With inefficient, siloed business models and antiquated technology holding back traditional banks, the door has been opened for a global Decentralized Finance (DeFi) alternative to transform the future of global finance.
Enter Jason Blick and EQIBank, a global digital bank boasting customers in over 100 countries. In this interview Jason will shed some light on DeFi and why it is so important for the future of the financial industry.
1. Hello Jason, we'd love to hear how EQIBank came to be? What prompted you to create a new global digital bank?
EQIBank came about for several reasons: the first is to offer an unprecedented level of customer service. Our clients really appreciate digital but still highly personal customer service.
Second, EQIBank's mission is to build a more interconnected banking world. While building on the rich and diverse history of banking, EQIBank is a digital bank for the present day with a network spanning 180 countries and territories.
As well as offering the kind of premiere digital banking services you'd expect from a bank like EQIBank, we also provide Banking as a Service and DeFi services in the form of EQIFi.
2. Can you tell us a bit more about EQIFi? How does it work? And how is it different from other DeFi projects?
EQIFi is the first DeFi protocol in partnership with a fully licensed and regulated digital Bank. This fact alone sets EQIFi apart from every other DeFi project on the market today.
A decentralized protocol for pooled lending, borrowing, and investing for ETH, ERC-20 tokens including wBTC, Stablecoins, and select fiat currencies, EQIFi provides a single uniform platform for DeFi products with potential access to EQIBank bank accounts, loans, custody, debit and credit cards, OTC, and wealth management.
Customers expect the convenience of digital channels for their day-to-day banking activities worldwide, and EQIFi's infrastructure is optimized for real-time digital interactions. Today's culture embraces the evolution of digital technologies. EQIFi is an extension of this, establishing trustless transactions as a compelling new standard, driving real-world adoption.
3. It has been said that traditional banks, which have long ruled the landscape, are finding it difficult to keep pace with innovative fintech offerings. Why is that? And do traditional banks have any real hope of ever bridging that gap?
The truth is, in traditional finance, distinctly separate silos of function have been reinforced by legacy systems developed to meet the needs of centralized institutions. This idea of assigning separate silos to each banking product, such as one for a current account, another for a credit card, and another for a mortgage loan, has been central to every financial crisis, in turn increasing mistrust of banks among the public.
Many customers feel that traditional banks have failed to offer a fair and sustainable business model to maintain safe and secure lending strategies.
Do they have any hope of keeping pace with the more innovative new kids on the block? Time will tell, but at the moment, they are simply too big to adopt a full-scale solution to replace their infrastructure, brick and mortar costs, technology, and antiquated operating models. Their levels of hierarchy, antiquated mainframe systems, siloed business models, mountains of paperwork, hidden or difficult-to-understand fees and payment schedules have been the subject of criticism for several years.
4. While DeFi may be the future of finance, it isn't without its problems. Can you highlight some of those, and tell us how EQIFi can help provide the solutions?
At this early stage, DeFi certainly isn't perfect. Decentralized protocols still face material issues, including achieving a seamless user experience and secure industry standards. They often incur smart contract vulnerability, lack of interoperability with wBTC and other blockchains, over-collateralization, low liquidity, difficulty switching between blockchains, and issues with fiat on/off ramps.
In the case of lending and borrowing, one of the biggest problems today is over-collateralization. As there are no guarantees with such a volatile market, lenders want significantly higher collateral for their loans. This leads to a situation where many lenders won't work with a borrower unless they can effectively front a significant amount of assets, undermining the essential function of borrowing. The situation then does not fulfill one of the main philosophies of DeFi, which is to bank the unbanked. It also causes notable cuts into profits made on leverage trading, discouraging that use case as well.
EQIFi solves these problems by providing a complete, community-governed, DeFi solution. By providing users with a single interface, clients can manage their entire banking, trading and lending services for fiat and cryptocurrencies.
EQIFi solves pressing issues related to trust in DeFi itself, making it a perfect instrument for today's savvy customer who is looking for services based on higher social values with better terms.
5. As we move into 2021, what do you see the future of finance looking like? And what plans does EQIBank have for the rest of the year?
Bank of America analyst Francisco Blanch recently claimed that "DeFi is the most fundamental challenge to modern finance that we've encountered."
He's 100% right.
The future of finance, especially for traditional centralized institutions, will be determined by how they deal with the challenge of DeFi.
They can choose to embrace it, modernize their systems and the fundamentals of how they run their business, or they can fall by the wayside. It's as simple as that.
As for EQIBank, we're just going to keep doing what we've always done - provide the services and products that our clients crave and do so with an unprecedented level of customer service.
It's going to be a big year, so watch this space!