Submitted by The Collective
There is no doubt that the crypto industry is in a phase akin to that of an adolescent, with all the associated growing pains, volatility and tantrums that are often seen. Considering this, it is no wonder that many, especially those new to the industry still feel an air of trepidation when considering ‘dipping their toes in’ or in exploring the block-chain further.
The prevalence of price volatility & manipulation, regulatory uncertainty and high profile hacks have only added to the continued mistrust and dismay within the industry. Combined, these factors have most people resigned to the belief nothing much can be done except hope. This does not have to be the reality we accept nor is this an accurate representation of the crypto industry.
The lines have become blurred through a myriad of negative assumptions projected onto crypto but strip back the stories, block the FUD and you will see that in fact, there are companies who are making a positive impact on every-day business through block-chain technology. Let’s remember that an important catalyst for the birth of the crypto industry was the ability to tackle challenges, restrictions and controls in the traditional financial systems. The expectation was that the industry would work together to create a more beneficial future for all, uniting to overcome the more challenging aspects of the industry.
The reality is that most of the crypto enterprises are still focussed on the 1% of the population, yet remain frustrated that they can’t nurture more mainstream adoption. This mindset can have a detrimental impact on not only their business but the wider market and is more likely to dissuade the very people they are trying to attract.
Protecting Your Safety
Much of the negativity surrounding the crypto industry has centred on security and safety. In everyday life, we often make decisions to either enhance or contribute to the safety of ourselves and those that we love. Insurance policies, education and new technology are just some of the tools we use daily, most without a second thought.
Going on a first date is a perfect example of our self-understanding. We may not even realise it, but we carry out due diligence before, during and after the date. Common sense prevails and couples often meet in a public place that has been mutually agreed. In crypto, we look for similar safe havens such as trusted and compliant exchanges that are proven and regulated, safe and secure.
In the dating scenario, technology is also used so the couples can keep in touch with friends and loved ones and let them know they are safe. If these simple processes are used in our every-day life then surely we should expect similar within crypto, a larger network of support that reinforces and protects those most vulnerable.
The example of a first date is not too dissimilar to the due diligence that would be expected when working with or investing in crypto. Like potential partners, there are many and varied crypto enterprises in existence, all with their supposedly unique offerings that are designed to attract our attention. In this instance, why would we blindly accept what we perceive to be the truth in crypto when in everyday life we are far more vigilant?
As consumers, we are far more aware of the choices available to us and often use peer review agencies as part of our confirmation process. Comparison websites are now used as standard which provides a level of authenticity and consumer confidence. The power of the peer review process is significant, they provide us with confidence that the product we are buying or the service we are using is what it claims to be.
This isn’t fiction because we can easily see the thousands who have used the same service and left their reviews. Crypto, on the other hand, is much harder to discern. Yes, the variety of choice is certainly there and yes, every website you visit tells you exactly what you want to hear. If, however, we look more closely we come to realise that these websites are designed to do exactly that. But what if we aren’t a part of the crypto community? What if we are an every-day consumer who has taken an interest in an area of block-chain technology?
These are areas that appear to have been missed by a large contingent of current block-chain companies. The general public wants to easily decipher a company offering and decide if this is suitable for them. They also want to see a clear framework around the company they are interacting with, safe in the knowledge that it is safe, conforms to national regulations and has a mechanism to check its validity.
In the real world, how many people would buy off a company that wants to keep their identity secret and gave you no one to reach if something goes wrong? These companies would not last and rightly so, these are some of the obstacles that are faced in crypto today.
The 4 key concerns of crypto:
- The lack of clarity and direction provided to potential users of the block-chain. The nature of decentralisation can bring with it a lack of support and company visibility that is otherwise seen in mainstream business.
- A lack of a dedicated peer review mechanism to improve consumer confidence and inspire a collective approach to highlighting the very best the crypto industry has to offer.
- Minimal regulatory compliance across the crypto industry with very few companies in a position to demonstrate to potential investors, users and a wider market that this is a viable solution.
- Volatility, price manipulation, scams and hacks make up the most media-worthy headlines and often overshadow points 1-3.
Breaking the Mould
It is evident that in order to break this cycle, at least a few of the points above need to be addressed and overcome. Market confidence and acceptance of those new to the industry needs to be addressed and a focus on attracting and engaging with the 99% of the population that aren’t currently involved would also help.
Electroneum, the London based Fintech company has pushed a number of these boundaries in their drive to aid mass adoption. Electroneum (ETN) markets itself as the ‘enablement currency’, a mobile-based payments solution designed for the 99% who are yet to use block-chain technology.
Headed up by CEO Richard Ells: Their vision –
We are using the power of blockchain to unlock the global digital economy for millions of people in the developing world. Helping everyone to live life on their own terms, our solution is enabling people to embrace their entrepreneurial spirit and find new ways to enhance their lives.
This statement sets the trend for a reoccurring theme throughout their website, one which opens the doors to the many who have yet to interact with the block-chain.
Electroneum has tackled many of the regulatory & compliance issues by becoming the first crypto company to become fully compliant with Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) procedures. The team understand that in order to achieve mass adoption, adherence to these regulations is a vital and much-needed step, one that will allow governments and corporations to embrace the use of cryptocurrency. Electroneum has become the Worlds first crypto to adhere to the 5th EU Anti-Money Laundering Directive and from this hope to demonstrate its reliability and trust in those that wish to work with them.
Much like the first date scenario, Electroneum is using their regulatory compliance as a safety blanket for users, providing reassurance that in using ETN, users are operating in a safe environment and if something were to go wrong they have a contact mechanism for support.
Their strategy has been built around the known fact, on how real people operate, what they expect, and have created real-world tech that takes them out of the (crypto) bubble. The transparency to which Electroneum operate has helped them build a registered user base of over 2.8 million and growing, with further Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) partnerships on the horizon, it is likely this number will grow significantly into 2019.
Targeting the 99%
The recent re-launch of their website: https://electroneum.com/ highlights Electroneum’s current and potential target markets, one of which is the gig economy that could potentially enable more than 1.7 billion unbanked people worldwide to access online digital learning for the very first time. The gig economy is designed to marry developing and developed economies and provide access to a low-cost new resource of highly motivated skilled people. It will allow users to learn, share and monetise their digital skills using ETN as payment.
Electroneum is tying the gig economy into a wider ecosystem that has been built over the past 2 years, this includes their instant API payment system and their cloud mining project. The API has been used in the live environment through 2018 with vendors and allows instant payment from the user to the vendor. The mining is a simulated process which airdrops up to $3 per month into a user’s Wallet/App.
The idea is to create a system that encourages users to not just sell their ETN to FIAT but to re-use it by buying and selling goods and services within the ecosystem. The strength and growth potential will then depend on those who use it and will inevitably entice many first time users to the crypto space.
Electroneum’s journey so far provides a good degree of confidence that mass adoption is within reach. It may not be the route that many are anticipating but it is one that has been well thought out, structured and executed. Many interpret mass adoption as a race but fail to notice that it is an endeavour that will likely benefit everyone, regardless of who or what brings it to be.
Mass Adoption, What is it?
For those who follow crypto with interest, you will have heard countless times of companies who are striving to make ‘Mass Adoption’ a reality. The media often covers the Bitcoin ETFs, SEC rulings or BAKKT and how these could help trigger mass adoption. Most of these are focussed on the short to the mid-term value of their assets, which of course is great news for those looking to take a great profit, but if we look deeper, what does actual ‘mass adoption’ mean?
- It means creating trusted ecosystems where consumers feel safe.
- It means attracting real-world users and providing them with a means to use it.
- It means empowering those with no prior experience
- It means adapting to the World instead of expecting it to adapt to you
It means we need to swap the 1% with the 99%…
Disclaimer : This article does not constitute investment advice, financial advice, trading advice, or any other sort of advice. Do conduct your own due diligence and consult your financial advisor before making any investment decisions.