"Crypto Has Been Like Covid For Money" - Claude Eguienta | ATC #488

In this episode, Mike Townsend chats with Claude Eguienta, Chief Executive Officer at Mimo, a company that creates protocols providing tokenized real-world assets and allowing the minting of multiple price-stable currencies against collateral to its users.

Claude has been working for startups and large tech companies for over a decade after graduating with a Masters in Computer Science, focused on distributed systems. In the past he has co-founded Telcoin, a startup focused on financial inclusion via remittances on the blockchain, and Kabotip, a crypto startup which went through the OnLab incubator.

Claude is a software engineer strongly driven by his desire to make the world a better place. He grew up in France, studied in China and the US, and has lived in Japan and the UAE for most of his professional life. He speaks French, English, Chinese and Japanese.

Host: Mike Townsend

Guest: Claude Eguienta

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Episode Transcript

Mike:Welcome to Around The Coin. This podcast is with Claude Eguienta, the CEO ofMimo Capital. Mimo has about 40 people. They're focused on building DeFiprojects, specifically recently to allow people to purchase treasury bonds,earned yield on those bonds in crypto. We talked about how they're technicallydoing that. We discussed the world more broadly, the influence of U.S.Regulatory policy on crypto related to the rest of the world. We discussed theimpact of Asia. We discussed the long-term arc of crypto on humanity. Reallyinteresting wide ranging conversation. Hope you enjoy. Here is Claude.  


Mike:All right, Claude, I'm excited to be chatting with you. Like we were justsaying in the pre-show conversation,  

why don't we divein and talk a little bit about the state of cryptocurrency as it's perceived bypeople. And I know this is kind of a subjective. Question, but how do you sortof view where we are?

Given that I'm inthe US there's a bias perspective that I have. I don't get to travel certainlyas, as much as you do. How do you view the state of cryptocurrency morespecifically like tokens, token projects where are people generally bearish andwhere are people generally pretty bullish at this point that you're seeing?

Claude:Well, I think this is a very interesting question because where you are in theworld will. Like kind of guide the answer. I would say that it's one of thefirst times, not the first in crypto, but one of the first, like, I would say,eras where you have a strong split between what the US will think and what therest of the world will think because there, there's the.

The regulation, theregulatory environment with the s e c going after quite a few players, thatmakes it somewhat like scary to on, on, on every side of token projects for theAmericans. Like, it's scary to buy because, like maybe these guy will beconsidered a security tomorrow. Maybe the price will drop.

Maybe like thoseguys will go to jail. I don't know. Like, and then you, you have the, the otherside, like the, the issuers like, maybe we should make something but badAmericans, maybe we should do something. So, Essentially like there's kind of abreak in inside of the token market and like the fact that the s e c is notreally stopping is, is, like kind of contributing to this climate.

So, but outside ofthe US it's pretty interesting. It's it is a proper, I would say a good bearmarket. What I mean by good as it's the fact that there's not much fear,there's more of a. Well, nothing's happening. The waters are calm. People arenot really super stressed. There's volatility here and there, there's one daywhere it goes up and then a lot of days where nothing happens, and then one daywhere it goes DAOn and a lot of day where nothing happens.

People are notreally in the climate of fear or greed. It's it's pretty muddy waters. And thisis That's for people inside of the industry and for people outside of theindustry, there's just way less interest because people outside of the industryget their interest mostly in bull cycles, like when the prices go verticalbecause they hear their neighbor just bought a new Ferrari, or they just hearlike, tho those crazy stories or.

In the beginning ofthe bear market when they hear their older neighbor just got liquidated andlost their new fund fortune or something like that. This is when like peopleoutside of our industry like relate to the, the crypto world, but within theindustry's slightly different. Like right now, it's a good moment for people.

Who want to bebuilding. So you have a lot of you say like when you have conferences and allthat, like tickets to conferences still sell out in seconds. You have like,hackathons for engineers that come and want to build new stuff that still likesell out. People just wanna come. There's a lot of energy for people who wantto do new things.

E everything. Is iscrazy. Like if you want to, if you wanna find a form of of an interestingmetric to see the interest in the crypto space from a builder perspective, lookat the time it takes to get a new code base audited. Cuz auditors, like qualityauditors like receive a lot of.

Projects. So thelonger it takes, the more like, I would say the more interest there is ingetting stuff audited, right? Assuming their resources are not too elastic. So,right now it still takes to a top tier auditor, like, four, five months to getyour project in on, on the, for Ethereum stuff on.

So it can be fasterbecause there is less competition right now, I mean, What I mean by solana, Imean like, auditors that can understand the rust cut basis. So it's, kind of adifferent family of programs. So it still goes faster. I would say maybe that'sa good, in good indicator that there's not that many people building at thismoment.

But outside ofthat, like, it's still pretty long to get like a very good audit in comparison,if you're middle of a bull market takes you a year to get a slot in the mostprestigious firms. It can take a little bit more than this, but it's generallyabout a year. So there is less interest, but still quite a lot.

And even thoughlike another metric would be like the funding, there's still quite a lot offunding in new projects. Valuations are lower, but there's quite a lot offunding. So all in all, I'd say like within the industry there is, there's no,at least there's not much fear. People are not thinking that crypto willdisappear tomorrow.

They're just.Pretty understanding that, well, prices are not as good as they used to be, butthat's fine. They, they keep building. And outside of the industry, people areeither not paying attention or, just loosely paying attention.  

Mike:Right, right. Okay.  

And then let's talkabout Mimo a little bit.

Let's jump rightinto it. So just to set the table here, you guys are focusing on. Well, whydon't you tell me what, what is the current focus of the business? What is thesize of the business, maybe in terms of people, money, raised revenue, howeveryou measure your success so far.  

Claude:Well, the, we, we do not have at least in the current incarnation of thebusiness, there's not external investors and the project is not generating alot of money.

It is, generatingsome money, but like, not enough to pay the burn rate. So we're still likeburning some of the money we've generated through like mostly management andlike resource management so far. And the focus of the business. I mean, we're,we're roughly like 40 people and the focus of the business is about helpingpeople to stay in crypto, but enjoying the fruits of, what, whatever happens inthe real world.

So it's it's prettysimple in the fact that. It used to be that crypto was only for pretty, prettyspecific category of assets. Crypto native assets, like mostly volatile assets,and then stable coins. You had like the family of assets that go up and DAOnlike wildly at a recycle and then stablecoin that just full of currencies.

And if you wantedto have anything else than this, you needed to leave the crypto system and goto a bank or something like that. What, what I mean by anything else would be.Things like structured, pro structured products or debt products or liketypically like sovereign bonds, things like that.

If you wanted tohave exposure to this type of thing, you would need to go out. But for a longtime it didn't make any sense cuz bonds didn't pay. And when the bonds do notpay, there's a lot of things that just decide not to pay except for that in Inother countries, like emerging markets, which was not very interesting to a lotof people inside of the crypto world.

So for, for a longtime it didn't make much sense to search, but at some point it becameinteresting, like in 2022 when the, the Fed decided, like made it very clearthat they were going to raise the interest rate. It became like really clearthat sovereign debt was going to be attractive all over the planet.

And at this momentwe realized like, wait, maybe. We can help people stay in crypto, but still getthe benefits of this type of investment. And we decided to build like thisprotocol called Kuma, which allowed people to get exposed to the yield of realworld assets in a way that would still be become compatible with what we'vebeen doing before, which means DeFi.

Cause we're a DeFiDeFi company at first, right? So we do not want to make something that leavespeople in crypto, but. But them in the form of a crypto gel. We wanted peopleto have like, to stay in crypto and being able to move their assets freely within,no, within reasonable boundaries, but still like, move their assets like aDeFi, like a DeFi product and not like, something where to just deposit,deposit some U sdc and wait for yield.

It, it had to besomething more of a DeFi primitive. Cuz if you know anything about DeFi theway. That people tend to represent it is money Legos. We wanted to make a newmoney Lego that would represent like, yield from real, the real world.  

Mike:Okay. So let me just try to make sure I understand this.

So, Mimo Capital,there's roughly 50, 40 people and the majority of the revenue has come from,you said management. I'm not sure what that means. Maybe help clarify thatfirst,  

Claude:but management mean that. The company's been around for long enough so that theresource management, like, you have some e you do a couple trades, you do acouple things like that.

Like the, the, thecompany managed to stay afloat by but by essentially trading for a while it wasnot like it was not the intention of the business, but it managed to keep thecompany afloat to like, between the cycles.

Mike:Got it. Okay.  

So making goodtrades, making money on trades, and that that pays the, roughly, I'm assumingit's like 4 million a year to have 40 people on payroll, something like that.

And then thebusiness itself now is focused on. You said you kind of explained why theinterest rates in the Fed have made an opportunistic pathway for building aDeFi protocol called Kuma that allows people to, can you explain that in alittle bit more detail? So it allows people to do what exactly. Hold a stableCoin pegged to the US dollar, or,  

Claude:well, it's not exactly a stable Coin like I mean, if we wanna go into detailsagain, the, the goal is to get people in crypto exposed to the yield from thereal world, right? Mm-hmm. Like, there's real in the real. If you go to theirbank and you tell them, I want to spend like a hundred thousand dollars intreasury bills, you're gonna have you're gonna see your banker.

They're gonna likedo something with you. And at the end of the day, If they accept, you're gonnahave some, like in your brokerage account, if your trading account or somethinglike that, like depending on your bank, you, you're, you're gonna have the ahundred thousand dollars worth of t bills and it will appreciate like a littleby little.

And I mean is it isnot going to appreciate little by little, the secondary market value of it isgoing to appreciate legal by legal, but. When it reaches maturity, you will beable to like to claim dollars in exchange of it. And you, you, you'll just haveyour dollars and you will have made a realized gain of like, today the pricesof today, roughly 5%.

So mm-hmm. That,that's the way it would work if you were to go to the bank. And if you have U SD C, you would not, or U S D T, you would not be able to do such a thing. Wewanted to reconcile the concept of staying in crypto, but getting access tothese yield.  

Mike:Mm. Specifically the yield from treasury Bills.

Claude:Not only any form of that instrument, treasury bills, just being the first.

Mike:Got it. Okay. And that's currently what you're focused on? Or is there otherdepth?  

Claude:Yeah. That that's okay. That's what we're focused on. Yeah. Yeah. Like,and  

the way we're doingthis is, is pretty it could sound convoluted, that's why I didn't like diveinto it, but mm-hmm. If you wanna know the specifics, it's we.

We have a company,a regulated entity that buys debt and sells it in the form of NFTs. And theseNFTs get you a claim on the, on on, on what the debt sells for on the secondarymarket. So that's a, that's a, that's a pretty straightforward thing. You, we,we sell you some NFTs, you sell it back to us, more expensive.

Because in general,debt tends to, I mean, if you're looking at treasury bills, they tend to have asecondary market value that. Appreciate as they get closer to maturity theyhave a volatility that is coming from the expectation of the, of the nextcycles of interest rates. Because, like the, if the next one's gonna pay more,people wanna sell the current one so they can get the next one kind of thing.

The opposite, ifthe next one is expected to pay less so that that's you have these type ofcycles, but. Generally, they just tend to, to go up following a, a normal arather straight line towards maturity. And if you, if you look at the, theother side, you, you have like, the, those NFTs NFTs are interesting, but thisis not this is not easy to use in DeFi.

So we have built aprotocol with, with our. With our community and the DAO that we have hasdeployed this protocol and this protocol accepts those NFTs as payment in orderto meet some tokens that would be like trading one for one against a dollar.But that would bake in the interest that is received by the nft.

So the way theywould behave is very similarly to stablecoin, except it would only be stablerelatively to the price of the underlying asset. This is not like the, the goalis not to be a stablecoin one for one for the dollar. The goal is to be astable Coin, like, one for one compared to $1 within a treasury bill kind ofthing.

So if the treasurybill trades up, it would be more expensive if treasury bill trades DAOn.Mm-hmm. It'll be less expensive. That that's, that's more of a. Indirectexposure to it. And these coins are interest bearing. So like, if you have ahundred in your pocket, yeah.  

Mike: Iwas gonna ask like, how,

how is this going? Is it working? Are peoplebuying these NFTs that represent treasury bills? Or is it, is the marketestablished for this?  

Claude:Of, we sold a few of them. We, we came up publicly only like on a Friday, so,oh, okay. Okay. To give you and those to ends are now currently online.

It's we, we willsee how it goes there. There's only at this moment, it's only a few tradesgoing on left and right because we have a whole educational layer to, to bringto people. As, as I was gonna tell you, those coins end up being like, let'ssay you have a hundred in your pocket today, you will have a hundred in.

Five at the end ofthe year if they pay 5%. So it's like the balance grows up in your pocket. It'skind of new for a lot of people. So we need to educate the market. We need totell people Yeah. Yeah. Think about like a U sdc, except it multiplies withinyour wallet without any user action. Mm-hmm. It, it's kind of like, the thing,it's not exactly the same, but this is what we need to, to help peopleunderstand, like, those are DeFi tokens.

Those are not liketokens issued by the company. So we need to explain that the company is notresponsible for them. It's more of a DAO thing. The company is responsible forthe NFTs. The DAO accepts the NFTs as payment and decides to meet new tokenbecause it has the NFTs behind. So it's, those are two separate things.

We have a relatedentity and and the DAO on the other side. And unlike the company, the DAO isstill subjects to governance rules. So it's another day of ation that we needto. Have with people. Like, all, all those things that, everything needs avote. Everything needs like gover, right?

A proposal andeverything. We're playing by normal DAO games.

Mike:Yeah. Interesting.  

And so is this thefederal, the US Federal Reserve interest rate in treasury bills, is that thefirst place you start? Do you see that as being like an expansion across everyother like sovereign debt? Instrument. And why? The, why us treasure bill bondsfirst?  

Claude:Well, because one of the, of the goals of this was to try to imagine what wouldcircle be if it started in 2022. Like what would it be if it was DeFi centric andin 2022, like when we know so much about how we can. Do interest bearingtokens, how, what happens if you have interest that you can pay to people andall that.

And this kind ofmental exercise led us to build this. And, we ju it was just natural to startthe dollar because, well, now that we have this, let's, let's do this. But thisis clearly not the, the, the the goal of the company to only have a dollar. Imean, Mimo was started on a Euro stablecoin, and we, we do believe in thenecessity to have like multiple currencies, if any, for, for trading or, oranything else that users may want.

The, the, likethere is a lot of volatility between currencies that, that we have observed,and we do not think that everybody should take the bet of becoming an armchairfor ex trader. So, We, we want to have like mm-hmm. Multiple currencies onchain. And let people build, for example, like, currency baskets and stuff likethat.

Got it. Like, butthen it would pay interest. It starts to be interesting. We want to let, yeah,we just wanna build the Lego bricks so people can do those things. Andtherefore it's pretty important for us to have like multiple currencies andusing the bonds that pay.  


Let's talk aboutthe markets for a minute. So, US obviously has quite a bit of turbulence on thebanking side of things. Interest rates have gone up recently. There certainlyseems to be a, a trajectory towards a world that is multipolar. Un recognizedthat recently. And I think the rise of China, India certainly show that the USis not gonna be the dominant power.

Do you view. The,the influence in the crypto world as being a another problem or another waythat people think about stable currency. Typically, people think of stablecoins as a one-to-one backing of a US dollar in a bank account to a stableCoin, u s TC and Tether. Do you see as the US presumably decreases its.

Financial influencein the world loses its global reserve currency status. Do you see Bitcoinbecoming the global reserve currency? Do you see it becoming maybe multipolarin that there's many different currencies that people are using? Or how, how doyou sort of see the next few years or five to 10 in terms of the breakdown??

Claude:Yeah, that's I think this is a very good question and I'm not a hundred percentsure that I have enough material to. Provide, I would say, a meaty answer toit. Therefore I decided to put myself as an infrastructure provider, as inlike, well, if we're not sure what's going to happen next and what will be a decentcurrency, easier for people to do x for people to do y for the, like the, forbig companies and institutionals to like, hold and trade, like, whatever wouldbe medium of exchange, whatever, whatever will be a medium for.

Storing value, it'sit, it, it starts to become like rather difficult because there's a, there,there's a lot of factors there that are way beyond just technical reasons,right? It can, it's not, it's not even on the economics. It's like politics inthe middle. And when you start to make bets that have that many dimensions,you're, you're so close to gambling that we didn't want to enter this thisthing as a company.

So we thought,let's, let's just make sure. That we position the company in such a, in such away that no matter what the users need, we will be able to serve. So thatthat's why we we're tokenizing multiple things, and this is one of the reasonswhy we're moving forward with quite a few. Bitcoin related primitives that I,that I won't be able to explain today cause it's still at the research state.

But, um Sure, sure.We, we, we do understand that there could be like Bitcoin could have a muchmore important position in the future that it does have now. And if we're rightin this there, there's quite a few infrastructure primitives to keep building.So we, we are working on, on on those as well.

But if, to answeryour question, like, it's. I, I unfortunately have to explain that. Yeah. Notreally sure. Like, yeah, yeah. We will just try to, to make the rails for that.

Mike:No, it is certainly is complicated. I mean, you certainly have the influence ofother countries. China puts a lot of pressure.

India is certainlygrowing a lot. And then you have the dis incentivization of using the US dollaras the reserve currency because, the US controls the printing press. So whenthey print money and they give it to their citizens, everyone else loses. It'slike a tax. So there's a massive dis incentivization there.

And then on top ofit, I, I view that the cryptocurrency is the next wave of financial technology.So to not be using that as the core rails, you're, you're using the horse andthe car is being invented. So it does, like, I don't know if the answer isBitcoin per se, or if it's more multicurrency, but it seems like it's goingthat way.

One, one thing wewere talking about pre-show is the. Fact that the US has taken an or orthogonalperspective on regulation relative to the rest of the world on cryptocurrency,and quite clearly, in my opinion, the wrong direction and trying to ban iteffectively. What, what, where do you sing? You live in Dubai, you're inFrance, you're in, you're Italy, you're traveling all throughout Europe.

What are countriesgenerally aiming towards and, and if you can pick up on it, what's thesentiment about the US. Yeah. Uss stance on cryptocurrency. What do you hearpeople saying about why the US might be so anti crypto?  

Claude:That's okay, that question will have like, would have many answers, but, let metell you a couple things first.

I, I talk to a lotof project founders. Cause first of all, I invest, then we invest as a companysometimes, and then like, I just help founders, like get to their goals andstuff like that. Founders know each other. It's a normal thing. I, I had neverseen that many projects try to stay as far as possible from the US as I've seenrecently.

It's, it's really aclear thing like, well, the US represents a great market. It's big and allthose things, but. As big as the market can be. I'm not going to gel. So peopleboom, they go with the band. Like we at Cuma made it pretty clear that we arenot selling our NFTs to like American residents. It was just a thing like we,we, we, we could look into this and we, we are actually exploring a couplethings, but before we have a certain form of certainty and regulatory clarityand maybe, A different type of asset that we will sell there.

We're just like wejust prefer to like, to say like, well, it's, it's a red flag when somebody,like a kyc like like gives us in the KYC that they, they are residents of theUnited States. Like it's as bad as coming from Iran. It's wow. That that'swhere we are. Yeah. Yeah. That, that's where we are right now because forexample, if you're from Iran, there's clear, like the FTF says, no, all right.

You crossed thatcountry and that's it. But in the US it's different. It's not about saying no,it's more about like, Well, we don't know, but they are very clear on the factthat if you're doing something and we, we, we do not like it, even a coupleyears from now, we're gonna knock the door and you're gonna be in trouble.

So we're like,yeah, until they have regulatory clarity, we're just not, not gonna play withthem. And we're not the only ones with that. Like, and now that China isreopening the door to crypto via Hong Kong, There's a, very large market on theother side of the world, and there's, a lot of customers, lot of lot of juice,and.

Lot of people withproblems to solve. So we're like, maybe there's another place to solve problemsfor Maybe the American market does not want our brains and we we're gonna gosomewhere else. And when you have even American founders that come and tell me,yeah, I can't really make interviews and all that, like I don't want people toknow I'm American because I wanna build, I wanna keep building stuff in theindustry and I'm gonna build for China and all that.

American founderscame to tell me that I was like, Whoa, we, we are here already. That was thething. Yeah. So I would say it's more of a split. But like everything, becauseit's mostly political and not like economical, it is likely temporary. So wewill see the, the, the, the, the country has it, it's still, the US is stilllike leading force, but still democratic country.

And I, I believethat, with time maybe if, if that does bring value, Americans will want to havesome of these value and will find a way. And if it does not bring value toAmericans, maybe it's, it is just that crypto was not a good solution for thatmarket. It, it's not, it's not necessarily a bad thing.

It's the, not theentire world does not have to be homogeneous in technologies. Right. Like,they, they're, like China uses WeChat and they're very happy with it, and therest of the world does not. And nobody died from that. So not everything has toprovide the same value for everyone.

And maybe Americaand crypto is a story that does not need to last. I don't know. Like I'm notAmerican. I I don't really have a voice there.

Mike:Well, that's, no,

I, I, I haven't heard this perspective, so Iwant to like, dive in a little bit. So I view crypto as a, a progressive leap.In the technology capability.

So it's like a,it's like a car to a horse. Like it's, it's just a, it's, it's a, it's such a,it's not, it's not apples to oranges. It's like, it's like the word fruit tothe actual object. It's a completely different level of of cooperating. And soI see it as like if you, if you stick with the old rails, effectively, It, it,to me it's, it feels very similar.

Like we're goingthrough this transition of power, like the churches used to rule the world, andfor the first, thousand years, maybe 1500 years after Jesus, the year zero to1500, it was like churches, the Catholic church was, dominant and they, theybasically controlled it.

Yeah. And then, andit was like the king. So it was like, if you're, if you're head of a church or,or you're a king, you basically have the law of the land. And then, then kudosto the France, right? The revolution and, and all that changed and democracywas introduced. And so democracy was like, I think of it as a technology.

It's like a meansof cooperating amongst people and the cons, US Constitution in particular. Waslike a framework for deploying that technology. And I view Bitcoin as, andmaybe you could even lump like early successful projects like Ethereum into a,a constitutional framework of sorts into deploying that technology.

Certainly manyother projects, Solana, you can go DAOn the list, we're inspired by the work atEthereum. Ethereum inspired by the work at Bitcoin. And so it's, it's likethis, it's like this pattern of cooperation using. Tech using the internetfirst as the primitive, that allows people to do things that you couldn't dousing the old methods, right?

Because that in theold methods, your money's in the bank, well, the bank is stored by somebodyelse, and so you never, it comes DAOn to control, in my opinion. You neveractually have control. If the US government prints dollars, well then theyultimately have control at the end of the day. And so I view it as a shift incontrol.

And maybe  

Claude:how many Before the print.  

Mike:Even before the print, right? Yeah.  

Claude:Yeah. And so it's like the banks are regulated,

Mike:the, the banks are regulated and it's very centralized. And not thatcentralization is bad per se, but when things become very centralized,centralized, all of a sudden there's an opportunity to have decentralization.

And my perspectiveis, And tell me where, how you see this differently is that the west and the USprimarily is known for and has found success in the decentralization, both ofdemocratic power. Everyone gets one vote and that gets counted up and we choosethe president and that should also be true in principle with money.

But now I see thisconflict happening in the US where the, the accumulation of power presents a. Aconflict of interest, right? If, if we now are willing to give up control ofthe US dollar, well that means centralization, the US starts to decline. Andso, I don't know, I mean, I, I throw that back to you kind of in a, in ajumbled assortment of ideas, but basically like, yeah, the, the US is kind ofover overly centralized.

Claude:To me, it's interesting and sad at the same time that even in, in In theconcept of living in democracies like we do in the western world. We still havea notion of earth versus them kind of thing. Like, oh damn, this is notsupposed to happen. It should just be us.

Like, it shouldjust be if it's the, if we're the ones voting and all that. But it's not assimple as just a democracy everywhere. It's just like a democracy and theinstructures in place and then like a concept of we are well, but if we givepeople that much power they will do something and abuse and you will have likewhatever consequences.

And the, then theissue becomes that It, it starts to look like the democracy has multiple gears.Like, uh mm-hmm. There's one gear for electric president and there's anothergear when it comes to being free about like, managing your own resources. Like,and when it's about like, the, the money that you have, like, oh yeah, it's yetthe, another gear.

Like, it's like,oh, damn. I thought we were like in, in the Democratic system now. We we're, itlooks like we're afraid of the people like who, who are like, like who we'reelecting, even though it should be the opposite in us, if we were to putdemocracy to what it was supposed to be like we should not be afraid of thepeople we vote for.

But, it's it's kindof how it looks like. I do think that even in the western world, there'sthere's still a separation between the US and the rest. Mostly because of, inthe us, the. The fact that there is no clarity around crypto is likely, in myopinion, mostly political. It is not necessarily something that like it is nota technical reason or anything like that.

Mm-hmm. I think it'sreally a couple agencies that fight for fight for governance over the, thespace of crypto. And given that these politics do not really did not occur thesame way in Europe, we have more clarity there. Therefore there is there, thereis a different environment. So I think it's not, it's not the west and early,it's really specifically the US that, that is like more difficult to work withat the moment.

And it, it, itmight not always stay like that. Like, I mean we're seeing like a couple can,couple companies leaving Canada right now and stuff like that. So maybe there,there, there, there are different there are different frameworks that areopposing crypto. I am not entirely sure what's going on everywhere, but Fromwhat we're seeing, the US is still pretty special in the fact that it's oneextremely big, two, has very little clarity.

So it's, it's veryattractive to a lot of people to go there while still like, like, scaring them.And for what you're talking about regarding the, the fact that crypto is a techtechnology that is essentially like superior to the previous financial system.I mean, I've been building in crypto for almost 10 years now.

Like first Cryptostarted in 2014, so, I'm a strong believer that crypto has the potential tohelp in some form. Like, there's many things that we can try and there, there,there's, there are things where crypto is just a better system. There arethings where crypto is not there yet, and I tend to be rather supportive ofdecentralizing things.

That's why I'm abeliever in DAOs and stuff like that. Like, I like this concept. I think it'smore of a, of a direct representation of how things should be. It feels like.It's it's enough structure to help and like, not, not, not as, not enoughstructure to, to slow everything DAOn, but enough structure to help when youneed and stuff like that.

So I think it'sjust pure progress, like, crypto and the concept of DAOs and stuff like that tome is a, is really a nice addition to everything we had. That's why, forexample, like, I'm not necessarily like a, a maxi of any currency. Mm-hmm. ButI'm a maxi in the concept of what we've built in crypto, like the crypto industry.

I, I'm a very bigsupporter of that, and I do think it's really good. But again, as I was saying,if the American market does not want this, if American people do not want tovote for that, like do, do not really see this as necessary. Maybe like it isthat the, the, the way things are working is fine with them.

And that's that,that, that's it. Like, or it'll be just a test to the democracy. Like, if thepeople want something and they can't get it because the go government wantsthings, otherwise, then maybe you don't really have a democracy out there. Idon't know. You tell me.  

Mike:Yeah, yeah. No, no. These good questions.

I, I, I, I kindawanna ask you what, what more on this is like, If, if we play this out and say,okay, may maybe, maybe you're right there. Maybe there's something here. Itsounds like maybe there's something people in building crypto don't realizethat might be a problem if we look forward, say. 15 years, 20 years, and welook back and say, oh, remember we were such young guys and we were so excitedabout all the future of cryptocurrency.

We now know thatthere are these major flaws that have resulted in real catastrophes andtragedies or failures in some way.

What do you think the possible failures are ofintroducing the cryptocurrency and the technological ramifications? That it haswith it? Like what, what are the, maybe everyone sings all the glory of it andall the praise and all the upside, but what, what might be some of the negativeexternalities? In the future?  

Claude:Well, the thing that we hear all the time is like the, the, the problems aroundmilitary policy, right? Like, you have people working super hard to establishlike, good ways that the, their money should flow. And that e essentially, likeyou, they have great tools in the name of inflation and things like that.

To to, to, to. Tomake their economies grow and or stabilize them. And with crypto, you are,you're essentially given the keys to, to this, to another set of people. Likeif, for example, Bitcoin was. The main thing tomorrow, and it, it would belike, kind of like going back to a gold standard, like for, for a lot of peopleit would sound like a, a strong economical regression because we're losingtools that a lot of people have been building so far.

Some people havebeen saying that those tools are more tools for manipulation than tools aboutlike a economic stabilization. I, I, it's a conversation that. Would be worsehaving, like, it would be a very long conversation actually, if were like to,to go to, to go this route. But it is to, to me, like this is the main argumentwe hear we hear against that.

It's really the,the issue around like, like, policy, the, the other thing we hear with crypto,there's always the, the age old issue of money laundering. Like we, we, we keephearing that. If, if crypto grows money laundering will be a thing. Crypto is athing for like moving money from drugs and all that.

But when you lookat crypto frameworks all over the planet, it's, if you were to launder moremoney tomorrow, maybe using crypto might not be the best, especially in placeswhere crypto is regulated. And I, so I don't think that it's inherent tocrypto. Like, this whole thing, like people have been laundering money withbanks.

Very successfullyfor a very long time. HSBC could tell you a couple things about that and like,in, in retrospect, like, I'm not sure crypto is bringing much innovation here.So like, like it's again, like, I, I, I didn't intend to just bring a line of defensefor crypto, but I'm just telling you like what we keep hearing about like the,the risk of, the growth of crypto, right?

And apart fromthat, like, there is, there is another thing that we keep hearing is that,Crypto has created a form of a distortion in, in in, in the, in demographics,like in the pockets of, of income, like. Crypto pros getting rich at therecycle and the rest of the world, like getting super poor and stuff like that.

Like, at the end ofthe cycle and it, it starts to be like a, a new class of of people that getmoney. We don't really know how and stuff like that. And when they were fivepeople, we didn't really care when they were a million people. It starts to belike pretty bad when, when they're, if there are a hundred million people, itstarts to be something that.

It was not plannedagain, like, and when you go against the plan, when you go against like the,the way resources were supposed to be allocated, people were supposed to work,get a job, and then make some money and do this and that. And in the middle ofthat, you have something that works to be like just one or two anomalies ofpeople that make a lot of money.

Now you have a lotof them and that are getting money at the expense of other people becausethere's still this image of this, this concept of a zero sum game. This, this,this distortion is something that is not pleasing everyone. So like, all inall, that those are, I would say the main things we hear about the, theproblems of crypto, in my opinion, that the, the benefits that crypto canbring, wildly upsets those Yeah.

Issues that I justmentioned, but, I'm obviously biased. I mean, I wouldn't be here. Right,right,  

Mike:right, right. Well,  

you don't need tobe perfect. You just need to be better. And it sounds like the two points therebeing one there might be with greater freedom and control of the individualcomes greater potential for abuse of that power.

You can buy andsell illegal goods weapons and drugs and that sort of thing, and there's nocentralized control to stop you from doing that. Its definitely a concern. Ieven think taxes, like do we have a reliable way of pooling resources togetherand then funding projects as a collective like that, that still seems a littlequestionable to me, whether that's easily done or not.

I, I certain ifeveryone has good will, yes. But I don't, I don't know. And then also yeah, theinfluence of ba basically. Do you, do you, does one believe that there's. Anecessary role for the collectivization of power. Like we, we need to buildbridges, we need to build roads, we need to invest in the 3D infrastructure.

And so to do that,we need to collect taxes. And then presumably enforcement of illegal activityis a good thing for everybody. It sets cultural norms. And I think that you cansee this being played out in cities like San Francisco, where they play outthe. The, the policy of let people do what they want and decriminalizeactivity.

So much so, andthen it swings so hard where you're like, you have an open air drug market inthe middle of the city. And it's like, that is even, even people who are veryon that side of the. The tribe would, would now push back on that and say, Hey,we need some kind of enforcement. And so maybe that becomes difficult to dowith cryptocurrency as the base layer of financial trade.

Yeah. It's,  

Claude:it's a thing like but I mean, again, like, I, I would like to like shift alittle bit towards. What does it bring to us? Like there, there's this, easy.Mm-hmm. Money flow and all that. But there's one thing I realized like thisweek, like, I mean, I, I knew about it, but it became like crystal clear thisweek to me.

Mm-hmm. I, I, Ilike very, I like vintage cars, so I have a vintage car and all that. And ohyeah. I owned my like so the last one I pro, I mean, I have a must in 67 andlike a, I got a C3 Corvette like, before the big winDAO, like, so, so it's a,like a stingray. And I got like, a very good friend of mine that owns a garagethat works on those cars and he was like, oh yeah, now crypto, crypto.

He talks to meabout crypto, and not only crypto, but investment in general. And I was withanother friend of mine who's into classic cars and him, and we realized like,How much the people who are in crypto know about finance in general. Like, notnecessarily like, in the traditional way of learning finance, like at school,but they, they, they have more of a, I would say an interesting relationshipwith money that is very different from the, the generation of people who didnot touch crypto.

Like for, forpeople who are in crypto The like, every time there is a Federal Reservebeating, It's like watching a big game of the, of the N NBA or something likethat. Everybody's knowing. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Everybody's following like, moneyall over the world. Like Yeah, it's a people, like if you talk to them aboutlike, how how money.

Flows or like youtell people about new regulation in mm-hmm. In anti money laundering. Like ifyou ask people what is the F A T F, if you ask people mm-hmm. Like, people whoare in crypto know a lot of those things. And I'm not talking about people whoare building like me, I'm talking about like even users.

Mm-hmm. And like,this guy, this guy who works on the cars did not know a lot of those things.And I just, dropped him like a couple things in crypto and tell him like, readthis, read this, read that, get into crypto and try. And after a while Irealized like, damn, this thing works.

Crypto is just sucha good school. And this is something that like, of course the beginning ofthat, like when you get into crypto at first, like you just start tounderstand. Mm-hmm. Like, the bump and dump schemes and things like that. Butafter a little while you start to understand way more.

You start to,because you want to explain those things that you see all day, like, and the humansare curious, right? You see? Something going up, going DAOn. You want why, why,why is it going up? What is, oh, because those things, like those guys do nottrust that he's gonna go up. So maybe is going to go now DAOn now, or maybethis happens, or maybe that happens, maybe supply is X or maybe this and that.

And then you lookinto tokens and then you look into other things and then you start to thinkabout like money as like a, as a, much, much more broad concept as than, thanbefore you were into crypto. And I realized that just crypto is a, is a verygood school nowadays, guy. Yeah, because of his exposure to crypto became veryinterested in, I would say I, I was saying finance, but I would say it's morethan finance.

It's money andeconomics, but it's like, it's really money in general. Okay. Like people havea different relationship with money thanks to crypto, and this thing is, In myopinion, very crucial. Like if we were talking democracy a little bit earlier.Yeah. If you want people to make the right decisions when they vote for theirpresidents, how do you expect that if people do not understand what money is?

Like it's and I'mnot saying that PE like crypto is gonna explain everything about money, but Ithink it  

Right. Thedoor  

Mike:people are, people are more interested. It create, it creates an interestpathway. Yeah. People are now talking about Yeah, exactly. Like what is thedefinition of money? What's the Howie test, what's, what are the governingbodies that Yeah, yeah.

No, I totallyagree. It's similar to in the sense you could look at the silver lining ofcovid as people becoming more interested in the policies of healthcare, peoplenow know more about vaccines. Yes. Exactly. Than probably ever, ever before inthe last a hundred years. So, yeah, no, you're definitely right.

Claude:And it's again, it doesn't mean that everybody's gonna be right, but I mean,that. It, we have an access to financial education that, that, that is, thathas been big forever. Right. But nobody was paying attention to it beforeCrypto opened the door to it. Like before you had this thing that is, thatcould be called a giant, giant camo.

Yeah. Like peoplewere like, oh, now they start to understand. And like, if you believe indemocracy, you have to believe in education because people need to be educatedto make the right choices. And if crypto only had an educational value, thenit's already a lot. Then I do think he has. Yeah. No, that's really true.

Way more than this.Right. But  

Mike:yeah, it's, no, it's, it's so true. And I'm sure one day we'll look back andpeople don't even think about money. It just operates behind the scenes, like,like the internet. Right? Like, could the average person describe how the, thewebpage lows? Probably, probably not. Because it's not really topical.

Mm-hmm. But maybein the year 2000 it was, everyone was talking about it, that maybe people weremore. These things kind of ebb and flow. I've heard. Yeah, I've heard that. TheUS is really, people are here, are really good at driving cars because everyonehas a car and you just drive everywhere. But in the future, you, you won'tdrive a car, it'll just drive itself.

So then that skillatrophy. So it's kind of interesting how these things ebb and flow.  

Claude:Yeah, it's that's a good point there. There is this thing, like today, money isa very, let's say, a very efficient way to drive behaviors of humans ingeneral. Mm-hmm. So knowing about money, knowing how it works, and knowing howit's issued and knowing how, like, it, it enters the systems and, and all thatis helpful in, in understanding, or at least in trying to understand like howthe people you vote for are trying to make your life better.

Right. And like,it, it is, it is such a central tool right to the, the life that you live that.Anything that helps you understand money is in my opinion, positive, right?Yeah. So I'm not saying everybody should just think about money all the time.This is so, this is gonna become toxic, but, it, it, it's a thing.

And as I think youmade a very good point with Covid and healthcare, like if people do notunderstand like those things and just take healthcare for granted or justdecide that, just take healthcare for like something that you know, that thatshould not exist and all that. It just makes it, it just makes everybody thinkabout healthcare policies when you have global, like health crisis.

And I think, like acrypto has been covid for money maybe or something.  

Mike:Yeah. Yeah. That's good. That's a good, that's a good phrase. Claude, where areyou online? Are you actively tweeting or writing anywhere?  

Claude: Ijust like, I just reconnected to my like, very old Twitter account and started,like, barely started tweeting again like a couple weeks ago.

So, yeah. My handleis K L O D I O, just Claudio. And the same handle on Telegram. This is where Ispend way more time on Telegram and than on Twitter Telegram. Yeah, I guess,All, all generation. In 2017, the whole world of crypto was on telegram, sopeople wanted to reach me, just go on telegram.

I was on somepublic channels and all that. Mm-hmm. Now, most of the world has moved towardslike first Twitter, then discord, so yeah, moving to Twitter and Discord, butlike, yeah. Let's say I am more vocal as as part of my company. I don't, Idon't publish. Yeah, that's true. My image that much.

I, I write as Mimo,right? When I write, I write the company writes and stuff like that.  

Mike: Iwanna hear some of your ideas  

and Awesome. Well,we, we'll have all the links to the company and the show notes and congrats onall the progress. Thanks a lot so far. It sounds like you have a great team andhave made some really meaningful progress.

Claude:So We do, we do. The team is really good.

Mike:Thanks for hopping on, man. I wish you the best of luck and hope to have youback on.  

Claude:Well, that would be great, and thanks a lot like that that was a very goodconversation. I'd like to hear like the, like, and it, it's pretty rare, likein our product, we do not really promote to the US as I was telling you.

So it's reallyinteresting to have conversations with somebody who's from the us right? It'slike, oh, it's radical. Different, different type of conversation. So verygood. Thanks so lot for today.  

Mike:All right.