“We can demonstrate that it is absolutely safe to use cryptocurrencies in everyday life”
Traditional money and the financial system will not disappear overnight but they will change. Have you considered using cryptocurrencies? We haven’t so far but they have just become more accessible to the everyday user. We talked with Evgeny Vigovsky, COO of Saifu about how the company wants to help make every currency transaction a breeze.
JAXenter: One of the main problems with cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies is that they are not really accessible to the everyday user. How can we change that?
Evgeny Vigovsky: We remove all the complexity caused by cryptocurrencies and keys management from the user’s side and take care of it on our own. Therefore, a user doesn’t have to be an IT/Security expert.
We provide them the same (or even better) user experience as with conventional bank accounts with online and mobile banking applications that we have developed from scratch for that very purpose.
At the same time, we bring bank-grade security to cryptocurrencies, by using Thales hardware and our own software to store keys for customer’s funds in the most secure way.
JAXenter: How does Saifu plan to integrate cryptocurrencies into everyday interactions? How about security concerns? How are you planning on addressing them?
Evgeny Vigovsky: We offer IBAN accounts and not wallets. It means that customers can use both fiat and cryptocurrencies together every day, exchange fiat to crypto and back, make transfers and payments in fiat currencies (e.g. pay bills). For example, a customer can buy and hold bitcoins, benefiting from its rapid growth and exchange it to fiat when needed.
We also offer the Saifu Mastercard card, which can be linked to a cryptocurrency account, so a customer can spend cryptocurrencies in all places where Mastercard is accepted.
Companies are one of our strategic segments. We see a huge increase in demand from companies. Some of them want to buy cryptocurrencies whether as an investment tool (buy and hold) or to use in other blockchain services.
We don’t believe that traditional money and the financial system will disappear overnight. However, it will change a lot.
Another type is represented by companies that have raised funds in cryptocurrencies during the ICO and need to start their operations. Rent an office, pay suppliers, pay salaries, etc. All of that needs payments accounts in fiat currencies. at the same time, it makes sense to keep most of the funds in crypto while it grows so fast. We offer these companies IBAN accounts for fiat and cryptocurrencies they can use and benefit from both types and it really streamlines their operations.
Another problem for companies is how to easily buy and secure store cryptocurrencies; as a company(legal entity) we also solve that problem.
JAXenter: With this service, are you trying to make cryptocurrencies more digestible?
Evgeny Vigovsky: Yes, we’re doing our best to make this complex and great technology accessible to a wide audience of non-tech savvy people.
Remove the complexity from the customer side, provide accounts but not wallets via easy to use online and mobile applications. The way in which customers use cryptocurrencies stays the same as with fiat currencies, so they know how to use it.
JAXenter: Saifu is a fully regulated financial institution and it is licensed by the Czech National Bank. Is this a new era for cryptocurrencies — being on a par with fiat currencies?
Evgeny Vigovsky: We don’t believe that traditional money and the financial system will disappear overnight. However, it will change a lot. Tight integration with existing businesses and financial institutions is really important for making cryptocurrencies ready for everyday use.
Instead of being in opposition, we can demonstrate that it is absolutely safe to use cryptocurrencies in everyday life.
JAXenter: Do you think this move will make users trust cryptocurrencies more?
Evgeny Vigovsky: Yes, we do. Providing the most secure way for storing cryptocurrencies from a technical perspective isn’t enough. Internal Control and processes, Risk Management, External Audits KYC/AML and etc. leads to transparency and high quality of corporate governance. As a result, customers can trust us.
JAXenter: What are your concerns with regard to cryptocurrencies and blockchain?
Evgeny Vigovsky: Many people use the hype to get as much money as they can, but that affects reputation, perception and adoption of such a great technology.
But there are some companies that have long term strategies and do a really good job in offering their customers new products to make their lives better.
We are happy to be one of them.
We’re doing our best to make cryptocurrencies accessible to a wide audience of non-tech savvy people.
JAXenter: What is the biggest misconception about cryptocurrencies?
Evgeny Vigovsky: Most transactions are high risk and it’s not possible to understand what’s going on there. Thus, it’s not compliant with current policies. It happens because many people don’t really understand how the technology works.
In fact, blockchain makes transactions more transparent and thus more compliant.