Ishan Pandey: Hi Jerry, welcome to our series “Behind the Startup.” Please tell us about yourself and the story behind Philcoin?
Jerry Lopez: Hi Ishan, it’s a pleasure to be here. A little about myself - I am a 17-year veteran in Marketing and have spent over 6 years in the blockchain space. My major focus has always been on international growth and community culture building. Along with that, I have a Masters in Ministry and a Doctorate in Counseling. With my background, I have always had a passion for people and giving back. Once I dove into the blockchain space, it became apparent that there is a massive opportunity for blockchain to help change the way giving happens. That’s when Philcoin, as an idea, started. It’s been created to bridge philanthropy and technology to create the largest-ever philanthropic movement.
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Ishan Pandey: Please tell us a little bit about Philcoin and how can digital assets impact philanthropy?
Jerry Lopez: Giving back has never been easy - especially on a global scale. When a natural disaster or war happens, people are unable to find the means to help. Yes, there are organisations who fundraise and help disperse those funds but I am talking about this happening on an individual level. There’s always been a gap. Digital assets give me, you, your family, friends, colleagues - you name it - the opportunity to make a personal difference just through a simple wallet-to-wallet transfer. The beauty is that not only does this change the way giving happens, but it’s also instant and cheaper as well. Funds reach those in need much faster and with far less intermediary costs, meaning they receive more of those funds.
Ishan Pandey: Crypto philanthropy has developed as a valuable and long-term source of funding for charities, providing people with more possibilities to contribute to good causes. In what ways do you think that the mass adoption of blockchain technology and digital assets can benefit philanthropy and human society?
Jerry Lopez: Coming back to my previous mention of blockchain providing a more efficient and affordable transaction process - anything that’s faster, simpler or cheaper promotes mass adoption. The last few years have changed the world on a human level. We’ve seen global pandemics, wars, natural disasters, and more like we’ve never seen in our lifetimes. Blockchain provides a transparent and simple means of giving back to donors and philanthropists know exactly where the funds are going and how they’re being used. If, and when, the global philanthropic ecosystem adopts digital assets and blockchain; imagine how many lives will be changed and how much money will, in fact, reach those who need it. This will change the philanthropic scene forever, for the better.
Ishan Pandey: In your opinion, do you think by way of monitoring donations across various layers, blockchain technology can be used to create a truly transparent charity system? Further, how can this be made a reality?
Jerry Lopez: Yes - I completely agree. It will take some work to make this a reality but it’s up to philanthropists to bring together their communities to help educate them on the benefits of blockchain technology. This is what we do as a team. We are visiting organizations worldwide to help them understand why blockchain is the future for individuals and charities.
These organizations, in turn, share that education with their communities and so adoption grows. We have created a global community of over 150 million members through these simple sessions. If more blockchain and digital companies used this methodology, the reach will be immense. Partnerships are key in this as well. The amplification of partnerships can help create more adoption that the individual organizations could not achieve alone.
Ishan Pandey: What are your views on Terra Luna 2.0 and the Terra Luna crash?
Jerry Lopez: Crypto is not for the faint-hearted, there will always be volatility caused by supply and demand - it’s part of the cycle of this industry and any crypto enthusiast knows and understands this. Of course, what we saw with the Luna collapse is unprecedented. Personally (and I speak on behalf of my team and communities as well), I believe in the value of crypto and its potential to change individual and global wealth. Crypto is in its infancy, so there will be extremes, but the long-term visions and purpose will see certain projects succeed and others fail. Now, coming back to the question at hand - Terra Luna, while historical in terms of the scale of its crash, is not the first. And the forking of the Terra blockchain is also not the first of its kind. We saw this with Ethereum back in 2016 and Ethereum came back even stronger. Luna’s fork mimics Ethereum’s so who knows - Luna may rebound stronger than before but only time will tell.
Ishan Pandey: The Cannes Gala's major sponsor this year was FTX, a cryptocurrency exchange founded by Sam Bankman-Fried, a 30-year-old prodigy. What are the long-term implications of such a collaboration on the crypto industry's future, especially in the philanthropy sector?
Jerry Lopez: It’s fantastic news - the more we see conventional/traditional organizations partner with blockchain companies, the more people will start to believe and trust in the future of this sector. Crypto has, for the most part, Crypto has played safely within its space and communities. However, branching out into other industries will be paramount for adoption. This way, crypto companies are building bridges and tapping into communities they previously did not have access to. The credibility and trust gained from such partnerships can help open doors to other, untapped partnerships - and give us the ability to open conversations with established, more traditional sectors that we never thought possible, such as philanthropy.
Ishan Pandey: According to you, what new trends are we going to see in the industry in the next five years?
Jerry Lopez: I think we’re going to see game-changing solutions from the blockchain space - it’s an incredibly creative and innovative sector and we’ve only scraped the surface. Blockchain companies understand what it takes to reinvent themselves and expand their suite of solutions. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the technology of crypto used to overhaul the current systems and solutions we have today. We’ll start to see automation and integrations in place to create greater transparency and utility across traditional sectors such as logistics, transportation, sustainability, software solutions, payment gateways, retail, and more. It’s already happening.
I also believe we’re going to see governments and institutions adopting blockchain to better their communities and humanity as a whole. They know that blockchain and crypto are here to stay (even if they don’t want to admit it!) and that these act as a bridge between the decentralized sector and traditional institutions, which can help give back, educate and prepare people for the future.
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