Q&A with Spiros Margaris who joins Lodex and BLOCKLOAN
We know BLOCKLOAN is going to disrupt the lending and accessibility space so we searched for a team of advisers with extensive, world-leading experience across different sectors.
Spiros Margaris is an icon in the fintech space worldwide. Global number 1 influencer in blockchain, AI and Fintech, he gives us an insight into his experience, tells us why he joined the team and why he believes we are going to make some waves in the not to far future.
1. What attracted you to Lodex and BlockLoan?
What attracted me to the Australian fintech company Lodex is their unique marketplace business model approach and the team’s excellent strategy–execution record. Lodex’s real-time, auction-style ‘Loans & Deposits Marketplace’ approach can be seen as the ‘eBay for banking’ and indeed, this is how I expect the future of financial services to develop. Their unique approach is why I was interested to hear their ideas when they approached me.
Lodex’s use of a third-party API is where the future of open banking is headed and I think that they are particularly well placed to capitalise on this opportunity. Even the most trivial glance at their early traction history and it is immediately apparent the success they have achieved: over 40k members and $400mil in auctions since November 2017.
Lodex also founded and manages the start-up BLOCKLOAN. This venture is clearly the evolution of Lodex, as it enables businesses to utilize blockchain technology to help consumers access credit regardless of international borders. BLOCKLOAN is exciting because by using equity as collateral, it is positioned to help retail investors safely and securely access the crypto-asset class. This is a game changer.
2. What makes Lodex and BLOCKLOAN special?
These two start-ups have everything necessary to become very successful ventures. They have a highly experienced management team and are advised by professionals in retail banking, start-ups, AI/ML, technology, blockchain, media and marketing. Moreover, they already have a track record of delivering results (as mentioned, Lodex has achieved over 40,000 members and $400 million in auctions since November 2017), which engenders great confidence in me.
Furthermore, the founders of these businesses, Mic (Michael Phillipou) and Bill (Bill Kalpouzanis), are extremely down-to-earth and hardworking. They are pioneering the technological transformation of the financial services industry, and their passion and zeal are infectious!
3. What is the intention of the BLOCKLOAN ICO?
In short, with the BLOCKLOAN initial coin offering (ICO), we want to build the BLOCKLOAN platform further (60% is already based on the Lodex platform technology) to provide easy access to credit anywhere and anytime through the use of a global blockchain bank-as-a-platform; we also want to enable traditional investors to familiarize themselves with crypto using listed equities as collateral through a margin loan facility. The BLOCKLOAN sector possesses a significant amount of potential, as is evident by the fact that BlockFi raised $52.5 million for crypto-asset-backed loans (July 24, 2018).
The fact that the BLOCKLOAN ICO is backed by the same people who ensured the success of Lodex in Australia, and the fact that the technology is based largely on Lodex’s technology, gives me great confidence that the BLOCKLOAN ICO will be as successful as Lodex.
4. Do you think both businesses have potential?
I do very much believe that Lodex and BLOCKLOAN have the potential to expand internationally. Indeed, Lodex is currently in discussions with an offshore start-up team to launch in a second country. The company is also obviously open to other global partnerships.
BLOCKLOAN, on the other hand, will primarily focus first on Europe and Southeast Asia.
5. What are the business goals?
Lodex’s business goals include further galvanising its position in Australia and growing its member base from 40,000 to 80,000 by the end of 2018. Lodex is also aiming to launch in at least one other country.
BLOCKLOAN’s most important business goal is to finalise the initial coin offering, as well as to build out the first deliverables, including launching its own wallet by the end of the year.
About Spiros Margaris, senior advisor of Lodex and BLOCKLOAN
Spiros is a venture capitalist and the founder of margaris ventures. He has more than 25 years of national and international experience in investment management/research and start-ups.
Spiros is the only person to achieve ‘The Triple Crown’ of influencer rankings, which he reached when he was ranked the global No. 1 FinTech, Artificial Intelligence (AI) & Blockchain influencer by Onlaytica (05/2018). He was also ranked the No. 1 InsurTech influencer by InsurTechnews (07/2018). He regularly appears in the top three positions of established global industry influencer rankings.
Spiros frequently speaks at international FinTech and InsurTech conferences, and he has published numerous articles on thought leadership. He also published an AI white paper, ‘Machine learning in financial services: Changing the rules of the game’, for the enterprise software vendor SAP.
He is a senior advisor at Lodex, BLOCKLOAN, SparkLabs Group, wefox Group (wefox & ONE Insurance), Arbidex, Datametrex AI, Yield Growth Corp., kapilendo, moneymeets and at F10 Fintech Incubator and Accelerator.
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