Don’t place all your eggs in one basket. It is a much safer option to put diversify your investments by investing in multiple assets. There are horror stories of people locking up their life savings in lesser-known coins hoping for the price to go up, only to end up losing a significant portion of their investment.
Over the past few years, the Cryptocurrency industry has been making headlines nearly every week. Many people have gotten very wealthy investing or leading the cryptocurrency industry. At the same time, many people have lost a lot investing in the industry. In addition, more people have been scrutinizing the ecological impact of crypto mining, as well as its potential facilitation of illegal activity. What is being done and what can be done to address these concerns?
In this interview series called “5 Things You Need To Understand In Order To Successfully Invest In Cryptocurrency” we are talking to leaders in the cryptocurrency industry, as well as successful investors, who share insights from their experience about how to successfully invest in Cryptocurrency.
As a part of this series, I had the pleasure of interviewing Marie Tatibouet.
Marie Tatibouet is the CMO at Gate.io. Gate.io is a global blockchain asset exchange platform with over 6 million users from more than 130 countries. Her thought leadership articles have been published on leading finance and crypto websites in English, Spanish and other languages.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would like to get to know you a bit. Can you tell us a little about your backstory and how you grew up?
I grew up in a multicultural environment, often moving around, and was an inquisitive child. My parents will tell you my « why » period lasted longer than other children, and I was constantly trying new things. Problem-solving was definitely one of my favorite activities and playing and improving my chess was what helped me go from a wild child to a focused one. Funnily enough, I still retain both today.
Is there a particular book, film, or podcast that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?
The Big Short was a highly influential movie in my life. Although I had previously studied the direct repercussions of the financial crisis in economics class, I had not realized exactly how much it had impacted the daily lives of regular people, nor had I truly realized how much of blind eye institutions and powerful people can turn. I still watch about once a year.
It was actually shortly thereafter that I found out about Bitcoin and my life changed forever. My thoughts, my opinions, my career, and my investments would never be the same.
Is there a particular story that inspired you to pursue your particular career path? We’d love to hear it.
It’s actually funny because my path all ended up making a lot of sense. I studied finance in college, but I didn’t want to make it my bread and butter; I ended up working in marketing instead. When I moved to China, I worked in marketing in the tech industry, and after I ran my own marketing business for a few years, I ended up as the CMO at Gate.io. Marketing meets Tech meets Finance all day, every day.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
Around 2016, I joined an online platform called 21, mostly to dabble more with this space and familiarize myself with the different aspects of BTC trading. However, what I didn’t expect was the complete rabbit hole I will get into. I was seriously obsessed. Thankfully it worked out. Two years later, I got this opportunity to drive marketing at Gate.io, and since then, I have been heading the marketing function as a CMO. Gate.io is one of the oldest crypto exchanges globally, and we serve more than 3.5 million users across the globe.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
I am very thankful to both of my parents for believing that I could do anything, giving me the confidence to participate in male-dominated industries. And to our very own Virgilio Lizardo (Gate.io’s Vice President of International Affairs) for teaching me about the wonders of cryptocurrencies and giving me the tools to spearhead the Gate marketing efforts.
Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?
We recently launched NFT Magic Box, and I am particularly excited about the utility it brings to creators and artists. The Magic Box doesn’t charge anything to mint NFTs, which empowers artists to focus on their work without worrying about the financial side. I think this will be very helpful to them.
Ok super. Thank you for all that. Let’s now shift to the main focus of our interview. The cryptocurrency industry seems extremely dynamic right now. What are the 3 things in particular that most excite you about the industry? If you can, please share a story or example for each.
Sure, so one of the things that I am really excited about is how Bitcoin has become the asset of choice for institutions looking for a hedge against financial fluctuations. I hope that with the recent resurgence in price, we will see more companies joining MicroStrategy and Tesla.
Second — the confluence of DeFi and NFTs. I think right now, these two are the most exciting crypto use cases. Many protocols are now combining the two into more compelling use cases. For example, locking up a rare NFT as collateral to issue loans.
Finally, I am excited about the potential of Ethereum 2.0. I want to see how sharding, rollups, Proof-of-stake will combine to scale up Ethereum exponentially.
What are the 3 things that concern you about the industry? Can you explain? What can be done to address those concerns?
Uncertain regulations around the world is still a major problem. So governments need to really step up and create frameworks for regulation. In that regard, North America is ahead of the curve.
Secondly, it’s a little concerning that we still don’t have strong oracles. There is no reason why DeFi apps should still be suffering from oracle-manipulation flash loan attacks.
Finally, we need people to get more educated about the space. Investors are lazy and don’t do the proper research about a project before putting in their hard-earned money. While a vast majority of the projects are legit, there are some scams out there. You can hunt these out by going through their whitepaper and checking out project reviews.
What are the “myths” that you would like to dispel about cryptocurrency? Can you explain what you mean?
- Myth #1: All cryptos are scams
No, they are not. If they were, then you wouldn’t have billion-dollar companies adding them to their balance sheet, nor will you have had so many companies working tirelessly to build their decentralized ecosystems.
- Myth #2: Cryptos are used for criminal activity
No, they are not. El Salvador, right now, is working on creating a system that will help them regain financial integrity following decades of dollarization.
- Myth #3: I am too late to the game
Well, as they say on Twitter. If you are reading this, you are still too early to Bitcoin.
How do you think cryptocurrency has the potential to help society in the future?
Oh, this is such a cool question!
- First and foremost, I am certain that international transactions as we know it is going to change forever. We will no longer be dependent on SWIFT and PayPal to send the majority of international remittances. Instead, crypto transactions are going to become the new normal.
- Secondly, we will see more countries taking El Salvador’s path and using BTC (or any other crypto) to offset hyperinflation or the effect of dollarization.
- Thirdly, the world’s biggest companies will have a significant portion of their balance sheet dedicated to crypto.
- Finally, cryptocurrencies and DeFi can be the greatest boon ever for the unbanked masses. There are still 2 billion people around the world that are unbanked. They don’t have access to any financial instruments whatsoever. Crypto and DeFi could give them easy access to wealth-building opportunities.
Recently, more people have been scrutinizing the ecological impact of crypto mining. From your perspective, can you explain to our readers why the cryptocurrency industry is creating an environmental challenge?
Well, it’s mainly because of how proof-of-work (PoW) works. The two biggest cryptocurrencies in the world — Bitcoin and Ethereum — are both dependent on PoW mining. In PoW, you use mining equipments (ASICs and GPUs) to solve cryptographically hard puzzles by spending real-world computational energy continually. This is why many questions have been raised about mining and its potential environmental implications. For example, according to BBC, Bitcoin mining annually consumes more power than Argentina and the Netherlands.
This is why out GateChain has adopted the environmentally-friendly proof-of-stake mechanism, which will make the mining process wholly virtual and cut down exponentially on energy usage.
From your perspective what can be done to address or correct these concerns?
- Firstly, old-school PoW currencies like Bitcoin need to adopt renewable energy sources like solar and hydro. We can’t be dependent on coal-based electricity anymore.
- Secondly, newer currencies need to adopt virtual mining consensus algorithms like Proof-of-Stake (PoS) instead of PoW.
Ok, fantastic. Here is the main question of our interview. What are “The 5 Things You Need To Understand In Order To Successfully Invest In Cryptocurrency?” (Please share a story or example for each.)
Awesome! So, here we go:
- Learn how to analyze the team and the fundamentals. Look at the team. Check out their LinkedIn, or just Google them. What all have they been involved in? For example, Cardano’s founder Charles Hoskinson was also the co-founder of Ethereum. This makes Cardano a very promising project.
- Ask yourself this question — “Does the business even need a token? Does it need decentralization?” If the answer to these questions is “no,” then the token will mostly be useless. Please go through the whitepaper and project docs ad see what problems they are looking to solve through their protocol.
- Look at the project’s community. Does it actually provide value or do they have a bunch of folks just hanging around begging for an airdrop? A healthy community goes a long way. I think Ethereum has everyone beat in this regard.
- Ignore the noise. Just because the entire world is investing in Dogecoin because of an Elon Musk tweet doesn’t mean that you must as well. Do your own research (DYOR) before giving in to mass hysteria. If you want to invest in DOGE, go ahead, but only after doing your due diligence.
- Finally, don’t place all your eggs in one basket. It is a much safer option to put diversify your investments by investing in multiple assets. There are horror stories of people locking up their life savings in lesser-known coins hoping for the price to go up, only to end up losing a significant portion of their investment.
What are the most common mistakes you have seen people make when they enter the industry? What can be done to avoid that?
Let’s explore these questions both from the PoV of investors and developers.
The main mistake they make for investors is their expectations, which stems from a lack of education. Crypto investment isn’t magic that it will make you an instant millionaire. On the flip side, you could potentially lose a lot of your investments if you don’t do your research and lock your money up in certain assets.
For developers — understand that the programs and assets you are going to be building have to be a mix of coding, economics, along with a dash of social mechanics. For example, you can’t create a protocol without understanding how the internal economy works. Similarly, don’t innovate just for the sake of innovating. If your project doesn’t need decentralization, then don’t decentralize it.
Do you have a particular type of cryptocurrency that you are excited about? We’d love to hear why.
Like I said before, I am currently super excited about projects that bring together NFT and DeFi. I am really looking forward to seeing how a decentralized metaverse looks like.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the greatest amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
I am very passionate about increasing the number of women working in crypto. Ever since I started working for Gate.io, we have executed a fair representation hiring policy. As a result, we have one of the fairest gender distributions that you will ever see anywhere in this industry, We are not hiring women just for the sake of hiring. We have women in leadership positions making executive decisions.
I don’t want to sound arrogant here, but I want more companies to follow our lead and bring in more women to crypto.
We are very blessed that very prominent leaders read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would like to have a private breakfast or lunch, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them 🙂
I would love to meet Satoshi Nakamoto for lunch! But if that doesn’t happen, then Vitalik for sure. These two are pretty much the Alpha and Omega of the crypto space.
Thank you so much for these excellent stories and insights. We wish you continued success and good health!
Thank you, it was a pleasure! Same to you.