Kellogg Fairbank is CEO of Nash, a fintech that makes cryptocurrency and decentralized finance easily available by bridging the gap between traditional banking and blockchain. He is an experienced technology executive and entrepreneur with more than a decade of experience in senior leadership roles in the fintech and payments industries, including positions at Braintree / Venmo and PayPal. As a speaker at BLOCKCHANCE Europe 2021, we asked Kellogg some questions about Nash and the future and got great insights.
I recently read that Nash offers crypto safe and easy at the same time. How does that work?
Making crypto simple is already one way of making it safe. If you can design a UI for buying, storing, trading and earning that is as simple as a digital banking app, then you’ve already eliminated a number of points where beginners can make mistakes, like sending to the wrong address, or accidentally paying huge transaction fees. Of course, the other major feature Nash brings to the table is non-custodial security. On Nash, users are always in control of their funds, which is safer than centralized, custodial solutions, where exploitation in the system could give access to all user assets. Nash also uses multi-party computation to sign transactions, meaning users have the option of blocking certain wallet operations, whitelisting addresses, and so on. Your full private key never enters your device’s memory. This is another layer of security for user wallets, and we’re one of very few platforms to offer it.
How do you explain the rising importance of digital wallets?
People are drawn to convenience. It’s simply easier to pay at a checkout with your phone, which you can pull out of your pocket, than to search through your wallet for a card – or for cash. The coronavirus pandemic has done a lot to underline this convenience too, with a huge emphasis on contactless payments. Cryptocurrencies are the logical next extension of the shift towards digital versions of traditional cash. They can offer the same convenient experience, but with even more efficiency in the underlying settlement structure – and, of course, the additional benefits of non-custodial, decentralized currencies.
What will the world in 10 years look like?
Sticking to crypto, I think it will be mainstream by then, but a large role will have been played by state-level solutions run by central banks. So-called “central bank digital currencies” already have a lot of benefits, even if they aren’t decentralized. It’s worth remembering that everyday people are still quite skeptical of cryptocurrency. This will do a lot to validate the technology for the general public. They will see “official” solutions built on the blockchain, which can nonetheless interact with DeFi apps. Imagine being able to lend out “real” euros on Aave, without having to go through other stablecoins. Banking apps will have to incorporate crypto functions as a standard. This is already what we at Nash are anticipating – we’re building one of the first apps that offers accounts with IBANs alongside a full crypto wallet and blockchain applications. I think apps like ours will be the standard in ten years.
How do you gain confidence for the future?
I look at where we are, how far we’ve come, and project where we can go. The best way to be confident is to have realistic expectations – but when it comes to the crypto space, I think those realistic expectations are already very exciting!
BLOCKCHANCE Europe 2021
Kellogg Fairbank is an experienced entrepreneur and a realist whose work aims towards an exciting future. Meet him at the upcoming BLOCKCHANCE Europe 2021 conference, where he will hold a keynote speech! Get your ticket here and take a deep dive into the universe of future technologies.