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BitTok CEO J.D. Salbego comments on the current market situation defining the position of the BitTok exchange and answering the questions about its goals, strategies and approaches.
It is the twelfth year since the birth of Bitcoin, and the global digital asset market has gradually changed from the blue ocean to the red ocean. Bitcoin will be halved in May 2020, and the halving of digital assets is coming. However, the current market is generally weak. Considering all aspects, what do you think of the current market?
J.D. Salbego: Though we saw a drastic drop in price and with almost bi-polar dynamics for a short while once the pandemic was official, our markets have stabilized and doing better than a lot of traditional markets which is a key indicator of the current investors optimism about the value of BTC and the future of digital currency as a better and safer store of value than our current governments who can just print TRILLIONS of dollars whenever they please. NOT, just a recent response to this horrible pandemic, but have been continuously over time. With the BTC halving coming up, currently, more investors are holding in hopes that the halving will see surges in BTC price, volume, and potentially other correlated top assets like ETH, XRP, etc. With these market indicators and perceptions, investors are looking to seize this major event as an opportunity to hedge their investments. On the flip side, and not public yet (I would say, you get the exclusive here first), there is a concerned sentiment within our industry with effects of the coronavirus shutting down supply chain channels, and BTC miners who had originally prepared for this great event by ordering new chips and systems, now faced with the stark reality that they might not be able to meet the computing power demands of the halving. This potentially could jam the system without enough CPU power to mine the transaction volumes needed if this major event surges markets as many anticipate.
Exchanges are quite significant in the global digital asset circulation. With the development of digital assets, the competition between exchanges is intensifying. What do you think of the current situation and the development of the exchange industry?
J.D. Salbego: I think we’re in a pivotal moment in digital asset exchange history where the industry is closer to mass adoption and institutionalization than ever before. As our industry, technology, and crypto financial products mature, it brings new breeds of legitimate exchanges like ours (BitTok Exchange), who bring more transparency, regulated compliance, proprietary technology – and furthermore bringing real value to investors and projects looking for great trading and crypto driven products. As well, we provide a valuable relationship with an exchange that is here for the long-term, not just a quick buck and then disappear into oblivion.
At present, digital assets have gradually realized global expansion is necessary, and at the same time, the competitor landscape is fierce. With such market conditions, what is BitTok’s positioning, goals, and current strategy within this situation?
J.D. Salbego: Our goal is to be a leading and fully regulated global digital asset exchange, delivering both innovative valuable products and services for both users/investors and projects. Secondly, we’re reinventing the exchange & project relationship with unique technology and partnership business model structures. Thirdly we’ve strategically structured our company to be vertically integrated with cross-functional divisions (including a VC fund division), to maximize and diversify revenue streams, and to enable maximum optimization, growth & execution of delivering products and services. We’ve had huge success with our trading volumes, user growth and recent crowdfunding partnerships. Currently, BitTok has more than one million registered users, more than 100,000 daily users, and more than 5,000 community members. Also to align with our goals of always bringing value to our users and a growing suite of new products and digital assets, in the future we’re considering listing financial derivatives such as futures, options, contracts, and swaps.
At present, we’ve already established local markets in China, Singapore, Vietnam, and Indonesia and have established a deep connection and long-term cooperation with local community managers and institutional, retail, and large private crypto investors networks. We’re set to expand markets in Q4 2020 into the Middle East with headquarters, banking, and localization, and in Q1/Q2 2021 to South Korea and Japan markets.
And what makes a company great other than its products? It’s the team and people that drive our company that make us successful. We have an exceptional team all with international leadership backgrounds including Kevin Pang, Desmond Ng, Charles Wu, etc. They all have exceptional track records, rich experience in the international technology, blockchain, and Fintech industries, and have achieved a notable amount of commercial successes.
Just recently and highly noteworthy, we’ve been granted an exemption to legally and compliantly operate by Singapore Monetary Authority (MAS), while under license review, along with other major companies like Binance, Huobi, OKCoin, Google Payments, PayPal, etc. We’re one of the only new exchanges globally allowed this honorable recognition and support by a government authority like MAS. What this shows is the great work we’ve been doing in the market while only being less than a year old. This is a major step and foresight into the future success of BitTok and our community as a whole.
Digital asset exchanges have two core points in terms of products, one is financial attributes and the other is technological advantages. What is the strategy of BitTok in these two aspects?
J.D. Salbego: With the financial attributes of our products, one aspect is our strategic position to innovate the digital asset crowdfunding system, while delivering real value to both projects and users on our exchange. As part of our two-fold value system, projects receive exclusive access to our high value investor network, distribution channels, and proprietary technology – on the other side, users/investors gain exclusive access to unique financial product opportunities (valuable assets, ownership and ROI structures, high appreciation growth) from projects they couldn’t receive otherwise. For existing assets on our trading platform like BTC, ETH, XRP, USDT, EOS, DASH, etc. we provide deep liquidity pools, a robust order matching system, and many of top tier advantages.
In regard to technological advantages, we have unique and highly valuable proprietary tech features in our crowdfunding platform that no other exchange has in the market currently. Our trading engine is high frequency trading (HFT) tested to allow supreme transaction speeds. As well, our architecture design is precise with code auditing, penetration testing, security hardening, multi-layer / multi-cluster security, and advanced cold wallet storage. Technically, BitTok’s core system adopts a bank-level distributed disaster recovery deployment method to ensure that the system always runs stably in the event of any equipment failure or even natural disasters.
The important function of digital asset exchanges is to help high-quality digital assets achieve circulation and reflect their value. What is BitTok’s approach to project selection?
J.D. Salbego: Our exchange is founded upon strong principles. We actually have 5 pillars of principles we live by: 1) we seek partners not customers, 2) community validated & driven, 3) project screening & due diligence, 4) regulatory compliance, and 5) active, effective, and continuous project monitoring. We list only those projects that we believe as we prioritize long-term relationships, we thrive upon growing liquidity, market shares, and the investor community. As our 1st principle pillar is, we are absolutely dedicated to working together, growing together, and thus, sharing success together with our partners. With that being said, we have 10 elements of value in our criteria system. It’s too much to list here, but some of the key elements we look for are: unique technology and product solving a problem, credibility, experience, and reputation of founding team, existing or future token economy and active investor community support, a real use case for blockchain, etc.
Superb platform management is the basis for long-term development and success of any exchange. As security and regulatory compliance is the top priority of BitTok and the user’s experience on your exchange is exceptional, how does BitTok go about to achieve its advanced technological design of its platform while under proper legal and compliant frameworks?
J.D. Salbego: We focus first on robust high-level security architecture as managing and protecting our user’s assets is our number one priority. With that, BitTok guarantees the asset security of the platform through 100% cold storage. As well, our internal control system involves a 2FA system, early warning system, dual database cross-validation, real-time security detection, and private key management.
In terms of legal compliance, BitTok conducts compliance operations within the limits prescribed by the legal and regulatory authorities. As I mentioned in another answer, on March 27 the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) officially announced the list of companies that have received payment service exemptions under the Payment Service Act (PSA). BitTok is among them and has become a digital asset exchange that has obtained an exemption from regulatory authorities.
Secondly, we focus on creating a superior user experience designed to be interactive, while delivering simplicity and flexibility within our social trading environment. We continually refine, upgrade, and enhance our technology and features. With our focus of scaling and always delivering a high-quality product and trading platform to our users, we will develop new features to meet the needs of our growing user base as we expand. From customer service, all the way up to myself the CEO and the rest of our senior management, we truly listen to our users and actively monitor their needs and suggestions.