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00:00:00:07 – 00:00:15:03
Richard Carthon: Hello everyone. Welcome to the episode of Crypto Current, your host here Richard Carthon and today got a special guest all the way out in New Jersey, but actually spent some time here in Austin and we got to connect on that a little bit before the show started, but we have Amar with HyperLinq. How are you doing today?
00:00:16:07 – 00:00:19:21
Amar Gautam: It has been wonderful speaking with you, I’m very fine. How are you?
00:00:20:04 – 00:00:30:02
Richard Carthon: Oh I’m doing great. Today is Father’s Day, so I’m sure that you’re going to have a really good time and I’m happy that we’re getting the talk, but you know before we dive into today’s conversation, how about you tell us a little bit about yourself?
00:00:30:28 – 00:01:10:11
Amar Gautam: Absolutely and thank you and Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers out there. I do have two kids, so it’s wonderful, I mean spending time with your kids. I’m a computer engineer and scientist by profession and education. I was born in India, I grew up in India and then moved to the United States about 10 years ago. A majority of my life was spent in the financial services industry. I used to work for the world’s largest interdata broker, so most of my experiences in FinTech, architecturing and designing and developing trading systems. API is automated trading, so that’s my overall background.
00:01:10:15 – 00:01:22:15
Richard Carthon: So tell us a little bit about what you know, what was your first introduction into the cryptocurrency and blockchain space? Like who, like what year was it in and what was the conversation that kind of just opened your mind to the space?
00:01:22:25 – 00:02:10:07
Amar Gautam: Although I was in tech but I was very, I got introduced to Bitcoin sometime in 2008. And I wasn’t introduced because Bitcoin was being traded or it was an asset or currency, whatever you want to call it, I got introduced to it because of the technology. So I, somebody passed on the white paper from Satoshi Nakamoto, I read that, very interested and I was very curious about how this can revolutionize the financial industry, as well as overall what the impact would be on people, in terms of making the financial system more open and inclusive. But I was still skeptical at that point, I’m still a little bit skeptical today as well, in terms of what scalability situation is for Bitcoin but.
00:02:10:28 – 00:02:11:13
Richard Carthon: Right.
00:02:11:15 – 00:02:19:28
Amar Gautam: That kind of pulled me into the cryptocurrency and blockchain space and then I started exploring other possibilities of blockchain in other industry segments as well.
00:02:20:21 – 00:02:56:00
Richard Carthon: Which is great and I mean you bring up a good point of the scalability of Bitcoin and so many other things in the crypto space. One of the underlying issues has been in just how can we scale this at a place to where it’s used in everyday and without people really having to know about it, so like once you’re starting to look at this you know you have your background with trading and looking at some of these different algorithms. I know that you saw a ton of opportunities in the crypto trading world, so tell us about like you know what made you want to start HyperLinq? And when did you kind of dive into it? And tell us a little bit about that story.
00:02:56:02 – 00:03:34:06
Amar Gautam: Sure. As I mentioned before, I used to work for the world’s largest inter-dealer broker, so we were very much involved in trading derivatives and equities and other capital markets, Forex, for example. And one of my very good friends and a Product Manager at the same company, Caterpillar, was also Co-Founder at HyperLinq, he started introducing me to the trading aspect of cryptocurrencies. And at that point, we started figuring out that there was a lot of disparity in prices between exchanges and there was a huge arbitrage opportunity back in the day, of course. it doesn’t exist as much.
00:03:34:08 – 00:03:34:23
Richard Carthon: Right.
00:03:34:25 – 00:03:59:25
Amar Gautam: But then we looked at a lot of tools. There were existing tools that were connecting multiple exchanges and allowing you to trade, but there was none which actually did smart or that I would think for example or automatically execute arbitrage for you, even though it used to connect to multiple exchanges, the user experience was really flawed. Privacy was a big concern.
00:04:00:14 – 00:04:00:29
Richard Carthon: Right.
00:04:01:01 – 00:04:22:23
Amar Gautam: So for those reasons, we started building our own app, it wasn’t intended for public use. We started building early 2018 and it was for us and then we gave it to some of the friends, trade of friends, they loved it. They started requesting more features and stuff, so we started formally building it for the public in late 2018.
00:04:23:16 – 00:04:46:05
Richard Carthon: Amazing. So you’re at late 2018, of course you know the market has just gone on a complete roller coaster from the rise of late 2017 to the early 2018, you have the dip and now you’re building out and you’ve built out this really cool tool and now you have people using it. So fast forward to two years later where are you currently at and what’s been going on in the world of HyperLinq?
00:04:46:15 – 00:05:09:07
Amar Gautam: Yeah. So by the end of 2018, as you mentioned the market was pretty slowed down, I was slowing down actually, so it was a great time to build a product. And then when the market is ready we can show it to people. But since then, we launched our version one in mid 2019, but we had to pivot to a different concept altogether I would say.
00:05:10:03 – 00:06:26:16
Amar Gautam: We do not focus on multi exchanges as much as we focus on user experience now and also we figured out that people are not so privacy concerned as we imagined they would be. And so version one was decentralized in a way that we had nothing on our site and people would download the app on their next stop and they would kind of appear to be with the exchanges then they can trade on multiple exchanges, but clearly that hindered in a way that we couldn’t input a lot of service side features like automation and advanced order types and stuff. And from the feedback we got from people, they were not so privacy concerned as as we were personally, but there were still security concerns, so security concerns could be managed in different ways, like we do encryption in transit and also users could limit their API keys with IP and we’re doing for withdrawal permissions, for example. So given that, we pivoted and we would not focus too much on privacy, rather than creating tools that would enhance user experience and make trading more efficient and productive for you, so that in the end it’s less stressful and you make more profit.
00:06:26:19 – 00:06:55:28
Richard Carthon: Got you, and I think focusing on the user experience side and just taking back from it is very important. And because with a lot of these other platforms that I’ve noticed, user experience isn’t that great it’s just more of like I go on here to trade I do X, Y, Z, but what makes the better exchanges that I’ve been on more sticky is that they’ve thought with the end consumer in mind. So I guess, can you kind of speak a little bit to like you know who is your ideal end customer that would come on and use HyperLinq?
00:06:57:06 – 00:08:01:21
Amar Gautam: So for us, it doesn’t really matter which exchange you trade on or how many exchanges you trade on. An ideal customer would be a daily customer who would for example, trade some Binance or trade some Cool Coin, or Coinbase Pro and these platforms do not give you enough tools to be able to make proper trading decisions, so for those users, we provide a direct solution where you have charting, you have technical analysis, you can save your drawings and add analysis and you can basically put advance order types like OCOs and Ladders, and not just that, once you are done trading, we have a very nice tool to analyze your trading performance, for example, so you can do analysis, you can look at what your big events were or how many trades you won, how many trades you lost, what was your average winning size and stuff like that. So those kinds of insights are not available on the changes themselves, and also we have trading from charts.
00:08:02:18 – 00:08:35:08
Amar Gautam: One of the cool features, for example, I would like to throw it out there is you could manually train the market using our tool because we have something called “Drag to Update Live Orders” and so you don’t really have to cancel an order, you can just keep dragging the market up or down. So those kinds of user experiences, some of the exchanges do provide some tools, which are better than others. For example, Binance has a better sort of tools than One Pro, but in the end exchanges responsibility is not building those kinds of tools.
00:08:35:10 – 00:08:35:25
Richard Carthon: Right.
00:08:35:27 – 00:08:42:09
Amar Gautam: I think great exchanges’ primary responsibility is to provide you a matching engine and provide you liquidity, right?
00:08:42:12 – 00:08:43:17
Richard Carthon: Right.
00:08:43:23 – 00:08:44:08
Amar Gautam: Yeah.
00:08:44:10 – 00:09:14:06
Richard Carthon: And so just my understanding and what I think is really cool about this is that you’re basically making this hyper focused and hyper experience for your like hardcore traders that want to make the advanced trades that you’re very limited to be able to make on most exchanges. You’re the bridge that’s connecting all of these different islands and the world of trading to be able to do all kinds of different kinds of trade orders and be able to automate it, but then also be able to do reporting that most of these others also don’t allow for as well.
00:09:14:11 – 00:10:02:10
Amar Gautam: Yeah, absolutely correct. Ultimately, I mean so the app 2.0 is still in beta, so automation is still being built out, but there’s a lot of scope for manual trading as well. Manual trading is not going to go out the door at any time because automation is cool, but not everybody wants to do it, not everybody is comfortable doing it, so automation is definitely on the roadmap. But manual trading also is very stressful on exchanges themselves and it’s an integrated solution, all around solution, so you have like portfolio management, you can manage multiple accounts in the given exchange for example, but at the end of the day you should be able to look at all the data and make sense of it and make proper trading decision, make your trades, elect your profits and be able to analyze what you did, right? So that’s really important.
00:10:02:12 – 00:10:36:27
Richard Carthon: For sure, and I definitely see a lot of practicality for this and can definitely be used especially for the more advanced traders out there and for people who are looking for that next level of trading especially for using tools like this. So I know that you are able to use audiences that are based in the U.S. but also internationally as well, which I also think is really cool and great that the solution kind of affects everyone because for a lot of trading tools and things out there, unfortunately the U.S. citizens are usually neglected and said like actually you can’t use this, so I think that’s really cool.
00:10:36:29 – 00:11:32:12
Amar Gautam: Yeah. So we are a U.S. based company, we are a diversity corporation and we’re very proud to be a U.S. company and we integrated Finder’s Pro for example and we have Binance U.S. as well, so our focus always has been to cater to the U.S. customers, but if you look at our user base, majority of them are outside the U.S. section, but we are leaning towards building a better user base in the U.S. itself, especially for users and the new exchanges that’s going to FDX is coming into U.S as well, for example. So we are bringing derivative exchanges, so it really is simply partnering with the FDX and FDX is just coming on our platform. We partnered with Futures. I know U.S. customers can’t trade on Futures, but eventually once we have more exchanges with more liquidity in the U.S. we are soon going to integrate them as well.
00:11:32:14 – 00:11:57:24
Richard Carthon: Right, and that’s really cool. And I mean I think the fact that you’re building out all the infrastructure so whenever someone finally says like, “Yep, y’all can go for it” you know you already have it built out so that is very very cool, but to kind of shift gears just a little bit, I mean I know that you have been in the industry for a while now and I’m sure you see all kinds of things on the horizon in the space. Do you want to kind of speak to some of the things that you’re looking out for?
00:11:58:24 – 00:12:38:12
Amar Gautam: Absolutely. I’m very very interested, for example, personally speaking on scalability just to have way back on a scalability factor. I’m very interested in Lightning Network, for example. A lot of people are not even aware of where the Lightning Network is headed to where they are now, right? So I’m very very interested in that, but I’m also interested in the e-commerce sector, right? So e-commerce is kind of untouched right now. I think blockchain has a lot of power to fill growth in e-commerce in a different way and more peer-to peer-fashion forward, for example. And I’m also interested in healthcare, for example.
00:12:38:14 – 00:12:38:29
Richard Carthon: Yes.
00:12:39:01 – 00:13:17:15
Amar Gautam: How best you can manage like health records and like it’s very centralized right now. Your medical records, the electronic records, right? So, and also I’m very much interested in identity and authorization, for example. So if those can be moved to blockchain as well because some of these projects do not need scalability as much. I know that there is an argument that a lot of blockchain products are really scalable and fast and whatnot, but if you look at the technology it’s not really like how Bitcoin is, they’re kind of still very very centralized in a way of saying, right?
00:13:17:21 – 00:13:33:17
Richard Carthon: What do you think, you know the world has changed very rapidly because of everything happening with COVID and everything else. How do you think the crypto and blockchain community and world are being affected as well? And how do you think they are adapting?
00:13:34:16 – 00:14:19:09
Amar Gautam: Not only COVID, I mean overall, if you look at the world, lot of I mean there is a lot of economic strain on people, right? And a lot of countries are not doing well, especially for example in South America. A lot of people are stuck, they’re losing jobs and whatnot. So there are a lot of people in the world that were not included in the formal financial system, right? So crypto’s definitely giving them the opportunity to be part of an open financial system and so that empowers people, right? I mean you can manage your own money, you can transfer money to people, you can run relief funds for example, so blockchain and cryptocurrency is definitely going to help in those sectors.
00:14:19:17 – 00:15:07:19
Richard Carthon: Yeah. So I mean I think those are a lot of really valid and great points and I mean one of the things that you kind of brought up earlier that I think is definitely being affected by this is people having access to money and having you know the peer- to-peer aspect you know where a lot of from the global economy their dollars are whatever they use are weakening and something like cryptocurrency, like a Bitcoin is a lot more stable and so you’re seeing a lot of global money being poured into the crypto space because it’s being seen as more secure and it could be a great hedge against everything that’s going on the world. So I definitely see from a macro level a lot of opportunity moving in that direction. And I think that’s going to continue at an even faster pace. Because of what’s going on in the world.
00:15:07:21 – 00:15:09:03
Amar Gautam: Absolutely, I totally agree.
00:15:09:05 – 00:15:18:27
Richard Carthon: No doubt. Well, really appreciate everything that you’ve been able to share with us today, but I like to ask everyone before they finish up, what is a final thought that you want to leave with all of our listeners here today?
00:15:19:05 – 00:15:56:08
Amar Gautam: I definitely want to talk about the injustice that’s happening around us and we can’t have a blind eye to it. I think we all are responsible and accountable to make the world a better place. Blockchain, cryptocurrency, let’s include everyone, have financial inclusion and also empower people. I think a lot of the discrimination, lot of minorities that they’re facing problems could be fixed, if we empower them and if they if we help them build their own economic status and then create new businesses and opportunities and I think blockchain can help in those areas.
00:15:56:17 – 00:16:20:29
Richard Carthon: I think that’s a great final thought and I think that is a great final message for everyone. Definitely listening today, you know let’s stand in solidarity, let’s keep pushing for it, let’s find ways to connect and not destroy each other, let’s keep building and empowering each other and indefinitely keep doing that. And I really do appreciate you sharing that final message. But you know what are some different ways that people can connect with you and learn more about HyperLinq?
00:16:21:25 – 00:16:49:07
Amar Gautam: Absolutely, we do have a Discord community, which is pretty active. We recently started it about a month ago and we have about 400 traders or more there, so definitely join us on Discord, it’s a very lively community we talk about trades, we talk about technical analysis and of course our team is available there to take your feedback, We are very active on Twitter as well. So you can connect with me personally on Twitter, I’m sure that Richard is going to send the link.
00:16:49:11 – 00:16:49:26
Richard Carton: Yes.
00:16:49:28 – 00:16:59:22
Amar Gautam: Of my profile. And I do work towards mass adoption of cryptocurrencies, so I do have a lot of giveaways in the crypto space, I pretty much run a couple of them a week.
00:16:59:24 – 00:17:00:09
Richard Carthon: Awesome.
00:17:00:11 – 00:17:25:26
Amar Gautam: So check that out. I do have the HyperLinq profile on Twitter as well, so follow us for updates and of course download the app, try check it out at least, it’s in beta, it’s free to try. We haven’t started any subscriptions yet, so it’s a great time to try it out then and give us feedback and tell us what you want built. We definitely listen to our users and we do have special perks for all our beta users.
00:17:25:28 – 00:17:32:11
Richard Carthon: Excellent, well definitely appreciate that. Everyone listening definitely goes check that out, Amar, I really appreciate your time today and for everyone listening. Stay Crypto Current.