- ‘Fin-techionary’ of the Week: ETFs (1.14)
- News (1.57)
- Interview with Kiaan about their experience and current work at Stitch (4.25)
- Quick Fire Questions with Kiaan (31.55)
- Signals: When it rains in crypto (38.08)
- Upcoming Events (40:35)
Hey FinTech friends!
My name is Helen Femi Williams, and I'm your host of the Hey Fintech friends podcast, brought to you by This Week In Fintech.
So let's talk about the structure of this podcast.
First, we're gonna go through the news. And if you subscribe to The This Week in Fintech newsletter, you're in luck because this is the audio version.
Secondly, we'll go through the fintechtionary, then we're going to have a chat with this week's friend Kiaan
And lastly, I'll tell you a bit about the latest Signals article.
Oh, and before we move on, how can I not mention events!
I'm going to go through some of the global fintech events, conferences, and places that you need to know about that are happening in the next two weeks. So listen up for that too!
Also, friends, I did want to say I'm so happy about the number of people who've reached out if you've listened to this podcast, who've engaged in it, and I did want to let you guys know that from December onwards, we're going to be looking at the guests for 2023. So if you know someone interesting, or you think you would be great for this podcast, please do feel free to reach out to us.
According to Forbes, an electronic funds transfer (EFT) is a way to move money across an online network, between banks and people. EFT payments are frequently used in place of paper-based payment methods—like checks and cash—to make transactions faster and safer.
When you make a payment these days, odds are you’re using an EFT to make it happen. Friends can use EFT payments to split a restaurant bill, and businesses can use EFT payment options to get paid by their customers. With so many uses, EFT payments are essential to how money moves through the economy and your life.
🤝 M&A - Fintech
- As everyone reading this newsletter should know by now, this week, FTX, the world’s seventh-biggest crypto exchange, encountered insolvency and was forced to look at strategic sale options due to a run on the bank. Its rival Binance, the world’s largest exchange, signed a non-binding agreement to acquire FTX, but later walked away from the acquisition after one day of audits. Meanwhile, the parent entity is trying to sell its ring-fenced US subsidiary, FTX.us, to rivals Gemini or Kraken. The turmoil is caused ripples throughout digital currency markets - with bitcoin tumbling 11% as of writing. It remains to be seen what the fallout is from the contagion of FTX’s collapse.
- French payments giant Worldline is boosting its presence in Italy through the acquisition of Banco Desio’s merchant acquiring business for €100 million.
- Railsr, a UK banking and compliance software provider formerly known as Railsbank, which just last month announced a $46m Series C, reportedly shopping for a buyer.
- Business-focused fintech giant Bill will acquire financial planning and analysis software builder Finmark.
- Latin American corporate payments provider Tribal* announced its acquisition of Paykii, a B2B cross-border bill pay platform.
- Indian small business-focused neobank startup ZikZuk acquired tax e-filing platform TaxSpanner.
- Prevu, a digital homebuying platform, acquired the assets of Reali, which in August announced it was shutting down after raising a $100 million Series B a year prior.
🏦 M&A - Bank and FinServ
- Alternative asset manager Canyon Partners is exploring selling itself.
- The Irish government sold 5% of Allied Irish Banks to institutional investors for €396.6 million.
- Australian fund manager Perpetual rejected a second private equity takeover proposal at a price of A$1.89 billion.
And now for our friendly chat with this week’s friend Kiaan!
Kiaan Pillay is the CEO & co-founder of Stitch, a fintech company that helps businesses more easily launch, operate more efficiently and scale faster by providing seamless access to the financial system. A former developer, Kiaan spent his career building API startups in Africa, including Root, a bank account for developers, and Smile Identity, a pan-African identity verification company. While working on a peer-to-peer payments app, he saw firsthand the challenges fintech innovators face due to outdated financial infrastructure across the continent. This understanding inspired him to launch Stitch in early 2021.
Excited to be here. Thanks for tracking me down on email. I am based in Cape Town, South Africa, which I am a fanboy for, and whenever I can I try to advocate for people to move down. I think Nik had a great time with us here, a little bit of my background. I've always been fairly tech II. I always was very obsessed with computers as, as a kid ended up studying computer science and finance. And right after university, jumped straight into the startup world. I joined a startup called route, I joined as the first software engineer but ended up running ops, as you do with startups. I joined another which does identity verification in African markets, also an API based product. So same, same sort of thing again, and then by happy accident, kind of was building stuff on the side that led into stitch and ended up, Yeah, awesome.
Okay, that's a lot of information there. I guess my first question is about South Africa. I've never been to South Africa. What is that? Like? What's the best thing about it? And secondly, my question is stitch, what is stitch and if you were talking to like one of your non FinTech friends, or your mom or something like how would you explain what Stitch is?
great question. I still haven't worked out how to explain what stitch is to my family.
They still think I'm building apps, which is certainly far from the truth. South Africa Yes. Many, many things. I think. I'm very, very Cape Town biassed Cape Town in particular is just like, an incredibly beautiful city, if you have been to San Francisco reminds me of San Francisco a lot. It's kind of got the hilly type of terrain, it also gets the fog. We also have a prison island, which is a weird similarity. But it's just a beautiful, beautiful, beautiful city. But in general, South Africa is a really spectacular country obviously has a tonne of history, which is still played plays out in some negative ways. But I think really, really great cultural background, incredibly diverse people here. I don't know how widely spread this is. But South Africans at least often refer to themselves as the rainbow nation because of such diversity in the country. So yeah, I think just really incredible people with really, really strong work ethics, a lot of care for the country and pushing things forward despite often a lot of setbacks and often a tonne of bumpy stuff, government, macroeconomics, etc. For like, just spectacular people.
That sounds cool. I've always I've always wanted to go to South Africa. It's definitely on my list. My brother actually spent a lot of time in Johannesburg over. Locked down. He really loved it there.
Oh, lucky. Lucky him.
Exactly. Whilst we were all sitting here. And if we were to kind of circle back to like Stitch and stuff, do you like, how would you explain Stitch? Maybe? Yeah, if it's not to your mom, like to your friend or something like how would you explain what you do, what your role is, and what stitch actually is like, what the mission of stitch is?
Yeah, I can give you the to my mom pitch, and I can give you the to my friend pitch that to my mom pitch. I hate that I have to do this. But I often just do it similarly to a card. So you know, I explained card Hey, Mom, when you know when you try to pay for your Uber or your Netflix, you put in your car details. And money gets moved, right? That actually happens by somebody that's not like Visa that does that's not like a bank that does that there's like a player in the middle that kind of does that. And when I explained stitch, I explained that we do the same sort of thing. But we do it directly from a bank. So instead of going through Visa, MasterCard, or a different payments trail, we directly execute that from a bank. And we kind of offer the same experience that you get from a card except we do it directly through the bank, increasingly, we're going to add more payments methods which you can get into but that's how I explained it to her, I don't think she knows why there's any benefit to doing card versus bank or otherwise. But that's kind of how we positioned there. The like, slightly better version of that is essentially explaining it from like an app or a product perspective, like explaining it to my friend, you know, as a consumer of FinTech products, or that Savings
Investments, crypto person person payments, there's like a backbone to that right. And you have to like upload money. Typically you do it through card or you do it manually, we sort of facilitate that entire money movement process. So not only do we allow you to put money in to all of those apps, but we allow those apps to reconcile the money and then we allowed them to do a payout to if you're trying to withdraw back into your bank account. If you've made money from crypto, which you probably have not done this week, but you'd be able to push it back into your back.
Yeah, I actually really liked that you gave a different explanation for your friend and your mom, even though, like your mom just thinks that you build apps anyway. So that was great. Is there kind of a specific region or area that you focus on within Stitch?
So I'm one of the cofounders. And CEO, I spend a lot of my time on mostly external-facing stuff. So I do spend my time working a lot with the people team internally, but otherwise, kind of split up my time between the growth team, which is like marketing and design, customer success, we naturally have kind of like a 80/20 kind of rule where we're most of our volume comes from a small number of customers. So it's, it's been a lot of time there, try to build really strong relationships there spend a lot of time on product partnerships, specifically bank partnerships. And then, of course, new sales, not on everything, but where there are relationships that I have, or larger accounts that we're trying to get involved with. I like to spend a lot of time there as well. Okay, so
you're kind of doing a lot of like, you've you've kind of got your hat in a little in a lot of different fields. And so I guess that kind of leads me to ask, like more of a personal question, like, you know, you've done a lot, you know, when it comes to your career, like it's within fintech. But what about the market? Or thing? Are you excited about from a FinTech perspective or like a stitch perspective?
Yeah, that time, the like, a very brief origin story about Stitch is that we started trying to make a person-to-person payments app, invest, you try to build the entire thing from scratch ourselves and had a woeful, willful time doing so I think kind of realised the complexities of building anything financial your eyes, you have to have some sort of payment method, and you need to have a bank account to hold your money in. And then you need to get a sponsoring bank to do that. And you've compliance to do the need to KYC your users. . And I think that, you know, is maybe now taken for granted in some slightly more Western markets, some European markets in the States and I think there have been incredible players that have done similar things, the likes of stripe plaid, Tink, Trulia, even like checkout . I think largely that is still not happening in many markets throughout the world, you know, the markets we serve include. And it's just so exciting. It's just like very cool to be able to give developers the tools to be able to build these sort of things and be able to just like create and breathe new ideas into the world because they have, you know, new tools available to them. And I think we've seen this happen in other spheres, not just fintechs years, you know, once like API products, Twilio, or even just cloud services proliferated. And it's just like really exciting to kind of watch that unfold. There's just like a whole new wave that's happening in many markets.
Yeah. And I think something that you touched on that is the kind of markets do you think there's something unique or different or exciting or frustrating about like serving the South African or the African market that makes it different from let's say, someone in a different region? Who was who's serving different markets?
Yeah, absolutely. There is a lot that it's unique. There's a lot that's frustrating. I think that the adage that like, quote, unquote, Africa is a very complicated country is a very true one. I think everybody kind of looks at Africa and thinks is this one big? Well, I think you can, with an uninformed opinion, look at Africa and think there's one big homogenous thing that you can kind of go after. And I think you start to see that, like individual markets themselves are so like, uniquely different in terms of like, you know, bank penetration in terms of financial penetration in terms of compliance regulation, the actual payment rails are so uniquely different, the banking partners are so uniquely different. And I think that is been pretty fascinating to kind of dive deeper into a few markets, it is certainly not the case that you've cracked one market in Africa, you've cracked them all. So I think that's been pretty fascinating. I think, you know, in terms of the opportunity side, it's just like absurdly big, you know, I think, because everything is so nascent, like I mentioned, it's just like a really, really, really big opportunity set. And I think, perhaps what really excites me and it's maybe a little bit romantic, but you're seeing this huge wave of people going from cash to digital for the very first time. And in many cases, that's like not cash to bank. Right? There's this like, I used to hate the term LeapFrog. But I think you're just like seeing it happen in a lot of markets not happening right? People are going in many markets like directly to fintechs and they're treating them as their only store of digital value people are going to mobile money right and like, you know, like, absurd percent of Kenya's GDP runs through like M PESA. And like, oh, Over 90% of adult Kenyans have M PESA. And they use it once a month. And you're just seeing this, like, phenomenal adoption of these products everywhere. There's just like really exciting that, actually, weirdly, I think you might start to see overtake some of the more Western markets, because there is actually incumbency in banks in these Western markets. Now, there is like, for penetration and inertia to like people being like, bought into this ecosystem. But I think you'll start to see like a lot of really cool innovation in the markets we serve.
That's super interesting. Do you think that means they can kind of surpass maybe some of the legacy issues that potentially, you know, other systems have, which kind of do go through cash to traditional finance to fail?
I think, certainly of an imperfect example. Kenya. I mean, when you think about FinTech penetration, maybe it comes up, maybe it doesn't, because it's it's telco owned, but but really, it's just the most absurd, you know, like the adoption of a financial product ever outside of like bank accounts, right? Where else would you see 90% of the adult population, like at least once a month, using a payments platform right, and it's just so ubiquitous, you can use it to pay for your groceries, you can use it for your person to person payments, you can use it in tandem with your FinTech apps. Because I think that alone is a great example. But you're just starting to see this happen to a lot of different markets. And there's just like, no need for a lot of these, you know, outdated paradigms that have come into being because, you know, banks existed in a digital world in the last 20 years. So I think it's really exciting. I think you see it play out in different ways. In each African market, I even think just the concept of like agency banking, and being able to like move cash to digital is still such an exciting thing that is kind of like uniquely happens in emerging markets. I think maybe the closest parallels to some of this is in some Asian markets and the likes of like, really volatile systems like Alipay, or Wechat are really interesting examples of like, why the and deeply penetrated products that you just don't see in like the US or Europe.
Nice. Yeah, exactly. That's what I was thinking. And because they haven't really had these issues, you can be a bit more creative or innovative. And I want to say go back to you, and maybe ask you some of the questions our previous guests have put forward. So every week I asked the guests like, what should I offer next? Guest I actually have quite a few questions now. So a question from a couple of weeks ago was what was the event or thing that will stop you from working in FinTech?
Oh, that is such a great question. I don't know, I am quite lucky that I feel very deeply in love with what I do and the sort of entire sector that I am in. I think there's like an endless amount of opportunity. I kind of feel like a FOMO venture capitalist whenever I'm on TechCrunch because I never I see it. You know, a new FinTech, fundraising. I'm like, God, crap. That is like the coolest new thing. I'd love to be like working on some of that, too. There are just so many great things that are still coming out to be I think maybe the only thing I've been asked before the question and maybe a slightly different lens in terms of like, if I started another startup, what would it be and I think maybe something specifically around like developer experience as a service, I think that is one area that equally draws my attention. But there's sort of been like less urgency or pool for me personally, to solve this sort of problem. I think, like, as mentioned previously, I think developer experiences like so, so important. And giving developers like really beautiful, easy tools is still something that doesn't happen, as well as I think it should, in many places, I think even stitch, you know, started and we all deeply, deeply cared about developer experience, but it is a surprisingly difficult thing to like, pay a lot of attention and time to when you're building new products. And it's quite an easy thing to almost have, you know, with a built-in like decay rate. And like, over time, your like develop experience worsens if you don't give it direct attention. And I think, arguably, there could be products and there could be companies that build this as a core competency and almost as infrastructure for people to use. And I've always loved that. It's really fascinating. So maybe something like that. If for whatever reason, I got tired or or there was enough pool in that direction. But I am very happy where I am right now.
That's super interesting. I guess we're all very focused on my product experience and like the end user and stuff like that. So sometimes like Hey, developers might get sort of lost in the, in all the other stuff that's going on, especially when it's like, okay, let's launch this product out there. And now the question that was asked was, how do you learn about this stuff like, you know, when it comes to you and your career, you've obviously worked with a lot of different fintechs. And you've been in a lot of different spaces, you know, but let's be honest, like, the space changes so much, you know, like, when it comes to FinTech as a whole, or defy or like, whatever you want to really say. So where is it that you kind of like, absorb your knowledge? And like, what would you where do you go to kind of learn about all this stuff? Like, if someone was just starting out? What would you be reading or going to?
it's a really good question. I don't have a good answer for that. And that's a particularly atrocious thing to say, because obviously, we have a tonne of new joiners and people join stitch for the first time and they need to upskill on these things that we don't actually have a great path to point in one, we do a very good job of giving people stitch context and what happens inside of stitch. But like your you don't have a FinTech background, super, super, super difficult. I've just kind of learned everything empirically by being in fintechs. In the last, whatever, eight plus years now, I think, at least what I do, and maybe some of the areas that I don't understand, well is I try, I try to be super, super critical of like anything again to like TechCrunch type articles, on anything I read, because I think, often at least you see a FinTech fundraise the article. And it's easy to kind of point the finger and be like FinTech bubble, crazy thing, start a startup doing something that's not super important or interesting. And they raised tonnes of money. In most cases, if ever, I kind of like deep dive and things I like end up like being very fascinated with these companies are building and actually find that they're solving much harder problems and at face value it looks like and so I often try to like be really critical on like other companies and try, like deeply understand, like, why are other people working on these things? Like, what is the value add? And I mean, occasionally, I'll kind of come out and be like, Oh, maybe that's not such a huge problem to work on. And I did kind of understand the problem set. But most of the time I kind of deep dive and I'm like, Oh, well, I really didn't understand why you would need to optimise payments in this sort of way. I didn't understand why this vertical couldn't solve reconciliation. And that's why this company exists. And that's a really, really good way to learn. I think I learned pretty well through like narration, I guess like most people do, or anyone does as, as humans do. And like startups just very naturally are like stories. And so find it really easy to kind of read other founders stories or other like product inceptions company inceptions and kind of learn through that. And then you just ultimately find you understand very, very, very little about why people do this, and then kind of like, reset it on your own. Like there's a limited amount to what you can find online. But But usually, that's the way I do it.
Okay, so, I mean, I guess it's kind of about having like that, what, obviously, you have to have an interest in it. But I guess it's also just you'd like to kind of go down those rabbit holes trying to work out like why X, Y and Z happened? Do you? Do you feel like you've gone down a lot of like rabbit holes in this area or are like, I guess, what kind of rabbit holes you usually go down? Is it FinTech or is it like something else?
Mostly FinTech, I think is maybe a little bit self-satisfying, because I can usually go down the rabbit hole and at some point, I will start to understand it. I just don't think I'm smart enough to understand a lot of what like other people are doing in more esoteric spheres of the world, or maybe just things that I don't have expertise in. So often I do often I kind of go down and I'll see like a random employee loyalty programme startup, and I'm like, Oh, this is interesting. What's that about? And I'll kind of go down and find that stuff endlessly fascinating. If it's a bit more technical in the domain, I don't understand I often just end up quitting probably just because I often just can't kind of understand it and the lifts to understand it. Often, I just don't have when I'm scrolling around on my phone and kind of like getting into things by I can kind of endlessly go into fintech. Yeah.
Also, sometimes you just want to skim read and see if you get it and then sometimes it's just
like, Okay, that's enough.
I never get it through skim read. I'm not I'm not smart enough to get anything under skim read.
And so that's why that's why I skipped somebody. Thanks.
Yeah, fair enough. There's loads of questions here from different guests, but I'm gonna ask this
What keeps you up at night professionally and personally?
Nothing. I'm very into into sleep these days. I'm optimising my sleep drastically. I am only partially joking but professionally, I think I would just be lying if I if I didn't say that, occasionally, you know, how reliant we are on regulation and banks and third parties is quite scary, right? At the end of the day, we can do a limited amount without these partners. And these partners are very large incumbent organisations or regulators and you know, in some markets have been known to be very volatile or very flippant, that can be quite scary. I used to worry about the tech or customers and stuff like that. And we're in a much better and slightly more scaled spot now. So I feel that less personally, pretty coupled, I spent a bit of my time kind of obsessing around work stuff. I don't think I ever find stuff personally that keeps me up that stresses me out outside of work. Often I'm I'm kept up because I'm very excited about certain things, often. The things that excite me are and keep me up or the things that I cannot work on sort of like these other ideas that I've heard or like things that we want to do. At this point. We can't do just yet. So it is nice to kind of dream about and scratch that itch in my brain. But you just can't like dive into it further. But yeah, nothing personally I've always the kind of stressed myself out too much that is non work related.
It's it's basically work. Last thing I do the evening before I go to bed is I look at all of our graphs, and I look at how the day is going. And then I go to sleep. And if it's a good day, I go to sleep peacefully. And if it was a bad day, I'm off.
Yeah, I'm not sure if you're like joking
Genuinely The last thing I do before I go to sleep, but the first thing I do when I wake up, and I
love it. It's okay, if it does the same thing is probably not super healthy. But I do love it. Yeah.
I mean, if you love it, then you love it. So what do you think we should ask the next guests
if you weren't doing this, and you were to do a startup in another industry? What would it be? And maybe the other one that I've never had a good like as in like if you were to find another startup in a different industry that like not FinTech or if you're in med tech, not med tech, what would it be? And then one that I sort of never had a good answer to myself. But if you were to leave the startup world, and you were to go work at a quote-unquote, corporate or enterprise, which would it be? And why?
Those are really good questions. So you've answered your first question about what you would be doing if you weren't necessarily doing stitch and what Startup you'd develop. But if you were to leave the startup industry and work in a corporate, or enterprise or whatever, what would it be?
Yeah, I still don't have a great, great answer there. I think another industry that like really, really fascinates me is I guess, entertainment. But I suppose like, specifically like the film industry and movies, certainly not on the forefront of acting or directing or anything like that. But I've always kind of been fascinated with how that works behind the scenes. How do you like, you know, scripts? Or screenwriters, like managed to birth these ideas? And how do they get to fruition? Like, who reviews these things? How do they get funded? How do they source the actors around it, I've always kind of thought it is in probably a very walked we're not crazy to similar to like startups because they kind of like start is this idea. And then maybe you find a financier, and then maybe you find some actors to join the team. We're interested. And I just like personally, love, love, love, love, love movies, and I spend a lot of my free time watching everything I can get my hands on and like actually going to the movies. And so I have no appreciation of how things go from zero to a produced film. And I've always thought of you like quite an interesting thing to get into that I just assumed I would kind of like, like and have passion for. So that that would be something like, like, cool that I'd love to like noodling. Yeah, no,
And also, if you look at all the events of last week, like, you know, maybe the startup world and what's happening will become a movie. Who knows?
there's so many of these things. Now there is, I mean, two of my favourite movies ever are the Steve Jobs movie and social network.
Do you know what I think that it is, though? I think we're obsessed with like scams as a society,. Yeah, so I don't even necessarily think is just startups obviously, by nature of like, what I'm not saying startups are scams, but it's more just by nature of creating something like, obviously, not everyone has the best intentions. And but I think, like I don't necessarily think it's like, we want to know how this person founded this amazing company. We want to know how this person kind of like fooled everyone. And I think like the Theranos one is a really good example of that the podcast for that I was like, obsessed, I like listen to the whole thing. In one day, we work as a good example. And all these kinds of ones where it's like, they created this like cult personality thing. And I think, I don't know, even when you look at Netflix documentaries and stuff, there's just this like real phenomena about like, the internet, the use of the Internet, and the use of like, money and how these things all collide together to create like, I don't know, an image of something that potentially is not it. That's my theory.
I think that's right. Especially because, I mean, this is gaining more and more like, mainstream attention, I think, because they're just like good stories. And people like naturally have some inclination to kind of like scratch a little deeper under the surface, especially if there's some angle of deceit, or anything grey, which, at the end of the day, a lot of startups are. And so yeah, I think it kind of like scratches that itch for most people. Intuitively,
yeah, I'll just sort of like how far can you take this? And like, there are so many good, like, yeah, things on that. So I'm gonna go to our quickfire session now. And essentially, I'm going to ask you like 10 questions, they have nothing to do with FinTech and just answer the first thing that comes to your head for you, are you ready?
Okay. Are you more like a square or a circle?
That's cool. If I gave you 10,000 bananas, and you can't throw them away or eat them, what would you do with
Banana Bread party, massive scale banana bread party? Oprah's you can't eat them. Does that? Does that count as eating them?
I'm gonna say yeah, it counts as eating them. And also you can't give it to people like and you can't sell it.
Oh, no. Okay. I would make like a soapbox car out of Bananas. Okay.
Well, five things you need to make a fort in your house.
pillows, mattress, food, food supplies, snacks. Bedding like a sheet. lamp. Weneed light on the inside.
Okay. And what do you like daydreaming about?
Sport, Sport, Sport or what movies to watch for the weekend.
What do you hope has been invented?
Oh, great. One cheesy one for teleportation. I really, really really hate travel. I love travelling. I love being in new spots. Like one downside, which I did not tell you earlier about South Africa is it really is a horrible place to travel from it is like not convenient at all.
And if you had to measure your height in Oreos, how many Oreos tall do you think you would be?
Oh my god. How many isn't Oreo? Like three centimetres? I don't know. 660? How did you stack them up?
Okay. Are you more like a river? A lake for ocean or waterfall
And if you could eat one food everyday, what would it be?
Okay, pretend that you get to make one rule that everybody in the world must follow. What Rule would you make?
everyone should be barefoot?
I think the world would be a better place if everyone was barefoot. I'm barefoot person for time and it's nice. I feel like you just a happier person. You're what kept you more in tune with. I hate to be that that person. And I have not always be like this. I only started getting barefoot I actually after I got I got an injury a few years ago. It's just so much nice. I like people that are barefoot my myself not being self-fulfilling, but I like people
do you go outside barefoot
I have done that. I have stopped doing that. Because I've had things inside my feet. That's not fun for anyone. But I feel like if everyone was barefoot, then society would make it so that outside is okay. And it's more walkable. But it's not fun stuff that gets in your feet. It's just there forever. I've just have things that have been in my feet for years. They've just never disappeared.
Oh my god. There's actually a guy on Tik Tok, and he lives his whole life barefoot. And he goes around, and he interviews people and asked them to take off their shoes. And then like they stand there like barefoot together. Like you'd really appreciate it.
And lastly, if you could build a house out of any material, what would it be and why? I don't know. I have so many house questions.
Oh, that's interesting. All glass maybe? Depends where I would live by Yes. But I love very openairy glossy type houses.
Yep, that works. Okay, awesome. That's the end of our quickfire session. I think I pretty much anybody have one more question.
Well, thank you so much for coming on the podcast.
quickfire questions was the most stressful thing I've done in a long time. But this was fun. Glad we got there the end.
Signals is our subscriber only reads and Im going to read you a snipper from our latest article.
What! Is! Happening!
"Crypto exchange FTX lent billions of dollars worth of customer assets to fund risky bets by its affiliated trading firm, Alameda Research, setting the stage for the exchange’s implosion, a person familiar with the matter said.
FTX Chief Executive Sam Bankman-Fried told an investor this week that Alameda owes FTX about $10 billion, the person said. FTX extended loans to Alameda using money that customers had deposited on the exchange for trading purposes, a decision that Mr. Bankman-Fried described as a poor judgment call, according to the person." - The Wall Street Journal
Remember when FTX stepped in to bail out crypto platform BlockFi over the summer? The same FTX that then made a bid to buy Voyager and was hailed for altruistically using its fortress balance sheet to save the crypto industry from potential collapse? FTX, the company that built a reputation for regulatory compliance and was taking shots at Binance on Twitter for its alleged lack thereof?
There’s a lot of chaos to unpack amid the recent spate of crypto exchanges going insolvent, sassy tweets, and investigations into potential fraud. There’s also a lot of wisdom for the crypto industry and its regulators to take away from this.
FTX's collapse– and its recent antecedents– are underscoring the need for crypto to live up to its ethos of transparency and exposing cracks that platforms are already moving quickly to address. The crypto ecosystem will emerge better-off for it.
Before getting into lessons learned, let's have a quick refresher on the journey that got us here.
If you're leveraging a trade, you’ll ask a broker to lend you funds covering some percentage of the order. Putting less of your own money down means that your gains will be multiplied when the trade is a success, and losses multiplied when the trade isn’t. You’ll typically need to show the broker that you have enough money to cover their downside in a margin call if the underlying security drops in value and the trade starts going south.
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