the real big ideas have developed in Silicon Valley and and not in not in Europe so much, at least at that time. And that drove me, you know, saying, you know, what, I’m going to take, you know, my pack my bags, take my family, you know, complete your own risk and move to Silicon Valley back in 2009.

Rob McNealy
You know, this is my own observations, because I spent, you know, a little bit of time in Europe myself, that Europeans don’t tend to be as entrepreneurially focused as I think Americans are. In fact, you know, sometimes I spend in different countries in Europe, actually entrepreneurs were kind of in many places, look down upon what’s been your experience with that culturally speaking?

Dirk Lueth
Yeah, actually, that is one of the reasons Actually I came here for, especially to, to the US and to, especially to Silicon Valley because that’s exactly right with that notion. I mean, we know taking Germany and Europe as a whole. Of course it has it has a history and in especially in Germany, we have a lot of people in what is called so called the middle stand, which is, you know, mid size, small medium enterprises, which is somehow the backbone of the German economy. But the reason I came to the US for me was because they’re more related to, let’s say, very much engineering, but the big things, there was a lack of, let’s say, vision, for for lots of people to really do something or to go vision is one part of it. But the other part is also the whole idea of taking more risk and that’s what is lacking currently to my mind is got better, but, but that’s what what is missing in obtaining risk as an entrepreneur, you don’t have that much and it’s all the whole society in Europe is a little bit more lean leans towards security, job security and so on. So you see that so for example to so one one example was, there was a survey in, you know, where they ask students, what do you want to become when you when you graduate from from school, and over 50% of the people said, actually, you know, we want to become some kind of a civil servant, you know, work in an administration because it’s job security and less, you know, becoming an entrepreneur.

Rob McNealy
Yeah, it’s interesting. I always thought that German culture has always been really, you know, interesting. I mean, I come from, I come from a German Polish background primarily, and so my father spoke German polish and English as a child. He was trilingual, because of my grandparents and great grandparents were some of them were off the, you know, they were immigrants from Europe. And it’s interesting. What I see that It’s just there’s like really big risk aversion with a lot of Europeans there. They’re just really, really, they’re very concrete. They they like things very spelled out. They like a lot of details. But you’re right. I think that, you know, the visionary piece. I think it is not. I don’t know, I don’t know if it’s, I don’t know, if it’s culturally pushed down, or if it’s just something about that is just they they focus on the concrete. You know, I always joke around if you want to look at some kind of product manual, right? Look at the German instructions in German and versus the English version, right? It’s about like, a 10th of the thickness. And I worked for when I was younger, I worked for several, you know, big corporations that had, you know, you know, places and outlets in Germany. And so, and it’s funny because we’d always I work with a lot of German engineers and Swiss engineers, and you would always have this discussion about Americans don’t read the manual, so don’t bother, build them on for them. Germans it was this joke that if you had a product that Germans would argue about a calm on page 34 that it shouldn’t have been in that one thing and they’d be going and looking over you know all these little detail I don’t know. It’s just kind of interesting but I always like to see background of what

Dirk Lueth
I can completely agree to that point. So if you look at the German culture right we had a famous German philosopher His name is Schopenhauer and he always said there was three steps to truth or three stages to true he said the first stage is and obviously you find it also somewhere maybe more towards the eastern in the US but it’s much more heavy you know, in Europe so the first step was always when you have an idea it’s really cool right everybody laughs at you haha, we never did something you know, like those Really? You know, that’s a stupid idea. And you know, I remember very well when you don’t 2005 six when I was really excited, I think most the time you know, it was a little bit earlier later. I think when Twitter came around right or 2007

Dirk Lueth
I said, Oh, what a great new way of

Dirk Lueth
you know transporting media or ideas to other people because of what I’m going to tweet about your idea of you know that I’m you know, what I’m, you know that I’m going to the restroom now or what is it? What is the story right? People were really laughing at it. And then when you become became more more popular, right people will starting to opposing it right? Well, you know, you never done these kinds of things over here in general rates. The second step Actually, no, no, no, we don’t do this, that that’s not good. And then the third eventually when something’s really successful, and that’s what Joe says, you know, now it’s become self evident yet always said, I always knew you know, you should have listened to me two years ago when I told you this is going to be a hit. These are the three steps they don’t mean a really cool you know, then opposing and then self evidence. That’s what what’s very much in the, in the theme that culture which is there and when I compared especially to the US what I found when I came over here, I think Americans are much more short term oriented much more, I’d say. China’s maybe not the right word. But, you know, they’d like to take toys and play around with it. And, you know, if they don’t like it, they they dispose it. Right. And Europeans are much more for the long term, I really think about Should I really use this to you know, sticking to this photographer and, and and continue working with it and then after a while, you know, then they say, okay, you know, maybe you do try to try to do and risk and maybe start playing with it. But that’s, that’s all summer we’re just different. I mean, you look at the entrepreneurs, in a lot of entrepreneurs successful entrepreneurs in in Europe and also in Germany. What I like so much in Silicon Valley on the us is that people are always giving back so they had maybe a successful exit and then they do it angel investments and help lots of entrepreneurs know to come off the ground what you obviously need when you start a new company. I saw a lot of my friend entrepreneurs in Germany, they some of them invested Two startups and I have a current my current startup was a good friend of mine investment at startup. But lots of people then went again to the security that I either invest into real estate, right kinda kinda interesting. That’s that’s where somehow the the mentality sits also, even with the entrepreneurs.

Rob McNealy
I think it’s, it’s always good to see the the cultural differences across the board, just because you can compare contrast and, and I think, when it comes to organizational building, when you’re building a team, there are certain attributes of different cultures you want on a team. I think, for instance, I always think back to my days when I was in Business School, right, is that you definitely want I like having Germans and that kind of German work ethic that detail oriented, I want that guy in charge of operations, because he’s detail oriented, I want him to be the project manager. You know, for instance, you know, in some of these are stereotypes of course, but you know, we always liked a You know what? Italians and French they tend to be a little more liberal with time and deadlines and things of that nature. They’re a little more indefinite, right? That’s just culturally how they are. If you spend time in those places, they’re they’re different, very different than Germany. And you might want to put those guys in charge of communications or sales, for instance. But the vision thing, but the yank in charge of that, you know, kinda like,

Dirk Lueth
no, absolutely. So we always say, you know, Germans, I mean, don’t don’t get me wrong. I think Germans is great in engineering. And, you know, that’s what their foundation is based in Poland. Right. But when it comes to sales and marketing, I think Americans are just better However, it’s changing, right? And blockchain is also very interesting new development, what I currently see probably touch a little bit later in this podcast, but I think it’s it’s really where I will say, hey, if you have a great engineering team, you No, leave it in Germany because they do really very, you know, very good quality work. But if it comes to sales and marketing try to adopt the American way of doing things. And I’m trying to identify user personas, target groups and so on. That’s what Americans, just two packs alongside.

Rob McNealy 
You know, what I found with blockchain and crypto over the last couple years that I’ve been kind of in this space, is that you are dealing with a very international market out of the gate, every I mean, it’s global, it’s just global in there and there’s not a lot of barriers that you’re having to deal with. So it’s like now you’re interfacing with all these different cultures. And given the the amount of the the Asian influence is tremendous, and blockchain right now, they’re, they’re a huge part of the part of the space and it’s interesting, you know, having to kind of interface with all those different pieces. 24 seven, you know, it’s been interesting, least, you know, also being inside a project and kind of having to deal with all the different personalities and communication styles and multilingual groups that’s like, wow, it’s been interesting. You know, because you know, kryptos International, its global from day one. So it’s been pretty interesting. So, tell me about what you’re doing. What, tell me about upland?

Dirk Lueth
Yeah. So upland is, is we said it also when you introduce myself, it’s basically it’s a virtual property game. So the idea is that you buy and sell and can trade virtual properties, which are real estate properties which are based on real world addresses. So when you live on 234, post street in the future, you will be able to buy that property. The way it works in the app is basically you use when you sign up and we will currently in close better but you know, soon will go open better also. But the idea is you will get a map application you zoom in, you can buy a property and once you bought it, you able to sell it at a later stage the way you were Actually and that’s something we do a little bit different than lots of others first of all you need now to buy epics which is our in game cryptocurrency. And you can buy those apics with either with credit card or be accepting also PayPal. So right now we not yet accepting crypto. And the reason why we doing this because we always said from day one we want to build a mass market applications and as we know, crypto or blockchain is a market of roughly what I heard roughly 50 million people worldwide but but gamers, two to 3 billion on the globe. So the idea is we really want to get everyone on board. And they don’t have they should not deal with complicated wallets or private key handling. This is still a huge barriers of entry. So we put a lot of thoughts into this whole onboarding process, how to make it simple and then how to purchase something. So that’s, that’s what our the mission of the company is that we really want to make this Game accessible for for for mass audiences.

Rob McNealy 13:04
So as the long term goal that the in game currency will be able to be traded in the real world on exchanges.

Dirk Lueth
Yes, that is the goal however, we still we want to have to comply with regulatory environment, especially in the US. So, maybe I’ll explain a little bit one more step how it’s going to work how So, you exchange apics, which is all up x, which is our in game currency, you buy that with with feared currency and then you purchase a property. So that’s then you own this property. Once you own this property, you will start earning additional apics will yield on on the on this on this property, which makes it interesting because then you can take those apics potentially and buy other properties for that. And we gamifying the whole approach. So the next step is then that you can start and complete a collection that means for example, collected Three bus in San Francisco once you collected three bars in San Francisco or three, three properties on mission streets are different different levels and different scarcity also on those collections, and you start earning actually accelerated apics on them, that means you get a one time boost, and then also on top, you will get recurrent, higher higher earning on those properties. What makes it now interesting is that you can go and sell those properties because they are all non fungible tokens. We’re talking blockchain here, you can own them. And you can go and sell them those properties on the marketplace again, so when you maybe have some properties you don’t need for collection and sell them you can sell them either for for apics you can trade them against another property and soon you will be able to sell them for free at so we will going to be the first one of the first allowing fear out also again, so that’s hopefully coming in the first quarter of next year.

Rob McNealy
So Other kind of gamification elements Do you plan to build into this kind of game?

Dirk Lueth
Yeah, so after the collections we are going to have

Dirk Lueth
so the the ideas everything is location based you will also get some kind of what we call a block explorer which is some kind of an avatar which roams the city right and this helps you to discover other property so when it comes to city you will be able to each time he touches the property you will be able to buy that property was the only way to buy properties going forward will only be through the Marketplace or through where you avatar or the block explorer has touched some of those those properties. Going forward. We will since it’s very much location based driven, we will add our location based features that means you can take your mobile phone and when you actually in the city, you will be able to find maybe something on the streets which could be a piece of a property which could be also which could also be apics, which we’re going to gamify in terms of of treasure hunts, so Let’s, that’s something we are planning on doing also in the first quarter of next year to introduce.

Rob McNealy
So I would love to talk about the long, long long term roadmap because I got all sorts of ideas of how that can be used for different things, as well as an entrepreneur, because I’m always trying to think of a different angle. But it’s interesting. I think, right off the bat, there’s going to be a lot of domain squatters trying to squat on certain types of, you know, properties like national parks, for instance, or monuments and things like that. Is that something that you anticipate? Or is that something that you think is something that will be a bad thing? Or what would be your take on that? Do you think that’s what people are going to be doing?

Dirk Lueth
So yeah, I mean, that’s, that’s what you’ve seen, what’s another other type of games that people are looking for those landmarks, and currently, you’re not able to buy yet landmarks in a blend. We did that on purpose because we foresee a different way to purchase those and it’s not probably not that only one person can buy it. We see rather see a group of people buying it together. So there’s some of these kind of features will be coming up soon. And and then of course, the ones who are first they will they can get it and they can do other things with it. But that is just the pure. It’s a parcel of the plot of the landmark but you asked you know what, what the vision is and where it’s all going. Because you can eventually see right now we gave me five, let’s say the distribution of all the land around the world. We’re starting on some Cisco then we’ll go branch out to other cities in the US. And eventually we go global also soon, not soon, but in the next year. So but once people own just the land, and when you think about Muslims, we are blockchains non fungible tokens, that means everything circles around to ownership. So our marketing messages also join the ownership revolution, which is something really new. Just imagine when you live somewhere in the city, like in London or somewhere in Asia, sometimes it’s not affordable for you to buy any property again. So what we need Industrial Revolution means for us is that your first time you know people can go and buy a property. And when you can look at the vision eventually once once we started with, you know, we have a good distribution, we will allow that people will start building on those properties, a rectangle kind of structures, right? They can represent something, what is there in the real world map, maybe there’s something else so you will, and then you can add company, the other layers use other technologies, just, you know, a tremendous reality, virtual reality, all these things we have in mind, which are a little bit more for the longer term roadmap, but eventually right now we’re distributing the land and eventually sometime next year will also start allowing people to build on top of land.

Rob McNealy
So the question I would have is, how is the price determined for a property right now? So it sounds like you guys as game developers, you guys own all the property right now? What would it cost for instance, and real fee to buy my house?

Dirk Lueth
So I don’t know exactly. Why you live? And you live in Salt Lake City, right? Yeah, because we correct Yeah. So. So right now we have San Francisco obviously, it’s what we want to do is always that somehow connected to real life, as we probably heard San Francisco is not the cheapest area to live in these days. So you can imagine that’s a little bit more expensive areas. Yeah, so I don’t know how big your parcel is, or your little plot of your house, but I assume you’re probably a house would probably cause something between five and $10. Right. That’s my assumption. And unless you live on a huge, huge acre and, and the because it depends always on the number of what we call square. So just to be quickly a little bit technically. So we divided the world into three meters by three meters, which is one square, and we call those up squares. So in order to represent a property better, and when you take, let’s say, your property, my death will consist of 100 up squares right? order to to show your your property on the on the map. So and each app square has an a certain price to it. So to your earlier question How did we come up with the pricing so we actually looked in San Francisco you know different neighborhoods and have different pricing you can look those prices app and other other platforms like Zillow you know the real life license really on Trulia and so on. Now, you so you can do that. So we what we basically said okay, we take you know, the cheapest property or the cheapest neighborhood in San Francisco, we took that and we said they you know, property should cost around two to $5. And then we extrapolated the cost for other properties. However, we had to do john some adjustments, but you have to have a mind this is only the way we are selling the properties right now. In the long run, or the midterm prices will be determined by the market and the market can be like the real life market. However, as we have those collections, that could be a reason People, you know, really keen to get certain properties in certain areas to complete the collection. So the market prices can but don’t have to deviate from from real market prices.

Rob McNealy
So, my undergrad major was geographic information systems and cartography. So I really like mapping, even though it’s been a while since I did anything with it. So what kind of underlying tech were you getting your maps from and all your Geo Data? Just kind of a nerdy question?

Dirk Lueth
Yeah, so it’s good question. So we’re currently working with Roboto. It’s called mapbox. So they basically themselves are based on Open Street maps. And but the biggest challenge is they do not have the property borders, right. They might have addresses but they don’t know exactly what the property borders are. And there we are working with another provider who has the passes all around the US to provide a called land grab. So that’s where we getting all of those, those those parcels. However, on the global scale, that’s going to be a little bit more tricky. First of all, one of the The reason is cost. So if you buy property borders, in some countries, in some cities, it’s very expensive. So but other cities, I think like Singapore, or Berlin, and Germany, they actually provide the data for free. So it’s always depends a little bit to where you are. But there’s also there’s going to be areas in the world. And as you can imagine, we’re going to offer the blend in the whole world. Some, some areas might not even have any property borders. So we currently running a project with the university where we take satellite images and start using machine learning and neural networks to understand how those property borders might in which which areas those property borders might be. And then we I would like to expert extrapolated, it’s going to be 100% accuracy. Probably not. But like in real life. It’s going to be but good good enough that people see okay, this is my property. That’s the property I want.

Rob McNealy
Yeah. I guess that’s, that’s gonna be a lot of work because, you know, everybody’s using different, you know, different geocoding systems and everything else. So, and a lot of places, especially in the third world, like in Africa where they don’t even have property, it’s tribal. And, and, you know, and I know there’s some projects working on that. So that’s what I’m thinking about, you know, just from a technological standpoint, that’s a pretty huge project trying to pull all that together like that. So do you envision long term any kind of like Second Life, you know, kind of interactivity where people can, you know, buy a property and then they can go and host events in that property? Is that something you guys are looking at? I mean, this is what comes to my mind with this game off the top my head.

Dirk Lueth
Absolutely right. As I said, right now we’re distributing the land but going forward, people will be able to build on top of the land. And then people always asking us, because we are blockchain and you know, we’re we’re strong believers, this whole idea of decentralization, no intermediaries, and so on. I mean, we really envision a world Where you know people interact between themselves where we don’t really play a role right so So to answer your question yet it will be some kind of Second Life we don’t know yet how exactly on details that is going to look like. But from from philosophy is really we want two people to do a decentralized transaction so let’s say you know, you know you want to sell digital arts now maybe you want to want to build a you know, virtual gallery or something and you know, somewhere in San Francisco or let’s Salt Lake City awesome. And then you maybe add digital art pieces into onto that property, and you’re and you’re selling those digital ads to other players, right? So we don’t want to be in the middle of that and we just want to be enabled that that somehow works and that that’s that’s what our task is but we will don’t want to be in the middle and say, you know, we we define, you know, how much fees you know, they have to pay and whatever. So this could be really work. The whole idea and the whole vision is of our plans. has to be really a parallel economy somehow at an open economy, which works on its own going forward.

Rob McNealy
So how are you guys funded? Is this a bootstrap project? Or do you get VC funding?

Dirk Lueth
So we’re currently building on the Eos blockchain and we are funded by USBC. So as you probably heard us at a quite a large Ico finished it last year, and then they gave back if if the numbers correct I think billion dollars or something to the whole VC community. And they distributed between different VCs around the world. And one is actually based in Frankfurt, Germany. It’s called Finn lab. And they funded us, you know, the original seed funding but also we also added a couple of angels into that, as I mentioned at one fret good friend of mine, he’s a successful entrepreneur in gaming, he invested to it. We have a we have somebody from the real estate space who really liked the project. So we’re kind of mixing some other Makes the other angels into into our investor.

Rob McNealy
So you said you guys were in closed beta right now when what is your rollout timeline look like between open beta and going fully live?

Dirk Lueth
Yeah. So as I said earlier that we want to target the mass market audience right now we only let a very small amount of people in but we have huge demand actually have people knocking on the door want to drain but of course, we are close better. And it’s called on purpose better was obviously we need to find out what people like what they don’t like. We have of course here and there. We have some backs. We have to get out. But we were planning on going open better somewhere around Christmas. It depends a little bit because what we will be launching right now everything is based on a mobile phone browser. But we are intending on launching iOS and Android apps. As soon as we have approval from the app stores, of course, then we can launch those apps. But we also going to introduce as a as a freemium model because right now when you start playing You know, the only way you can play is when you purchase something. But we also wanted to use this kind of freemium. Because there’s a special way and always called play to own business model. And that’s how we try to coin this notion in the blockchain world. And you will have access to roaming the roaming block explorer of your roaming little game piece, which helps you to discover more property so that’s all coming in the open better will be sometime around Christmas, maybe for Christmas, but maybe also early next year depends on actually third parties when as I said, when we get the approval.

Rob McNealy
Dirk, I’m excited to play it myself now. So where can people find out more?

Dirk Lueth
So go to www.upland.me. So that’s so it’s not.com it’s a upland.me. And there’s the there’s the where you can sign up for the waitlist and we letting everybody almost everyone in at the moment so maybe have to wait one two, maybe three days. But since we are very close to open better, we want to collect more feedback that moment.

Rob McNealy
Very good dirt. Thank you so much for coming on today.

Dirk Lueth
Yeah, I was a pleasure. Thank you very much.

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Mark Wittenberg – Paycent & XcelTrip Transcript

Mark Wittenberg - XcelTrip & Paycent

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy
Hey, today I have to welcome back to the show. Mark Wittenberg How are you today, sir? Awesome. How are you? Good. How is snow Mexico today? Oh my god, I literally washed my car and it’s minus 12 Celsius this morning. It was minus 25 Celsius yesterday? I think so. So you like throwing ice cubes at it? How does that work up there? It’s great. You go through one of these car washes and it has an automatic dryer. So by the time you get out and wherever you gotta go, your car’s dry. It’s great. You know, we just got a couple days of snow here over our Thanksgiving holiday and I one of my little hobbies is that I actually like to rebuild old things and I rebuilt an old tractor and like a garden tractor, but it’s pretty beefy. And I got a giant like four foot wide snow blower PTO driven snow blower, Cashman Ford, and I got to try it out for the first time this season. So I was all excited and my wife’s just like shaking her head cuz she’s like it’s a little overkill for the suburbs had I’m like yeah but I just know blowed like six driveways of our neighbors all in like an hour so it was awesome so

Mark Wittenberg
I’m curious I’m curious to know how how are the neighbors feeling that got the frickin snow blowing yeah there were happy there you know I like to take care of my neighbors i think you know when it gets into like all these like libertarian kind of people they’re like, oh I want to you know I want to just not have government and I’m like yeah but the thing is if you’re going to have that you got to be able to work and support your neighbors and to me it’s not about talk you got to go out there and do work and to me I live that like to me, I my neighbors have helped me is really interesting. Like last year last fall, we put in some sod in our front yard. And like all my neighbors just walked down the street and started helping me put sod and it sounds a hard thing to do. And so to me, if any any way that I can go help my neighbors out the same way, you know, it works out and so I like that’s why I like my neighborhood my neighbors are pretty cool. And so we all kind of help each other out. But you know, it’s interesting like in Salt Lake some winters is like in the valley here where we were like in a valley and you know some winters we don’t get any snow at all. It’s kind of like Denver weather Denver is like this to you might get to maybe two years in a row where like March 65 degrees, but then every, you know, three years you get like four feet of snow. You know, so it’s like you gotta be prepared for either no snow or like a massive blizzard. So anyways, but I actually we have a big lot and I got a lot of sidewalks so I was getting sick of like, my kids were also whining a lot of getting sick of actually having to shovel it. So I got I found this attachment for my tractor and I’m like, yeah, I’m glad I got the attachment because it makes that whole job pretty like you know, a lot if not faster. Yeah. So anyways, what’s going on with Verge, some of the other projects you’ve been working on what’s new?

You know, it’s just same old you know, phone call after phone call after phone call. It’s a lot of work man, I’m not gonna lie to you, it’s a lot of work to, to you know, I’ve got a full time business to take care of as well and and with these other projects I’m involved in it’s it’s a lot of work for sure. But you know, we’re doing it for the right reasons right so I gotta fill the holes Well, you know, this is one of those things that people don’t seem to understand that even decentralized quote unquote community projects, they have a lot of work that needs to be done. And and to me, I still liken them to businesses. You know, even though there’s not the same command and control structures and and you know, legal entities and things like that. You still have to think of them and at least I do is like a business you have to grow it You still have to do the the phone calls you have to do the relationship building the business development and the sales. This is the one part a lot of projects don’t do as the sales part. But you know those things, all those jobs still have to be done. You know, if you’re going to be trying to get people to use your service, your project, if it’s a service, or your crypto as a payment method, you still need to get out there. You still need to do all that work. And it is work and, and and it’s harder as a decentralized project. It’s harder as a community project because you don’t have the ability to just go tell someone to go do something.

Yeah. No, I totally agree. And we talked in the core team about that quite often, you know, I, you know, how I look at it is where we’re still an $80 million project. So whether people say we’re decentralized, we’re not a business. We’re not a business. Listen, we have the same attributes as a business would have for eight an $80 million evaluation or whatever you want to call it market cap at million dollar market cap or 90 million or whatever it is, we still have to operate in the same way an $80 million business would have to operate. We still have those same, you know, the same attributes, people are still going to call on us the same way. The only difference is we don’t throw money at stuff, we can’t just go out there and pay thousands of dollars to market in a magazine. You know, and and of course, we’re colorful, our core team is colorful so we’re all again, like you said, with decentralized we have everybody’s opinions involved, right? So everyone’s gonna have a different opinion. So you know, it’s been decentralized and volunteer we just kind of do our own thing.

Rob McNealy
You know, and and management by committee can be difficult as well. And I think we’ve we’ve struggled with that with just getting our product to where it is today. Yeah, but we’re going to be going to main net very, very soon, hopefully next week. From the time of this recording, we’re really darn close, but holidays, you know, slowed us down a bit. But I definitely, you know, see that, you know, management by, you know, kind of management where you have to get everybody’s buy in, or at least you have to get the majority of the communities buy in for the big decision making. That’s harder, because it’s a lot more persuasion. It’s a lot more politics and, and I think that changes the dynamic, especially for someone who has a background as being an entrepreneur, where you’re just like, this is my baby, we will do it this way. And so that’s, we’re going we’re about to make that leap now. Because once we bring the block producers in and go to mean net, now, the way decisions are made is going to be a lot different. And it’ll be interesting to see how the rest of the team copes with that. Because the process is going to in a lot of ways get less efficient, which is good is because you don’t always want everything to be inefficient, or to be super too efficient either. But it’ll be interesting to see how it plays out.

Mark Wittenberg
So how many how many on your team total?

Rob McNealy
You know, I guess that depends on how you defined “on the team”. If you look at all the contributors that have been here till now you’ve probably about 18 to 20. Regular core contributors half dozen. Yeah. Yeah. So it’s quite a bit to manage for sure. Yeah. And, and so, and I think that’s the problem is that, because we’re all volunteers, we all have day jobs, we all have family commitments, things of that nature. You, you know, you don’t always get the performance that you would want, you know, so, you know, sometimes people can dive in and they can jump in for, you know, a week or two solid and just because they had a vacation or something like that. And then you know, hear from two months because they got busy with other things in life. And, and, and I don’t begrudge anybody that right I mean, that’s just part of part and parcel. But I find because of that, you know, we always have to kind of be in like, we’re recruiting mode, because people come in people fall out people get bored people, you know, lose interest, people lose, you know, have other commitments come up. And I think that’s with kind of with the decentralized project, it’s a little different than if you’re a company. Because if you’re a company, you’re like, Oh, well, these people can work 40 hours a week, and if they don’t work out, we fire them in a month or two, but you still get that, you know, you get a lot more production out of employees than you do out of volunteers. Yeah. And and so to me, it’s just we have to kind of always keep our eye open for someone else to come to the project, just because we know people will fall out and this is one thing I’ve noticed as well is that people are not patient. Right? And and I think what ends up happening a lot of people say they get excited about the idea of working on a new project or you know, bringing a new, you know, crypto or a new thing into the universe. And then they don’t realize that oh, this is actually going to take a year two or three years to really get attraction we want. And and I think people get bored, to be honest, because there’s just a lot of there’s a lot of boring work involved with this. And I think, you know, as far as I can see in the my own self is that there are times when you’re like, why am I doing this? You know, is it ever going to work with it? And then you know, you do that self doubt thing sometimes, like, Oh, is this really worth it? Are we going to get mass adoption? Or are we gonna actually get a launch? You know, things like that. And, you know, we’ll be we’re almost two years old will be two years old in a month. And I tell the guys it’s going to be too and this is what I’ve been telling them for six months is expect that it’s going to take two years after main net to really get traction. I think that’s a realistic expectation. If we don’t manage to get somewhere two years after launch, we’re not going to and when you and I tried to be as realistic and set really good solid expectations. But I think some of the guys that’s that’s hard, you know, they’re like, Well, can we just moon overnight and you know, You know, that’s not gonna work.

Mark Wittenberg
No. Yeah, I do you’ve nailed it man. It’s like I I’m, I’m self admitted one of the I don’t have any patience that’s when I try to get stuff done I I try to move through it fairly quick but you’ve nailed it stuff takes time. Like you know, I look back and with our project when we partnered with mine geek I think it was April of 2018 or something that we partner with mine geek and man, people just ride us on that it’s like these are these partnerships take time to bloom, like you can’t communicate with these guys every single day of their lives. You know, they’re busy, they’re doing their company stuff. They’re they’re trying to scale out or bring on more people, whatever they’re trying to do this. This takes a lot of time. This is and i think i it just shows how immature crypto is right now. When I say mature I don’t mean that as a personality I mean immature as in small, like we’re an immature space. And you know, you don’t see these larger corporations going out there and making these partnerships announcements and saying, hey, by the way, in five months, we’re going to be partnered with this company in five months, we’re doing this. They talk about it behind the scenes, and when it happens, that happens, and that’s when they announce it. So, man, I’m with you. It’s like for your project at two years after main net, it’s like, maybe it might be a little bit longer than that. Who knows how fast crypto grows, but it takes a lot of patience, man, I don’t have patience, but I’m certainly learning it.

Rob McNealy
I’m really impatient too. And that’s really interesting. Cuz my wife Kristie, who is one of our co founders, and she does a lot of the behind the scenes stuff. And she’s like, I can’t believe we’re still involved with this. I go with me. She’s like, you never stick around. And one thing that long effort, and I said I’m actually really excited about this still and to me that that actually has been surprising to me. But I think it’s because I keep you know, I, I’ve really tried to set my own mind to be patient on this. And I keep finding, you know, I think of it like this, we’re building something really, really massive, we’re building the Titanic in my mind. And if you’re going to build a titanic, you can’t expect the Titanic to launch overnight if it takes only 15 I mean, think of it this way, if it only took 15 minutes to build a crypto and put all the pieces together and and do all that stuff, then everybody would do it. Right. And you know, it’s not that easy to do. And there’s there’s a lot of barriers to entry. I think this is why you look at that there’s, you know, thousands and thousands of tokens and coins out there, right but you really don’t see much traction in a lot of them. And and I think part of it is absolutely that people either you know don’t know how to run it or people just get bored in and they fall away from it and they stop trying to grow it and I do believe like what you’re saying about, you know, these partnerships take time, I have a lot of really, really major potential partnerships that we have in the works for us, but I don’t talk about them, because they’re early yet. They’re really, really early, but I’ve already planted those seeds. And I know those some of those seeds will sprout. But what’s going to take is we now as a project have to prove ourselves worthy of those partnerships. Yeah. And I think, especially in this lot of people on our stand with, you know, with partnerships, right, they’re taking a risk on you. And so they want to see that you’re going to do what you say we’re going to do. So, you know, what I’ve done along the way, is, you know, I’ve been talking and building relationships for a year, year and a half with some of these players that I know would be a really good fit. We it’d be a really good mutual partnership. But we need to prove ourselves and and how we do that is we do and actually do what we say we’re going to do and I think, what I’ve seen out there in business and even with crypto is that most people are full of shit. Yeah. And successful people know that most people are full of shit. Lots of people talk. Lots of people spend spin their wheels, most people don’t end up producing. And I’m not trying to bag on people. It’s just a fact most people talk shit, they like the idea of something. But executing is really rare. And making things happen is rare. And so I’ve planted the seeds, and I keep those seeds kind of growing and germinating and keeping those potential partnerships up to date. But we need to prove ourselves and I think part of that will be getting through and main net and then you know, seeing how our marketing starts working and seeing how we start growing. And I think once we start growing, and we can prove to those other partnership people that we’ve been talking to that we are viable, and we are a legit, you know, potential partner for them. I think we’re going to massively accelerate just with any of them. If any other them land. It’ll be huge for us. But we have to prove ourselves. And I think that’ll take another six to nine months after me net just to get really to start showing people what we can do as far as the marketing, the business networking and things that we’re doing. It’s going to take time, but it’s going to happen, but I don’t hype, and I don’t make announcements of announcements, and I don’t sit there and try to, you know, hype. Oh, I talked to so and so, you know, it might be a great partnership, but it’s gonna it’s a two year out partnership. It’s not going to land for two years, because we need to be at a certain size before that will happen. But we’re, we’re laying all that foundation out. And I think that’s the critical piece.

Mark Wittenberg
Yeah, you nailed it, man. It’s partnerships are like, it’s like a marriage, man. Every marriage goes through a honeymoon stage too. But for me, you know, you know, I can be talking to 10 or 15 different people right now on potentially collaborating with us or partnering with us. That just means that i’ve reached out to them. And I’m, I’ve opened up a dialogue with them have opened up a conversation, you got to move through certain phases. And once you become a partner, I’m a big fan of managing those relationships. So if I create a partnership myself for the team, it’s important to me to manage those relationships, you know, every week or every two weeks or every three days, just say hi to them stuff like that and see how they’re doing and see what the next goals are. For them, see how we can assist them in their next phase. It’s not just take a partnership, and oh, yeah, we’re a partner now. And now we’re done and we move on to the next partner. It takes a lot of time and effort to not just put the partnership together but to manage that partnership once it is a partnership like I can’t it you know, people like man, I can’t stand announcements of announcements that it that’s one thing, it’s just like, I had, I ran this I ran into so and so at Starbucks and we shook a hand and now we’re going to partner Sunday. That’s like, yeah, it’s like you run into a million people in your life diamonds and people, man people are like Twitter’s crazy, you know, everybody’s like when this when that and, like, I’m not gonna talk about the, I’m not going to talk about the companies I’m talking to now because it’s, it’s, it’s irrelevant to any kind of conversation until we can shake a hand do a deal and, and make sure it’s going to fit for them and for us, and to be quite honest with you fit for them maybe not fit for us because right now in crypto, you know, I look at it like a side besides so right now in crypto, we’re, we’re the B side, you know, when we’re doing a partnership or looking at a collaboration, somebody, we’re going to be the B side, there’s options out there. We just have to make sure it’s the right fit for that partner and see how see if it’s gonna fit for that partner. So, man, it takes a lot of time to partner build and again, like I said, I can be talking to 10 or 15 different companies right now. And I probably am talking to 10 or 15 different companies right now. But it takes time to work stuff through. You can’t just these guys can’t just integrate something in two days, it doesn’t. Two days, two days, it takes time. And like you said, it takes a lot of time.

Rob McNealy
Well, it was interesting. I know, last April, I talked to very large point of sale company in this in the gun world. And it was kind of interesting, because they seemed interested in first and then they kind of goes to me, and that makes sense, because, you know, that’s, you know, going eight months back and we were a lot further behind where we are now, of course, in our development cycle, but I wanted to open the dialogue with them, because I know that they would be a great partner in the future. But I also know for them to take a risk on us. Remember corporations are really risk adverse Way, way more risk averse than say a startup company would be. That’s why startups are much more nimble, typically, and a lot more groundbreaking and disruptive because they can be, they have nothing to lose. But bigger companies have a lot more to lose. And so they want to be very careful they partner with and, you know, some of the teen, I didn’t even make this public, right. This is just, you know, this was an early guys these strategically thinking, one of the things that I know is I want to partner with, in a general sense strategically with our project, partnering with point of sale, people that already have customers in the space that we’re going into, and there’s about a half dozen of them in the in the US gun world. So, you know, I said I want to start opening the dialogue to introduce myself and put us on their horizon. But I don’t think we’re at but back then. And probably even now for another six months to a year out. We’re not going to be ready for them. We’re not going to be ready. And some of the teams like well, so if you’ve been following up with that guy, I’m like, well, it kind of goes to me a little bit. And they’re like, Are you worried about that? I go now, I think Because I go if I were him right now and it was a C level executive at this company, I would be trying to figure out how I launched my own cryptocurrency Yeah. And and because they the in the gun space is really there’s just there it’s not, they’re not that cutting edge in a lot of respect it’s actually a very low tech industry right now. And I said what will happen is they’re going to go start figuring it out and since they’re big company, their learning curve is going to be slow. It’ll take them six months to figure out that legally speaking, it doesn’t make sense for them to try to do it. And you know, and because I already know what it takes legally to, you know, be drop a current cryptocurrency and I’ll tell and I’ll say this another way for cryptocurrency to be successful, it’s kind of got to be neutral. You know, if you think about it, I think if you want to be adopted by an industry, right, you know, it’s not going to be as easy to adopt by an industry if one of the dogs in that show is running, for instance, if your competitor is running the crypto, you probably aren’t going to be as likely to want to use that crypto because it’s helping your competitor. But what could make sense as a like an independent project, like what we’re doing, like a community project makes a lot more sense, because we’re not, we’re not a competitor, we can work with all those guys. But I said, Look, if I was that, that CEO of that company, I would be trying to figure out how to launch my own cryptocurrency right now. And I’m going to go down that track before I start, you know, engaging with outside projects. And I know that’s what they’re doing. And they’re also going to find that it doesn’t make sense for them to try to launch their own cryptocurrency because the legalities of it and the fact this is not going to work as well. You’re not going to get the adoption that you would want. You might have an internal project but it’s going to be hard to get other products or other people in the industry outside of that. And it’s funny because one of these one of these companies, you know, I’ve been looking at, they’re really not like very well by a lot of people in the industry either so that works against them. So working with a project like us makes a lot more sense. But that’s going to take another six months or nine months or a year after we launched to not only do in show people that we will say we’re going to do X, and then we’re going to execute on x. And it takes that time. And and I think these are those things that a lot of people, especially developer types, or people that are not entrepreneurs even right there’s a lot of a lot of people that hold crypto are not entrepreneurs, so they don’t understand all these, you know, the ideas that you have to do things in a progression, you have to go through baby steps you have to grow. And it’s just like getting on exchanges to write. You know, you have to start on crappy or smaller exchanges. That’s just the nature of the beast, you have to work your way up. It makes no sense to pay, you know, 50,000 bucks or 100,000 bucks to try to get you know, a listing for you to get on a bigger exchange when your project isn’t big enough to really drive any kind of new volume on that bigger exchange, they’ll just the list you. And you know, there’s been you just wasted a lot of money and time and effort. You know, you’ve got to work your way up and grow. And and that takes patience. And a lot of people don’t have that patience, I think. Yeah, I agree.

Mark Wittenberg
Yeah. It’s, like you said, good point with the exchanges, because we often get that from our community to you know, like, we’re, I mean, obviously, I’m part of a couple of projects, but from the verge aspect, I mean, we’re listed on 5060 exchanges already. So, but I get the, you know, when the USD t pairing or when the USD pairing or when’s Coinbase going to add this and when’s binance gonna add more pairings? Listen, at the end of the day, we don’t control that. That’s not we can harass these exchanges like Coinbase or binance. Or Cz, we can harass him on Twitter, all we want is that gonna is that going to get us the end result? Definitely not, the more who you are as a person, the more they’re going to get pushed away. It’s consistency. So the way I look at it is we just do what we’re doing, do it consistently. And try to do the right thing. If they want to add more pairings for us, that’s going to be their business decision. Because let’s face it, they’re a business. So that’s going to be their business decision. If they if they love our community and love our large community and want our large community to help them in some stuff to put some stuff out in the future and stand by them. Then they’re going to do that if they if they don’t see the value in giving us more parents. Hey, that’s up to them. We’re not we can’t control other people’s decisions. We can want what we can want what we want, but they’re going to do what they want to do. And you know, and and I just tell you know, my advice to people is just be as kind as possible and you know, if you want to be a partner with another exchange or have another exchange add you just support them and be consistent in how you’re how you’re addressing them online and how you’re talking to them and have respect for them. You know, people like Cz that guy, I think I tweeted about it tweeted about it the other day about, you know, where guys like cc came from Vancouver worked and I think he worked in fast food or whatever, in Vancouver, BC and then went off to university I think in Ontario or something. He’s got roots too. He’s got a past and he’s going to remember his roots as well. You know, we can hammer people can hammer him all they want to hammer him but at the end of the day, you still need to give respect to somebody like him for building what he’s built. Hammer him all you want, but 99% of us probably would not be here without binance or without Coinbase is probably pretty close to the fact

Rob McNealy
Well, I would say this when it comes to exchanges, and, you know, as far as you know, our long term goal, of course, yeah, you who doesn’t want to be on binance, who doesn’t want to be on the big exchanges, right? But it also needs to make sense, you know, for them. And to me, if you have to, like bother people and bug people and harass people to get your project listed, to me, maybe there’s something lacking in your project, or it’s not big enough. And, you know, at some point, I do believe that the whole exchange world and the way projects are evaluated by the general public and exchanges will change. Right now. It really is about who can pay the listing fees for a lot of these exchanges. They don’t care about your project. They just because their business models are they want listing fees. And, and to me, I think eventually, I think that a lot of the BS in crypto and all the fake volumes and all the crappy projects and the failed Ico is, I think

The markets going to change. And I think the way projects are evaluated will change. And I think how they’re likely going to change is that projects that have real adoption and people and real customers, and have real communities and are really growing, those are the projects that are quality, and all the exchanges are eventually going to want them. And so I tell everybody, even in our community, when they come up with these when moon kind of concepts and you know, you know, and all these comments that we get all the time is like, Look, we don’t need to worry about price. We don’t need to worry about exchanges. We need to focus on building quality, we need to focus on getting users and retailers. And if we do those things and do it correctly, we will not have a problem getting on any exchange that we want to in time. Yeah, yeah, totally agree.

Mark Wittenberg
I totally agree. I you know, I I don’t I’m not out there telling people to go buy verge and invest in Verge. That’s not that’s not what I do. I’m not focused on I’m not focused on telling people to invest in Verge as a as a as a currency, we’re just we should just concentrate on building what we want our use case in our mission to be just constantly do that. And I look kind of look at it like a McDonald’s kind of a thing. McDonald’s started out as a milkshake company now look where they grew to. They didn’t grow to a McDonald’s. Hamburger joint overnight. When they started with milkshakes, it takes a lot of time, but they focused on what they wanted to do. That’s, that’s what they focused on as a currency, and it’s going to be interesting to see what happens in 2020. But if as as us like, even with my other projects, Excel trip patient, if we just focus and concentrate on on what we need to do. People are going to it’s going to open up people’s eyes and they’re going to eventually see it and we’re going to eventually grow. When I say grow, we’re going to grow to two more use case and maybe evaluation will grow too. I’m not I’m not too concerned about these people that want to see 10 cents or 20 cents or five bucks or 10 bucks tomorrow, it’s like, just just concentrate it to hammer exchanges on Twitter and say, when are we going to get this or it’s about time this project gets virge gets USD parent, it takes just as much energy to help up the decentralized project as a volunteer than it would to go on Twitter and ask that question. What’s the point of engaging in a in an antagonistic conversation when you can just turn it to the good and focus on the project instead, but that’s kind of the way I look at it when I’m on Twitter I try to be I try to be on point with my tweets and I try to I try to give respect respect as Do you know, and for us and cryptocurrency we owe everybody else respect at this point.

Rob McNealy
I agree. So, in 2020 what do you see happening in crypto in the new year? Ah, what do I see happening? Or what would I like to happen? That’s a good question. Um, why not both?

Mark Wittenberg
Oh, boy, what would I like to happen? I would like a whole lot of consolidation to happen. Personally, I would like I am the farthest thing away from a money grabber. And I would absolutely love to see that these money grab projects just go away. Just be vaporware go away. And, you know, I feel for the people that again, maybe invested in them, but again, that’s not my problem. But I would like to see it consolidate in a harsh way. And I’d like to see it get really real, what do I think is going to happen? I think we’re still five years old from anywhere from being anywhere serious, but I think at the end of 2020, we’re going to see a major shift I think I think it’s going to consolidate heavily in 2020. And I think it’s where we’ve turned a big corner where it’s going to be use case focused. And I think 2020 we’re going to see, we’re going to see some real use case projects get pushed up for sure.

Rob McNealy
One thing though, where the rubber meets the road is use cases and I always hate customers. Now a lot of people you like to use the word user. I like to think of people as customers, because I think that changes the focus a little bit. To me, you know, a user means that you can be an investor. Well, an investor is not someone who necessarily is going to grow your project and a lot of times it’s the opposite because if you’re into me since we’re also a pure payments, crypto, we want people to spend to us we want people to accept us as money. Right? That’s our focus. And to me, I still think payments is the killer app. And and regardless of the people in Bitcoin, or what have you that are pushed, have moved to this store of value nonsense narrative. And, and to me, I think the Bitcoin community and I’m not bagging on them, but you know, and I own Bitcoin, right? I’m a supporter. But I think that a lot of people in the Bitcoin community moved from peer to peer digital cash to store value because Bitcoin failed at being a peer to peer cash project. And now, people I’ll be, I’ll probably be getting hate emails for this, and that’s fine. But the reality is they they moved the marketing message, they changed the narrative away from the Satoshi white paper. And I’m not going to get into the conflicts with all the different Bitcoin communities now and the splintering and the other projects that came out of the forks and all that, but I agree with you, I think the killer app, it’s about users, it’s about people using your, you know, project. So if people are holding, you know, task or verge or you know, digibytes, or any of these other kind of payment projects. To me that’s counter growing the project, because you want people to spend it, right? And if you incentivize or encourage people to view it as an investment rather than currency, to me, I actually think you’re hindering the growth of your project at that point. You know, just like staking wards. I think if you’re a payments project, and you do staking rewards, you’re you’re like nailing your own self to the cross. It doesn’t make any sense to me. Because these people, if you’re getting interest, you know, on your project, why would you spend it, you’re totally incentivizing the wrong behavior when you do that. And people have asked us, are you going to have staking rewards? And I go, absolutely not. Why would I want that? You know, it sounds great. If you don’t believe in the project, you know, if you don’t believe in the mission in the application in the use case. Yes, thank you more. It sounds great. You know, and I hold a lot of task, you know, but you know, so I would benefit from staking rewards, but it’s going to hinder the growth of our project and to I do believe

That in 2020, we too will see a change moving toward actually use cases of customers, not just users. I don’t believe in I don’t think of investors as users or customers. And a lot of people conflate that they’re like, look how many people are using Bitcoin ago. They’re not using, they invested in it, they’re hotaling Bitcoin, they’re not spending it. And to me, that’s not what you want. You want people to use it, and use it commercially. And, and just think of it as another payment method. That’s what the ideal should be, at least according to the Satoshi white paper, but they’ve moved from that they’re not even trying. The thing is they’re not even trying anymore. So I believe that there’s a vacuum there. And I think projects like you know, verge and task and digibytes that are community driven, that are focused on the mission and the application are the ones that will be successful and I do believe there will be a consolidation now the question is when Will the Emperor not have recognized he’s not wearing any clothes? With so many of these projects? Right? I can, I can tell you I know of at least a couple dozen projects that are in the top two or 300. And I know there’s a lot more, but I know for a fact like, you know, 3040 of these projects are either completely dead or complete scams, but they’re still traded and listed in the top hundred, you know, our top 200 or top 300. And yeah, I’d love to see those go away. Why are you tracking a project that, you know, literally traded at, you know, $21 at its peak, is now trading for eight cents. The people that ran the project are in being indicted for fraud, but yet you’re still trading and it still has a $6 million market cap. Why are you even tracking that? Why are exchanges still involved with that? Yeah, I’d like to see that garbage flush out of the system personally because you know, it’s it does take away attention. From projects that are viable and are legitimate and are growing, yeah, totally agree. I mean, and I’m not bias either way, whether it’s, again, whether it’s verge or Excel trip or pay center, you know, whether whether these projects are involved in that consolidation and they go away then so be it, but I can’t, all we can do is try to work as hard as possible focus as much as possible to try to gain acceptance for sure.

Mark Wittenberg
But I’m with you out of the top 100 or top 200 there’s got to be 30 or 40 that are just going to be gone. And I and I agree with that. 100% I agree with that. But again, these volunteer decentralized projects that are non Ico or whatever, they’re they literally can’t go away. There’s, there’s gonna be a turnstile, right like it’s it’s there’s going to be volunteers on Always coming in and volunteers always going out volunteers coming in and volunteers. We literally, we literally can’t go away. Can we flatline? Absolutely Can you flatline for two, three years, four years, five years, six years, whatever. Absolutely. But you literally won’t go away. Right? Yeah, I think it just comes down to how much inertia you have. And I think what will end up happening is a lot of these non Ico parents are a lot of them what’s happening with these Ico projects, is that you know, a lot of these projects will run Victor would never even run a business before and then they got literally stupid raises through their Ico which a lot of market which which in the United States and pretty much every Ico was illegal. Yeah.

Rob McNealy
And so what ended up happening is, I saw on some projects where they literally hired 100 150 people with their Ico money with no revenue insight, and you’re like, what are they doing with 100 and 150 developers

I mean, that’s insane to me that the so they created all this amazing like overhead, you know, let’s look at in the business, right? They just like went nuts. Yeah and then when the market tanked they didn’t cash out the Ico money and their theory and Bitcoin that they received, you know, drop down 90% from this Ico high. And so they basically just went and burn through all the money. And so a lot of these projects, they’re just they burn through, they fizzled out there, they ran out of money. And I think, you know, projects like task where we have no overhead, we have no debt, we have no full time employees, what many employees and so we don’t, we’re not chasing a burn rate. And I think virgin a lot of these other like digibytes stuff there. We’re not chasing burn rates. We’re not running from going out of business and running out of cash. It’s not even part of the thing. We’re self funded through the network or networks of you know, pays for itself. So it’s sustainable. And I think that That’s part of the problem is that and you can go look at a lot of those socially, the Ico tokens, which are some of the worst. Go look at their socials go to the top two or 300. And I do this every couple of weeks, I’ll go through and just pick a couple projects. And I’ll go look at their websites. I’ll go look at when they last updated. I’ll look at their socials and I haven’t updated in eight months. If you haven’t updated your socials in eight months, you’re probably dead. Right? Yeah. And to me, you know, there’s, I think coin market cap or maybe the exchanges or something, there needs to be something done about that, in my mind, that there’s no development on the project, they probably maybe they didn’t have they didn’t produce what they said they would produce and their tokens were just a method of raising money. And so if there’s not going to be, you know, a project built off that, you know, token Why are they still trading the tokens? And I understand that people lost money. You know, there was a lot of bad male investments in people fell for it. And that’s why the SEC was created in the first place in 1933. And 1934. You know, but you know, I think, yeah, I think there’s going to be some consolidation. There’s gotta be, you know, these products are crap, I think the problem is, is that the exchanges don’t want to let it go. Because these exchanges, you know, most of their fake volume is on these crap projects that, you know, they’re just churning and burning token tokens to pump up their volumes themselves. And if they had to de list all the dead projects, they wouldn’t really have much left.

Yeah, good point. Absolutely. Fair point. For sure. Yeah. And that’s one of the things that it’s frustrating as a project is that I would rather I would rather as a project be listed on more Western exchanges that have third party validated, you know, honest books and honest volume, because I don’t want to be associated with these, you know, Asian exchanges that have fake volume and that are doing dodgy stuff and they’re ethically challenged. But we’re also stuck as a project is that to get on, you know, like the American exchanges are like some of the top but they’re also the pickiest, right. They don’t they too don’t want to take a risk on and brand new projects. So we’re kind of stuck in this catch 22 that you have to kind of deal with some of the crappier exchanges to get some volume to prove yourself worthy enough to be on the more legitimate exchanges. And I don’t like that at all. I wish we don’t have to go through that process. But that’s kind of the way the process is in crypto and, and, you know, people that are not working in a project, they don’t understand all the nonsense we have to kind of deal with. And, you know, it’s a there’s a high risk for as a project of getting ripped off by the exchanges that, you know, have crazy listing fees, but then want, you know, 2% of your supply. Yeah, you know, and then they don’t bring anything to the table themselves. yet. They’re a highly ranked exchange and you have to Be on a highly ranked exchange to get to the next level exchange or and in, you know, that growth process. I know it’s nuts to me, it’s just I wish that we could just be I would rather just be on two or three, you know, really legitimate and well respected exchanges and not worry about it. But that’s just not so easy to do.

Mark Wittenberg
Yeah, I mean, even the western exchanges for older projects are not as easy either. It’s, you know, we’re for verge we’re, what are we five years old, we’re five year old project, and there’s some exchanges in the western Western exchanges that we’re still not on or we don’t have USD parings and, again, so be it. I can’t I don’t control their model, their model is their model, and that’s in there that’s in their brain what they want to do.

Rob McNealy
So it’s, it’ll have to change. Eventually, they’re gonna have to do list, you know, legal securities, if they want to deal with Americans, because the US government’s going to force that. So I think that’s going to I think that’s going to be a big driver. Yeah. In 2020 of that. consolidation is that if you’re, you know, if you want access to American markets in American customers, you’re going to have to D list privacy coins, and you’re going to have to D list any of these illegal securities and and I think that’ll be a good thing to be honest. And that now opens the door for more legitimate projects like ours, where we’re not in the legal security. We’re not an Ico project, we don’t have that stain and stigma around us. So and I think Same thing with verge I think there will be openings for us and legitimately well run projects in 2020. So I’m excited about that. One of the things that gets me excited and motivated doing the little happy gopher dance.

Mark Wittenberg
Yeah, me too. And we get into the privacy coins getting delisted and people you know, it’s a question that’s come up with us to you know, because we’re, you know, we’re looked at as a privacy coin, but we’re privacy by choice. So we’re not, we’re not full on privacy. So that’s kind of, we’re sitting in a nice kind of an area you know, because we’rePrivacy by choice and we are definitely not a security so you know it’s it’s always nice talking to you rob because it’s like maybe some of these projects are going to listen to us or look at us and and see through and go you know what these guys are serious. This Rob guy, this Mark guy these projects that these guys are involved in. They’re serious people we’re not just some fly by night guys that are going to pop up and go away tomorrow kind of a thing. And we need more of this. You know, we need some of these bigger projects, these bigger exchanges to kind of look through and go does that guy sound genuine? Is he genuine? Does he does he well spoken does he come off? Well, is he in business? Yeah, I kind of want to do business with that guy. You know, do business with the people that that are genuine and do business with the people that are that are going to help you don’t do business with just pure money. Some of these exchanges they have they have a lot of money already. Data I don’t think I don’t know.

Yeah, with the securities thing I think you’re right in 2020 we’re going with the securities coming down we’re going to see a lot of these projects just go away. It’s unfortunate but it has to happen. Agreed. So besides you know virgin we talked a lot about verge last time you’re on tell me a little bit about patient and excel trip and some of these other projects you’re working on. So Excel trip. I mean, I just said as an advisor, so I’m not I’m involved. I’m very, I’m a big fan of communication. So I like to communicate to my to the CEOs and the CEOs and the CEOs and the CM whatever OHS and as much as I can, but so Excel trip is it’s a decentralized travel platform, right? So I think you can book over a million hotels 400 Airlines with it now so you can pay in crypto. So, for me, it’s that’s going to be an important project moving forward. It’s going to have it certainly has it’s certainly a spot in crypto for sure. When companies like sell trip, tie into some of these other bigger companies and pull their information, and you can use their platform to pay in crypto, maybe you’re going to Expedia or Priceline or whatever. But if they’re taking those that information on those hotels and flights, putting it into their platform, and you can pay in crypto and get a reward or cash back or whatever you’re going to do to travel. I honestly don’t know why more crypto conventions and more crypto traveling. People don’t use don’t use Excel trip. It’s busy. It’s a busy website. They’re they’re really busy business at hob, the CEO and founder back guy travels like non stop I can’t even like every time I talked to the guys in a different spot. Like I should just put out a map and just pin where he’s going. It’s crazy how much that guy travels but I mean It’s a busy website, but it websites like that are going to get busier and busier and busier. And I really think that these conventions and these conferences and these meetups and stuff like that they really need to take advantage of websites like Excel trip where you can book and get cash back. I mean, man, there you book and pay with crypto and you’re getting some cash back and crypto. So and they’re not gouging, they’re not like some of these other travel platforms that raise the price 20% to say you’re saving 20% It’s not like that. It’s the real deal. It’s very competitive pricing, pay sent. On the other hand, of course, their pay Center is a bridge between Fiat and kryptos. So they’ve got debit cards, and as far as I know, right now, they’re the only worldwide debit card solution, bridging between Fiat and crypto. So you put your crypto on your on your app and then you move it over to your debit card into what they call sipps si p s which is equivalent to one USD and then you just go spend your debit card. They’re the only worldwide solution right now, as far as I know, in the space they they only allow us to. Absolutely, yeah 100% they have over 100,000 cards delivered. That’s huge 100,000 cards. That’s that’s a pretty big market share. It’s a well ran car. It’s a well run company. It is absolutely. A well run company. I whatever people are going to say about this debit card, that debit card, maybe I’m biased because I’m an advisor for them. Maybe. But I’m really not like that as a person. I’m not stepping in as an advisor role to a company that I think is vaporware. That’s not who I am as a person. If I’m going to back something 100% with my name, my name means a lot to me. So I’m going to make sure the company’s legit and I communicate with these guys every day. So I’m following them and

Man, these guys are legit companies Paycent and Xceltrip are straight up legit companies. I mean, straight like no Hab for Xceltrip. He was an early adopter. So you go to his go to his facebook i think that guy’s got like 300,000 followers or something like that the guy was involved in early and a lot of projects. So these guy and patient, Sumida, they know how to build and scale companies and they know exactly what to focus on and know exactly what they need to do so totally legit. Well, to me, those were use cases and that’s, you know, getting now getting crypto and getting on ramps and off ramps in and people using crypto for spending that to me again, you know, it goes back to what’s the killer app. And those are the types of things that you know, we need to see out there and you know, maybe you can connect me with them. I’d love to talk and learn more about those individual projects as well.

Rob McNealy
But we’re getting to the point where we’re almost out of time. So Mark, where can people find out about all the things you’re working on?

Mark Wittenberg
A Vergecurrency.com, Xceltrip.com, and Paycent.com. But pay sense got an app Xceltrip. Yeah Xceltrip calm and you can find me on Twitter at Verge Canada. And yeah, let’s, let’s have some fun out there.

Rob McNealy
Absolutely. Once again, I really enjoyed our conversation and if you haven’t already, folks, make sure you you know, hit that subscribe button on iTunes or follow us on, you know, Twitter Rob McNealy or go to you know, YouTube, we’re everywhere. Thank you so much, and we’ll catch you later.

Mark Wittenberg
Thanks, Rob.

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