I had the pleasure of interviewing Darius Eghdami CEO of Fansunite, a blockchain betting protocol. A serial entrepreneur, investor, and sports junkie, Darius has previously founded and/or led multiple businesses in digital, data analytics, and consumer internet.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you got involved with the Regtech or Crypto markets?
My pleasure! I was introduced to cryptocurrency indirectly through a pilot program that our company FansUnite ran with Secure Play in 2016. This pilot program introduced me to the transformative potential of blockchain to provide a shared, consistent record of transactions between various stakeholders — a natural fit for industries requiring regulatory oversight like gaming.
Can you share 5 ways that Regulation and Regtech can help stabilize the Crypto Economy?
Somewhat ironically, given that blockchain is poised to disrupt RegTech, the cryptocurrency space stands to benefit significantly from regulatory improvements and further regulation. While decentralization is a core tenet of blockchain projects, investment in crypto is primarily conducted through centralized entities. These entities are hard to police, operate in jurisdictions with varying levels of regulatory oversight and diligence complying with KYC/AML standards. We still see huge volatility and price manipulation occurring in the cryptocurrency space, which serves as a large detractor to investors. Shared processes and oversight from a regulatory authority or decentralized exchange platform would help provide a comprehensive, secure, and permanent audit trail — dissuading much of the foul play observed today.
What are the top concerns that crypto firms should be considering in order to have a competitive edge?
The crypto market has been through the wringer this past year, seeing drops of roughly a 70% market cap from the prior all-time highs set in December. While this has dissuaded many investors from partaking in the market, nothing has changed in regards to the transformative potential of this technology.
I think those looking at projects in the cryptocurrency space have to raise the bar in terms of due diligence, to ensure projects have legitimate use-cases, token economies and development teams capable of achieving the project goals. I generally advise steering clear if there is no tangible working product or an alpha version of the project.
Can you share examples of measures you take to prevent internal data breach?
A data breach is obviously a huge concern in the crypto space where compromised private keys result in direct access to a company’s working capital, security is paramount. Two-factor authentication is a must, as well as ensuring that best practices are followed with regards to internal user management and admin privileges.
Can you share a story of a time when things went south for you? What kept you going and helped you to overcome those times?
I have had many ups and downs as an entrepreneur and there have been countless times that I’ve felt our backs were against the wall. Whether it was trying to gain traction for the platform, generating revenue, continuing to ensure we don’t run out of cash, there are always new challenges to overcome. Having the right business partners, team members, advisors and support is invaluable in being able to overcome these issues as you lean on the people so heavily when you’re working with them directly in the trenches. I’ve been fortunate enough to have had some amazing, supportive, ambitious partners which have elevated our company to where it is today.
What are some things that you do on daily basis regardless of how busy you are?
Being a new father, I make sure that I spend quality time with my daughter. We generally go for a family walk with our dog every day, weather dependent.
What are the top 3 upcoming conferences you are attending and are excited about?
I will be attending the Malta Blockchain Summit early November followed up by ICE in London in February 2019, where more than 30,000 attendees are expected.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
There is a quote from Mark Twain that I’m particularly fond of “There has been much tragedy in my life; at least half of it actually happened.” It might not relate to all entrepreneurs, but this quote reminds me to stay level-headed in all the success and failures of running a company. It reminds me to stop thinking of the worst-case scenario and compartmentalize issues so we can stay focused on our common goal of success.