Multiple Crypto On-Ramps With Zipmex | Marcus Lim Interview (2020)
Zipmex is an exchange with a difference. They have multiple fiat on-ramps, OTC and a deep liquidity pool with some of the most competitive rates in the business. How do they do it? Let’s ask Marcus Lim, he is the man behind Zipmex!
So one of the interesting things that I’d like to announce today is our partnership with xbullion. So xbullion is the you know, the first gold back token in the world that is audited by BDO that’s insured. Right.
And it is, you know, going to be launching at the end of this month. And, you know, they’re working with the refiner in the UK can’t mention who it is.
And so people will be able to buy fractional amounts of gold. So instead of having to buy a gram of gold, you can buy half a gram of gold. Right? So that’s
The TraderCobb crypto show talking business in blockchain.
Ladies and gentlemen welcome to the TraderCobb crypto show, this show is proudly brought to you by Marcus Lim of zipmex.com.au and that’s the website I’ve been telling you to go and visit. It’s actually an exchange of Marcus.
Pleasure to actually meet you. Pleasure is mine as well. Well, listen, I want to speak to you about what you guys are doing. But first, I want to get to a bit about your background because you’re a successful young dude.
Based on where you were in Australia, entrepreneur, you’ve had another startup, which I believe you exited is it correct. Yes. And and what has brought you into Zipmex?
Sure. Okay, so just a bit about myself. Yeah, sure. So I’m originally from Singapore, and I migrated to Australia when I was 10. And in the previous startup that I found it was One Player.
Okay, so One Player started in 2012. And, you know, between my co founder and I, and it’s a marketplace for local services, we build our business along the way.
And in 2016, Fairfax Media, or rather, the subsidiary domain group, bought a 35% stake in the business, which I exited and I gotta move back to Singapore to kind of explore the FinTech industry or landscape here in Southeast Asia?
Yeah. And so from that Fairfax exits to the land of Bitcoin crypto and exchanges. What got you here? So what got me here was, you know, within the FinTech landscape, and obviously, you know, cryptocurrency and blockchain is within that landscape.
Yeah. It got me really interested, you know, back in 2016, when I was kind of reading up more about the technology, I mean, I’ve heard it first time and in 2014, but, you know, back then, you know, no one kind of really gave a lot of small focus network, correct?
Yes. So when I kind of read up about the technology, and I realized, you know, what it would do for payment, and that’s where it got me really, really excited. Yeah. And and when I kind of look at the whole, you know, ecosystem, which includes projects, which includes exchanges and wallets, and so on, so forth.
I realized that the exchanges, the first point of contact the gateway for people to move fiat money, you know, into the cryptocurrency. Yeah. And that was a point which I wanted to build customer relationship.
Perfect. Well, that makes sense. The first phone call in the world, they say how to get rich, you know, in a gold rush, you sell the picks and shovels.
And that’s exactly what you’re looking to do. So make sense. Now, when it comes to Zipmex, how long have you been around for in business?
Sure. So we were founded in 2018. We, you know, we launched, you know, in July this year, and we’ve only kind of really picked up over the last couple of months. The difference here with Zipmex is that we’re regional from day one, right?
We’re headquartered in Singapore. We have an office in you know, Singapore, in Australia and Indonesia. And there’s something very exciting that’s happening in Thailand, but I can’t officially announce it yet. But you will hear about it very, very soon all saying
But, but it won’t, it won’t disappoint. And essentially, we would be able to start operating in Thailand.
Well, that’s a hit right there. If you can read between the lines. I understand. Grab this thing completely. So, I mean, relatively new, obviously, you’ve come to the shores of Australia and the shores of Singapore as well, which is where you’re based out of right now.
What’s the plan going forward? I mean, I know that, you know, most exchanges start here and then grow out what is the plan is it makes to, to make you stand out be different to all the other exchanges that are out there?
Sure. So firstly, you know, we’re the, you know, we’re the only regulated exchange that you know, fiat to crypto exchange that’s in Asia Pacific, right. And we’re regional from day one. So if you kind of look at all the local changes in each of the countries that we’re in they’re only local based.
In Thailand and Indonesia, Australia and Singapore, right. We’re actually regional from day one. So that’s the first one and regulated you say? exactly and Singapore.
So we have regulations licensing from you know, CEZA in the Philippines. We’re applying for our licenses in Indonesia, and then Thailand. You’ll find out in about two weeks time.
But I can’t officially announce it yet. Correct because Australia doesn’t have any regulating law we don’t have any license yet at the moment, but we’re regulated by AUSTRAC.
Okay you are correct because that brings a lot of credibility of course having that AUSTRAC standard approval. So when it comes to onboarding so you so I can basically go to the exchange, it’s not just not just crypto to crypto.
I can go in with my Australian dollars and go with 10,000 Australian dollars into the account. And what can I buy with that 10,000 what tokens are available right now,
Right, so currently, we provide five tokens, we’ve got Bitcoin Litecoin, Ripple EOS, you know, and Ethereum? Right. So those are the five at the moment. So our broader strategy is to move away not not just to be in cryptocurrency, but to evolve, you know, to digital assets.
Yes. Right. So one of the interesting things that I’d like to announce today is our partnership with xbullion, so xbullion is the you know, the first gold backed token in the world, that is audited by BDO that’s insured, right?
And it is, you know, going to be launching at the end of this month. And you know, they’re working with the refiner in the UK can’t mention who it is. And so people will be able to buy fractional amounts of gold.
So instead of having to buy a gram of gold, you can buy half a gram of gold right now. So that’s something that’s really interesting that will be launching and Cinemax will be powering the platform that we’re providing for xbullion.
So I be able to buy xbullion on Zipmex, correct yes. And how long are we talking to until that occurs? So we’re looking to launch sometime in December, in December in the next month, all right, well, okay. Don’t say don’t do anything for you guys.
We just got an exclusive you can go ahead and get this from Zipmex it is a difference and look for those that are coming into the space. But we do speak to a very broad audience. It’s not just about people that are in this space right now.
It’s about people that are looking to enter and trying to find credibility trying to understand who to go with and what to go with. Zipmex of course, you know, with that regulation with AUSTRAC stamp of approval with the Philippines and with Singapore law, the regulation behind that.
It’s a really, really good backbone for an exchange. It’s a great place to start. And of course, you know, most people that are getting in looking at Litecoin, Bitcoin Ethereum Ripple, and now they’re going to look at some gold options as well.
So it does stand out. The regulatory perspective is an area where I think this space needs to continue to grow. There’s a lot of trust issues. Yes. We’ve got a lot of big exchanges here.
A lot of them are, you know, Cayman based or Gibraltar or I’m not saying anything wrong with that. It’s just a little bit more flimsy on the regulatory side. Sure. What What’s your opinion on that?
Yes, so as an exchange, I suppose. Yeah. So to give you a very good example, we’ve been working with a Thai regulator for the last 12 months. You know, each of these countries in Asia Pacific are starting to regulate the spacing void in the SEC’s coming up with regulations in January.
But you know, it’s very clear that you know, there’s going to be a program around this. In Australia, still a little bit unknown Indonesia, you know, has an organization regulating this. And so, you know, with Thai SEC, we’ve been working with them for the last 13 months.
And I think it’s a steep learning curve for the regulators as well to understand how to regulate the space. And that’s the problem here, because innovation always skips ahead of regulation.
And so as the exchange as the entity and the company and the operator, we have to, you know, we have to open dialogue with the regulator to help them understand what’s involved, and what role do they can they play, you know, in the whole industry.
Ultimately, the responsibility of the regulator to is is in to ensure that we’re a legitimate business and the way we’re operating and here’s their guidelines and policies, right, and to protect the interest of the people within their country.
And that goes for all you know, for every single country. So this is the role that we play and we clearly understand the role that they play. But of course, I think the educational process is very steep. And we have to learn together in order to find the best middle ground.
Now, I couldn’t agree more. You know, you’ve got to have the innovators of the technology, working with governments to create an infrastructure that allows it to flourish as opposed to stifle any creativity and take those brains away into some other industry.
Because let’s be honest right now, I mean, we’ve got digital assets that’s big, they’ve got health care, which is also big for the older generations and whatnot. We’ve also got cannabis now it’s a massive industry these are the three cutting edge parts of where technology is going.
And those in those spaces those with that technology background have got those options so if any of these ones get stifled it’s going to really hurt the other industry and build up the other one.
So look, when it comes down to the exchange itself, of course, we can onboard fiat. We’ve got ourselves set up with, you know, regulation AUSTRAC, these sorts of things.
Tell us more about the security so yeah, come into the space I’ll worry because you know the whole fucking lose everything the click of a wrong button, that sort of thing. Sure. So what can you tell us about that security phone? How are they somewhat safe?
Yeah. So, so security is actually a very big topic here. And you know, also as an exchange, you know, we’re not going to, we’re not going to say that we know we have, you know, that we can cover all ground.
And okay, so the way we do this is we’re partner with BitGo, which is the largest enterprise wallet in the world. Yes. Right. And it’s backed by Goldman Sachs and Mike Novogratz as you know yes and so all the custody for our assets are actually with BitGo. Right?
And so that’s where and BitGo is the best in breed best in class? Yeah. In this so you know, we kind of have deferred rather, you know, part of the responsibility and obviously leveraging off their technology and their security, to be able to provide that kind of convenience, that confidence to our consumers.
Right? That we are using, you know, a legitimate enterprise wallet to be able to customize their assets. Now, as you know, with BitGo as well, with they’re custody solution, they you know, they have insurance policy of up to 100 million dollars and that’s backed by Lloyds.
Yeah, that’s fantastic. I mean, that’s really good to know. It’s a new exchange. Okay. So, to some degree, people are going to be sitting there watching going well, it’s untested.
But you’ve backed it up with the fact that, you know, there’s not much more you can kind of do really show me around security function. That’s the best there is.
Yep. So so I think from the security standpoint, I am, you know, from from a web perspective, we obviously kind of implement, you know, the best in breed and the benchmark, right, https protocols, and so on and so forth.
But I think the other parts that kind of, you know, to grow the confidence in our exchange is the advisors that we kind of bring on board, right. So for example, you know, in Thailand, which is really kind of a beachhead into Southeast Asia.
You know, we have the former chairman of the stock exchange of Thailand on board, right as an advisor, right of the business, and we have the vice minister of Thailand on board as well, right. And so along the way, we’re kind of building out this advisory panel, right.
And this advisory panel, obviously, because they put their name to the business, they want to make sure that you know that exactly is their credibility is on the line.
And so compared to other exchanges with a lack of proper advisors, and I think here’s the here’s the, you know, here’s the change in understanding here is, we don’t just want to bring, you know, blockchain advisors on board, right, we want to be seen more as a financial institution as we kind of go towards mass market.
Yep. And so, therefore, we need to have credibility from the mass market as opposed to, you know, having, you know, just Blockchain advisors All right, so we need to have a mix. Right? And so when people come to exchanges, you know, we don’t hide our faces, some Exchanges, hired, you know, hide who the founders are the management, you know, who the management it is.
So it’s not transparent. This is who we are. This is our credibility who you these are our advises these are, you know, the countries that we’re in or who are regulated with. And so that that’s how people can build their confidence and trust in us.
Well, so, you know, what’s your one year target? I mean, obviously, you’re going to be growing up adding new assets into Zipmex platform, what are the things sort of on your radar that you’re allowed to speak about? What can we expect from you going forward?
Sure. So, you know, within the next 12 months, I think for us, you know, we’re trying to roll out into the multiple countries that we’re in. And on top of that, like you mentioned, you know, bring on board legitimate projects. So we’re working for example, in town, we’re going to be working very closely with the, you know, the regulator and ICO portals, which is quite unique is.
You know, there are other countries haven’t got an ICO portal, which other curators or projects that are coming through. So I think that will be kind of really exciting just to kind of build out the infrastructure, build out, you know, the amount of you know, assets or the projects that would can be listed on to Zipmex, and then kind of build that trust.
Within each of the countries, and then I guess for the next, you know, 24 months is really, you know, what I could say is that, you know, we don’t want to just focus on crypto hence we’re branded as a digital asset.
That’s sort of a digital gold you’re talking about. All that. Correct. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. What’s next? Like if you got obviously gold’s the most obvious one? Yeah. Okay. Does that mean you go on a silver palladium, platinum and need to stay on the metals? Or do we, what else have you got down? The obviously what’s to see?
Yeah, definitely, I think other precious metals, obviously, on the cards. So you know, with the right adoption growth on xbullion, which is the gold token. I think silver is definitely you know, in the pipeline. In terms of security tokens. I think that’s really going on the next wave here, right.
And then in order to list security tokens, these exchanges will have to be regulated. And this is why we’re going to spend and invested all the time and effort being regulated because ultimately that’s where the industry is heading. Right. No doubt.
It needs those as well. Correct. Exactly. So I think in the future that won’t be, you know, hundreds of exchanges, I think there’ll be some, you know, they’ll be a handful each in each countries that are regulated by the government. And that’s where people will be gravitating towards.
So eventually you’ll be looking down the STO sort of pathway. How long do you think it’s going to take? Because this was a real buzz last year? I mean, yeah, I think from about July onwards, everyone was talking STO, STO, STO. And I think that there was created hype of the ICO craze correct.
And a lot of people just want to see those massive gains sure and who doesn’t. But the reality of it is, is, you know, things take time, short regulation takes time, the space needs to mature and grow. It’s for a lot of people being disappointed.
There’s that you might have those set of tokens. You might have the best of exchanges, but there’s very low liquidity, which I don’t see as a bad thing either. To start it off. And the reason I don’t see it as a bad thing is let’s say you want to have a diversified International property portfolio.
And let’s say this, you buying Blue Ribbon properties in, you know, Manhattan, and Russia, Moscow and all these different parts of the world and you can’t obviously afford to spend $75 million on that penthouse, you might be able to put 10 or 50 grand in there, and to each nations split the portfolio that way.
And you don’t need to have a massive amount of liquidity there, you have got a lot more liquidity by breaking that $75 million apartment down into chunks, or even just a share of that. Even if you can’t sell today, it’s much harder to sell a $75 million property in a few days than it is to sell a small chunk of that.
So I don’t see the liquidity on certain asset types as being a major issue. Sure, but it’s a little bit far behind. How long do you think it’s going to take until that STO space really starts to gain some momentum?
So I think the the real driver would be regulation here and I think a lot of the you know, because you know security tokens fall under security laws for, for most countries, you know, and it’s the default security laws, you know, here in Singapore, you know, in Australia, and so on, so forth.
But I think, you know, if the regulators are able to kind of come up with a separate framework, for example, in Malta, where they’re coming up with a separate framework for security token offering, I think that’s where, you know, we can really start to see some, you know, momentum happening, a lot more activity happening.
You know, for example, in Thailand, what I do know is that that’s something that they’re definitely considering. And like you mentioned, with a lot of real estate projects, the ICO portals are actually looking at a lot of real estate projects, because I think the one of the easiest ones to kind of understand, you know, you understand real estate, yeah, exactly.
So it’s nothing too far off. So but to answer questions in terms of timeline, I think, you know, we’re looking at the next, you know, 24 months, you know, for this to kind of really develop, right, I think that technology also needs to develop as well, because there are obviously certain requirements, you know, for security tokens that may or may not be operative in the current, you know, blockchain platform.
Right. So, there are a number of projects that are being developed at the moment, which I’m sure you’re aware of. So I think that’s really, really exciting. So, you know, it’s a whole it’s a number of moving pieces that need to kind of come together in order for it to kind of take off.
But I think what’s really good at the moment is you know, the pilots that are happening you know, the, you know, the smaller projects that there’s momentum going exactly to kind of validate you know, what security token is right and how you know, the mass marketing can be involved.
Well, you gotta crawl before you can walk that’s assuring, I know it is good to see that so we can onboard with fiat Australian dollars. We’re talking to a base label. You’re all over the world guys.
So make sure you check out the website if you haven’t talked what what are all the website but we’ll cover that in just a second. Sure.
Being an onboard with fiat, you know, you’ve capture the top five basically, obviously, they move around a little bit into STOs. The gold token coming out and information and news coming from Thailand shortly.
Yeah was it anything else that we’ve missed on this interview? No, I think I think that’s it for now.
But there’ll be definitely more more updates coming soon so stay tuned. And where we find out information what like list all your domains and we can find you on socials tell them.
Yeah so you can come to zipmex.com and that is basically a global site for Australia you can go to zipmex.com.au if you’re in Indonesia, you can go to zipmex.co.id and then very soon we’re going to be launching zipmex.co.th one of the other things that we’re we want to kind of announces and you know, look out for Vietnam because that’s how our mix market would like to kind of you know, penetrate.
This guy’s doing it all moving around I’ll tell you what, it’s been an absolute pleasure to meet you, Mark. Thank you very much. Yeah.
Zipmex ladies and gentlemen go across, check out zipmex.com as he said or .com.au if you’re in Australia, have a fantastic day. Bye for now. Thank you.
The TraderCobb crypto show talking business in blockchain
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