The Prosper Series is a weekly event aimed at envisioning and creating a world of prosperity for all. Adriana, the host, welcomes participants and emphasizes the importance of community. The series originated as an in-person retreat but shifted to an online format due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Before diving into the session, a short meditation is conducted to invite presence and stimulate creativity.
The session features an intimate fireside chat with the founders of Celo, a platform that provides financial tools accessible via mobile phones. Celo’s network was launched recently, and this chat reflects on the journey of Celo, highlighting the learnings and challenges encountered. The chat is guided by the theme “Gifts of Failure” and explores the founders’ perspectives on failure.
The founders discuss the concept of failure in the context of their work. They draw inspiration from the book “Finite and Infinite Games” by James Carr, which distinguishes between finite games (with clear winners and losers) and infinite games (continual play without an end). They share how Celo faced limitations and initially operated in a small community, but as the team recognized the immense opportunity to improve financial systems globally, they dove in with determination.
The founders express their surprise at the rapid growth and acceptance of digital currencies, including central bank digital currencies and cash transfer programs. They note that these discussions have accelerated much faster than anticipated, with major organizations entering the space. Additionally, the founders remark on the evolution of perspectives towards environmental impact. They acknowledge concerns about the carbon footprint associated with blockchain technology and explain their commitment to carbon offset initiatives.
The founders reflect on the importance of community engagement and dialogue. They highlight the significance of open conversations, transparency, and actively reaching out to others. Furthermore, they emphasize the goal of supporting entrepreneurs worldwide, especially those in regions lacking a robust ecosystem for financial innovation. This commitment has led to the establishment of an ecosystem fund to provide opportunities and resources to underrepresented entrepreneurs.
The chat addresses the hybrid structure between C-Labs and the Celo Foundation. The founders explain that as the project progressed, it evolved into a community effort where multiple stakeholders played crucial roles. C-Labs, once a central focus, became a part of a larger network of contributors. This shift reflects the broader vision of collective growth and impact, extending beyond any single organization.
The founders discuss the balance between investors’ interests and the project’s purpose. They acknowledge their fortunate position of having aligned backers from the project’s inception. To further support the community’s growth and mitigate the limitations of traditional funding ecosystems, they established an ecosystem fund to back entrepreneurs globally.
The session concludes with gratitude for the participants and an invocation for all beings to prosper in their unique purposes and connections. The host expresses anticipation for the next session and invites attendees to continue the journey towards a more prosperous world.