Why Africa Should Take Advantage of Cryptocurrency – Kwakoo COOAbbakin
Why Africa Should Take Advantage of Cryptocurrency – news article by The Nation.
Gideon Wanyoike is the Chief Operating Officer of Kwakoo market. A Crptocurrency expert and a Co-creator of Onyxcoin. He speaks withShehu Olayinka about Kwakoo eCommerce market; Cryptocurrency and how it could be use to eliminate poverty in Africa.
What brings you to Nigeria?
I am in Nigeria to attend to our eCommerce market. We have a platform which is going to be the biggest in Africa. For the past 10 months, we have created an eCommerce platform that will have Crytocurrency as one of it payment models.
Right now, digital or Cryptocurrency is now an important part of financial market. What we have now done is to marry the two together in our eCommerce platform. We will be the first eCommerce platforms using Crptocurrency as a payment model.
What is Kwakoo market all about?
Kwakoo market will be a platform where you can get any product you so desire and the advantage of Kwakoo market is that we have eliminated middlemen. The prices are not exaggerated and we are going to be using Cryptocurrency to discount product prices.
So in Kwakoo market, anyone using our Crytocurrency called Onyxcoin as a payment model, will automatically enjoy 10% discount and 5% bonus for vendors selling at Kwakoo market and anytime they accept Onyxcoin as a payment method, they automatically receive a bonus. So it is a win win for vendors and the customers.
What is Cryptocurrency about?
Cryptocurrency is just digital currency. A digital asset whereby we are able to invest in them and able to use them as a medium exchange. The one currently in use is the one called fiat money.
Money is just a medium of exchange and other functions of money is store of value and to have an account. Cryptocurrency actually is a better store of value, better medium of exchange because it is highly portable and it is a good form of payment models.
Who can use Cryptocurrency?
Anyone can use Cryptocurrency, but the challenge is that the way the technology is right now; people who understand how to use a Smartphone are those now able to use Cryptocurrency, while those who don’t know how to operate a smartphone will find it very hard to operate Cryptocurrency.
So what’s happening right now is that anyone who can use the digital asset or Crytocurrency, is anyone who can use a Smartphone. Interestingly, huge percentage of the population are knowledgeable about the use of smartphones, so it becomes very easy for them to use Cryptocurrency.
How do you intend to build trust, being that Africans tend to have problem with e-transaction?
We are aware of the fact that in Africa, trading online is not that high and you can’t compare it with how it is being used in Europe. So what we are doing is that we have a eCommerce platform called Kwakoo market.
Yes, we want to have an online business, also we want to have a bit of offline, because most Africans understand offline business more. So if we mix the two, offline and online, it becomes easier for them to do online transaction.
How do you see your established competitors?
Our model of operation is quite unique as compared to what other people are doing in the market. If you look at all the established eCommerce platforms, what they do is they try to give discount using the money they have. Let me give you an example of using using a Crytocurrency which we have created.
We are operating in a different level because of Cryptocurrency. We can give out ten percent even 50 percent discount bonus because the Cryptocurrency we are using belongs to us.
We clearly are not competing with anyone right now, as we have come out with a new product, new model and the only competition will be if people copy what we do, but actually the people in the market right now can’t compete with us.
How old is Onyxcoin?
Onyxcoin is a brand new company. It started operating January this year in Kenya. The eCommerce platform is set to be launch in August 2018. What we are currently selling is Cryptocurrency.
We already have offices in six African countries (Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Rwanda, DRC) and with intending Lagos, Nigeria office, we will have seventh offices across seven countries in Africa. This happened inside four months and you can see that the growth rate is quite good.
Which other payment platform will be available apart from Onyxcoin?
Most people understand what is called Bitcoin, when you tell people about Cryptocurrency, the only thing they are aware of is Bitcoin, but after Bitcoin, there exist more Cryptocurrency.
Why people tend to have that impression is that Bitcoin pioneered Cryptocurrency, but after Bitcoin other Cryptocurrency had been created and we are talking about more 2000 Cryptocurrency and Onyxcoin is one of them.
What about card payment and pay on delivery?
We are not only using Onyxcoin as a payment model, we will also allow people use cards, use money. The only thing is that if people use Onyxcoin as a payment method, they get discount, but if they can use other payment method, they buy at a full price.
So what is happening is that people will be attracted to use Onyxcoin as their payment method as they are looking for a discount. We are not saying people shouldn’t use their card or cash for transaction.
Going back to the trust issue, how do you intend to work on trust since Africans have problem with e-transaction?
We are the first Cryptocurrency to have physical offices. Let me give you an example, when we talk about Bitcoin or another Crytocurrency, most of them are actually online and nobody knows where their offices is located and they don’t even put up offices in Africa or any other places.
But Onyxcoin has been able to put up physical offices across Africa and that shows you how serious we are, because we are here for the long time. Which is why we are setting up offices so that people can check us in our offices in countries we operate.
What got you attracted to Crytocurrency?
I got attracted to it because it is a new invention and if you look at what happen with technology. The internet when it came, the people who took advantage of it, you will find out that most of them are from North Americans and United State. Africa lost that opportunity to take advantage of the opportunity that came with the internet and if you look at it right now, all the big companies that are technologically base are actually from North America.
Africa is behind when it comes to technology and when we saw the invention of Cryptocurrency, we knew we are not going to be left behind, if you don’t take advantage of this industry while it is in its formative age, down the line you won’t be able to catch up with those who went into it early and that’s why we also thought about going into it early.
What’s the advantage of Cryptocurrency
The advantages of Cryptocurrency are much. The biggest advantage of Cryptocurrency which normal people understand is the deflation nature of Cryptocurrency. Deflation is whereby a currency gains value overtime. The money we use which we call fiat currency, loses value overtime. So Cryptocurrency work differently and Cryptocurrency mostly gain value overtime and two, Cryptocurrency is not constrained by borders.
If I want to move money to somewhere abroad, you will have all those issue of exchanging to the currency of the other country and during that transaction you lose money, but Cryptocurrency is borderless, as you can transfer money to anywhere in the world because it is technology and you are using the internet for the transaction.
Three, Crytocurrency is secure in the sense that if you have your money in your wallet, maybe stored in your laptop, computer or smartphone, it means that when you have the money and you are able to secure your wallet, nobody can take it away from you.
It is more secure than the normal cash and one thing more unique about Cryptocurrency is that Cryptocurrency is coming to create new money. What that means is that it is able to emancipate huge population from poverty, because now we are creating new money and lastly it is the most portable form of currency we have right now in the world.
Future of Cryptocurrency in Africa?
I am actually going to talk about it future in the world. Right now, all indication have it that Cryptocurrency is the currency for the future and Africans can’t afford to be left behind because we will be losing big time if we did.
Cryptocurency is the future money and there is no debate about that and all the cash, what we also call fiat money is something that in the next ten to twenty years will be obsolete. Cyrtocurrency is the future of currency in the world.
What do you mean by Crytocurrency eliminating poverty?
Let me give you a simple example. If you look at most African countries, the biggest employers is the government. So what does the government do, it employs people, gives them salary and then they tax them. What that means is that the government is operating like a creator of value.
If people are able to acquire this money and create value for themselves, what they have done is that they have actually lifted themselves from poverty and now can participate in buying of goods and services simply because they have the currency. Another angle to look at it from is the success of Bitcoin.
Bitcoin started in year 2009 and in less than ten years it is valued around $120billion, so what exactly has happened is that Bitcoin has created value for money and the people who are involve in Bitcoin currently, actually acquired it for a value less than a dollar and they have been able to acquire money and value.
So what if we in Africa do the same thing, by creating a currency and overtime it gains value and that currency is distributed to the populace in Africa. Exactly what that means is helping people come out of poverty’.
Do you have any plan of educating people about Onyxcoin (Cryptocurrency)?
Yes, we have actually being doing that, Right now we have done seminars in Lagos, Benin city, Onitsha and we are also going to be doing another in Ibadan.
This is exactly what we are going to be doing in every other African countries, educating people about Cryptocurrency. The most important thing for any invention is for people to understand it and that’s why we are educating people about it.