Introducing crypto@scale, a new show from The Flip, co-hosted by MFS Africa's Head of Crypto, Gwera Kiwana, and The Flip's Justin Norman.
crypto@scale is a pragmatic and hopefully hype-free exploration of the crypto ecosystem across the African continent.
Today's episode is a conversation recorded live from Nairobi last month. In this conversation, we share our perspectives on the sector, the use cases we find the most intriguing, the challenges we find most pressing, why we're launching a crypto show in the middle of a bear market, and what you can expect from us and this show.
For more from crypto@scale, follow us on Twitter @cryptoatscale.
00:00 - Intro
02:16 - Why are we launching this show
3:51 - The African market conditions and context for crypto's adoption
6:47 - Crypto use cases: stablecoins
10:36 - Regulation, centralization, and CBDCs
14:16 - DeFi and real-world assets
17:36 - Interoperability
19:26 - User experience and crypto education
22:17 - The DeFi Mullet
23:14 - Who's going to build and design for the future of African markets?
26:57 - Why the name crypto@scale? And what does crypto at scale mean to us?
29:15 - Prediction and wishlist
- Gwera Kiwana–Head of Crypto,MFS Africa
- Justin Norman–Founder & Host,The Flip
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[00:00:00] Justin Norman: We interrupt this season on the future of work to drop a special episode today in The Flip’s feed. A new show from The Flip, I'll be cohosting with MFS Africa's head of crypto, Gwera Kiwana called crypto@scale.
If you enjoy this episode, please be sure to subscribe on your favorite podcast app or YouTube by searching for crypto@scale. We'll be dropping one more episode later this week and new episodes every other week thereafter.
[00:00:27] Gwera Kiwana: For so long, we've heard crypto stories be told and it's really all about line go up and all about the hype. I think there's more stories that we can tell, and we think there are better stories to tell. Real use cases. We want to focus on pragmatism, and we really want to step away from the hype and speculative nature that we've seen in crypto so far.
[00:00:48] Justin Norman: That’s Gwera Kiwana, MFS Africa's head of crypto, and my co-host for a new show called crypto@scale. My name is Justin Norman. I'm the founder and host of The Flip podcast. And together with Gwera, we're excited to introduce you to crypto@scale, a pragmatic and hopefully hype-free exploration of the crypto ecosystem across the African continent. Today's episode is a conversation with Gwera recorded live last month in Nairobi.
African markets are a place where crypto has seen meaningful adoption to solve real problems and where we believe there's a lot of promise for crypto enabled future. But we're wary not to overstate its potential either. In this conversation, we share our perspectives on the sector, the use cases we find the most interesting, the challenges we find most pressing, why we're launching a crypto show in the middle of a bear market, and what you can expect from us in this show.
So, without any further ado, introducing crypto@scale.
[00:01:45] Justin Norman: Good evening, everybody. My name is Justin Norman. I'm sitting here next to my new co-host, Gwera Kiwana, for the launch of a brand-new show from The Flip that we're calling crypto@scale. For those listening at home, that is not a soundtrack. We're here in front of a live audience in Nairobi. So, a big thank you to all of you for joining us here tonight. Gwera, how's it going?
[00:02:07] Gwera Kiwana: Good. Yes, I'm feeling loose, feeling goosey.
[00:02:12] Justin Norman: People actually showed up.
[00:02:13] Gwera Kiwana: Yes, on Valentine's Day, too. So, thank you guys, all the single people, maybe. I don’t know.
[00:02:19] Justin Norman: So, we're here tonight to launch our new show,crypto@scale, which is going to be an African-focused crypto show from The Flip. I think a lot of people are probably wondering, why are you guys launching a crypto show, especially in this market environment? I want to talk first about why we're doing this, get into some of our interests and values, and what listeners can expect from us and from the show. So, Gwera, do you want to kick us off a little bit with a big vision of what we're doing here?
[00:02:42] Gwera Kiwana: Yes, so for so long, we've heard crypto stories be told, and it's really all about line go up and all about the hype. I think there's more stories that we can tell, and we think there are better stories to tell. Real use cases. We want to focus on pragmatism and we really want to step away from the hype and speculative nature that we've seen in crypto so far.
I think the time has come, we're now in a bear market. Some people might be sad to hear that. Maybe you lost a little bit of money. Maybe you may have lost a job. But I think this is probably the best time to be discussing real-world use cases in the bear market. But also, contextually, let's zoom in a little bit more and focus on the Africa use cases across the continent. This is where crypto is really going to shine and the killer use case is going to be found here.
[00:03:29] Justin Norman: Yes. I think there's no wonder it shouldn't perhaps come as any surprise that guys like Jack and Vitalik have taken trips recently to explore the crypto ecosystem in particular. So, just to really drill down and to talk about crypto in the African context. I think that the market conditions and the environment that we're operating in, is particularly interesting for crypto, right? That's why guys like Vitalik and Jack are taking trips here. So, it's not just that we're doing business in Africa, but it's particularly interesting, a particularly interesting opportunity to talk about it in this context on the continent.
I think some of these characteristics we should talk a little bit about before we talk about use cases. I think for you, Gwera, and your role at MFS Africa, obviously, just first and foremost, this idea about how difficult it is to move money across borders, and what things like stablecoins mean as an opportunity. Do you want to say a little bit about the sort of conditions that we're talking about here from a crypto perspective?
[00:04:21] Gwera Kiwana: Yeah, so MFS Africa is – I work in MFS Africa. I'm leading crypto there, and our DNA of the business has been for so long, moving money across the continent, in and out of the continent, and we just are really damn good at doing that. But I truly believe that cross-border payments is indeed a race to the bottom in terms of pricing. We're sitting in NALA’S office. NALA has a pretty core feature in their app that is a comparison feature because everyone's kind of just like racing to the bottom in terms of pricing. And the way that moving money across borders right now exists, is just not fit for purpose. It is more expensive to move money within Africa than between European countries or between America and Europe, and that's absolutely ridiculous.
So, I think that one of the killer use cases is just going to be sold by stablecoins really, moving money across borders. The other contextual piece that I want to touch on is the p2p story of Africa, and how the DNA of how a lot of money movement on the continent, mobile money even, was initially founded on people doing p2p payments of airtime. Now, we're seeing p2p payments dominating the crypto usage adoption in Africa.
[00:05:28] Justin Norman: Yeah. From a peer-to-peer perspective, I mean, for me, growing up in the US with pretty well-serviced financial services, there was a lot of unlearning about why crypto has taken off, why NFTs are valuable, right? In this context, in particular, where there is inherent trust in peer-to-peer networks, and maybe less trust in institutions or intermediaries, I think a lot of the crypto story just makes a lot more sense. There's not as much unlearning, as, us Westerners have to have about why it's so interesting, why these things are valuable, why peer-to-peer has taken off to the extent that it has. I think this sort of fragmentation that exists this informality that exists really lends itself well to decentralized systems. So, I think there's no wonder that peer-to-peer payments have taken off to the extent that they have from a crypto perspective as well.
Another thing that I'm particularly interested in, in the crypto context, obviously, it's just like this African macro story, right? The Flip, we're publishing right now, a new season on the future of work. And every episode, I'm starting with the same statistics around the population is going to double by 2050. They're adding more people to the workforce than the rest of the world combined in the next 10 years. What is the infrastructure that needs to support all of that? And people look at Africa from a next billion users’ perspective. Ethereum Foundation has a next billion users initiative, as do traditional companies like Google as well. So, that is a really important part.
Then, I also just think exclusion from the global FinTech ecosystem, right? You talked about payments. I've tried to make payments to people in Ghana and Nigeria and had the remittance companies shut my account down. I'm sure there are many others in this room who have had that issue as well. That's a really important thing as well. So, I think all of that makes crypto worth interrogating further from an African perspective. I think it's really interesting. And with that, you want to sort of transition to some use cases a little bit? We talked about stablecoins first. That's, I know, your baby that you're living and breathing at the moment.
[00:07:18] Gwera Kiwana: Yes, I mean, I love stablecoins. Mass adoption of crypto is going to be –it's going to look and feel like something we understand, and we understand currencies like the dollar, things that are stable, and stablecoins, really also, we're going to do a whole episode on stablecoins. But it's something that I think is really – it's a use case. It's actually filling a gap that exists right now across the continent, and makes it a lot cheaper to do things like move money, exchange value.
[00:07:43] Justin Norman: I want to ask just a question of you in your dealings about this idea of, we talked about stablecoins from a cross border payments perspective, right? Also, in the context of like a lack of USD access in countries that have an import or an export deficit, right? There's a lot of news that's going on today around BUSD and the issues with algorithmic stablecoins in the past, and all of that, the trust stuff. What do you think about that? Because I think, if we're going to have a pragmatic conversation about something like stablecoins and the opportunity for them to really be transformative from a commerce perspective on the continent. What sorts of things need to happen, for big business, for institutions to actually believe that story and to use them more for the volume of transactions that are meaningful in this context?
[00:08:32] Gwera Kiwana: I think, step away from the, I think, the institutional use case, I think your is what you're alluding to. Because the institution use cases has been sold for almost with stablecoins. There's a ton of liquidity that has been moved between black rocks, and whatever, all these large institutions. And the funny thing is a lot of that movement is happening with organizations outside of Africa. The stablecoin use case here in Africa is heavily retail. I think the stat was 80% of transactions on chain in Africa are p2p retail use cases. A lot of that is using stablecoins like the BUSD, Binance USD, which is issued by Paxos.
We're seeing Tether. USDT is doing a lot of really great work in the space and they've got a ton of liquidity. Circle, not so much, because they haven't really focused heavily on Africa quite yet. But I think the stablecoins are permeating, and we're seeing a lot more liquidity. I mean, I'd wager to say like, it's a lot easier to find a USDT than to find an actual US dollar in Nigeria, for example. Places where real actual financial hurdles are being met by populations.
So, the devaluation of our currencies. We're not economists. We don't have time to go and argue at parliament with these old men who just don't care about anything except for their next line cruiser. We're not going to fix the economy ourselves. So, people have found a way to leapfrog that and the big use cases are holding value. So, I would like to have the money that I received, that I have now, to hold its weight and not to devalue with the currency in a year. I would like to actually save in DeFi. I would like to have my $10 a month that I save actually grow, and this is what we're seeing people use stablecoins as, as not only for exchanging value but also to store value that holds itself, but also to protect wealth, to build wealth, and really just the next generation is leapfrogging traditional systems. I hate, love, hate that word, leapfrogging, because I'm sick of hearing it. I’ve talked about it with mobile money for so, so long. But it's happening again.
[00:10:34] Justin Norman: Yes. Now, you just talked about the big use case so far is retail though. We're going to talk a little bit later about why we chose the name crypto@scale. But from a scale perspective, the institutions are the ones that are interesting, right? Because of the volumes that they use. So, are we going to get there? We talk about this lag in the African context. I mean, it's one thing for people to be moving smaller volumes, p2p. But what then needs to happen for these big institutions to actually come to the table and start using this in a meaningful way as well?
[00:11:02] Gwera Kiwana: Well, the first thing is regulation, right? I think Absa is not going to adopt the stablecoin for its internal settlement, as its internal settlement currency, if they are afraid that they're going to lose their banking licenses in the countries that they operate in, because the regulators are so punitive because they don't understand crypto as well. So, regulation is kind of a no-brainer, is like one of the hurdles that needs to kind of be overcome. Really, I think that we're going to have a whole episode on that as well. But I think that the way forward really is a coordinated approach with private players in the market. So, FinTechs that are interested in crypto, crypto natives, foundations as well, because we need to keep ourselves honest, and have like actual crypto for good in the conversation.
But institutions are not going to adopt this until or at least publicly. I can tell you for a fact, because banks and large financial institutions in Africa that are moving money in stablecoins, quietly. But I think that for this to be at scale, we need to see a pretty coordinated effort across the board.
[00:12:02] Justin Norman: So, I want to make a point, but before I do, are there any like Bitcoin Maxis in the room? None.
[00:12:07] Gwera Kiwana: Really?
[00:12:09] Justin Norman: That's interesting.
[00:12:11] Gwera Kiwana: It’s a safe space.
[00:12:12] Justin Norman: You can say, yes. You can say. The reason why I asked that question is because this idea of regulated crypto as well, as a theme that's going to cut across our future shows, this idea about how decentralized or how centralized something needs to be and the role of regulation in particular. So, I think we're putting a stake in the flag or whatever that saying is saying, we think that crypto should be regulated, or at least you are. I haven't made my mind up yet. But you were saying?
[00:12:40] Gwera Kiwana: I’m fully begging to be regulated. I think that it unlocks – I think I heard someone in the crowd go, “Yeah.” But it's a huge unlock. Regulation allows organizations like the UN, various development organizations can actually now adopt this safely and freely without having to worry about being shut down. So, there's a lot that can happen if this is done at scale and regulation, as much as governments sometimes we don't trust our governments. But that's why I'm advocating for a more coordinated approach with multiple people at the table who can advocate for those.
[00:13:12] Justin Norman: What about CBDCs? There's all of these central banks that are saying, “We're not going to regulate, we're just going to create our own stablecoin.”
[00:13:21] Gwera Kiwana: We can boo. Do we hate CBDCs? Let's see from the crowd, just like a whoo, or a boo for CBDCs. Oh, okay. [inaudible 00:13:32], I'm going to name him by name yelling, hyping up the [inaudible 00:13:36]. Cool.
[00:13:37] Justin Norman: What do you think?
[00:13:39] Gwera Kiwana: So, I think CBDCs are inevitable. It's digital money to an extent to – here in Kenya, M-PESA. is basically a CBDC. I mean, it's a private company that is moving it and it's being issued by the central bank. But I think that having CBDCs could do a lot of good for things like projects and things like universal basic income, relief, for example, during COVID. If there's a CBDC, the Government of Kenya could easily have given every household a paycheck, right?
So, there is some good that can be done from that. But also, maybe privacy is very important as well. That's my bear case for CBDCs. But they're inevitable. We're going to see them come. But ultimately, they're still not solving the problem. The problems I was talking about, the retail problems individuals are facing with their currencies devaluing. Basically, they're not able to move money as easily. Who knows? Will CBDCs connect cross border? Will we see the eNaira connect to the eShilliing? I don't know. So, the jury's still out, but I am not emphatic about CBDCs.
[00:14:42] Justin Norman: I think what we're really talking about in this context, as well as this idea of crypto engaging or connecting with the real world, right? We were having this conversation earlier, talking about DeFi lending, and they talk about real-world assets, right? And that is DeFi protocols that lend In two companies doing “real things”, not like there's over collateralized, decentralized exchanges, or the tokenization of assets, like land deeds, for example, right? Or you can get a mortgage on chain or something like that.
I don't really like the term real world, because it implies that crypto is not the real world. But I think maybe some would argue that that's true. But that's, I guess what we're really talking about, in many cases with stablecoins, and CBDCs, and as well as with DeFi, this sort of applicability in one's everyday life. You talked about the ability to get a loan. But right now, it doesn't really make sense for you to get an over-collateralized loan from a DeFi protocol.
So, I know that people are building towards that, towards the ability to do that. It's not necessarily better in the real world here in the country, like Kenya, where they're offering mortgages for 15%, with an outrageous amount of collateral. But what do you think about from a DeFi perspective and our sort of perspective and point of view, from a content perspective about what's interesting in DeFi, and what's happening there?
[00:15:59] Gwera Kiwana: I mean, so the real-world asset piece, so for those who, just to explain a little bit about what Justin said about over-collateralized lending. Over-collateralized lending is basically when an entity lends to you, but you put up collateral that is exceeding the amount of value that you're taking out.
[00:16:19] Justin Norman: It's often like 150% value of the loans. You're putting up more money than your actually getting back.
[00:16:22] Gwera Kiwana: This is a financial tool that is used by the wealthy elite, and it's something that is not accessible to the average person. So, the way that exists right now, over-collateralized lending is not really going to find its explosive use case there. But there's organizations working on providing affordable lending to individuals that are under-collateralized or not collateralized at all even, and we're seeing protocols pop up that are working in Africa, especially. We're going to name dropped like Goldfinch, Maple, [inaudible 00:16:52] and –
[00:16:53] Justin Norman: SimpliFi is in the room as well.
[00:16:55] Gwera Kiwana: Simplify as well. Yes. So, the work is being done. And I think that this is, again, it's solving for a real problem, which is people not being able to access credits, purely because of where they live. The banks that they go to, are asking for outrageous repayment terms or interest rates. But DeFi, we're just kind of almost getting there where we can really see mass lending happen for real-world lending.
But that brings me to another point about bridging the real world and DeFi or crypto or the world, fiat world, and that's really going to be on and off ramps that drive that change. We still don't have any at scale on and off ramps on the continent, at least, that are enabling people to move seamlessly between fiat and crypto. We're seeing the UI, the UX looks like it, like you're putting your shillings and receiving USDC or whatever. But it's actually an exchange. People are finding pairs of various currencies. We still have a long, long way to go, to move in more into DeFi.
[00:17:58] Justin Norman: So, there's this sort of age-old question around interoperability, right? As well as around getting people to actually spend. So, I was particularly intrigued last year with like stablecoin, Visa cards, and MasterCard cards where rather than having to actually off-ramp that was being handled by the credit card networks, or this idea about interoperability that you could pay from USDC directly into someone's M-PESA account. Do you think that there's like a sort of answer to what that's going to look like that would drive more meaningful adoption in the African context, in particular?
Because in Kenya, where we are today, interoperability is huge. The ability to pay from your bank account to someone's M-PESA or vice versa, whereas I suppose this idea of taking it, converting it, or is using it, actually, going to be the thing? Because everyone is so used to using M-PESA that they're just going to – if there's an M-PESA equivalent in USDC, that's what they're going to end up using.
[00:18:55] Gwera Kiwana: We live in a bubble, sometimes, where people are like, “Yes, I'm fully crypto. I'm spending my stablecoins and I'm paying rent in stablecoins. I'm getting paid my salary in stablecoins.” I know people who live that lifestyle. And I think that my auntie, in Mbarara, Uganda, Western Uganda, she's not going to be adopting it that way. I can't give a definitive answer but what I least what I think the future is going to be. I think it's going to be a hybrid, and I think it's going to be also masked. We're going to have to abstract the complexity of crypto away from the way that people use money right now, in a more simplified and more simplified terms.
The UX needs to be a lot like radically more simple. Don't make people work to do things. I think the only people that are actually working are a very small number of people who are adopting crypto, and going through all the hoops of setting up a MetaMask and figuring out a way to on-ramp and off-ramp using exchanges or ATMs that are in various parts of Nairobi. But, I think, the jury's still out, but I think that we're going to see a hybrid.
[00:19:53] Justin Norman: Yes. This user experience question brings to mind obviously, again, this idea about centralization, right? Centralization perceived to be something that's going to lead to a better user experience, notwithstanding the sort of security thing, or the security issue in the context of FTX. Thank you.
I suppose that's been talked about for a while, right? And you talked about your auntie in Uganda. And the reality again, in this question of crypto at scale, of how mass adoption is going to look, right? So, there's the use cases from a payments perspective or stablecoins. There's the use cases from a lending. We've talked a little bit about other things, right? Whether it's NFTs or this X-to-earn sort of thing. There's, you're in Kenya, this shop to earn with Nuzo. What do you think about that, maybe from a Web3 perspective about this idea of onboarding people into the ecosystem and sort of every man into the ecosystem, especially in the context of how difficult it is to use DeFi today?
[00:20:57] Gwera Kiwana: Yes. It's a steep learning curve. The chasm really is education. And if I had one USDC for every time, some foundation, or chain, or exchange had the word education on the website, I'd have a lot of money. But everyone is talking about education. But we really need to figure out a way to drive education that is actually like, it's not bias, and not like getting people to use a certain chain, or I think everyone who's doing education in DeFi, has a bit of an agenda. But I think that chasm is going to be crossed with education, right?
Even then, if we get there, and we're in a world where like everyone is in Web3, I don't think that's going to happen. I think same thing with M-PESA in Kenya, incredibly ubiquitous, but 90% penetration rate, but we're still using cash. Is anyone taking the expressway in Nairobi, from the airport? We have to use cash on that, for the reasons I don't know.
[00:21:48] Justin Norman: It doesn't take M-PESA?
[00:21:49] Gwera Kiwana: IT does not take M-PESA. Some maybe might say that there could be some money laundering going on there.
[00:21:53] Justin Norman: But does it take stablecoins?
[00:21:55] Gwera Kiwana: Actually, I hope someday. But we're still in the world where we're using cash and M-PESA and mobile money and we're using cash and credit cards and debit cards and checks are still around in America. I don't know like, I think that when it happens at scale, it's going to look familiar, it's going to feel familiar and it's going to take companies or even governments or organizations to understand UX. Not just design UX, but I mean, the actual user experience. They understand the job your user is trying to do and they make it frictionless for them to do it, or at least easy. And a lot of that is we understand cash, we understand how money works already. But getting people to understand stablecoins, it's a huge jump. So, it's a bit of both and it's kind of like the mullet thesis of –
[00:22:41] Justin Norman: Do want to say what the DeFi mullet, do you want to say what that is?
[00:22:43] Gwera Kiwana: The DeFi mullet thesis, for those who know me, have heard me go on and on about this a million times. But basically, it's a school of thought that I subscribe to, which is that mainstream adoption is going to be in the form of a mullet. So, the mullet haircut is business in the front, party in the back, ponytail in the back. I think that the mullet is going to be where mainstream adoption happens, where it's going to be FinTech in the front. So, at least for financial services. FinTech in the front and DeFi powering the back end. So, abstracting away that complexity, making it really easy for people to understand.
Have you ever tried sitting down with anyone who's outside of this world and explaining to them like open up a wallet and use a bridge to move? It's too many – the UX is horrible. But mainstream adoption is going to be in a way that we all understand and it's going to be easy for us to get into, and it just should be well designed. I'm bullish on designers as well. UX designers, product managers who understand how to build things for people.
[00:23:40] Justin Norman: One thing that you and I have also talked about, is this idea of who's going to build this? Who's going to design this? Where are they going to come from? I think from a global technology perspective, WhatsApp is ubiquitous. M-PESA is a homegrown solution. I think a lot of the applications that are being built most prolifically are global applications, right? Do you think that's going to sort of repeat itself in this context? Or what does the local building look like? And what sort of impact are they going to have from an uptake perspective?
[00:24:12] Gwera Kiwana: I don't know. I can't give a clear idea of who's going to build that. I think there's a lot of people scrambling right now. But you've released a teaser right now, on The Flip regarding the future of work. What have you seen in the conversations you're having? Are there a lot of young people, smart people flocking to build in this space? Are we seeing that at the same rate that we've seen in say, North America or Silicon Valley?
[00:24:35] Justin Norman: I mean, I think what's particularly interesting about you talked about education before and in the context of the future of work, and in the context of how young the population is, right? The average or the median age is under 20. There are a lot of workforce programs, for example, that say, “We're going to train you how to do this job, or maybe it's the perceived to be the job of the future.” But there's always a sort of lagging indicator of to what extent are they training people for something that's already passed, right?
So, we talk a lot about, and I think that there are some interesting pilots that happen around what happens if you give somebody like a mobile phone with their time and a crypto wallet, and just let that young person figure it out and go on YouTube and learn? And how much does the education have to be prescriptive versus just enabling them and giving them the option to figure stuff out on their own? Because even like, we're too old to teach people things at this point. Is that what the future of work is going to look like? Is people just sort of learning things for themselves and being given the tools to go explore on their own and figure it out? Or is really explicit, and implicit education initiatives really important from the foundations and whoever else, because this stuff is just hard and complicated? What do you think?
[00:25:43] Gwera Kiwana: I don't know. I think it's – like you said, we've aged out of the young hip happening on the edge of the next dimension. So, I can't confidently say who I think is going to build this. But I can say, though, that I'm quite hopeful for big tech. I'm quite hopeful for public, private partnerships with big tech and public bodies that finally maybe come around to understanding how to build the future. I don't know. It's too soon to tell.
A lot of the crypto, sorry, not adoption, building we're seeing right now is happening in these really amazing grassroots communities. In Kenya, there's a lot of cool stuff going on at the SafariDAO. They put on an ETH conference at the end of last year that was really well attended, and a lot of just buzzing energy of people building really cool stuff. So, maybe if we think away from the demographic of people that are going to build it from an age perspective, and more, like, where's it going to come from? Is it going to come from top down or bottom up? And I think it's going to come from both sides and meet in the middle. And then that sounds so cheesy, but that we're going to see these grassroots communities like SafariDAO, hopefully, someday deciding to work with Google. Okay, maybe not Google. But maybe Microsoft with the AI that they've got going on. I don't know. Who knows?
[00:26:55] Justin Norman: I also think the term permissionless is used a lot in the crypto context. I think that that's interesting in the context, also of global FinTechs and you go on some cool new app or Twitter launches, Twitter Blue, and you can't even sign up for it if you're in this region, right? Whereas a lot of these protocols are open source foundations. You can be a contributor, if you have the skills or the ability, and then also just crypto being global in nature, inherently global in nature means that people can actually participate. I guess, that leads us then to this idea about crypto at scale. We came up with this name for a specific reason. It was actually your name. We debated for a while whether we should actually use the term crypto or not as well. You want to talk a little bit about what crypto at scale means to you and why we decided to go with that?
[00:27:39] Gwera Kiwana: I'll start by saying we chose not to call it crypto@scale Africa, because we've got enough podcasts, enough conferences that have the title Africa, and then we don't hear or see things that say, Crypto North America, or Money 2020 Europe. It's money 2020. It's like, they're all over the world. For those who don't know, it's a big conference. We didn't use the word Africa because like we said, crypto is inherently borderless. It is inherently 24 hours. So, why confine it to just Africa? And also, this Africa rising story that we keep hearing. I mean, for those in my generation, millennials were kind of sick of it, right? We’re sick of this Africa rising. Our whole lives, we've heard Africa is when have we risen? We've risen. Africa has risen. The time has come.
[00:28:23] Justin Norman: He has risen.
[00:28:25] Gwera Kiwana: Yes. He has risen. Exactly. She, Africa is a she. So, I think that let's stop talking about Africa rising narrative, and focus more on what the topic is, and the use cases that we're going to see here, that proliferate outside of Africa. So, what do we mean of crypto@scale? We mean, this technology, not just cryptocurrencies, or tokens, or line go up, but also the distributed ledger technology, blockchain technology, the communities that we're seeing, and we're going to speak to lots of really cool people who are building in this space while we do this podcast. But really, just when we say at scale, we mean, at a point where it's ubiquitous, the scale is reached, when again, we won't have to keep talking about like just Africa. It's actually hit a scale. What do you think about the title?
[00:29:04] Justin Norman: For me, also, this idea about scale is everyone talks about what the scale look like in crypto, right? I think that it means meaningful and major participation from users and builders on the continent, right? So often you see the map of we're a global company, and there's nothing in Africa, right? Especially I think, because of the use cases and the market conditions and the characteristics at scale, to me, means a really meaningful participation on the continent.
[00:29:35] Gwera Kiwana: Yeah. And participation on the continent that, like I said, proliferates beyond Africa.
[00:29:40] Justin Norman: We're going to also do just to wrap up one thing at the end of every episode, which is talk to our guests about predictions and a wish list or things that we wish to see in this space. So, I didn't think of any, so you go first. What are your predictions?
[00:29:52] Gwera Kiwana: I didn’t think of any, either. I think I asked you to do this today. Oh, man.
[00:29:56] Justin Norman: All right, I can go. My wish list is that we become a leading a crypto-focused podcast in Africa, meaningfully contribute to the discourse, compel people to stop talking about speculation and hype, and really focused on what's interesting and getting involved in meaningful ways. The extent to which through content and storytelling and narrative and insights and education, we can help move the industry forward in our little way. That's my separate, but related to.
[00:30:25] Gwera Kiwana: I guess, my wish list now is kind of connected to the podcast as well. I kind of wished to have this podcast be something that people around us, our friends, our colleagues, the communities around us just shift the thinking of what crypto is, and kind of rebrand this thing. I mean, for so long, crypto is kind of been in like a club with crypto bros who are all minting, making lots of NFT. Let's move away from that and actually make it accessible and explain the real-world use cases. I really want to be in a position where I'm not asked by an investor or regulator, why we're not investing in Shiba Inu.
[00:31:03] Justin Norman: Yes. I feel like you made fun of me as a crypto bro and minting NFT. That was a dig at me.
[00:31:08] Gwera Kiwana: This is not going to be a crypto bro podcast. I can tell you that for sure.
[00:31:11] Justin Norman: Thanks for listening to this episode of crypto@scale. If you enjoyed this episode, please do consider sharing with a friend or a colleague who you think may enjoy it as well. For more updates from the show, follow us on Twitter @cryptoatscale. Thanks again for listening and we'll see you next time.