We are a team of global, decentralised finance and technology veterans who stumbled into the incredible world of DeFi.
Ming was previously the head trader for several cryptocurrency trading firms. Ming started his career on the proprietary trading desk of Goldman Sachs. He has extensive experience in market microstructure, high-frequency trading and derivatives. Ming is a member of MENSA.
People centric products lead to success. I was involved in B2B sales at one of the world’s first cloud storage start-ups and as a frontier member. It was here that I understood that success was directly correlated to our relationships with fellow frontier communities.
Communities power innovation. I was a dreamer since birth and always marvelled at the fact that a community of stars powered space into actual conscious living beings. In the same way, the power of community has been supercharging innovation within the DeFi space.
Our collective superpower within this space is our ability to harness the power of community to supercharge innovation and reengineer legacy industries for the new age. We are always reaching for the stars; worst case, you’ll land on the moon.
Continuous achievement is my passion. I believe life is a journey to become the best version of yourself and to slow down progress for the sake of slowing down would only lead to underachieving your potential. This is one of the key principles I stand by and continue to instill in our team’s core.
Fair competition is a positive sum game. In DeFi, there’s an explosion of innovation and opportunities. The sheer potential applications of blockchain technology keeps expanding as we continue to develop and this leads to a positive sum game. Similar projects early on, take on an entirely different outlook from each other just a few months later due to the new market that got created by its own development.
Only the best can conceive the best. Our belief in people ties into our team strategy where we leverage the best people in their collective industry to join Strips in creating the foundations of the emerging DeFi industry. The finance and technology industry arguably pools together the best minds and we understand there is no convention to brilliance. Our people-centric core values cultivate passion and creativity with our team, which is then transmitted to our entire community.
Our vision is to innovate our aging financial system into the 21st century. Today’s traditional financial infrastructure (TradFi) is rife with opqaue pricing systems done behind closed doors, and settlement processing inefficiencies that take weeks to process, expensive logistics that deter innovation. With blockchain technology, these nuances are becoming more and more unacceptable. We are at the forefront of creating solutions to TradFi issues within a DeFi world by making market transparency, instant settlement, and automated clearing the standard. We have statistical evidence that decentralised finance will eat traditional finance, and interest rate markets will be the largest of all.
Transparent Red was previously a portfolio manager at a sovereign wealth fund. Transparent Red has traded fixed income, interest rate swaps, equities, bonds, FX, asset swaps, swaptions at a $9.5 trillion asset manager.
When I was young, I was like Hermione Granger (in philosopher’s stone) with strong self-expression, until I realized that the smartest person in the room doesn’t necessarily go on to save the world. It’s the person with the most courage.
I have two superpowers. First is episodic memory, in terms of work, I remember at what time, who proposed what, and why we did or did not choose certain solution, and I keep notes of *almost* everything.
Second is extremely detailed reasoning. I make up scenarios based on logical reasoning and deduce outcomes of all scenarios with its probability and each of them will have an appropriate solution. I act like Herman Lamm: I always have a back up plan for a back up plan, though I hope I am not as unfortunate as Lamm. There are always unexpected situations, so the more I prepare in advance, the more time I leave to myself to work on the unexpected ones.
Philosophy is an everchanging pursuit. Growing up in many different places and cultures, I have learnt to be open to different cultures and philosophies. There are certain philosophies that work at different times in culture.
My all time favorite book is Ökonomisch-philosophische Manuskripte aus dem Jahre 1844
I joined crypto because too many people in Trad-Fi work like little hamsters running on a wheel. They work for the sake of working. You don’t expect people like that to make the financial system better and more open.
Don’t fear suffering. The strongest steel is forged in the hottest fire – we are a team of springs, we are resilient and stoic enough to go through any struggle and adapt ourselves to the changing environment. Our team will never sit here and hope the ball lands at their feet. We move the ball forward.
My prediction of DeFi is that It will be the infrastructure that overtakes whole traditional financial systems, and introduces a bit more discipline into a world with too much helicopter money.
Kirill started programming at a very young age and created Russia's first RTB technology which was later sold to Russian Tinkoff Bank. He has extensive experience in different programming languages, analytics and blockchain. Kirill has been offering free online blockchain education content since 2017.
The moment of creation is my passion. I was born in a small town in Russia where although beautiful, it lacked fun activities. I was introduced to coding in elementary school and instantly fell in love with the way you can imagine, build, and launch an entirely new world from the palm of your keyboard; and most importantly, it works! It is during this period of creation where I can truly feel the excitement of the unknown becoming the known.
Fear the kick practiced 10,000 times over the 10,000 kicks practiced once. Bruce Lee’s quote always reminds me of the power of iteration in development.
My alpha comes from my acute ability to iterate a solution for almost any problem that is in front of us. I have a strong all or nothing personality and once my mind is set on something, I go through all potential solutions and counter solutions in true agile form. We instill the spirit of “do something with everything, or you choose to do nothing” to stay efficient with our time and resources and spark creativity.
All can be revealed with the scientific approach. Isaac Asimov opened my world to universal scientific principles, Theodore Dreiser introduced the importance of emotional balance during the most difficult situations, and Linus Torvalds sparked my appreciation for simplicity within complexity. All three authors touch upon the key principles of progressive discovery and learning through scientific discipline, which we use daily for solving complex problems with seemingly no perfect solutions from precedent.
Solve meaningful problems. The commoditization of development has been hindering innovation by providing developers with ready made code that you can Frankenstein into your project for a “good enough” solution. At Strips, we are tackling issues that have plagued DeFi since its inception with our own original framework. It is here where our team comes to life as we create the solutions to problems that stunt the growth of DeFi; all within a community of open discussion and impactful engineering. We believe if the problem you are solving is not meaningful, what are you really solving?
The future is now. Within the next decade, DeFi will be the biggest sector in finance and the innovations of today are becoming the way of life tomorrow. As we work towards building a better future for ourselves, we also understand that we must be responsible for our efforts now and do our parts in creating a strong foundation.
Stefano (aka VS) studied communication and design in Italy. He is an Italian citizen and a Singapore permanent resident, who also lived and worked in the Middle East and Africa. He has broad business experience spanning from sales, marketing, training, advisory, and branding. VS has obtained more than 80 Adobe certifications.
Curiosity is my broadest skill. I grew up with an older brother who shared with me everything he learnt. With him I wrote my first lines of code when I was only 10 years old. I memorized all the capital cities in the world, and tons of other trivial facts, just because. Fear me if I play against your team in a pub quiz.
Ambition is my most valuable asset. I never settle for mediocre. Yet I am not a strict perfectionist. Some of the points I make are for reference only. Pareto’s principle is seldom a clear 80/20 afterall. If there is room for improvement, I will occupy that space. I never leave my hotel room in a worse condition than when I found it when I checked in.
Wisdom cannot be bought. In my 25 years of career I figured out a smooth balance between getting things done right, and getting the right things done. To the fools, every business related issue is perceived as urgent, and important. But wisdom teaches us to prioritise according to the overall impact. It’s impossible to please everyone, but pleasing most people is a fine art.
Efficiency and effectiveness. Once, when I was filling an ice tray, I accidentally poured too much water in it. Option 1: pour the excess water out in the sink. Option 2: if you are thirsty, drink the excess water from the tray. We are always a bit thirsty anyway. That's how an effective and efficient mind is both wired and weird.
Underdogs always win. All innovations that eventually worked, were at some point ridiculed. You’re probably too young to remember when video conferencing was thought to be impossible to gain traction. But you are probably young enough to remember when Steve Ballmer ridiculed the iPhone. And how about those banks who ridiculed crypto, before pouring billions of dollars into it?
Being present. The challenges of today are paving the way for the financial structures that our children will naturally adopt. We are not here to kill banks, but to address inefficiencies. For decades, financial institutions comfortably sat on their knowledge. Today we stand on the shoulders of giants, learning and progressing at an unprecedented speed.