Newconomics 2023 - Meet our Speakers: Cyrus Fazel
We hope we are going to be able to welcome you to Newconomics in Lisbon next month. Things are getting exciting as we continue to book the best and brightest business talent working with web3 technologies. One such guest is Cyrus Fazel, Founder of SwissBorg which aims to democratise wealth management and connects leading crypto exchanges to offer access to liquidity. He kindly shared his inspiration to start working with blockchain technologies and his hopes for the future.
“My main focus is how to make a good link between the mission of financial freedom for all, and making sure that employees and communities are all aligned on that mission.
I was born as the nouveau poor. People talk about the nouveau riche, but I come from a family that lost everything. Growing up as a refugee you have very high standards but you don’t have the means for it. Usually when you go through a difficult phase as a kid, you work out that what is missing is money and that money will repair whatever your family is missing. I think this is what took me into wealth management but after ten years among the hedge funds, I realised I was only widening the wealth gap and that was the scariest thing in the world. I wanted to help to make an equilibrium and help more people to be financially free. You usually get self actualisation after you have financial freedom. When you don’t have to worry about money it has an impact on your self expression and you can be yourself and make your own decisions.
To me, web3 is a way to democratically organise societies. That’s the bigger picture. Within that there are ways to create meritocratic systems anywhere. Web3 is a way to make sure that communities are rewarded in a fair way. From there you empower users who can decide how they want to grow their ecosystems and applications.
When I discovered Bitcoin through friends, I saw people buying things on the darkweb and I never really got it. I saw that some people were doing this for video games too, but I still wasn’t that interested. I saw people losing lots of money when Bitcoin dropped, and I could see that there was some excitement in the financial speculation, but I still wasn't that interested. It finally clicked for me when it was my father’s birthday and I forgot until it was only three days before. I was in Switzerland and I wanted to get something for him in Tehran. I called my cousin and asked what I could do in such a short time, and he said, send me some Bitcoin and I’ll buy him the bottle of whiskey and I realised that there would be more people than just me who needed to send money around the world without restrictions in that peer to peer way. I could see once Ethereum launched that this could be used for so much more. We already had a Swissborg web2 version, and we realised that we could turn to web3 tech and blockchain to expand our services and reach the entire world.
Not everyone is able to see this yet. To really understand crypto you need tech, finance, political, application and strategic knowledge as well as understanding of how societies online are changing. It’s really wide and it takes a lot, I still have issues of understanding and I have been living and breathing it for seven years. This is a barrier to a lot of people, especially as 99% of projects die and people see money disappear. It takes time to learn how to invest safely, but when you do, that provides a lot of fun as well.
Anything that is B2C can be improved with crypto. Right now when we use social media applications we are enslaved, we are working for free. We think we are participating as part of a network, but you’re not really getting rewarded. Web3 is a contrast that frees people to be rewarded fairly in any ecosystem.”
Find out more about the new economics of Web3 and how it can change the way we work together at the Newconomics event in Lisbon. Full details and registration can be found on the website.