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2019 Singapore Fintech and Blockchain Week continues this weekend with more fringe events. Blockcast.cc has the honor to meet up with many experts from all over the world.
Blockcast.cc: Hi everyone, my name is Jenny Zheng, Cofounder of Blockcast.cc. Today we have Arjan with us in Singapore. Good to see you again. Looking fabulous!
Arjan: Thanks Jenny. Always happy to see you.
Blockcast.cc: Can you give us an introduction of yourself?
Arjan: My name is Arjan Eikelenboom, based in Amsterdam. Many of the people in the industry know that I am a strong supporter for blockchain.
Blockcast: Yes our common friend called you a blockchain evangelist! Can you share with us your background? And what were you doing before “blockchain”?
Arjan: Before I entered the exciting space of Blockchain Technologies I was a Private & Investment Banker. The moment the credit crisis start to hit the financial markets back in 2008 I checked out. I saw the big knock downs coming from far and thought I could use my time and experience much better. Also, I was fed up with the greediness of corporate business; banks were no longer there to service the customer but had change the game completely; shareholders wanted more and therefore loyal clients had to dig deeper in their pocket to keep them happy, in return receiving less and less service. Now, 10 years later we see nothing has changed.
Blockcast.cc: What did you do after your stint with the finance industry?
Arjan: After my career in finance I picked up on the upcoming market of Photovoltaics; solar energy. Eventually becoming a solar energy specialist and concluded this career with the publishing of the first Solar Energy Guide for residential homeowners and business.
Blockcast.cc: So how did you end up in blockchain?
Arjan: Translating complex matter is one of my core skills. During my solar days I used this gift in writing and talks, presentations and lectures. The upcoming of Bitcoin triggered my attention and I wanted to know why this new ‘money’ was tracking such a huge audience. Soon I found out that most of the attention was based on fomo. That was an orange flag to me. Then Ether and other altcoins become more popular. The orange flag turned red. That was my key. I studied for weeks to months and did lots of research to learn ever single detail that would be of any significance to understand blockchain tech. When I could explain to myself what blockchain is and how this technology could potentially change the world of how we do business on every level, I started to blog about it. People liked it, wanted more and I smashed it up, followed by producing a high quality blockchain seminar in Amsterdam. It was sold out in days and the audience was happy. Many more seminars followed.
In that same period I was recruited by Credits – a whitepaper start-up at the time – to help them in their pre-ICO round. I traveled all over the world, climbed on most crypto stages in EU and USA and gained a lot of traction for the brand.
Blockcast.cc: Quite a road. It sounds to me you want to educate people. Do I see that right?
Arjan: Absolutely. The space is heaving with people who have no clue what blockchain really has in store for us. Ignorance is fertile soil for people with bad intentions. We saw that during the ICO age of 2017/18. Hence the cryptowinter that followed after a hype built on quicksand; people lost their money and lost trust. We now need to regain that trust. With a proper story and solid information. Telling stories is how I share insights, vision and point out the dangers.
Blockcast.cc: You became a solar energy specialist after a career in banking. Do you consider yourself a blockchain specialist.
Arjan: I do not. I learn every day myself. In the entire world there are only so many people that I’d consider a specialist and those people are barely visible in the limelight. They need evangelists and storytellers like myself. Together we can built a strong front where we can educate decision makers on governmental levels and also regulators. I’m involved with a number of international organisations to do just that. Banks for instance cannot make one single step in the cryptospace without regulation similar to the traditional financial markets industry. Mass adoption of blockchain is therefore a bit further away than many of us hope we are.
Blockcast.cc: What value you think will blockchain add to our society.
Arjan: I can name many but I believe that blockchain will play a key role of importance in business protocols where legal matters come in place. Any form of manual authorisation, approval and recording could potentially be automated. To do that it will take months, of course. But once done we have mapped it all out we can convert the whole process into a smart contract, on blockchain.
Blockcast.cc: Since you are finance guy right from the start of your career, can blockchain help this industry better?
Arjan: Micropayments. Its now too expensive. With the right technology like blockchain, we can reactivate this sphere as costs could be $0.0001 in the near future.
Blockcast.cc: Yes we can also look at invoice financing too. Lastly, can you share an inspiring quote for our users?
Arjan: Yes Jenny. This is what I would like to share-
“Be onboard during the hype. And create value after the hype.”
I hope like minded people can start earlier and execute the blockchain vision together.
Blockcast.cc: Thanks Arjan for your time. Enjoy your stay in Singapore.
Arjan: Thanks Jenny.