We asked builders in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space what they thought about the industry…and added some random zingers to keep them on their toes!
This week, we asked Alyssa Tsai, founder and CEO of Panony, an incubator, investor and advisor to blockchain and Web3 businesses, 6 questions.
My name is Alyssa Tsai, and I’m the founder and CEO of Panony. Our group has three business pillars. PANews is one of the earliest encrypted media in Greater China and Korea. It has published over 20,000 articles and averages over 5 million monthly views. At Panony, we invest in blockchain projects and consult Fortune 500 companies globally to integrate and expand the industry, covering the entire blockchain industry from solution providers and exchanges to public chains, protocols and DApps. I’m also a limited partner at NGC Ventures, Animoca Metaverse Fund and Delta Fund.
My previous work experience included Condé Nast, Isentia, Ogilvy, and a high-tech law firm before falling down the cryptocurrency rabbit hole. I also actively speak and moderate at global blockchain conferences.
1 — What are the main barriers to mass adoption of blockchain technology?
The industry is still in its infancy. There are many challenges we should be aware of, even though it is already a buzzword in the tech world. Scalability issues are directly related to adoption and blockchain implementation. This question is about whether the system can run smoothly as demand increases, which inevitably dictates mass integration.
It’s also important to address the complexity of blockchain technology that limits the mass market’s ability to appreciate these benefits. The barriers to entry are high, so people need to struggle to understand, let alone have to keep up with rapid changes and disruptions. Now they might as well use a good enough solution for their needs, such as regular financial services.
That’s why I feel like I’m doing a meaningful job every day. It’s too early for blockchain, it’s never too early for us. There is so much to do and so many people we can support through education. The future is now.
2 — Which countries are doing the most to support blockchain and which will be left behind?
Since I’m from Greater China, I can share what’s happening here from my perspective.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has said the country needs to “seize the opportunities presented by blockchain technology.” Following this principle, China has been developing a platform called a “blockchain-based service network” that aims to make it easier for businesses to implement blockchain technology. Many governments are experimenting with CBDCs — a central bank digital currency with a blockchain at its core — and China is experimenting with its digital yuan.
In recent years, the country has issued statements in support of the development of blockchain technology across multiple sectors and wants to integrate the technology into its financial and growth strategies. We also appreciate its intent to establish industry norms or tariff incentives to support blockchain-based businesses.
Hong Kong has a strong system that has spawned Animoca Brands, Crypto.com, BitMEX and many other prominent companies in the industry. Globally, Switzerland has SEBA Bank, the first regulated cryptocurrency bank in the country. In 2016, the local government of Zug became the first city in the world to accept bitcoin for taxes; in 2020, Swiss authorities allowed citizens and companies in Zug to pay taxes in bitcoin or ether.
Other countries such as the United States, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, and South Africa also play an important role in the blockchain ecosystem.
3 — What would you like to see tokenized? When do you expect this to happen, if at all?
Art history in museums, such as Dunhuang frescoes. I visited many years ago and learned that many experts and scientists are working tirelessly to find a solution to slow down the oxidation of murals caused by light and air exposure. Tokenizing these can help bring more money into research and democratize investment in art by making art works accessible to the public. It can happen anytime.
Also, charitable work and support for research is great to see tokenization, especially in the shadow of COVID-19.
4 – What makes sense to you and what doesn’t?
gender equality. As a young female entrepreneur from the East and connected to the West, I plead for more investment and education around women. I have met many strong women of all backgrounds who are as smart and hardworking as men. Indeed, challenges remain: discriminatory legislation exists, social practices remain, and women remain underrepresented at all levels of leadership.
When it comes to education, it doesn’t make sense to me to teach children to learn for the pride of their parents. We should focus on personal growth.
5 — Which parallel movie world would you most like to live in and why?
Marvel’s. At the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, it suddenly dawned on me that we could really have a powerful superhero that could save thousands of lives. Plus, these films are about incredible, exciting voyages through time. I would love to discover new worlds. For now, I’m going to have to embrace cryptocurrency as the wild new world I’m going to explore.
6 — Think of a favorite poem or music lyrics. What is it and why does it speak to you?
From Li Bai’s “Please Enter Wine” in Tang Dynasty: “When there is hope, oh, get drunk; never let your wine glass be empty under the moonlight! God, we have talents; we are not in vain. A thousand gold coins; more will appear again.” For those who may be interested in the original version – Li Jiangjinjiu “: “If you are proud of your life, you must reinvent yourself, don’t let the golden bottle be empty against the moon. Li Jiang entered the wine”, all the money was scattered.”
I learned this classical Chinese poem in middle school and it was eye-opening to me that people who lived thousands of years ago could lead a fulfilling life even if they were excluded from the position of emperor. I guess that’s how I learned about resilience and not being afraid of challenges.
To this day, I still remember every word in this poem, inspiring me, giving me strength – just like Li Bai, I am inspired to keep going through difficulties and stay true. I just keep doing what I believe in, even when I’m feeling down.
The aspirations of the young, ambitious blockchain community:
Be aggressive and inclusive. Know your community and listen to your community. Enhance and add value to each other through cooperation and fair competition.