Persistence AMA with Tushar Aggarwal at t.me/amaroom
Eric: Welcome @tusharaggarwal! Thank you for taking the time to be with us.
Tushar: Thanks Eric , excited to be here!
Eric: Can you please introduce yourself to the AMA ROOM community.
Tushar: Sure absolutely!
I started my career in the Blockchain/Crypto industry hosting the Decrypt Asia podcast (https://decrypt.asia/) and writing extensively about Blockchain/Crypto on Tech in Asia.
Then I joined as the first employee at Singapore based LuneX Ventures (Crypto arm of a Traditional VC Golden Gate Ventures — https://goldengate.vc/). Seeing an opportunity to contribute more to the ecosystem by being a founder versus an investor and bringing institutional capital into the industry, I started Persistence in Q2 2019 and we came out of stealth in January 2020.
Eric: Interesting background. Can you tell us what was your first crypto experience?
Tushar: One of my blogposts on Terra — https://www.techinasia.com/terra-drive-mass-adoption
My first crypto experience was when I was based in Singapore — towards the end of 2016, I got on Coinbase and started buying cryptos after getting my capital out of some traditional investments.
Eric: Sounds like you bought XRP
Tushar: Was looking to do angel investments into startups but instead came across crypto and the rest is as they say, history. Haha
Eric: So tell us, What is Persistence One?
Tushar: Sure thing!
Persistence facilitates the borrowing of Cryptoassets (Stablecoins) using Real World Assets such as invoices as collateral. This bridges DeFi and traditional finance and uses the features of DeFi to solve real world financing problems.
Persistence follows a three step process to facilitate this:
Asset tokenization — tokenization of real-world assets through document fingerprinting of invoices using NFTs to capture all the unique metadata
Asset Exchange (NFT Marketplace/DEX) — trading/exchange of tokenized real-world assets against Stablecoins
Financing / Liquidity Pools — usage of NFT assets (representing invoices) as collateral to borrow/lend Stablecoins through Stablecoin liquidity pools
Eric: What problem is Persistence One trying to solve?
Tushar: The first application of Persistence is Comdex, a decentralized physical commodities trading and trade financing marketplace, which has facilitated $30M in transaction volume now — I am sure we’ll be talking more about this during our conversation.
Eric: Could you tell us a little bit more about the product?
Screenshots would be great!
Tushar: Yes, so given the back story of how Persistence started (my frustrations around how no ‘real world’ problems were being solved) — Persistence aims to solve certain problems within both Defi and traditional finance.
I can do screenshots, graphics are probably easier to follow.
This goes into some of the problems Persistence is solving at the tradiotinal finance level and the solutions as well
As for DeFi, here are some of the problems and solutions
Tushar: So more about the product, now that the problems and solutions are set..
How do we actually go about solving them?
The overall tech stack looks as follows:
Happy to go into more details as we progress in this AMA
Eric: What is Comdex? Could you tell us a little bit more about that?
Tushar: Sure thing. As mentioned above, Comdex is a decentralized physical commodities trading and trade financing marketplace.
It is the institutional facing product of Persistence which matches SME commodity traders and trade financiers across major trading hubs in Asia — Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong and Dubai.
It has facilitated 30M worth of transactions and has integrated with Western Union for multi-region instant on/off ramp.
Press release from Q4 2019 — https://finance.yahoo.com/news/comdex-completes-over-10m-worth-070800123.html
For anyone interested
Eric: You guys have been active for more than a year. What are some of the past achievements of Persistence?
Tushar: High level, we have onboarded some of the top validators around the world.
Comdex as the first dApp has significant traction.
We have solid team in place on the business, tech and community fronts.
We have established partnerships with some of the top projects such as Terra
These are some of the validators validating for Persistence ecosystem currently — 80% of them are in the top 290 validator set for Tendermint chains such as BAND, KAVA, Cosmos itself.
We just published details on our milestones and also roadmap going ahead — https://persistence.one/roadmap
Eric: Damn impressive.
Tushar: Haha thanks!
Eric @exnetwork, [13 Aug 2020 at 9:17:50 PM]:
Who are some of Persistence’s competitors? What does Persistence do differently to stand out?
Tushar: In the interest of time, I’ll answer this question using an image as well.
Tushar: Some of the key differentiators — our go-to-market vertical, geographical focus.
Traction of course!
Also we have a highly technical team that has and scale out products
For reference, we did the world’s first interchain NFT transfer
We wrote about this on the Cosmos blog
Eric: Your native token is $XPRT. What is the token utility and how does it accrue value?
Tushar: Biggest use case is that it’s a ‘Work token’ — i.e.stakers, delegators of $XPRT token receive cashflows from the dApps in Persistence ecosystem.
Again, I love explaining through images
This image explains the work token aspect.
Outside of that, the token will be used for staking, governance, validator (dis)incentivization.
Eric: What type of financing happens on the Persistence App?
Tushar: Our goal was to go about things in a 2 step process:
Step 1: bring benefits of public blockchains to institutional users (which we did through Comdex)
Step 2: bring some of the same financing products to stablecoin holders through stablecoin liquidity pools to allow them to generate returns — this will take place through the native Persistence dApp.
The financing to be specific will be invoice financing on the ‘seller’ side — i.e. financing of accounts/trade receivables
Eric: What is the Persistence SDK and who has built on it?
Persistence SDK has been built in a modular way to support the trading and financing of assets covering the end to end trader journey.
Comdex dApp has been built from the ground up using the SDK. There are other teams building using the SDK within the Cosmos/Tendermint ecosystem that we will be disclosing in the future. Of course Persistence native dApp uses the SDK
Eric: What is the long term vision of the project?
Tushar: In the long term, we want to operate at the confluence of TradFi and DeFi solving financing and capital pooling problems.
A big focus for us will be on the Persistence native dApp to aggregate liquidity
While third party teams use our SDK to expand the use cases.
Long term, we want to keep hustling, building non-stop.
Q: How you solve Lack of infrastructure and access for MSME investors and businesses?
A: This is using the SDK which is open source
Anyone can use the SDK to very easily create their own exchanges and marketplaces
Q: Adoption is one of the important factor that all sustainable blockchain projects should focus to be more attractive in the investors’ eyes. What #PERSISTENCE has done and plans to do to achieve real world adoption?
A: On the institutional side, we have done the following:
Gas payments abstracted for end-user
Option of Regulated Fiat Gateways for Settlement
Transaction details Anonymized keeping privacy considerations in mind
Securely recoverable Key management
On the BD side, we work closely with SME trade financiers and Family Offices across Asia within our network to drive adoption.
Q: Why was Persistence built on Cosmos SDK? What solutions does it provide for the ecosystem in terms of interoperability and scalability?
A: The Cosmos SDK not only allows Persistence the ability to take advantage of the ‘Inter-blockchain Communication Module’ (IBC) being launched by Cosmos, but also allows for Persistence to create its own ecosystem of application specific chains which leads to an exponentially higher level of scalability. Through the use of the Cosmos IBC module, stablecoins from various networks integrated with the Cosmos IBC can be interoperably transacted on the Persistence App where these assets can be deployed to finance real world commodity trades. In addition, the Cosmos Hub/Zone structure allows for applications built on Persistence to have their own chain (zone) for application specific transactions while transactions pertaining to the native Persistence token occur on the hub.
Q: Since the tokenization of assets, NFTs, are highly valuable, do you provide any insurance in case of worst-case scenarios like bugs, hacks, etc. to the smart contracts and platform?
A: All code is chain native, we release only after extensive test-nets and alphanets, where some of the best validator organization of the world validate the code base while running them.
Q: What do you think DeFi will face substantial challenges and limitations in the future? With what tools does Persistence solve these problems?
A: Before we discuss the challenges that DeFi might face in the future, let us begin with discussing the problems with DeFi today.
Today, one can only use Crypto Assets as Collateral thus limiting the value locked in DeFi. The Value Locked in DeFi today is barely $5B. With our approach of tokenizing real-world assets such as invoices, accounts receivables, OBLs, we bring huge value to the DeFi Industry. In doing so, we aim to solve the financing gap of $1.5T.
Today, there’s a lack of Infrastructure around holding Crypto Assets. Acquisition of Crypto Assets is necessary to be able to pay for gas, which can be highly variable and expensive. We solve this problem by abstracting key management issues and gas for end users.
Q: Could you tell us about your work on token Swap and Community development with the cooperation of Terra and Persistence? How do you evaluate this collaboration?
Q: Am interested to know more about your flagship product, the COMDEX which allows commodity Trading, how secure and robust is it?
Q: Many projects Came after 2017 Bull run just to get Loads of Money & went away after that in name of ICO And same is happening in 2020 in concept of DEFI, this confuses Many NEW investors where to Invest,
Can You tell me 3 three reason to invest in #PERSISTENCE for Long term?
A: 1. Our demonstrated ability to execute in a heavily bootstrapped manner (we just didn’t emerge yesterday to capture on DeFi wave)
2. Execution risk has been eliminated through onboarding of top validators, traction of dApp, solid team in place, solid backers etc
3. Balanced Capabilities around tech, biz and community — the trifecta required for successful blockchain project
Q: Will there be more code going on Github soon?
A: Yes absolutely and its all open source — http://github.com/persistenceOne
Q: Can you list 1–3 killer features of Persistence One that makes it ahead of its competitors? What is the competitive advantage your platform has that you feel most confident about?
A: On the tech side:
* Abstraction of volatile gas for dApp user
* Reduced complexity for Key management and KYC though inter-identity module
* Structured tokenization of assets to NFT, Maintenance and fractional ownership through interNFT module
On the business side, our ability to do BD as demonstrated already with Comdex for example (ability to work with family offices, SME trade finance orgs across Asia)
On the community side, several initiaves that we have- e.g. running the Cosmos India community — which is one of the most active Cosmos communities globally
Q: Can you briefly explain how the Top milestones that the Persistence team aims to execute before the end of this year or going to execute in future, will help you succeed and What you may look like in 2020 and beyond?
A: We just released this information publicly — https://persistence.one/roadmap
Q: Do you think Using Real World Assets as collateral is the best considering they can also lose value? How do you cater for these kind of losses?
A: A default in the event of ‘Receivable Financing’ refers to the inability of a buyer to fulfill the obligations of the receivable by paying the amount agreed upon for the goods that they have received credit on. At this point of time a receivable involving a defaulting buyer may cease to possess any value, however receivables financed on the Persistence platform will be insured by an ‘underwriter’ who will assume risk of default on the receivable in exchange for a premium.
Upon an incidence of a buyer defaulting, there will be a protocol of analysis and oversight conducted by the underwriter after which financiers will be reimbursed for the incident.
Tushar: Alright guys in the interest of time, I’ll be jumping off the AMA. Truly humbled by the detailed questions and the level of due diligence in this group.
We always appreciate a great conversation and would love to connect with you. Feel free to reach out to us at:
📌TG Community: https://t.me/PersistenceOneChat
To learn more about Persistence One, our achievements and plans going forward you can access the following resources:
Github repo: http://github.com/persistenceOne
Please follow us on the above socials to stay updated with all of our activities
Eric: Thanks @tusharaggarwal !
Tushar: Looking forward to interacting with all of you on various platforms!
Eric: This is one of the strongest DEFI projects i have ever come across.
Tushar: Thanks for the kind words Eric, and thank you for hosting Persistence :)