InterviewInterview with Co-Founder and CEO of Unocoin – Sathvik Vishwanath

FintecBuzz FintecBuzz4 months ago31719 min
Interview with Co-Founder and CEO of Unocoin – Sathvik Vishwanath 1
Sathvik Vishwanath Co-Founder and CEO of Unocoin

Sathvik Vishwanath is the co-founder and CEO of Unocoin, India’s first cryptocurrency company. His bitcoin journey started by being an attendee and then a host of India Bitcoin meetup group in Bangalore, which now has now more than 3000 members. He eventually founded a company in the name of CoinMonk Ventures that aims to bring Bitcoin awareness to the public. This company after being an organiser of the Global Bitcoin Conference in Dec 2013 – the first ever Bitcoin conference in India, has launched a web service called Unocoin.com which emphasises in providing Bitcoin services that include storage, buying and selling., thereby advancing and accelerating the pursuit of Bitcoin technology. Since then, Unocoin is evolving rapidly.

1. Tell us about your role in Unocoin?
I function as a the CEO of the company and am responsible for company’s financial health, growth in terms of revenues and expansion and also play a critical role in product management.

2. Can you tell us about your journey into this market?
It all started in 2010 when I was building custom scripts to an online virtual game called Second Life. I used to pay hefty fee as conversion or handling charges before my remuneration hits my Indian bank account. At the same time, I was attending meetups on Crypto currency in India and collaborated with some like minded individuals which led to the formation of Unocoin in 2013.

3. How do you think technology is developing the Finance Sector?
Blockchain and cryptocurrency in specific has a huge role to play in finance as India is one of the biggest remittance corridors of the world. Also, as such, the idea of cryptocurrencies – if not as a trading entity – in its original essence can change the face and definition of Trading globally. They can and will fill multiple gaps that the traditional systems have and will enable and empower people to do things that are until now restricted. The idea itself is quite liberating.

4. How according to you, introduction of cryptocurrency is changing the markets around the world?
It would be used by majority of the population in the coming years as a substitute for conventional currencies as they are faster, cheaper, direct and global in nature. The question continues to be when will India join the band wagon.

5. How do you differentiate your bitcoin exchange platform from other such exchange platforms in India?
Unocoin offers class leading User experience along with security that matches global standards. The fact that the we have one of the largest customer base in India amongst all the crypto exchanges is a testimonial for the trust we have established in the industry. Also, we are pioneers in offering some unique products / features which are first in nature at only India level but across the globe. We are the first to offer Systematic Buying Plan (SBP) equivalent to SIP in conventional markets so as to make the affordability of the cryptos higher amongst the general public. We were the first in offering the capability of paying utility bills, crypto merchant payment gateway to make crypto mainstream.

6. Can you explain how has Unocoin contributed in development of cryptocurrency market in India as well as the world?
We are the first players to enter the crypto market in India. That gave us time, experience and expertise to setup our own rules and policies in what is a very unregulated space. That way, our KYC process, security protocols we follow to ensure the safety of funds and the technology platform to backup the same is class leading and has set a standard across the market.

7. India has a bit harsh approach towards Cryptocurrency, what are your views on this?
India as a country is behind the rest of the world in terms of how it treats cryptos. There is lot to learn from other countries where they have made significant progress in adopting cryptos as part of their economy. I am hopeful the new government takes up cryptos on a more serious note and help make way for a truly digital India.

8. What advice would you like to give to the StartUps?
Startup should be agile in nature. They should be agile in their strategy / decision making, agile in their product building approach. Do only what is necessary and find a fine balance between being tactical and strategic at the same time.

Adapt. Learn. Improve and never cease to innovate.

9. What is the Digital innovation in Fintech Industry according to you that will mark 2019?
I think the mainstream adoption of Blockchain by large enterprises is going to be the biggest highlight of 2019.

10. How do you prepare for a Technology-centric world?
Keep my team updated all the time and never stop experimenting and innovating at the work place.

11. Can you tell us about your team and how it supports you?
My immediate team handling technology, operations, marketing divisions work closely with me and we have a pretty open and transparent culture at Unocoin in terms of decisions around the road ahead, product, budgeting and people management.

12. What are the major developments you are planning, in recent time?
We usually disclose the new features only when it is time for its launch. For time being, we are at the verge of launching futures and options to our customers. We believe it is going to revive the public’s interest on cryptos to a considerable extent.

13. Which Book are you reading these days?
21 lessons for the 21st century by Yuvan Noah Harari

14. We have heard that you have a very joyful work culture, so can you share with us some of the fun pictures of your workplace?
Yes, our workplace is lot of fun. Find attached pics to the email.

Interview with Co-Founder and CEO of Unocoin – Sathvik Vishwanath 2

Interview with Co-Founder and CEO of Unocoin – Sathvik Vishwanath 3

15. Can you give us a glance of the applications you use on your phone?
Sure, I use Skype, whatsapp, Uber, Gmail, Swiggy and Gaana a lot!

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