Dear PointPay family,
PointPay CEO Vladimir Kardapoltsev participated in a traditional AMA session on October 26, 2023. He shared the latest news about PointPay, made several announcements, as well as answered your questions!
Below is a summary of the AMA held on the 26th of October, 2023.
Vladimir (CEO): Well, hello, everybody. Welcome back to our traditional end of the month ama session. I hope you're all feeling well. I'm feeling absolutely amazing. And as always with me is Diana. Hello, Diana.
Diana (Host): Hello, everyone! Let's begin and hear the latest news and announcements.
Vladimir (CEO): Amazing! Thank you! Diana was kind enough to collect all of your questions from the Google Form that was sent out on Monday. So now, we will ask those questions from the YouTube chat. And from the telegram as well.
As always, let me remind you, for some of you who are not familiar with the format that we hold, so every Thursday of every single month we hold a traditional ama session, it usually lasts from around 45 minutes to an hour.
But nonetheless, we hold those sessions to inform you of what is going on in the company. Sometimes you hear some news that we haven't announced yet. Old investors know that I sometimes inadvertently reveal some certain news. But yeah, do tune in! So this is our traditional format, we post a form where you can ask me, then we gather questions, sometimes rewrite them to make more interesting. But it kind of helps us to guess what's going on in the community.
That's a good format. Lastly, I think it’s important to show you face and to show that the company is real. It obviously helps to build trust and communicate with you. Our platform was always community driven.
As we go, Diana collects questions from various sources, including our chat, Telegram chat, and Discord channel. Our typical approach for conducting AMA sessions is as follows: I begin by sharing company news and future announcements, dedicating about 10 minutes to discuss any significant developments. For instance, a few months ago, we extensively discussed the FTX scandal. In the past, we've also delved into the intricacies of legal developments in the US legislative process regarding cryptocurrencies and the introduction of new legislation in the European Union. In essence, our sessions revolve around discussions about recent news and the latest industry developments. That's how we usually proceed.
Let's start with our biggest announcement from last week. PointPay achieved a remarkable feat by reaching the 14th position on CoinGecko, which was a pleasant surprise for all of us. Previously, we were comfortably at around 28th place, considered a tier three exchange. We didn't see this coming! As a result, we witnessed a significant influx of users and an increase in trading activity on our platform. Our daily trading volume, which used to be around 25 million, has now surged to 100 million.
This represents a fourfold increase. We also initiated a Bug Bounty program and made some key developments in our platform. Thanks to these efforts, we managed to secure the 14th spot. I couldn't capture a screenshot, but someone in our community did, so kudos to them. Currently, we're around the 17th spot, which still firmly places us in the tier two exchange category, an incredible achievement.
If we rewind less than a year ago, back in February and January, we were just starting on CoinGecko, ranked in the hundreds with positions like 101-120. But now, we proudly hold the 14th spot. Congratulations to everyone in our community for making this remarkable progress!
Next up, let's talk about what's happened in the past few days, not even a month or a week ago. Last Friday, we introduced 25 new trading pairs on our platform. Let me list them for you:
Ethereum pairs: TRX, BNB, MATIC, Polkadot, Solana and Litecoin.
New USDT pairs, including: FTM, LEO, FTM, XRP, DOT, and COMP.
Additionally, we added more Bitcoin pairs, like Solana, BNB, Cardano, VeChain, Polkadot, Matic, Dogecoin, and One Inch.
At the beginning of this week, we also added a flurry of new coins. We initially planned to release two new coins per day, but ended up with one on Monday, two on Tuesday, two on Wednesday, and three today. As a result, we introduced a total of 41 new trading pairs, which is fantastic news. This will positively impact our rankings on Coin Market Cap and CoinGecko since our trading volume will increase.
We analyzed the top 20 exchanges and noticed that they offer significantly more trading pairs than we did. This is why we decided to add these 41 new pairs, and we're committed to introducing even more before the year ends. If you recall, we made a commitment to have 100 new pairs by the end of the year, and it seems achievable since we've already accomplished nearly half of that goal in just a week.
What else has been going on within our platform? The 70 new pairs that we did. We did Alice on Monday, we did April Coin and Phil Coin on Tuesday. We did HTZ and LOOM yesterday. And today the announcement should have come through that we did BLZ MKR and ID.
Those are the main announcements. Additionally, we've introduced NEAR Staking with a 30-day period and a 4.5% APR, as well as VAX Staking, also for 30 days with a 4.5% APR. We announced these staking options recently.
What else has been going on? We had 41 new pairs, two more stackings. As promised, at the last AMA-session, we're going to have more kinds of short term stakings. Because of the risk factor, we can't really provide long term staking yet.
Currently, we offer long-term staking for PXP and occasionally for some other coins on our platform. However, we have plans to introduce more staking options by the end of the year, with one or two expected next month and potentially more. Additionally, we're actively working on adding more coins to our platform and planning new Launchpad listings. So, stay tuned for these exciting developments!
What else has been happening? We ran a competition for $300 in PXP tokens. To participate, you needed to subscribe to our Twitter, join our Telegram, and follow us on LinkedIn. The competition has ended, and we'll announce the winner in tomorrow's update. We were supposed to select the winner during the AMA session, but I wasn't informed about it. So, my marketing team will make the choice, and we'll announce the winner soon.
What else is going on? Tomorrow is Black Friday, or is it next week? We have something exciting planned for it. Also, next Tuesday, we'll have another competition with similar rules to the ones I just mentioned. You'll need to follow certain instructions, and we'll randomly select a winner to give away some money. We'll probably announce this on Monday or tomorrow, so keep an eye out! The top prize might be $300 or $500; I can't recall. The last two prizes are $50 and $100. Similar to previous competitions, you'll need to follow us on Twitter and Instagram to participate.
As for industry news, there haven't been any major developments recently, except for some updates with FTX. There's been political news in Europe, America, and Israel. Bitcoin's price is rising; could this be the start of a crypto spring? I hope it bodes well for us. Let's stay vigilant and see what the future holds. I believe that covers everything I wanted to discuss, and we're ready for your questions.
Diana (Host): All right. So here they are. What efforts are underway to secure the proof of reserves bench on coin market cap and coin depot and how do you see this improve the investor trust? And is it a prerequisite for achieving tier one exchange status?
Vladimir (CEO): Yes, it's a requirement for reaching tier one status. To achieve this, we need 10 points on CoinGecko and 10 points on Coin Market Cap, which requires the proof of reserves badge. We're working with external auditors to verify our reserves, ensuring we have enough to cover our liabilities and trades. This is a new requirement in the industry after the FTX incident. We're exploring the best partner for this, leaning towards external audit for trustworthiness.
We have different rankings on CoinGecko and Coin Market Cap due to their distinct evaluation criteria. CoinGecko considers factors like liquidity, team, bug bounty, and transparency, while Coin Market Cap places more weight on trading volume. Our current daily volume is about $100 million, but it's not enough to artificially inflate it. These variations in criteria lead to different rankings among agencies.
The proof of reserves badge, held by only about 50 exchanges, will enhance our reputation and trustworthiness in the community, crucial for investors' confidence. It's a prerequisite for achieving the tier one exchange status. We've built an excellent exchange and are closing in on the finish line to secure a top 10 position.
Mark my words, it won't be long.
Diana (Host): When do you anticipate commencing your marketing initiative to promote the exchange?
Vladimir (CEO): Marketing is already underway. We've done email campaigns, traffic campaigns, and competitions. However, marketing strategies evolve as a company grows. Bigger exchanges like Binance use extravagant marketing, but we're taking a different approach. Our recent ranking at number 14 on CoinGecko attracted a significant influx of users. We're focusing on cost-effective marketing like competitions and collaborations with bloggers for now.
Our full-scale marketing will ramp up in the coming months. We're cautious about budgeting to acquire customers at the lowest cost early on, as it becomes more expensive later. We've conducted competitions and email campaigns successfully. Collaborations with top crypto bloggers and more co-marketing are in the pipeline.
While grand marketing campaigns may happen down the line, we're currently in the phase of efficient marketing. As the industry sentiment improves with Bitcoin's recovery, we anticipate increased trading volumes, benefiting us and the overall crypto community.
Diana (Host): PointPay offers a wide variety of trading options. What's the strategy behind this, and how do you decide which new coins and tokens to list?
Vladimir (CEO): Our diverse range of trading pairs serves the interests of different investors. This includes cryptocurrencies, stable coins, meme tokens, and project tokens. The crypto world has evolved beyond a single coin, and we cater to various types of investors, from long-term holders to those who prefer short-term trading.
We compared ourselves to the top 20 exchanges and found that we had fewer trading pairs. To align with major exchanges and improve our user experience, we decided to increase our offerings. I had promised to have 100 trading pairs by year-end, but we may surpass that, reaching 150 or even 200.
In terms of selection criteria, we consider factors like trading volume, community support, technology, and the coin's reliability. We want to avoid listing scam coins or those prone to sudden collapses. While we may list meme coins temporarily, we'll review their inclusion as their popularity wanes. This summarizes our selection process.
Diana (Host): Are you still pursuing the listing of PXP on PointPay as a tier two platform or do you have plans to list it independently?
Vladimir (CEO): We plan to list PXP token on a tier-one exchange first, and later on our own. I understand it might seem counterintuitive given our progress toward becoming a tier one exchange ourselves. The exchange landscape can be confusing with all the tiers and expectations, but that is what we have.
So, once PXP is listed on any other tier-one exchange, we will list it on our own exchange as well. By that point, we may have achieved tier-one status ourselves. This approach is aimed at enhancing transparency, usability for our users, and providing flexibility for traders who can use both PointPay and their preferred tier one exchange. I hope this clarifies our strategy.
Diana (Host): How does your exchange address the issue of liquidity, especially for less popular or new cryptocurrencies?
Vladimir (CEO): To address liquidity challenges, we employ various strategies. We have in-house market-making and counter-trading mechanisms. Additionally, we maintain our own liquidity, mainly generated by trading activities on our platform. When our internal liquidity falls short in certain cases, we leverage external liquidity providers connected to our platform via API. In rare instances, if needed, we may tap into the liquidity of other major tier one exchanges. Our in-house liquidity covers approximately 95% of our trades, and external liquidity providers serve as supplementary sources. This multi-layered approach ensures adequate liquidity for our users.
Diana (Host): What safeguards and protocols are in place to prevent and respond to market manipulation and fraudulent activities on the exchange?
Vladimir (CEO): We employ various AI-driven tools to prevent market manipulation and detect fraud. These tools run programs through our databases to identify fraudulent activities, including unauthorized fund transfers between accounts. We utilize blockchain detectors and collaborate with specialized agencies to combat fraud. Within our system, we have implemented robust security measures, including red flags, yellow flags, and other alerts. For instance, when a user attempts to make a withdrawal or transfer funds between accounts, we analyze the transaction history and hashes to detect any suspicious activities, such as attempts to test the system or exploit vulnerabilities.
In addition to these measures, we have KYC (Know Your Customer) and KYB (Know Your Business) systems that are used by top exchanges and banks worldwide. These systems help us monitor large trades and report them to relevant authorities as required. We also have a security officer and an AML (Anti Money Laundering) officer who monitor transactions and check users against databases, including anti-money laundering and politically exposed person databases.
Furthermore, we are in the process of obtaining externally audited proof of reserves to demonstrate the security of user funds. Our commitment to adhering to regulatory standards ensures a high level of safety and security for our users. While these measures may sometimes slow down our platform's development, we prioritize the safety of our users and their funds.
Diana (Host): How does PointPay manage customer inquiries and complaints, and what ongoing improvements are being made to enhance customer service?
Vladimir (CEO): We have a dedicated team that operates 24/7 to respond to customer inquiries. While we are considering implementing AI-based solutions in the future, many cases can be resolved through automated algorithms or the FAQ section on our platform. However, human assistance is still essential in some instances. Our customer support team is highly praised by our users for their ability to address a wide range of issues, including transaction discrepancies, and make necessary corrections within the system.
In addition to our customer support team, we have a group of officers who handle transactions. We divide our support into front-line and back-office roles. As our company continues to grow, we will expand our team by hiring more personnel. We are also exploring AI-based solutions to streamline the handling of straightforward inquiries. If an inquiry cannot be resolved by the automated system, it will be directed to a human agent. This approach is commonly used by larger companies to efficiently manage customer inquiries.
At present, our customer support team is proficient at manually resolving any issues users encounter on the platform. They are bilingual and multilingual, ensuring that assistance is available in the language of your choice.
Diana (Host): What is your perspective on the current state of cryptocurrency regulations, and how do you foresee these regulations evolving in the coming years?
Vladimir (CEO): Regulations, in my view, are beneficial for the industry. They establish clear rules, prevent fraud, and promote compliance. While it's true that even with clear regulations, there can be attempts to circumvent them, the cryptocurrency industry is still in its early stages of regulatory development. Establishing regulations is crucial to prevent a "Wild West" environment that could lead to scams and other undesirable activities, as seen with the FTX incident.
The European Union has made progress with regulations focused on customer KYC and transaction reporting. In the United States, there have been similar initiatives for American citizens, although federal-level regulation for the entire country is still a work in progress. The industry is gradually moving in the right direction in terms of regulation.
In addition to regulation, there's the matter of how cryptocurrencies are taxed. Determining whether to tax them as a currency or another financial instrument is a question that regulators need to address. Europe is making positive strides, and I was hopeful that the FTX scandal would prompt positive changes across the industry. However, it appears that other concerns, such as upcoming elections, have taken precedence in the political landscape.
Diana (Host): Security breaches have been a concern in the crypto industry. How does PointPay learn from those past incidents to enhance security measures and protect users?
Vladimir (CEO): PointPay has a strong track record of security with very few incidents in the past, and none in the last two years. We've achieved this through robust security measures and by assembling a team of top experts from the banking sector to design our platform. Our user's funds are securely stored in cold wallets, making it virtually impossible for anyone to steal them. We only keep a limited amount of funds available for withdrawals, with a well-defined process for accessing our cold wallets. This approach is in line with industry standards and mimics the way banks manage funds for everyday transactions.
In addition to these measures, we've recently introduced a hacking-proof bug bounty program. This initiative invites ethical hackers to test our platform's security, with financial rewards for those who can identify vulnerabilities. So far, no one has succeeded, indicating the strength of our security systems.
We've also implemented two-factor authentication for both email and the Google Authenticator app. This extra layer of security helps protect our users' accounts. Furthermore, we have an auto-logout feature and, earlier this year, we enforced compulsory password changes to enhance user security.
Looking ahead, we may introduce features like password change reminders and phone verification via SMS to further bolster our security. Overall, PointPay is committed to complying with industry standards and providing a safe and secure platform for our users.
Diana (Host): Could you provide insights into the technology and infrastructure behind the platform? Its capacity and scalability to handle high trading volumes.
Vladimir (CEO): The platform underwent a significant overhaul this summer to address scalability issues. We recognized that the previous version couldn't handle high volumes of users and trades, which led to the platform becoming unstable. The new platform is fully equipped to manage substantial trading activity and can handle millions to billions of trades, depending on the infrastructure in place.
It's important to note that user growth and increased trading activities typically happen gradually rather than overnight, so the platform can adapt to rising demand. We've already witnessed a growth in the number of users and trading activities on our platform.
While the platform is currently not optimized for high-frequency trading, we believe it can be improved to accommodate such needs. We utilize top-tier AWS servers located in America, Asia, and Europe, ensuring robust infrastructure. Disaster recovery policies and backup systems are in place to meet industry standards. Our commitment to technological excellence ensures that PointPay's platform is well-prepared to handle increasing trading volumes.
Diana (Host): Given the importance of onboarding newcomers to cryptocurrency, trading, and investment, what strategies do you have in place to educate and retain new customers?
Vladimir (CEO): In terms of onboarding, we've implemented a user-friendly process that guides new users through the essential steps when they log in. This includes setting up their email, making their first deposit, completing KYC, and executing their first trade. We are continually working to improve this process for enhanced user experience. A progress bar helps users navigate each step intuitively.
Regarding educational efforts, we previously produced crypto school videos, but their popularity was limited due to the abundance of educational material available in the crypto industry. However, as we grow, we plan to revisit this program to provide more educational content.
Tutorials will also be expanded, especially in the coming year, as they are crucial for helping users understand our platform better. Additionally, we'll introduce simulated trading accounts, allowing users to practice trading without risking their real funds. These measures will not only enhance user education but also attract more users to our platform.
Diana (Host): Well, and that was the last question. Thank you very much for all of your answers.
Vladimir (CEO): Thank you, everyone!
Our journey this year has been incredible, going from the 100th to the top 14th exchange, introducing new trading pairs, and completely revamping our platform. What an amazing year it has been for PointPay. I hope you're enjoying this journey with us. Thanks, Diana, for gathering the questions and assisting me. Have a great day and weekend! Don't forget to join our Halloween competition, and we plan to have more competitions regularly to engage and attract new users to our platform.
Thank you all and have a fantastic day and week ahead. Goodbye!
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