Hear oh, dear readers, see here come the barbarian Corsican of the Blockchain, the French evangelizer of it and, for some of you, the one who accompanied you in your first steps in our ecosystem: Hasheur or Owen Simonin for the close friends.
Hi Owen can you introduce yourself to our readers?
Hi Gaétan, yes with pleasure! I am 23 years old and it all started when, after graduating from high school, I left Corsica to join theEDHEC Business School, a business school in line with my entrepreneurial spirit. Arriving in this one in 2015, I fall into the world of cryptocurrency. Nobody spoke about it at the time on a large scale in France and when I say nobody, I mean my words… When I discover a domain, I need to share it with others, I am like that, my comrades are remember it well (laughs). I said to myself that I could find my audience with the famous platform with the red triangle: Youtube. It was the best decision of my life that triggered everything else: my desire to be entrepreneurial, to innovate and to hire.
It is indeed this entrepreneurial spirit that led you to create several companies. How many do you have today?
Hmm, the number depends on how you look at it. There like that I would tell you 7 or 8, but if we only talk about those where I work directly, there are 3 of us. If we talk in shareholders, we are around 10.
The 3 that I consider to be the main ones, because I work on them myself are Just mining, Deskoin and Vivoka, a company in the voice recognition sector. These are our 3 biggest structures.
Obviously I don’t just do that and in parallel with my videos, I support projects as well on Youtube that in their press relations that it is the specialist press such as TheCointribune or conventional media.
Given your seniority, have you had the chance to invest in the Ethereum ICO?
Alas no, I would have liked … but I was lucky to go back to the time when Ether was around 4 euros.
So you have known the DAO hack and the birth of Classic Ethereum! What is your vision on the ETH / ETC choice?
My vision is consistent with the one everyone is saying today. At the time, I was still learning the fundamentals of blockchain through BTC and was therefore not very up to date with what was going on on Ethereum.
I understand those who have chosen to follow ETC to remain faithful to the precepts of the blockchain. Vitalik Buterin had declared “the code is law”, which means there is no going back. If you draw a parallel with Bitcoin, even though there is a way to fix it today, we do not correct what in cryptos looks like a religious book ! Out here following the hack of DAO Buterin chose to create another channel where this hack did not take place, it is in complete contradiction to his claims!
Those who followed ETC, are those who followed the values in the strict sense of the term but sank into a chain with flaws as confirmed by the 3 attacks this year.
After, these attacks are normal because there are fewer developers and therefore less monitoring on ETC than on ETH. So, of course, ETC follows the code of conduct in an exemplary manner, but why stay on a system that benefits thieves and dishonest people? So I am for ETH.
Are you confident about ETH2.0 and above all, do you already have your validator node aside?
Personally, I have not set up a node for ETH2, but the Just mining teams yes. Regarding ETH2 itself, I am confident, without really being.
Ether is going to make the most critical update in its history by changing its consensus protocol, which represents a huge architectural change! It’s been 3 years since we heard about this big update and today, when a date is announced, people are quite skeptical. They know it will likely be pushed back within hours of the initial announcement. But you have to tell yourself that this is normal, it’s like trying to change the engine of a race car .. in the middle of a race!
Ethereum can no longer afford to make a mistake, things are taking too long, which contributes to the prominence of other blockchains such as Tezos or Elrond. The scale of the DeFi phenomenon accelerates this need for a scalable Ethereum. For me, if the Ethereum teams don’t hurry or make a mistake, the ecosystem will suffer. The right balance between speed and haste is what needs to be found now.
Speaking of DeFi, do you see it as a speculative bubble or a real innovation?
Before talking about DeFi itself, it is worth remembering something fundamental.
All technological innovation begins with speculators. Take the Internet, it took almost 30 years to democratize it, but the speculators did not wait that long to provide the capital. No sooner had they realized the technological potential and the achievable financial gain than several suitcases full of banknotes were already on the table.
Here it is no different, we are witnessing neither more nor less, the youth at DeFi and dare I say it, cryptocurrencies in general.
So, yes, people mostly do not enter cryptos for ideological reasons, but by the call of speculation! I’m not going to hide it from you, I did the same and you surely did the same! But it is still the best gateway to this ecosystem of endless possibilities.
And you know what ? I’ll even go one step further and play devil’s advocate. This extreme volatility that breeds speculation is a form of blessing. It is thanks to her that we can appear repeatedly in traditional media such as BFM, TF1 or other traditional media. This highlighting attracts industrialists and technical profiles who, through their knowledge and their implications, develop and democratize it.
Our ecosystem must take the time to build and just like me, you know that this volatility is explained by the low volume of our industry. When we finally get the adoption everyone’s talking about, I think we’ll be as stable as regular financial markets.
Regarding DeFI: this is one of the paths that blockchain is taking to revolutionize the world before (and not just to evolve it). Indeed, it is the first technology in years that will allow us to deeply question the way in which finance has worked until now: question its governance and transparency. It’s more than a fad to me.
Cryptoassets are highly volatile unregulated investment products. No EU investor protection. Your capital is at risk.
For you, are we entering a Bullrun phase?
Already what is a Bullrun? No but seriously, what is a Bullrun? Everyone has their definition, so here’s mine: This is excitement that takes the form ofintense speculation, usually taking place every 3 or 4 years. In the past this has often been caused by the reduction in BTC mining rewards following the halving. When BTC goes up, the rest of the cryptos that usually don’t have a price in Euros but in BTC, also go up and then give birth to a Bullrun. BTC is the bull that leads the way.
Personally, I only knew the one from 2017 and had echoes of 2013. Since the bubble burst in 2017, we have been waiting for the next one.
Technically and fundamentally, there aren’t many people in cryptos so it can happen anytime. Nonetheless, I have understood for a long time that no matter what TA or AF you do, the lack of liquidity means that a few players can change this paradigm. If Bill Gates returns with his fortune tomorrow, the Bullrun will leave early given his heritage. Conversely if a Satoshi address wakes up and decides to dump all its Bitcoins, we will go on a very bearish phase.
If the past logic of the market continues, we will have an acceleration this year 2021. Whales have a huge impact on the market and can decide whether or not we will continue this logic. I have believed in reboots in the past and I was wrong and between us nothing surprises me anymore so I stay on my toes.
As a result of the 2017 ICO Bullrun many companies went bankrupt, don’t you have that apprehension?
No, because most of the companies that got shot had come into the field for the wrong reasons. You were talking about DeFi and its highly speculative side, we had the same with ICOs. In and of themselves, ICOs are a great method of decentralized fundraising, but what bothered me was the hype. Even a mediocre project managed to raise funds. Then we had the emergence of good projects that do not reap anything because “the fashion for ICOs was over”. And that disgusted me deeply and I didn’t want DeFi to suffer the same fate! It offers so many things that will change traditional finance that my biggest fear is that for 4/5 months, it will be successful and then good projects will not be funded.
Personally, our company made a staggering number in 2017. In 2018 and 2019 it was not the same. We were having fewer and fewer sales and that’s when I realized we absolutely had to adapt. This period was an opportunity for me to mature and strengthen my box as well as its scalability. I then learned something that was lacking in the boxes that went bankrupt: there are highlights in crypto that must be exploited to the maximum to optimize its cash flow and its processes so as to then manage cash and stock, what we call in the world of sport “Make your highlights come true”. You have to be able to survive, 2/3 years in apnea because it is a cyclical market. We are 10X more scalable today than in 2017 because we have adapted to this cycle.
“What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger”, Nietzsche
Many companies fear this rapid adaptation in the event of a crisis.
Yes and this is normal, but if we enter the world of blockchain it is for the many opportunities that it offers. It is quite easy to become number 1 given the small number of players in the sector. However if there are not many people there is a reason. You have to constantly adapt to the hype, with recently the Proof of Stake, Lending and DeFi.
Do not hesitate to make a mistake, lerrors are the best lines on a project CV and those who are not ready to pivot regularly to adapt their business to the solutions of the moment are not made for this ecosystem.
What will be the next big sector?
Honestly, I see quite a few and it changes very quickly. 4 months ago I would have told you without hesitation about Lending and Staking but now without hesitation the DeFi (which by the way includes both). Lending, Staking and DeFi will quickly come up against regulation. Anonymity in itself is a laudable principle, but those who really want to hide are rarely innocent. The next blockchain revolution will arrive in a few months but unfortunately I will only know a few days or weeks before.
For me, the next revolution will be the appearance of the big traditional boxes that will use blockchain tools or DLTs. We are starting to get around the tools, but the best ideas have not yet been invented.
So for you, Bitcoin will trigger the adoption of blockchain by manufacturers?
Yes, nevertheless the market is very changeable, if a news like a Binance hack were to come out, then my speech would be irrelevant. Unlike the MtGox hack which had sunk the domain for a while, such a hack would be much worse because instead of just harming investors, it would harm businesses. almost exclusively listed with them.
Once again, high returns come with risks, so do our clients, who know that there is no insurance in itself. We are trying to correct this problem.
By insurance are you talking about collateral like DAI or traditional insurance?
No no, I’m talking about real insurance. If someone does manage to get into our systems and empty everything, we are unfortunately not covered yet. Despite good leads today, 99% of blockchain companies are not covered.
There are some insurance policies for large exchanges but it only covers a small part of the industry. On our side, we consulted about a hundred insurance companies and the verdict is final … 99 refusal. Only one is ready to follow us and asks us for 10% of the amount under management by AN, this is not even what we gain in margin!
A small anthology of refusals for our readers?
” We don’t do that at home sir; we don’t want to finance terrorism; we do not understand ; how do we know you are not the source of your hack; you will kill our profession “. I think my favorite is an assurance that just answered me “LOL”.
One of our structures cannot even have the payment terminal to accept the credit card (no lie). Here again more than 100 establishments and only refusals. The solution is to open an international account, something that many in the sector are doing, but we want to remain Franco-French.
Why this desire to want to remain Franco-French?
It’s part of our marketing, it’s true, but it’s also reassuring for our customers. After that I also admit to being naive, If I had known over a year ago that we would be there, I think we would have gone straight away. But here we have a lot of partners, like the Caisse d´Epargne, which stood up to its compliance to allow us to practice and innovate. We do not want to lose them because few establishments of this size are able to grow with their customers.
So you have a choice, to flee to a country where there is no regulation or to stay in your own and fight so that once done it is done and that it also benefits others in the process.
You have been named Binance Advisor of the Year for Europe. Projects to plan with Binance?
It’s being negotiated, but I don’t like to make plans on the sky so… to be continued. Especially since Binance is a shooting star then, everything is moving very fast.
Cryptoassets are highly volatile unregulated investment products. No EU investor protection. Your capital is at risk.
This is how this first part, which focuses on entrepreneurship, ends. We will meet again shortly to discuss with Owen the world of Youtube applied to the Blockchain. Because who better to talk about it, than the biggest youtuber in France in the sector?
Engineering student in IOT, Translator, Community and Bounty Manager, I have been sailing the turbulent oceans of Blockchain since 2017.
Aware that the Blockchain will change our future, I too am participating in the revolution. Find me on Bitcointalk, LinkedIn and Twitter to discuss or suggest articles.