In this panel discussion, participants focus on bootstrapping liquidity in local markets. David Ryazkos, the Columbia Ecosystem Lead at the Celo Foundation, introduces himself and expresses his goal of developing an ecosystem in Colombia and other Latin American countries. He then invites the panelists to introduce themselves: Ruth Selema, CEO and Co-founder of Beats Mama; Oya Dejioloya, Co-founder of Cancer Finance; and Guillermo Goncalves, Founder of Eldorado.io.
Each panelist shares insights about their respective solutions. Guillermo explains that Eldorado.io is a peer-to-peer marketplace for buying and selling Celo dollars and Celo euros using popular payment methods in Latin America. They provide liquidity by aligning a network of OTC traders who perform arbitrage operations. Oya discusses Cancer Finance, which connects traditional finance and decentralized finance by using currency exchange agents in Nigeria and stable coins in P2P marketplaces. Ruth describes Beats Mama as a hybrid of an exchange and a crypto bank, providing on and off ramps for crypto transactions in Nigeria, Ghana, Venezuela, Colombia, and Argentina.
The panelists discuss why they chose to build on the Celo platform. Ruth mentions that Celo offers cheaper fees, scalability, and fast transactions compared to waiting for Ethereum 2.0. Oya emphasizes the mission alignment of creating financial tools for prosperity and the ability to use Celo stable coins for transactions. Guillermo highlights Celo’s suitability for addressing hyperinflation in Venezuela and leveraging remittances from the Venezuelan diaspora.
The panelists delve into the factors driving liquidity in emerging markets. Ruth emphasizes the importance of community and education to raise awareness about alternative financial solutions. Oya mentions that stable coins help facilitate faster business transactions and connect traditional money transfer networks with decentralized finance. Guillermo highlights the significance of hyperinflation and remittances in driving liquidity in Venezuela.
The panelists share their experiences with regulations in their respective countries. Ruth discusses the initial resistance from Nigerian regulators but notes a shift toward understanding and acceptance. She highlights the positive impact of stable coins on remittances. Guillermo expresses his concerns about Latin American regulators and governments but acknowledges the fragmented financial ecosystem as an opportunity for startups to bridge the gap and improve finance and commerce.
When asked about their one wish to enhance liquidity, the panelists provide their responses. Ruth wishes for increased adoption of stable coins globally. Oya hopes that all broker dealers and OTC traders would accept Celo stable coins, promoting more traffic and accessibility. Guillermo emphasizes the importance of eliminating regulatory barriers to engage in meaningful discussions and collaborate toward better solutions.
The panelists express their views on the role of stable coins and governance tokens in driving liquidity. Oya believes stable coins provide hedging mechanisms, predictability, and efficiency in markets. Ruth highlights the popularity of Bitcoin for potential gains but acknowledges the need for stable coins for hedging. Guillermo sees value in both stable coins and governance tokens, mentioning the benefits of stability and the potential for higher returns.
The panelists discuss the type of wallets they use. Ruth mentions using custodial wallets initially due to the need for user education and onboarding millions of users. Guillermo explains the custodial nature of Eldorado.io to facilitate escrow and ensure execution of peer-to-peer deals. Oya talks about the importance of education and gradually transitioning to decentralized solutions like web 3 wallets.
The panel discussion provides valuable