In Mature Crypto Market, Who Gets Rich?

Martin Köppelmann

In Episode #768, Nathan interviews Martin Koppelmann. He is the co-founder and CEO of Gnosis, the decentralized platform for prediction markets. He has been an entrepreneur and thought leader in the blockchain space for more than 4 years. He is closely related to prediction markets and has worked on decentralized, market-driven, governance mechanisms.

Famous Five:

  • Favorite Book? – Martin does not read books, but considers Reddit a good resource
  • What CEO do you follow? – some VCs, but no specific CEO
  • Favorite online tool? — Slack, Trello
  • How many hours of sleep do you get?— Less than 6
  • If you could let your 20-year old self, know one thing, what would it be? – He wished he looked earlier into game theory and economics

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:07 – Nathan introduces Martin to the show
  • 01:43 – Bitcoin was the reason Martin got into the crypto and blockchain space
    • 01:58 – This was during the time the Euro was having problems
    • 02:09 – Martin started to evaluate how he looked at money; he learned about bitcoin and the possibility of creating different forms of money
  • 02:35 – Gnosis has evolved
    • 03:04 – They are assuming that Gnosis will be a decentralized platform for prediction markets; for betting, auctions and insurances
  • 04:32 – Martin says companies like eBay, Uber and AirBnB will be replaced by a decentralized platform
  • 04:51 – They may replace companies that go into information aggregation
    • 05:02 – Instead of having different analysts determine the revenue of a company, markets and forecasts will be aggregated to one number
  • 05:15 – Gnosis has zero customers and zero in revenue, but they have a team and have raised capital thru selling GNO tokens; they raised $12.5 million
    • 06:14 – The tokens were sold for 250,000 ether, a blockchain currency, and at the time the tokens were sold, the ether was worth $12.5 million
    • 06:55 – The token has its own value and is currently trading at $240 a piece
  • 07:04 – Gnosis collects ether and pays their employees with it
  • 07:33 – To convert ether into real dollars, Martin uses Kraken, Coinbase and Poloniex
  • 08:40 – The foundation of crypto is its big vision and the vision to create something as big as the internet; however, currently, it is still just speculation
  • 09:31 – The token itself is almost always issued in Ethereum; the consumer creates the rules so the first set of rules they made involved organizing the token sales
  • 10:03 – Martin did the token auction and was completely controlled by the blockchain
  • 10:40 – Compared to Bitcoin, Ethereum was easier to use for developers
  • 11:10 – If crypto becomes the currency of the future, Martin says he hopes that people will become equally rich. He is currently working on a project where each person can issue their own currency and others would agree to accept each other’s currencies
    • 11:37 – They are trying to democratize money
  • 12:27 – Nathan says there is a limited supply of ethereum in the blockchain
    • 12:46 – Personally, Martin does not follow the bitcoin model
    • 13:02 – Martin is thinking of a new world where people are part of a new economy; each one gets to issue their own tokens and the tokens have value
  • 13:50 – Inflation can be used to finance a public good
    • 14:11 – For example, let’s say you want to create a platform like Uber, Uber is made to serve the public
    • 14:35 – The operating cost is not what made Uber expensive to build, it was the spend on marketing and buying everyone on the platform
  • 14:57 – Martin says there can be a new model where people can create value by joining the same platform
    • 15:13 – The value creation happens when people join the platform, this is where tokens are useful and can be used as incentives
    • 15:58 – The early adopters get more and those who join later will have to pay fees
    • 16:12 – Nathan says this sounds like a network marketing scheme
    • 16:25 – Martin says this is how Uber found success – in the beginning someone paid $2 billion and in the end, it’s the users that pay; but, the curve can be much flatter
  • 17:02 – Nathan asks Martin how values go up in crypto
    • 17:42 – Martin says value creation is made when everyone agrees on something
    • 18:15 – The thing about competing token issuances is that people need to find a way to combine their different tokens onto one platform
  • 18:44 – Nathan says he can see the good intentions of the people who are in the crypto space, but he is trying to figure out who will win or lose when the crypto marketplace is more mature and established
    • 19:28 – Martin says assuming there will be a winner and loser, the difference is found in people who have control over a platform
    • 19:49 – For example, in Uber they can change rules and raise fees, but on a decentralized platform, you can structure it in a way that makes restrictions on yourself
    • 20:16 – If you monopolize the platform, you can still get the fee but you have no control in changing it
  • 21:02 – Martin says there is power in making your governance mechanism into something that does not allow you to change anything
  • 23:31 – The Famous Five

3 Key Points:

  1. Crypto and blockchain can be the currency of the future.
  2. You create value when people agree to join a platform together.
  3. A future where people can have their own currency may be the way to democratize our use of money.

Resources Mentioned:

  • Simplero – The easiest way to launch your own membership course like the big influencers do but at 1/10th the cost.
  • The Top Inbox – The site Nathan uses to schedule emails to be sent later, set reminders in inbox, track opens, and follow-up with email sequences
  • GetLatka – Database of all B2B SaaS companies who have been on my show including their revenue, CAC, churn, ARPU and more
  • Klipfolio – Track your business performance across all departments for FREE
  • Hotjar – Nathan uses Hotjar to track what you’re doing on this site. He gets a video of each user visit like where they clicked and scrolled to make the site a better experience
  • Acuity Scheduling – Nathan uses Acuity to schedule his podcast interviews and appointments
  • Host Gator– The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for the cheapest price possible
  • Audible– Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5-hour drive) to listen to audio books
  • Show Notes provided by Mallard Creatives