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Zachari Saltmer Decodes Startup Success and Failure: Insights for Avoiding Business Failure

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“For those operating in the blockchain space, it’s crucial to focus on growth and adoption, both at the retail and institutional levels,” noted Zatoshi. Let us introduce Zachari Saltmer, the influential co-founder of One Big Fund, affectionately known in his circles as Zatoshi. As a seasoned trader and venture capitalist, his insights have had a profound impact in the arena of crypto markets, particularly with innovations such as BRC-20 and ERC-6551. As we set foot into the next cycle of growth, let’s glean some significant business wisdom from Zatoshi on topics ranging from launching an investment fund to the root causes of startup failures. Welcome, Zachari. We’re thrilled to have you with us today. Can you start off by sharing some details about your personal background, your

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“For those operating in the blockchain space, it’s crucial to focus on growth and adoption, both at the retail and institutional levels,” noted Zatoshi.

Let us introduce Zachari Saltmer, the influential co-founder of One Big Fund, affectionately known in his circles as Zatoshi. As a seasoned trader and venture capitalist, his insights have had a profound impact in the arena of crypto markets, particularly with innovations such as BRC-20 and ERC-6551. As we set foot into the next cycle of growth, let’s glean some significant business wisdom from Zatoshi on topics ranging from launching an investment fund to the root causes of startup failures.

Welcome, Zachari. We’re thrilled to have you with us today. Can you start off by sharing some details about your personal background, your business acumen, and your journey within the crypto realm?

Hello, and thank you for having me. I’ve had a rather eclectic mix of business experiences, ranging from eCommerce and music, with my initial venture being a rave clothing enterprise, to a fair share of business ventures that didn’t quite take off. These experiences have taught me to view failures as stepping stones to success, as long as one is open to learning from them.

My crypto journey began in 2013 with my first Bitcoin purchase. Since then, I’ve been fortunate enough to cross paths with numerous success stories and collaborate with some truly brilliant minds. This journey has shaped me into the entrepreneur I am today, and helped me develop a sophisticated trading algorithm for an upcoming product. My proudest achievements are the companies I’ve built without external funding, even though the road to success has been paved with a series of failures and successes.

Currently, I’m focusing on self-growth, and encouraging my team to do the same by completing various blockchain-related certifications to bolster our credentials and demonstrate our expertise in the on-chain space.

Fantastic. One Big Fund is your first significant venture in the crypto industry, isn’t it? Can you shed some light on your experience of creating the fund and the challenges you’ve encountered? I’m sure our readers who are contemplating launching a venture capital fund would find your insights valuable.

Absolutely. We founded One Big Fund in mid-2022, driven by the challenge of structuring a modern fund. The swift evolution of blockchain technology and the variety of products and services it has enabled over the last decade inspired us. We leveraged our collective experiences and lessons learned from past business ventures to build a startup designed to empower emerging entrepreneurs and startup founders.

One Big Fund is a self-incubated venture, serving as a tangible proof of concept. We faced minimal challenges during its launch and are now concentrating on nurturing our first client venture. However, potential fund starters should be prepared for challenges like liquidity crunches and regulatory pressures. These can be mitigated by implementing comprehensive due diligence and compliance frameworks from the onset and by proactively seeking high-liquidity market opportunities backed by solid data analytics.

From your perspective, what advice would you give to entrepreneurs interested in Web3? Should they rely on traditional funding, opt for DeFi, or consider a mixed approach?

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer to this. My advice would be for entrepreneurs to identify trends through rigorous data analysis, including search data, venture capital data, and blockchain data. This approach lays the groundwork for flexible and robust investment strategies.

Web3 entrepreneurs need a clear understanding of the kind of companies or projects they aim to serve. This understanding will guide their market research and data analytics, helping them make informed decisions about their funding approach. For instance, if their target market consists of crypto-native entities, DeFi-based solutions might be ideal. Conversely, for services that require crypto-fiat conversions, a hybrid approach could be more fitting. I personally believe that the future of digital funds lies in DeFi-TradFi hybrids.

On the topic of Web3 businesses, how do you suggest they traverse the ever-changing and somewhat uncertain global regulatory landscape, especially in light of recent developments like the MiCa bill in the EU and U.S. authorities’ actions against several crypto-based firms?

Compliance frameworks that adapt dynamically to the evolving landscape are key. At One Big Fund, we’ve implemented strong AML and KYC/KYB practices right from the beginning and have maintained transparency in our business activities. We’ve introduced a unique concept called Proof of Business, where we create NFTs on OpenSea and issue them to our partners, using on-chain credentials for effective due diligence and business verification.

Impressive! Alongside One Big Fund, you’ve also recently founded a crypto bank named MEQA. What’s your vision for this project, and how does it contribute to the overall growth of the crypto industry?

I believe that digital banking is the future and is here to stay. Over the years, I’ve recognized the need for alternatives to traditional banking infrastructure, a need that MEQA aims to fulfill. The recent banking crisis in the U.S. has only underscored the importance of MEQA. We’re striving to launch this crypto-bank as soon as possible, despite the challenges involved.

MEQA will play a pivotal role in promoting blockchain, crypto, and overall Web3 adoption on a larger scale. It can be seen as a secure, crypto-native wallet with enhanced banking functionalities, thereby bringing together the best of both worlds.

In light of the banking crisis, many experts attribute the liquidity crunch to fractional reserve banking and regulatory crackdowns. How does MEQA plan to address these issues?

While MEQA is yet to launch, our primary aim is to foster transparency by building a community-first platform. We are offering an advanced, non-custodial solution where consumers always have control over their funds. We’re essentially providing an encrypted wallet with banking features and a strong security layer, integrated with AML and KYC/KYB compliance mechanisms.

Startup founders will be able to self-custody their funds through reliable partners using MEQA, which I believe is our most compelling selling point.

Thank you for sharing your invaluable insights. Before we conclude, could you leave us with some final thoughts or advice for our readers?

Absolutely. After my years of experience in business, my advice to budding startup founders, particularly those in the Web3 space, is to adopt a long-term perspective. Success is hard-earned and requires time, effort, and dedication, whereas failure is relatively easy. However, an innovator’s vision for the future serves as the best guide. Don’t be afraid to take risks, experiment, and most importantly, learn from your mistakes.

For those operating in the blockchain space, it’s crucial to focus on growth and adoption, both at the retail and institutional levels. With the impending digital transformation of traditional assets, the opportunity to make a significant impact on the course of financial history is within reach.

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Andy Watson

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