At our last event, we were delighted to feature Chris Larsen, CEO of Ripple, the company that supports cryptocurrency XRP. Chris talked a bit about his life’s journey, including the fact that he became an entrepreneur to help solve problems he saw in the world. He founded eLoan in the late 90’s because as a child he saw his dad being taken advantage of when trying to get a loan. Later, his next venture, Prosper was born from mirroring Vietnam’s lending scheme – a community based lending process where members of the community come together to support each other.
His story is very complimentary to Parlay House values, following the mission to care about positive solutions while not burdening the ecosystem that must sustain it.
Both technical and inspirational, some of the key takeaways from our evening were:
The world’s money networks/ledgers don’t interoperate with one another, causing expensive and time consuming clunky work arounds that are holding back the promise of Globalization. Cryptocurrency is a vital part of the coming Internet of Value – creating interoperability of Money for the first time. Adding this to the world’s current interoperability of Data and Goods allows Globalization to finally work as promised.
XRP (and other crypto currency) supplement rather than replace the world’s currency systems. Not everyone will use the same type of value – diversity of assets and ledgers is a good thing. Digital assets provide unique features that are powerful in some uses, worthless in others.
Another critical component of the Internet of Value is some type of Interoperability matrix such as the Interledger Protocol (ILP). The shared protocol for exchanging Value can be likened to the way that shipping containers are a common protocol that allow the transfer of a range of Goods: a universal “box” to transmit things allows for many different shipping companies to send and receive goods, and ILP, which is endlessly scalable, can be used by many different financial institutions to participate in global participation in transactions by using a common holding unit.
Why aren’t women in crypto? Chris noted seeing same problem in tech. He noted that extreme libertarians (a male dominated movement) may be making problem worse because they are drawn to working with people like themselves. Women aren’t there from the beginning and then aren’t brought to the table. (Note: Chris brought three members of his executive team with him and we all noted that they were amazing women who are making their own impact within Ripple’s leadership.
Want to invest in Crypto? His advice was:
· Be prepared to lose what you invest. Don’t invest in anything that you would be upset to lose. It’s still a very volatile category.
· If you are interested in investing, BitStamp is the preferred platform for XRP.
· Unlike Bitcoin, XRP takes no electricity so all value goes back to ecosystem.
Resources to learn more.
· Coindesk.com, an aggregated site for crypto
· Reports from investment banks (RBC) and consultants (McKinsey)
The road isn’t always clear – just show up and take the hits