Dear Friends and Colleagues,
It seems so oddly appropriate that in a world that has gone remote and where the blockchain is everywhere, we should be planning an online crypto/blockchain event pulling in speakers and attendees from around the world. Originally my Workshops were intimate, invitation-only events, with 15 startups and maybe 60 people in total. We listened to some of the smartest people in the sector hold forth and tell their stories. Then of course Covid hit and so I brought everything online, and I quickly realized that with the online format I was not limited by the size of my living room. We were able to make the Workshops accessible to a much larger number of people around the world and attract more top speakers from distant time zones. So we decided to make the events bigger and global. In order to scale the Workshops, however, I needed help, and so I called upon my old friend Nick Sramek, who has a great deal of experience with programming as well as tech and startups, to help me run our new events company called Doon Insights.
I am very excited about our program. As in the past, our priority is showcasing some of the most compelling startups as a window into technology and market trends in the sector. I think you'll find our 15 startups very stimulating -- they truly reflect the tremendous breath of ideas and efforts that are happening in crypto today.
We also have a very impressive lineup of subject matter speakers and panels for you. My old friend and former law partner, Brian Brooks, who just stepped down as the Acting Comptroller of the Currency and had an amazing tenure advocating for the integration of crypto and banking, will be speaking to us on the subject of "The Future of Banking and DeFi". In addition, we have a long list of other very prominent speakers on eight panels addressing some of the most urgent crypto topics of the day.
Let me give you a preview of some of the themes that we will touch. It was not long ago when the world of crypto gave the impression that it was a world apart; a self-contained autarky filled with somewhat nerdy people that didn't care much about what happened elsewhere. That situation has clearly flipped. With the advent of stable coins, DeFi, and various other initiatives, the crypto world is building very significant bridges to the real world, including the world of finance and business. At the same time, mainstream financial institutions have plunged into crypto assets, and this happened well before Covid hit, before inflation was a threat, and before Elon bought billions in bitcoins. So you will see throughout our day how the virtual and real worlds are now merging, starting with our first panel entitled "The Mainstreaming of Crypto Assets".
However, the mainstream media still does not do justice to what is happening in the world of crypto. The narrative still appears to be that crypto is primarily a new and exciting alternative asset, a new uncorrelated asset, and a better hedge against a lot of things. What this misses is the much more fundamental disruptions that the crypto world is preparing to unleash upon the real world. If the purveyors of DeFi have their way, algorithms will soon be displacing many of the functions of our centralized institutions, including banks, securities firms, stock exchanges, options markets, SWIFT, custodians, escrow agents, and even lawyers and auditors. For those of you who are new to the world of crypto, you will get a mind-bending and diverse exposure to these initiatives.
Another very fundamental change that Crypto projects are proposing is to effectively do away with the role of equity in corporate organizations and replace it with a new ownership model where platform users and servicer providers are the primary owners, intermediated thru tokens. As a corporate lawyer this is pretty earth-shaking stuff, since our traditional corporate governance is fundamentally based upon share ownership. But the crypto world asserts that if you can construct a system where you can distribute ownership more broadly across the stakeholders of a platform to share in the benefits of its network growth, then the interests of all stakeholder are more aligned, and the pie is bigger for everyone. If this happens, why do you need traditional corporations? Indeed, often these projects do not issue stock -- the only way to invest is to buy their tokens in the secondary market. One of the morning panels will focus on new governance models associated with these new structures.
Even more than the other verticals that we cover with our Doon Insights Workshops, I think you'll find that crypto protagonists are incredibly global. The crypto world was remote well before Covid. We will have speakers and startups from such diverse places as Vietnam, Dubai, London, New Zealand, and Shanghai, and more prosaic places such as New York and San Francisco. Even China, where the government has a policy of greatly restricting crypto initiatives, we will find in our afternoon sessions that there is still a great deal of crypto activity underneath the covers.
At the end of the day we have another treat. The crypto world is also intersecting with the metaverse of gaming and also the world of art, and this is all accelerating at a blinding pace. Crypto is playing an increasing role inside of game economies. And the market for tokenized art, via non-fungible tokens (NFTs), is growing exponentially. Our last cluster of sessions will talk about these dynamic new trends.
We intend to facilitate communications and networking between attendees. To that end, we have set up a Slack channel for registered attendees to join, so they can contact others for discussions, calls and follow ups. Also, during the breaks and receptions we will be offering the use of Gather, a virtual networking platform, so you can walk around a virtual exhibition room and have video meetings with people you come close to. It's come to this — a gamification of networking! Check out our networking tab for instructions on how to engage with other attendees.
See below our lineup of confirmed startups and below that is the agenda for our discussion panels.
Looking forward to seeing you online.
Managing Director, Doon Insights
The Future of DeFi and Banking - Brian Brooks, Former Acting Comptroller of the Currency
The Mainstreaming of Crypto Assets
Asset Tokenization: Is There a "There" There?
The State of Decentralized Finance (DeFi)
Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) and Stablecoins
Crypto 2021 – What's Top of Mind in Crypto?
New Governance Models
China's Role in the Global Crypto Ecosystem
Fireside Chat on the Intersection of Crypto, Gaming and Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs)
Host and Managing Director of Doon Insights
Host and Managing Director of Doon Insights
Founder of Takoma Group
Director of Research at Fidelity Digital Assets℠
Former Acting Comptroller of the Currency
Founder & CEO of CoinFund
Chief Strategy Officer at Securrency
Co-Founder of Acala