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Technological Remedy for the Global Ambiguity: Interview with Pang Xue Kai, CEO of Tokocrypto

By Crypto Guys | Navid Ladani | 6 Jan 2022


Once the initial concern of coronavirus has finally been left behind, the new wave of pandemics dubbed Omicron starts taking over the world with the new force. Contesting the level of preparedness of authorities locally and worldwide, it poses a new challenge to the medical facilities and staff, the ones that are particularly scarce in number. At this erratic time, however, technological advancement may play a decisive role: emerging technologies such as blockchain already proved themselves to be an effective tool in battling the virus spread, thanks to the lightning-fast data dissemination combined with the overall transparency of the system. Applications built on blockchain have the potential to pave the way for reliable information exchange, thus becoming the hallmark of the data-fueled Industry 4.0.

From its first days, blockchain has found a particularly strong application in the finance industry. In a world where cashless payments are increasingly becoming the new dominant paradigm, this hands-on approach to technology may prove to be indispensable. Tokocrypto has already demonstrated that by becoming Indonesia’s most in-demand crypto-assets digital exchange platform and bringing forth the advantages of digital technology to the masses. Now, the company has made a significant move forward by launching its own asset Toko Token (TKO), the one put in focus in the corresponding White Paper, which made a major debut at the Kripto Odyssey (T.K.O) Summit 2021. Foreseeing the further growth of the Fourth Industrial Revolution across all spheres of life, Toko Token will become an indispensable tool of the new crypto-economy, the one in which the innovative approach is embedded in its DNA. Eventually, this may have a decisive word in the battle against Covid-19 - the struggle that, with all chances, may stretch for decades. 

Being excited to hear more about the role Tokocrypto may occupy in the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the efforts to prevent a pandemic, I approached to gain industry insights from Paul Xue Kai, CEO of the platform.

     Hi, nice to meet you. Could you please tell us about your inspiration for creating Tokocrypto? What lies at the heart of its value proposition?

Personally, my affiliation with cryptocurrency dates back to 2015 when I first ventured into crypto trading. After making some profits from crypto trading, I was wondering about what I can do to put these profits to good use. That’s when I had an eureka moment as it dawned on me that I can help others earn profits from crypto trading as well. After all, the fundamental ideology of cryptocurrency is the democratization of finance which means that the door to crypto trading should be open to anyone and everyone who wishes to embark on it. 

After studying the various crypto markets around the world, particularly those from Asia, Indonesia stood out as the one which held the most promise simply because of its sheer size in terms of its population numbers and geographical coverage coupled with the government’s pro-digitalization stance. Putting my plan into action, I partnered up with Teguh Kurniawan Harmanda who is the Chairman of the Indonesian Crypto Asset Traders Association (Aspakrindo) and together we founded Tokocrypto in September 2018 with myself as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Teguh as the Chief Operating Officer (COO). 

In the span of just a little more than three years, Tokocrypto has become the go-to crypto exchange for Indonesians and through it all our value proposition of embodying the financial democratization ideals of cryptocurrency remains steadfastly unchanged. Case in point is our ultra-low minimal trading fees of 0.1% as calculated based on the transaction amount. With this, Indonesians from all walks of life can venture into crypto trading in a safe and secure manner using Tokocrypto’s exchange, just like how I started off back in 2015. 


     Among all available technological alternatives, what made you go in favour of blockchain technology, a still relatively-unexplored and nascent trend in the world of tech and finance?

Blockchain has been heralded as a technological force which is set to disrupt the financial industry by unleashing a wave of transformational revolution upon the industry by harnessing the immense potential of financial technology (FinTech) which has been around for quite some time but never really lived up to its hype. With the coming to the fore of blockchain however, FinTech has taken off and in many ways has surpassed expectations thanks to blockchain’s ability to lower transaction costs, boost transaction speed, enhance security levels and improve privacy protection, albeit in a manner which warrants transparency and accountability. 

The benefits of the use of blockchain for finance are very well-documented by industry initiatives such as the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)’ Project Ubin and the Bank for International Settlements (BIS)’ Project Dunbar. The fact of the matter is that blockchain and its functional manifestation in the form of cryptocurrency is a FinTech Godsend for the finance industry.Given the benefits arising from the use of blockchain for finance under the FinTech framework, the choice to use blockchain was very much a no-brainer. 

The thing about blockchain which makes it uniquely distinctive from other technological alternatives is its decentralized and autonomous features which means that the technology can transcend all geographical boundaries, hence its universal accessibility. Case in point is the global availability and distribution of Toko Token (TKO) i.e. the native utility token of Tokocrypto’s ecosystem, Tokoverse.  


     How, in your perception, blockchain has already transformed the way we live and interact – especially within the framework of the Fourth Industrial Revolution? How is Tokocrypto accommodated within it?

Given the fact that cryptocurrencies stand as the prime embodiment of blockchain, it is not too surprising to find that these currencies have proved to be the key nexus between the interaction of blockchain with various areas of consumer lifestyle services. In line with the rising trend of digitalization brought about by the dawn of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, cryptocurrencies have ingeniously harnessed the technological potential of blockchain to revolutionize various areas of consumer lifestyle services through assets tokenization, gamification mechanization and digital payments in the domains of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), GameFi and e-commerce respectively. 

As a comprehensive and all-encompassing crypto-based ecosystem, Tokocypto’s Tokoverse has accommodated each and every sector of consumer lifestyle services in which cryptoization has laid its mark. With regard to NFT, Tokocrypto had in September 2021 launched TokoMall as the first multi-category NFT marketplace in Indonesia and which now serves as the NFT command centre of Tokoverse. For GameFi, Tokocrypto has plans in the pipeline to launch our own Metaverse whereby we would be embarking on strategic partnerships with leading GameFi industry players to deploy the play-to-earn (P2E) mechanism as an integral part of Tokoverse. As for e-commerce, TKO has been integrated with Binance Pay, Travala.com and Shopping.io.

In the first quarter (Q1) of 2022, Tokocrypto is set to break new ground in Indonesia’s blockchain ecosystem through the launching of Toko Launchpad which comprises an incubator that will be facilitating the implementation of promising blockchain-related conceptual ideas and an accelerator that will be supporting the growth and development of new blockchain startups. It gets even better as, during the same quarter, Tokocrypto is also set to launch our T-Launchpad which would be bringing to life the concept of initial DEX offering (IDO) by functioning as a decentralized platform to kick-start new blockchain projects thereby serving as the prime gateway for Indonesians to gain access to new and promising opportunities. In tandem with TokoLaunchpad which will be pioneering the pre-incubation phase of new blockchain projects, T-Launchpad would be facilitating the post-incubation stage of these projects as part of Tokocrypto’s suite of tools to be deployed via Tokoverse to turbocharge blockchain’s transformation of the way in which we live and interact.


     What was your motivation behind partaking in the Total Kripto Overview (T.K.O) Summit 2021? What are the main inferences that can be drawn out of this gathering?

The crypto market is akin to a bullet train moving at breakneck speed with developments taking place at an incessantly rapid pace from day to day rendering industry knowledge to be the prime currency. It is in this context that Tokocrypto has come up with the idea of organizing quarterly T.K.O Summits to help the crypto community keep abreast of the latest trends and developments in the fast-changing crypto world whereby Total Kripto Overview (T.K.O) Summit 2021 (“Summit”) is the second edition of our T.K.O Summit.

Tke key takeaways from the Summit which had as its theme “An Exploratory Voyage of Cryptocurrency and Its Blockchain Technological Foundation” include an affirmation of the role of blockchain as the technology which could remedy the issue of trust deficit in the digital domain and as the technology that would be unifying other technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence (A.I) and big data to transform the concept of Metaverse into a digital reality. As for cryptocurrency, the attendees of the Summit were afforded unparalleled insights into the impending arrival of decentralized finance (DeFi) 2.0, GameFi’s formula for success and the principles underlying the valuation of NFTs.

Nonetheless, the star of the show during the Summit was undoubtedly TKO whereby there were major updates by Tokocrypto about the token, covering its developments over the course of the past few months. Moving forward, Tokocrypto will continue to organize future T.K.O Summits to bring together the crypto community to drive forward our collective vision for a blockchain-based global revolution.


     Speaking about your asset, Toko Token (TKO): how can it facilitate the transition from Centralized finance to its decentralized alternative, DeFi?

Both centralized finance (CeFi) and DeFi have their respective strengths and weaknesses. With regard to CeFi which has been around since the seventeenth century, the framework offers the advantage of time-tested stability but perhaps because it has been around for as long as it did, CeFi has a tendency to be set in its own ways thereby resulting in its rigidity. On the other hand, flexibility is the essence of DeFi which thrives on innovation through the use of blockchain as the underlying technology. Accordingly, the aim of TKO is to serve as a nexus which bridges the CeFi and DeFi domains to harness their respective strengths while dispensing with their respective weaknesses.

That’s why TKO was developed as a BEP20 token operating using the Binance Smart Chain (BSC) network which heralded the concept of CeDeFi that integrates DeFi functionalities with the stability of CeFi. The gist of CeDeFi is that it entails the vetting of DeFi projects and tokens by centralized exchanges thereby harnessing the stabilizing effects of CeFi to mitigate the risks associated with DeFi projects and tokens. In the context of TKO, the stabilizing effects of CeFi are provided by the centralized mode of operations of Tokocrypto’s platform while DeFi functionalities are made available to TKO holders through the integration of the token with pre-screened DeFi platforms.

Fair to say, TKO stands as the prime embodiment of BSC’s CeDeFi ideals which could pave the way to the proverbial financial utopia.


     What are the main pillars in tokenomics of TKO? How can it be managed by the community?

The main pillar of TKO’s tokenomics is its governance treasury framework whereby a total of 250 million TKOs have been deposited in its treasury which governing bodies have had access to the vested TKOs since 31 March 2021 i.e. one week before the launch of TKO on 7 April 2021. The role of TKO’s governance treasury framework is to ensure that the distribution of TKOs in the market is undertaken in a manner that optimizes the trading metrics of the token. 

As with any cryptocurrency, TKO’s trading metrics are most vulnerable to market fluctuations in the early days of the issuance of the token which is why Tokocrypto has allocated 40% of the vested TKOs i.e. 100,000 TKOs to be distributed in the first year whereby this allocation is reduced to 30% in the second year, 20% in the third year and 10% in the fourth year. By the fifth year, TKO would be able to hold its own in spite of the prevalent market fluctuations as the token would have developed the requisite fundamentals to maintain the equilibrium of its trading metrics. Additionally given the fact that TKO is a utility token, Tokocrypto has also devised a quarterly burn mechanism for TKO to manage the inflation levels of the token as part of our efforts to ensure that TKO users would be getting maximum value for their money.

In line with TKO’s conceptualization as a community-centric token, Tokocrypto is constantly garnering feedbacks from our community which consists of 150,000+ members on our Telegram group, 300,000+ followers on our Twitter channel and 4,500+ members on our Discord profile before taking into consideration these feedbacks in the implementation of our management policies and the devising of our development programs for TKO. In time to come, TKO holders would be able to submit and vote on proposals in relation to the management and development of TKO as Tokocrypto transforms Tokoverse into a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) through TKO DAO.


     Could you speak more about the idea behind TokoCare - and the value of engagement in social problems?

In many ways, the Covid-19 pandemic has exacerbated the economic and social fault lines in countries around the world resulting in a pressing need for corporate organizations to step in to help alleviate the economic and social issues which have been made worse by the effects of the pandemic. Given the fact that blockchain and cryptocurrency are our twin forte, we came up with idea of establishing TokoCare as a platform through which Tokocrypto would be fulfilling our social responsibility through the use of blockchain and cryptocurrency to help address economic and social issues particularly those in our home country i.e. Indonesia.

Back in August 2021,TokoCare had organized Indonesia’s first NFT fundraising campaign in support of Oxygen for Indonesia which is a neutral coalition created by the Indonesian startup ecosystem to help fight the pandemic by alleviating the shortage of oxygen supply in the country. The event which managed to raise 222 Ethers (ETHs) — converted to roughly USD 700,000 based on the trading price of ETH at that time — in less than 4 hours through the sale of 1,024 unique NFTs by way of a Dutch auction went down in history as the very first NFT art charity auction in Indonesia and also the largest charity event thus far in the country.

Nonetheless, Tokocrypto’s social commitment goes beyond the Covid-19 pandemic as TokoCare’s macro objective is to make the world a better place particularly for those in need by harnessing the technological gift that is blockchain and the financial wonderkid that is cryptocurrency.


     I was fascinated to hear about Tokoverse – your own version of the crypto-based Metaverse. What technological challenges were associated with putting this model to practice?

One of the main technological challenges which Tokocrypto faced in putting into practice the vision for our Metaverse was making a complex technology such as blockchain simple to use. In this regard, Tokocrypto’s focus was on the development of a user interface (UI) which would ensure that the users of our Metaverse can have an enjoyable user experience (UX) while traversing through our Metaverse without us having to make any concession in relation to the deployment of the full range of blockchain’s features to provide a comprehensive suite of crypto-based services for the users of our Metaverse.

In order to overcome this technological challenge, Tokocrypto’s team devised a unique solution which adopts a two-pronged approach whereby the back-end development of our Metaverse incorporated the use of the cutting-edge technological aspects of blockchain. On the other hand, the front-end development of our Metaverse was undertaken with the focal point of UI simplification to ensure the best UX for its users.

In this manner, users of Tokocrypto’s Metaverse are able to enjoy the best which blockchain has to offer using nothing more than their TKOs without having to be concerned about the technicalities of the technology operating behind the scenes.


     Do you have any specific plans on the account of NFTs, the increasingly popular trend of todays?   

According to data collected by DappRadar, the NFT market generated more than USD23 billion in sales volume with the market capitalization of the top 100 NFT collections being valued at a whopping USD16.7 billion. The rising popularity of NFTs is also reflected in Google Trends whose data indicates that the number of searches for the term “NFT” nearly matched that for “crypto” for the very first time during the week of 12-18 December 2021. Without a doubt NFT is a raging trend in the digital assets domain. 

With TokoMall being accessible to NFT fans from Indonesia and around the world who are equipped with a Binance Smart Chain (BSC), MetaMask, SafePal or Trust wallet, Tokocrypto is in prime position to capitalize on the raging NFT trend. Leveraging our head start in the NFT market, Tokocrypto is set to be riding another NFT-related raging trend i.e. that of GameFi whereby we would be harnessing the synergistic combination of NFT and GameFi to develop Tokoverse into a place where NFT and GameFi fans can earn themselves some NFTs by embracing the financial connectivity of GameFi.

Once Tokoverse’s development is complete, Tokocrypto’s Metaverse would serve as a hybrid crossover dimension which connects the virtual GameFi universe with the real financial world with TokoMall’s NFTs functioning as the bridging instruments thereby bringing blockchain-based gamification in Tokoverse to a whole new playing field.


     Finally, what are the projects you are planning to bring forth in the times ahead? What is your roadmap for future development?

TKO’s roadmap for 2022 envisions the launching of T-Hub (which is an offline crypto community centre on the island of Bali in Indonesia) as well as that of Toko Launchpad and T-Launchpad in Q1 of 2022. Later on in the second quarter (Q2) of 2022, TKO users can look forward to the inception of TokoScholar which is a program tailored to engage university students and wider communities in crypto education as well as the transformation of TokoCare into a full-fledged non-profit organisation. 

As for the third quarter (Q3) of 2022, Tokocrypto would be launching TokoNews as a news aggregator for all things blockchain and crypto. Before 2022 comes to an end, Tokocrypto would have developed Tokoverse into a complete blockchain ecosystem that spans an exchange, a community hub, an NFT marketplace all of which has one thing in common, that is they are all powered by TKO. 

To find out more about what’s in store for TKO in the year ahead and beyond, you can have a read of the token’s recently launched whitepaper which is accessible here.

 

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