Our newly appointed CEO, Vladimir Kardapoltsev, answered the most asked questions within our community. Vladimir uncovered his actions on the new role and dived deep into the PointPay platform upgrades, licensing, and listing processes, as well as plans for future development.
Below you can find a summary of the AMA held on the 20th of October, 2021.
Alina (Host): All right. Let’s start by introducing our new acting CEO at PointPay. We’re delighted to have you in our company. What is going on in the company right now?
Vladimir: Well, let me start by saying thank you for believing in our project. I am incredibly grateful to lead PointPay. I have been working in this company for almost half a year, and it’s is very young and powerful.
I’ve been involved in the crypto and software development industries for almost seven years. I have quite a lot of experience in specifically fintech and token development.
Alina (Host): Do you have anything to add?
Vladimir: Well, pretty much. In terms of our plans: you know, they’re great. We are currently going through the process of change. The company started as a start-up with ten employees. Raising so much money for an ICO project is a tough job. I’ve worked in many start-ups, and I’ve never seen anybody achieve something as great as this.
For the last half a year, we’ve hired a lot of people. We have one hundred and twelve employees in our company. I think about 80% of them are working full time. So, it’s a huge company and a huge undertaking as well.
For the last few months, we’ve been trying to work on the platform’s scalability. To put it bluntly, the platform written in 2019 was not scalable. During those three years, technology has moved on considerably. We’re working now to establish good business and management processes.
For the last four months, I’ve focused on improving the infrastructure system and platform’s scalability. We’ve rewritten the heart and brain of our code, the matcher and the gateway on the go. We’re trying to build a big company. This transition takes a lot of time, and it’s not a smooth process:
- In terms of management, moving from 10 people to 100 people is difficult.
- In terms of development, the platform was written for a small number of people. Therefore, transformation to an exchange written for millions of users is quite difficult.
We’re trying to make those things happen on the platform’s back end and the service side — we’re upgrading our service to accommodate more people. Furthermore, we are introducing new features of our platform, which I will tell you about shortly.
What else? The management has changed. You know, I don’t like saying bad things about the old guard, but running a 10-person company and a 100-person company is quite a different thing. So, we’re growing.
We’ve had the foundations for a shack. But now we’re building a foundation for a skyscraper. We know that we have the possibility of creating one of the best crypto banks that has ever existed. We’ve been trying to reinforce the foundations and rebuild some components. That’s why we’ve been silent because we’ve been rewriting parts of the platform.
I would also like to announce a sixth token burn. We’ve been burning 100K tokens more every single week.
Alina (Host): Do you have any announcements regarding listing statuses?
Vladimir: I was hoping to give you a great update today. Unfortunately, our legal team and the legal team of the exchange have told me that I’m not able to do so. So currently, we’re holding talks with three top-10 exchanges and one top-20 exchange — it’s a regional exchange, which works specifically for an Asian market.
Alina (Host): Do you know anything about the legal status of the crypto and banking licenses at the moment?
Vladimir: We are working on expanding our services to the USA, notably establishing a separate PointPlay US exchange.
- At the moment, we have a money transmitter license in Wyoming. We’ve also applied for the money transmitter license and the BitLicense in New York.
- We have a legal opinion from a top New York lawyer, stating that our token is not a security but a utility token. Furthermore, we are currently waiting for a surety bond, a credit report, and an FBI report.
So, I think you’re going to hear some great news about our US services by the end of the year. Unfortunately, we cannot move all of our services there because of the regulatory requirements.
- We’ve also had preliminary approval from a Kazakhstan financial authority to receive a financial fintech license there.
- We’ve applied for a VASP license — a virtual asset service provider license in the Cayman Islands.
- We’re at an advanced stage with a BitLicense in Croatia, in Gibraltar. Furthermore, we’re currently working on a banking license in Dominica.
Alina (Host): We’ve picked out the most asked questions from the community. The first one is from Omar. Omar wants to know when we expect the PointPay exchange to work smoothly with Android and iOS apps?
Vladimir: We’ve been working on the back end of the exchange quite heavily to restructure all services. That’s why while we’re deploying, the services have stopped. Unfortunately, the original architecture of the code was designed so that we have to stop our services for quite a significant amount of time to do that.
On the back end, we’ve been rewriting the matcher. It’s the brain of our platform that matches all of the orders together. We’ve been introducing more liquidity, new trading pairs, and orders. Also, we’ve redesigned our exchange since it looked a bit dated and not user-friendly. Alina, please, post the photographs that I’ve sent you in the main chat please.
Alina (Host): Give me a moment.
Vladimir: So we’ve redesigned the entire concept of exchange. Currently, the Exchange part is unavailable in our mobile apps. It’s been tested many times, and, hopefully, we should be releasing it within the next week or two.
Alina (Host): I post the picture into the chat.
Vladimir: Okay. I was asked quite persistently that the withdrawals took a bit long — I think we’ve completed all of them. Due to security issues, we had to introduce the scoring system. Since we don’t have KYC yet, we have to deal with every transaction exceeding a certain amount manually. That’s because the old system was written this way. It’s a temporary thing.
We are trying to introduce more security measures on our backend side:
1. We’ve added disaster recovery.
2. We will have KYC within the next few weeks.
You know, I was surprised that we weren’t hacked. The platform before didn’t have any single security feature at all. For example, you would be able to access our previous version of the platform using a VPN. You cannot do this now because we are not allowing VPN access to PointPay.
- We have a register of suspicious IPs.
- We have a list of politically exposed and money laundering people.
In normal circumstances, we would stop the platform and build it all from scratch. Unfortunately, we have to work with a platform and introduce new features simultaneously. Therefore, there are some delays in services.
Alina (Host): Another question is whether there is any plan to start listing other tokens on the PointPay platform?
Vladimir: I think once we stabilize the back end of our platform, that should be done latest mid-November. We’ve already introduced a couple of tokens on a “test basis.” We have a plan until March next year to introduce a new ERC 20 token every other week.
Alina (Host): What product from the PointPay ecosystem is expected to generate the most future revenue?
Vladimir: Well, the exchange is as profitable as every other our service. We’re introducing an ICO launchpad soon. Probably, it should have a different name because I think Binance owns the “launchpad” tradename. We have hired top salespeople from Europe to market it. For now, it is going to be the most profitable part of the platform.
Alina (Host): Many people were interested in the security measures that ensure our company members’ funds.
- We’ve been making the disaster recovery for our services.
- We keep the funds of our users entirely secure. We have an external team of specialists who come every single week and test our platform for vulnerabilities.
- We have a security person from the top bank in Eastern Europe who is doing our security there.
- We’ve introduced many security features from KYC, and we have an AML officer.
We have been doing quite a lot of structural work on ensuring that the funds of the people who trade on our platform are secure. We haven’t had any breaches so far. Hopefully, we will never have them.
Alina (Host): OK, that’s great. Another popular question is what and when is the next big update in terms of service that can affect the token price?
Vladimir: Well, as I’ve said before, we’re introducing the new platform. Furthermore, we are hiring the top specialists to make our launchpad the most successful thing ever.
We’re also working on the B2B payment system that should be introduced after New Year.
In terms of the payment services, we’ve introduced ACH payments and Swift payments. I can tell you that’s incredibly hard to get — we’ve been working on it for more than two years. Pretty much nobody has it, and we’re very proud of it.
In addition, obtaining licenses and listing on the top-10 exchange should help our price quite considerably.
Alina (Host): Definitely. Can you tell us a little bit of what’s going on behind the scenes there?
Vladimir: Well, we had a strategic marketing plan approved quite a while ago. We have hired a content writer and a social media marketing strategist quite recently. So, we’re trying to attract the top talent in the industry at the moment.
We are striving to redo the work on our crypto school, which we were planning to be one of our most significant projects. I think we are also introducing a crypto blog quite soon, intending to publish at least three times a week. We are planning to be more present within the crypto and the regular finance communities.
Alina (Host): All right. I have a few more questions, but I wanted to see if you would like to take some questions from the community.
Holly: Do you plan something to add liquidity on Uniswap?
Vladimir: Because we are applying for crypto for licenses, we cannot add liquidity officially on Uniswap as that would classify PXP as a security.
Adam: Hi, Vladimir. I had a question about the PXP token. Are there any plans to expand the utility of the XRP token in other ways?
- At the moment, our token enables people to cut the taker/maker fees on our platform.
- Customers can reduce their transfer fees, and the transfer fees within the PointPay ecosystem are free.
- Furthermore, you get better rates on crypto loans at the moment as well.
- You also get access to the premium tutorials, but we’re going to expand that soon.
I think there was a question about the Point Bay blockchain. We’re probably going to introduce that sometime next year since we’re working on more critical services. At the moment, we’re trying to find more profitable revenue streams to make our platform more economically stable. Own blockchain is helpful for the users, but financially it’s not a top priority.
Miriam: Can we see any of the top-tier exchanges by the end of this year?
Vladimir: I was planning to tell you the great news. Unfortunately, even if we sign all of the papers and perform the KYC and AML, even if the investment committee says it’s fine, we have to find a slot within the exchange timetable.
We have one exchange in the works — it’s a top-10 exchange — but we cannot announce it yet since we’ve signed an NDA.
Miriam: That’s fine. But how about our own exchange? Because I know some of us are having issues with BitGlobal, especially with the high fees.
Vladimir: Well, the BitGlobal fees are linked to the Ethereum fees. I feel your pain — I own PXP tokens as well. If we list it on our platform, other exchanges will look at us less favorably because we will take away the market. That’s why we have to withhold this currently. We have to juggle those things together, whether we want to list on a top-10 or our exchange.
Dmitriy: What is the current listing status? Do we have a clear plan for the listing schedule?
Vladimir: OK, let’s put it this way. We hope to be listed by the end of the year, but that’s not down to us. That’s down to the slots that are available on the given exchange.
We have an internal plan, but I cannot say roughly anything due to the NDA reasons. However, I can reassure you that talks are going on at the moment.
Sammy: Some other crypto banks already run crypto banking services. So I want to know your vision: what kind of services make PointPay quite different from the other crypto bank and PXP outstanding?
Vladimir: First of all, our fees are a lot lower, our yields are a lot higher. We are working on a break-even point. We are trying to attract as many people as possible to our platform, while other companies are working on profit.
We are one of the few who are applying for a physical license. I don’t think any other crypto bank is doing so. It’s a challenging undertaking: if anybody hears the word crypto, they will just run away, especially banks, because it’s tough to verify a person. So, to obtain the banking license, as I’ve said before, we are introducing the KYC procedures because it wouldn’t be possible to establish a bank without it.
Jeff: How are the partnerships coming along?
Vladimir: As I’ve said before, we have partnerships with the ACH and Swift payment. We have a strategic partnership plan with quite a lot of companies. Unfortunately, we’re not able to disclose this because of NDA reasons. Not shortly.
Matt: Are there any monetary constraints imposed by the board of directors that could delay the listing? I know Andrey touched on this.
Vladimir: No, absolutely not. That’s not true. The board of directors is interested in the success of this project. Any single monitor has been approved — you just have to have financial reasonings for that. Listings are in the interest of the company.
You know, most of the top-10 exchanges have extraordinarily high listing fees. We’re still willing to pay them. If any cost has any reasonable justification, the board of directors will approve it.
Franbuzz: I want to know why we can’t unstake the tokens if we are staking.
Vladimir: Well, you know, that’s how it works in the bank: if you put your money for a fixed amount of time and decide to take it out earlier, you’re not going to get any money back. I read that it is still possible in other blockchains, and we’re going to explore this opportunity shortly. But right now, we are following this model.
Athirah: Hi, Vladimir. Can you share more about PointPay involvement in NFT?
Vladimir: We are working on the NFT platform at the moment. We are currently writing a strategic partnership plan for the top NFT artists. We have a person who is dedicated explicitly to that.
The Binance did a great thing, and we’re trying to follow up, but it’s tough. It’s a small market, and about 95% percent is dedicated to its leaders. We’re trying to make something probably different than everybody else is expecting. I don’t have the timeline in mind at the moment, but it has been developed.
Tam: How soon would it take to get back to the pre-price before the listing?
Vladimir: The only thing that we can do is burn our tokens. Otherwise, PXP is going to be classified as a security. And if that happens, our possibilities of being listed on different exchanges are pretty limited. The SEC, Securities Exchange Commission, will publish a thing that will say that we are a security, which would mean that we cannot apply to pretty much anywhere.
In terms of maintaining the price, it’s a free market. We’re not affecting the token financially, but we can support our token because we’ve been concentrating so much on the listings.
Moonwalker: Are you planning on adding any more tokens to the platform like Quant or Vector Space or AllianceBlock, by any chance?
Vladimir: We have a plan to list the top 50 ERC 20 tokens shortly. I’m not sure that those are in there. It takes up to one week to integrate a token built on the Ethereum network into our system. In terms of a native network, it requires from two to three weeks.
Tony: I had a concern that a lot of section heads or managers went across. Now, one of your jobs is to bring this all together, I suppose. How are you planning to ensure that the legal, marketing and development operations are integrated, so each team knows what others are doing?
Vladimir: In terms of bringing everybody together, we have heads of departments who meet weekly or bi-weekly. I’ve been involved in the most significant part of the development process. Well, I can say that I wasn’t much involved in other parts of the company, but I’m engaged in it right now.
I have weekly talks with the legal department, and I’m involved within the marketing department. We also have daily C-Suite meetings. I’m still learning, you know, it’s only been two weeks. I haven’t been involved within the support department and other departments yet, but I’m working incredibly hard. It’s a challenging task, and I’m working incredibly hard to bring everybody together. Just give me a couple of weeks to get on to other departments as well.
Tony: Ok, great. You mentioned it as a conduit for exchanging and transferring funds. Have you considered something that’s a little bit more crypto-orientated?
Vladimir: We have to work with the most popular providers to achieve a higher market share. I know that some other companies are cheaper, but we have to appeal to most people. If you would like to pay for your banking or telephone services, some companies do not accept payments except swift or ACH. Of course, we plan to integrate more systems in the future.
Tony: And the last question. The ICC in the United States is not being very crypto-friendly at the moment: Coinbase has been threatened, and Ripple is in a lawsuit. How do you navigate that?
Vladimir: We have three legal opinions across the world: an American one, a European one, and now we’re currently obtaining a Singaporean one as well. Legal opinions are the only thing that we could do, unfortunately. I don’t think our token is a security token, and we’re trying to do everything not to be considered a security but a utility token. So far, we’ve been successful. But the SEC and the other departments could change their definitions any day. So, we will have to work within other regulatory frameworks.
OK, last question, if you don’t mind.
Danny: For us, investors are essential. We are most afraid that the CEO can think anything, but the so-called board of directors can come and decide, namely Ilya and Olga.
Vladimir: Well, I could say that they’re both silent investors; they’re not involved in projects, attend kind of monthly meetings, and monitor the development and strategy of the project. They’ve, of course, elected me. But much of the input is in both my and the executive team’s hands.
Ilya invested in the project, and he believes in it. He sends us his feedback occasionally. I know there has been a lot of hype everywhere that you know he’s running the company, which is not true. And the things that Andrey was saying are not true either.
I’m running the company, and we have a C-Suite that is running the company. I have the privilege that I’m the first among equals the C-suite representatives. I don’t have the final say on anything as we have to vote on many things. It’s a proper way as it stops us from making foolish decisions. I think that’s a lot of FUD.
I think we’re going to end it here. I thank you all for attending this AMA session. I hope that you enjoy it. I promise to do my best to make this project great again. I will be working incredibly hard, and I thank you for your support!
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