In an interview with Cointelegraph, Alex Mashinsky, the founder of the decentralized finance app Celsius Network, took aim at the crypto community for becoming fixated on short-term profiteering and failing to drive mass adoption. Mashinsky urged the community to capitalize on the opportunity to redefine money and finance offered amid the deepening global economic crisis.

Mashinsky dismisses Bitcoin in 2010

Celsius is Mashinsky’s eighth company, with his prior seven ventures including two unicorn start-ups that raised over $1 billion combined. He holds patents for Voice over Internet Protocol from 1994, and he founded a global commodity exchange in 1996. Mashinsky stated that one of his employees showed him the Bitcoin white paper in 2010, noting that he then laughed at it and thought, this will never happen.

“I mean, this is the slowest database ever created. It’s so inefficient and needs so much electricity — it’s this crazy idea.”

He added that his entire career had been about finding better, cheaper and faster solutions, and “here is something that is slower, more expensive and really cumbersome, so it totally did not appeal to me.” But one moment, in particular, struck a chord with Mashinsky:

“After Mt. Gox collapsed, seeing the resiliency of this community — imagine if Nasdaq and the New York Stock Exchange disappeared overnight and everybody just kept going as if nothing happened. That is what happened in the crypto community, basically, from 2013 to 2014. I realized that I was missing something very big and had to completely reevaluate my position on crypto assets and decentralization.”

Motivations underpinning the creation of Celsius

Despite its resilience, Mashinsky characterized the crypto space as then offering little more than “a niche playground for geeks and developers.”

Alex Mashinsky: We have to create something that will bring more utility and create less volatility because otherwise hundreds of millions of people are just not…

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