Co-founder and COO at Plutus
A FinTech entrepreneur and one-time bond trader with nearly a decade in the financial markets. Most recently, Jasper launched an all-to-all hedge fund trading platform for credit derivatives before co-founding Plutus, a finance app bridging the gap between crypto and traditional finance.
How would you introduce Plutus?
Plutus is essentially an alternative to modern banking but with the addition of cryptocurrencies.
It offers a UK Account or a European IBAN to manage GBP/EUR; a non-custodial wallet to manage crypto; a built-in DEX to securely swap between them; and a Visa Debit Card from which you can shop and earn 3% crypto rewards upon every transaction.
What sets Plutus apart from other Crypto exchanges?
I would say there are three core features regarding our exchange that separates it from many others on the market.
Firstly, the team was very aware early on that cyber-crime would be a rising issue in the crypto market, so we opted for a decentralised exchange which is widely recognised as being far more secure but much more challenging to build.
On top of this, the majority of DEX’s on the market are crypto-crypto, whereas our PlutusDEX is crypto-fiat, which is completely uncharted territory. This decentralised fiat on/off-ramp is a rare but very appealing part of our product.
Secondly, we have integrated this into a mobile app with a seamless user interface. Almost all DEX’s on the market are only available on web browsers, and given the incredible growth of mobile banking, we believe the convenience of converting on-the-go will be a very positive addition.
Thirdly, the PlutusDEX is connected to a Visa Debit Card, meaning users can seamlessly convert their crypto into spendable GBP/EUR card balance to spend in-store or online in a secure way. It essentially makes crypto instantly spendable at 60+ million merchants.
Any new Plutus products you’re excited about?
2021 is looking very exciting for the Plutus community! Next month, we are adding Bitcoin to the list of available cryptocurrencies on our platform, which would make Plutus the world’s first DeFi Card you can spend BTC with.
We are also looking forward to releasing our non-custodial Plutus Wallet, which will be very similar to MetaMask except it includes BTC alongside ERC-20 tokens; a feature that will be very convenient for quite a large percentage of crypto enthusiasts.
On top of that, we’ll be releasing Plutus Cards in both Latin America and Asia later on in the year as we know there is high demand for our services out there.
What products and services does Contis enable that help you benefit your customers?
The arrangement means we can distribute Visa Debit Cards and provide a range of fiat related financial services for our customers.
Whilst we started as a crypto-first company, we want to bridge the gap between crypto and traditional payment rails. Contis has been key to offering convenient fiat on/off-ramps for our crypto-orientated audience, and for regular spending.
Where do you see Plutus in 5 years?
Our longer-term plan is to obtain a banking license so that we can provide a more extensive range of features and tackle a lot of the issues we see present in the conventional banking system. In 5 years time, we see Plutus as the neo-bank that bridged the gap between crypto and traditional finance.
Most importantly, we want to bridge that gap in a way that still upholds a core value proposition of crypto – which is ownership of your assets.
Plutus users will always own the private keys and have sole custody of their assets which is a rare feature. A lot of crypto companies are offering crypto services, but they are doing it in a way that detracts from everything that makes crypto great.
What’s your view on stablecoins?
Stablecoins certainly deserve a place in the market. They provide comfort for institutions in an otherwise volatile market and increase both the efficiency and costs of cross-border transactions.
Where do you see crypto heading in the future?
I think we’re in the midst of a major tipping point. The world is becoming increasingly aware that the crypto market, which appeared to fizzle out in 2018, is actually here to stay.
I believe we’ll see a lot more FTSE 500 companies jump on the bandwagon and invest various amounts of their holdings into Bitcoin as a hedge against inflation.
This will be coupled with the issuance of centralised government-issued tokens built upon blockchain technology and a much heavier emphasis on transparency. This could be a huge milestone for mainstream adoption and, hopefully, it will help raise awareness of the decentralised alternatives that people can then opt into.