VOiP Creator Bets On CelPay To Become The Venmo Of Blockchain


Celsius hopes to open up the blockchain market by enabling a seamless transaction of cryptocurrency – whether borrowing or lending.Getty

If you think about the world of blockchain and cryptocurrency, what would be your main concern? I’d hazard a guess and say it was stability. There’s no getting away from it, right now the market is volatile, but that volatility mostly comes from a fear of the unknown.

It’s a catch22, regulate the industry and you take away the value of decentralization, leave as it is and we face multiple peaks and troughs as investors get spooked.

So what can be done to add confidence to a growing industry? While the use of blockchain as a secure way to store a transaction has been proven, it is perhaps Nakamoto’s dream of using it as a base for currency which stands on slightly shakier ground.

While banking and other financial technologies are still getting to grips with the blockchain regulation complications, others are investing in its foundations. One of the companies I was interested to read about is Celsius Network, who announced only back in August that they had bagged one of the ‘Fathers of blockchain’, W. Scott Stornetta, who’s 1992 co-authored paper, ‘How to timestamp a digital document’, was one of the original sources used in Nakamoto’s Bitcoin whitepaper.

Interesting credentials

Add to the mix the inventor of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) Alex Mashinsky, who founded Celsius and continues as CEO, and you have some interesting credentials. So what is Celsius all about? Perhaps altruistically, the company aren’t looking to open up a new marketplace, they’re trying to bring new clients to the existing one.

Mashinksy explains:

Our goal at Celsius is to add 100 million new users to the cryptocurrency community by offering innovative, customer-centric financial services, including borrowing and lending.”

This new form of banking on the blockchain will allow customers to easily deposit, borrow, and earn interest with cryptocurrency. And the team hope that by welcoming such blockchain legends on to their advisory board, they will have the clout to achieve it. Essentially, Stornetta is there to validate the project, but he is more than just a trophy, he brings with him a legion of loyal fans who respect where he adds his weight.

Just as colleague and fellow co-author Stuart Haber has found success with Auditchain as Chief Scientist, Stornetta also sees value in the financial sector. That’s not to say that everything he touches turns to gold, but Celsius has done well to have not just one, but two heavyweights on board. And people are listening.

Not about money

For Mashinksy though, the possibilities of new technology have never been about money, and that becomes evident when you look at the success of VoIP. As one of the inventors with foundational patents dating back to 1994, over 3 billion people currently use VOIP for free worldwide, so it is perhaps no surprise that with Celsius he is now proposing MoIP (Money over Internet Protocol), to free the concept of processing money between borders. Celsius has called this CelPay and hope that it will become the blockchain alternative to Venmo.

So how do you convince a generation of weary investors that the internet, and by default the blockchain, is the best home for their hard-earned cash? Mashinsky is hoping that is social quest will stand them in good stead. Born in the Ukraine and raised in Russia, he believes in the good that his world-class team of developers can create.

He says:

We want to focus on Money Over IP and unlike any other blockchain company we work for the community and staying compliant. CelPay is solving the biggest obstacle for adoption of the Blockchain – ease of use. Just like Venmo enabled a whole generation to never step into a bank and do all their payments and transfers from their phones CelPay is going to enable hundreds of millions of consumers to bypass all the currency and regulatory restrictions that are in place to ensure they are shackled to the banking system. CelPay enables anyone on the planet to UnBank themselves and have their money work for them instead of them working for the money. The whole team honestly cares about doing good & doing well at the same time.”

Attractive rates for borrowers and lenders

Celsius are driving towards loans for everyone, by connecting crypto holders with borrowers via a working platform that promises to pay up to 7% for those looking to earn. Whereas loans attract just a 5% APR rate, highly competitive against mainstream banks.

How do they plan on doing this? They’re introducing a new token – Cel Token, which taps into the CelPay userface. The best feature? You can send coins and pay friends back instantly, worldwide with no fees. And you don’t need a crypto wallet either.

Simply download the app through the digital store of your choice and away you go.

But is Celsius too good to be true? They already have 10,000 registered users and raised $50million back in March when they launched their ICO. With the promise of low APR rates, no fees and the attraction of an app without a crypto wallet, it is quite possible that Mashinsky may hit his target of 100 million users. The only question is, will other financial institutions have woken up by then and could they, with their market share and big bucks advertising budgets, steal Celsius’s thunder? Would they? It’s a scenario I can’t wait to find out more about.



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