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Craig DeWitt, Co-Founder at Supermojo, on Creating New Payment Networks, Ripple, and NFT Payment Solutions | Ep. 237

Craig DeWitt, Co-Founder at Supermojo, on Creating New Payment Networks, Ripple, and NFT Payment Solutions | Ep. 237

In an exclusive interview with cryptonews.com, Craig DeWitt, Co-Founder of Supermojo, talks about the future of alternative payment methods using blockchain technology, creating new payment networks separate from ACH, and automatically creating wallets and self-custody options.

About Craig DeWitt

Craig DeWitt Co-Founded Supermojo, an NFT payment solution, and leads all Product and Engineering efforts. Prior to Supermojo, Craig was Product Director at Ripple, where he started the RippleNet payments business in 2015 and grew that product into the world’s first and largest cryptocurrency payment network for financial institutions. Craig has built wallet and custody experiences, enterprise payment protocols, and established rulesets powering billions of dollars in annual volume. While at Ripple, Craig was the Vice Chair on the Faster Payment Council, where he worked on faster payment steering, creating new payment networks separate from ACH from scratch.  Before Ripple, Craig earned an MBA from Stanford and worked on financial technology at Bloomberg.

Craig DeWitt gave a wide-ranging exclusive interview which you can see below, and we are happy for you to use it for publication provided there is a credit to www.cryptonews.com. 

Highlights Of The Interview

  • How companies can use alternative payment methods to stay competitive but also in a way that is within Federal regulation
  • The future of alternative payment methods using blockchain technology
  • How alternative payment methods in crypto can improve and what we have to do to get there
  • Creating new payment networks separate from ACH
  • Automatically creating wallets and self-custody options

Full Transcript Of The Interview

Matt Zahab 
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to the Cryptonews Podcast. We are buzzing, as always, and today we got Craig DeWitt coming on the show. Co-founder and Head of Product at Supermojo, an NFT payment solution where Craig also leads all Product and Engineering efforts. Prior to Supermojo, Craig was Product Director at Ripple. Ever heard of him? Where he started the RippleNet payments business in 2015 and grew that product into the world’s first and largest crypto payment network for financial institutions. Craig has built wallet and custody experiences, enterprise payment protocols, and established rule sets powering billions of dollars in annual volume. While at Ripple, Craig was the Vice Chair on the Faster Payment Council, where he worked on faster payment steering, creating new payment networks separate from ACH from scratch. That’s a whole another subject I can’t wait to get into. Crazy legacy right there. And before Ripple, Craig earned an MBA from Stanford. Wow. And worked on financial tech at Bloomberg. Craig, welcome to show, my friend. Pumped to have you on. 

Craig DeWitt 
Matt, I am so happy to be here, and thank you for memorizing that very impressive bio. 

Matt Zahab 
I may or may not have read that, but it is what it is. You know how long it would take to memorize that? Not the best, but either way. Quite the bio, though. 

Craig DeWitt 
Thank you. 

Matt Zahab 
You did a whole lot of everything. There a couple big dreamers right there. MBA from Stanford. Feel like a lot of lads and lasses dream of that and then working at Bloomberg. Two pretty cool things. The one thing in the bio that really stuck out to me was creating a new payment network separate from ACH. Now, for those at home, and I’ll get you to explain this, but ACH is just the el classico legacy payment network that is incredibly slow. I don’t want to say inefficient, but it’s just like, how have we not innovated from this? It’s been so many years. I’d love to start on this point and if you could give our listeners a quick primer about what ACH is and what you and your squad were trying to create to make a more efficient solution. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, so you’re totally right about not innovating over the years. Talk about ACH. We can talk about how wire payments work, but it’s all very similar. It’s essentially what the Medici’s came up with around the time of the Renaissance, and that is get one big bank or a couple of banks and have them hold all the money in their accounts. And then have somebody with a ledger or essentially a little notebook that says, Craig owns X, Matt owns Y. And when I want to make a payment, they take a little bit of money out of my account and put that money into your account, and they take a little bit of it for themselves. And so ACH is essentially the domestic clearing system. That process I just talked about is primarily referred to as clearing within the United States that powers the way that people actually send money. When you look at the innovations that have happened in payments, they’re primarily all at the app level. So you have things like, well, didn’t PayPal solve this problem? Or didn’t Venmo? Just any number of these systems. Those are really just front end applications. But underneath the hood, they’re all really doing the same thing. It’s the same stuff exactly. It’s all built on the same infrastructure. And so what I was really amazed by is when I was working at Bloomberg, this was 2013 to 2015, there are hedge funds who move their operations closer to where data is released from physically, because the time it takes for the electrons to propagate to their trading machines gives them an advantage in trading. That’s crazy, right? 

Matt Zahab 
I’ve never heard of this before. 

Craig DeWitt 
That’s crazy, right? So when labor statistics come out, the closer you are to that data center, there is a brief fraction of a time that you can actually benefit on that. What’s amazing, though, is they do all these trades, and then it’s like T +3 to settle, right? 

Matt Zahab 
Just for the listeners, when we talk about T +3, T is the day of the trade, plus three other days, business days for that to settle, when, again, it’s nightmare fuel. How in a world of 2023, where we have everything on our beautiful iPhones and Androids, if that’s your cup of tea, how can I not just send a wire to Craig and it be deposited in 10 seconds? But anyways, back to the story. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, so it’s an incredible thing where you do have folks essentially racing electrons for trading, and then the money moves on such a slow basis. There’s a lot of reasons for that, and there’s a lot of reasons why it hasn’t changed, and a big reason. I’m a technologist, so I always look at the technical problems. But a big reason is also around the regulation required to move money, right? Governments keyed in a very long time ago that not just a control of the monetary supply, but a control over when money is able to be moved is an incredible, valuable tool in their arsenal to make policy. One thing that I think has been maybe the saddest thing that I’ve seen over my seven years of a bill and payments is every year I talk to really brilliant founders who see a payment problem in developing countries. Places like the Philippines or within specific jurisdictions within Africa where they want to go and prevent these because they see people don’t have bank accounts. It’s like, oh, man, that’s a problem that I can solve with technology. And in those cases, in developing countries, it’s not really a technology problem. It’s a regulatory issue. The point is that a lot of governments don’t want people on the system. Don’t don’t actually know who they are, and they don’t have the documentation to prove it. Exactly. Because you lose control. Right? And so seeing that, seeing all these pieces come together, the financial side and, like, the billion dollar bond payments, and then also people who don’t have access to this because of regulatory reasons being pushed out, Bitcoin comes on the scene, or at least I become aware of Bitcoin, and it’s this oh, my gosh. You have this asset that is accessible by anybody who has an Internet connection where it could be instantaneously sent anywhere in the world. And the key isn’t just the tech, because you could conceivably do that on a centralized ledger. People were willing to trust someone, which in many cases they would, but because there’s no central operator, the governments of the world can’t come in and shut it down. And that’s actually how you get the financial access. And it’s just, like, fell in love with it from there. So I went to Stanford and I met Chris Larson, and he had billing XRPL at the time, and that’s history for me. 

Matt Zahab 
So for you, getting into the whole payment sector, I guess it happened at Uni and you never looked back. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, and it was less, I’d say, specifically about payments at the time and more about financial empowerment and transparency. So before I got an MBA from Stanford, I had gone to UC Berkeley, which is a pretty radical campus. We had some out there stuff going on that kind of blew my mind. And while I was there, the 2008 financial crisis happened, and I saw the kind of pain that came out of that, and it just lit a fire under me that just infuriated me against this collusion of the system. 

Matt Zahab 
Craig, could you feel that? Could you sensed the pain even as a Uni student who assuming again, I’m putting words in your mouth here, but assuming money isn’t the be all, end all, like most Uni students, it’s about learning and having fun and creating memories. Do you feel like you and most of your peers could feel the 2008 crash? 

Craig DeWitt 
What I could feel is people that I was close to, people I was close to, family, friends and family actually affected by it actually deeply affected by it. Right? And you could actually see that it was no longer just this, like, learning about Keynesian economics and supply and demand. And I was like, wow, there’s real pain here. And then the behavior of this government apparatus coming in and saving these banks who had made large bets and doing so with taxpayer money, and then bending over backwards to explain why it made sense for them to do so. My dad has a very small business. And what killed me about that is if he was in trouble, he wouldn’t have gotten a $10 billion package from the Fed to save his business. Now he’d be on the street. Right? And so that was this like, oh, these banks aren’t actually like bastions of capitalism. They’re playing in this system where they’re essentially nationalized in that they have a safety net behind them. And I went to Bloomberg because I was fascinated with the financial aspect of things. It’s where the money was. But Bloomberg promised transparency out of that system. Right? It was supposed to be able to give transparency. That was the story that I really liked. And Bloomberg does a good job of that. And then from there, the further radicalization was like, how do you take it a step further? And that’s cryptocurrency. And the best application of that at the time, and I still think to many, unless we talk about NFTs at the time, the best application of cryptocurrency is payments. 

Matt Zahab 
Yeah, for sure. And I guess that leads us into our next part Ripple. You were at Ripple during the big years of Ripple, and it still is one of the biggest, and there’s still millions of Ripple stands and believers and people who have bags and want to see it rip. You were there when I feel like some of the building blocks were being put into place. Do you have any interesting crazy, funny, heartbreaking, just any stories in general about your time at Ripple that perhaps aren’t so mainstream or a lot of people wouldn’t be cognizant of on the internet? 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, well, man, there’s so much, especially those early days. Well, the first thing that maybe some people know is Ripple on top of XRPL, had been experimenting with a smart contract layer called Codius. And we had a decent intern. This is before my time, but we had a decent intern. Name was Vitalik, who came in and worked on that. I think he’s Canadian, right? So like the kind of story internally, which I don’t think there’s any truth to the story internally was, you know, Canadian. Couldn’t figure out the visa, you know, thing as, as a startup and you know, we don’t want this Canadians taking our jobs down here, so could not make a fit at Ripple. He went on to do some decent things with another chain. But it’s amazing to think that there is a world where that whole kind of ecosystem that later became Ethereum is actually integrated or built on XRPL. 

Matt Zahab 
Craig, I didn’t even know Vitalik had anything to do with Ripple. I never knew he worked there. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, well, intern, I mean, if you count that is working there. 

Matt Zahab 
It’s still working. Sure, he had a couple of tshirts sent to him. Sure, he had a Vitalik at Ripple or some type of email address that counts as an intern in my books. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, the characters that would come in in the early days. I met Brock Pierce while he was doing like an investor thing, which was kind of a wild meeting. Early days were getting together with central banks and so we had really big folks coming in the office. 

Matt Zahab 
You guys were meeting with central banks that early on? 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, because very early on, the concept was on a cross border basis. Like the issue with a cross border basis. There’s really no supranational organization that can hold that ledger I was talking about, right? Like until all the countries it’s kind of the United States with the dollar, essentially. But really there’s not a supranational organization that can do that. And so XRP and XRPL as a bridge asset could be that ledger to where if you ever need to get from dollars to euros, instead of having a bank somewhere hold dollars and euros, you can actually cross through a very fast digital asset ledger XRPL. And so we’re talking to these central banks around the world. I remember one time, I won’t say his position, but fairly high up in one of the Nordic central banks, this guy got so wasted, so wasted an event. There was like an emergency meeting to talk about like, well, we need to ask him to leave because he’s going to get super weird. Are there any considerations before you ask a central bank delegate to leave? But it was wild stuff going on.  

Matt Zahab 
You’ve definitely gone to your fair share of crypto conferences. You’ve been in the meetings. I used to work in traditional finance like you as well. I never went to a meeting without a suit and tie on, without a watch on my wrist and just a clean. I’d never have a beard like this. It’s just different. How bananas was it back in 2015 in those early Ripple days? Again, I’ve gone to crypto meetings where guys are wearing cargo shorts and crocs and basketball jerseys and stupid shit on their head. Gals are dressed like a clown as well. Both sexes, not just the guys here. But it’s like. You must have seen some bonkers shit back in the day. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah. I mean, the way people dress and the way people thought and some of the stuff they talked about, it was always interesting because it was especially at that time, it was very counterculture. I still think it is, but back then it was very niche. So that the I’d say the culture felt even though it was all disparate, it felt closer in some ways. You know, one time at Ripple, something that fluff people’s feathers the wrong way is like man, it was like the princess of the Netherlands. I know that sounds crazy, but I don’t know if they actually have like a royal family like that. I guess they do. Maybe he’s the princess of Sweden or something like that. Anyways, they were coming to the office and an email went out like, hey, please don’t wear midriff cut off and tank top. Like, we have royal family people coming in to talk business type stuff.  And people were like, well, can’t tell me what can’t tell me? 

Matt Zahab 
I work in crypto. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, exactly. I was guilty of that too. We were doing some funky thing. I was dressed like a total weirdo myself. I think I was like cut offs or something like that. And I got called in. I got called into meeting, like, hey, can you come present product? Sure. Went to our big room and it was the largest bank in Germany delegation all sitting there. And those Germans, like German bankers, they dress it up talking like tie bars and like the gold watch thing, and like 15 of them. And I gave them I gave him a presentation on how we were going to fundamentally change the way payments work and cut offs. I was usually pretty good about that, though. I think I was more on the straight edge side because of that financial background, though, like yourself. 

Matt Zahab 
That’s crazy. I love that kind of stuff. Let’s, let’s jump into payment methods. Well, I mean, we’re we’re on payment methods, but let’s sort of let’s talk about actual use cases here. One thing that intrigues me, and I, and I know you’re an absolute pro, you’re a vet on this is how companies can use alternative payment methods to sort of stay competitive, but also in a way that adheres to federal regulation. Right? That’s the whole it’s one of the biggest ways you can use crypto and still get ahead. But again, you got to be safe. You have to have your ducks in a row. How can companies use crypto to make more efficient payments on both ends while also staying competitive and adhering to federal regulations? 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, well, this is a couple of hundred billion dollar question. 

Matt Zahab 
Oh, yeah. Just a small question. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah. Because historically, you could slap a good UI on top of the existing system and do some accounting stuff on your bank accounts to make a good payment solution. You can look at things PayPal has done a lot more than that, but you can kind of look at the early days of PayPal and it was essentially handling payments in that capacity while not changing the infrastructure. There have been an increasingly amount of new things that are coming out that are lowering the buried entry to create those kind of experiences. The Fed now payment system is a good example of that. So historically, I’ve been in a lot of meetings with the US Federal Reserve, and one of the concerns that they have is, in the United States, they do not want to compete against the commercial banks, and they have hesitated to offer features and functionality and products that exist in other countries because they don’t want to step on the commercial bank toes. There’s a lot of reasons why that happens. We could talk about that. Some of them aren’t good. 

Matt Zahab 
There’s so much power and leverage at the top of the commercial banks, right? When like in theory and on paper government is at the top of the food chain, but that really isn’t the case. It’s the billionaires. It’s the billy goats and the C suite of the bankers and the people who are not even on the letterhead or on the wall at the banks who are working behind the scenes, who run the show. That’s just how it is. No good conspiracy theorists, but it’s the way she goes. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah. A good thing to look at is go see out of these regulatory bodies and these government bodies, least go see where people work afterwards. And that gives you a good indication of at least some and not all. But some of the incentives in terms of direction of some of these things. 

Matt Zahab 
It’s a carousel. It’s like, oh, Craig was on the Board of the SEC and now he’s VP at Goldman. Or Now Craig’s making 25K once a week to go give a half an hour chat on payment rails. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah. Thank you for that 25K, by the way, Matt. I appreciate that. 

Matt Zahab 
Pretty good life. Yeah, I’ll send it to you in Bitcoin. 

Craig DeWitt 
So because of that environment, like the Fed hasn’t put out a lot of great products. They’re starting to put out this new thing called Fed now which essentially the Federal Reserve acts as that bank of that central ledger. Which makes the most sense because all the money ties back to them. If you’re going to trust $1 institution to be the Fed. And so they’re starting to offer these faster payment experiences. Because of that, it’s going to be a lot harder for you just to slap on a UI and be competitive in the payment space. So what are some things that you can do? Well, domestic payments, I think, are pretty difficult to differentiate yourself with. There’s a lot of competition there, and you got Zell and PayPal. And with Fed now coming out, you’re going to have other banks doing instant payment, like a lot of that stuff. But as the world increasingly becomes more and more global in terms of the supply. That takes place and the purchases take place. The ability of transacting internationally instantly is becoming more and more important, especially with remittances and people traveling and people buying from overseas. And so alternative payment methods that come to mind, number one, is finding ways to leverage crypto to make that a hyper efficient experience to where it feels like a domestic payment. Doing so on a regulatory basis, which you brought up as a business, you got to do that because the folks who enforce this kind of stuff, unlike the SEC, the DOJ has guns, right? And they’re not scared to put, like, boots on doors. It’s a tool that they use against the banks by the way. I don’t think this is well known. 

Matt Zahab 
The DOJ will go after the banks. 

Craig DeWitt 
So what the DOJ does and what the regulatory body overseeing the US Payment system will do is they monitor banks, these large banks. And like I said earlier, I’m not an apologist for the banks. But when you are doing millions and millions of transactions and moving billions and trillions of dollars, eventually somebody’s going to find a way to evade your AML sanctioned screening process. It’ll just happen someone will sneak through. Usually this is not done on purpose. There may be some bounce to where it actually gets to a sanctioned country or something like that. Government, like, rubs their hands. They’re like, oh, thank you. Look at this payment that you guys facilitated and this person’s on a disallow list, etcetera. So they say, okay, here’s what we’re going to do. We’re either going to charge you a $150,000,000,000 fine, which will kill your bank, or we’re going to do what’s called a deferred prosecution agreement, a DPA, which is worth checking out. And so it’s a gun to the head it’s not really a choice. And so the bank says, well, I’ll do the DPA. What is the deferred prosecution agreement? It pretty much means that the bank now has to pay the salaries of these federal watchdog folks who will come in and in some cases occupy an entire floor of the bank to monitor the transactions that the bank does. And so what the banks have become is the banks have become these incredible honey pots of information for the federal government as well as the de facto enforcers of government regulation. Right? Because when you try to make some of these banks that don’t allow you to make payments to crypto anymore, it’s like they’re enforcing a government’s desire, not necessarily their own desire. And so that, again, to what we talked about earlier from 2008, these things blurred together in terms of these for profit financial institutions who in many cases are agents of the federal government. That can get scary because you’re up in Canada, and I won’t get into the politics of this, but completely staying away from the politics, cutting off access to bank accounts based on political actions is pretty wild. 

Matt Zahab 
And also, Craig, you can let it fly. 

Craig DeWitt 
I keep it close to my chest for business reasons, because it was Michael Jordan. He’s like, even Republicans buy sneakers. So I like, everybody, you’re using my products. Your ideas are good. 

Matt Zahab 
I feel you. What you just told me about the banks, that’s absolutely been like, that’s just bananas. That’s very rarely in life do you get to have boots on the ground and a bird’s eye view, and that’s like, they got both heck, they got guys on the inside as well. They have, yeah. I’m thinking about one client of mine in particular and a couple people in my network who work in crypto who’ve been blacklisted by Canadian banks. And it’s just like, what’s the reason why? And they’ve posted they’ve sent me the emails back from again, in Canada, there’s five big banks that run the show. They have a huge monopoly. You can’t really do shit without those five. And they’ve all come together and be like, hey, you can’t use us. Now you have to go to a boutique bank which has inferior services and products and higher fees. And then it’s like, all right, well, what do most Canadians do when this happens? Another industry is minus crypto. It’s like, all right, well, I’m going to set up a Delaware corp, or I’m going to move to Texas or Florida or Puerto Rico or Dubai. It’s like, it’s crazy how this works. Another interesting aspect is how the Fed, DOJ, SEC. All these guys are running the show when it’s like the biggest sort of story present day. Well, not anymore, because we just had news that we have another I believe it’s five years, but the debt ceiling debate, it’s like, who are we to follow their rules? When how many trillion are we owed? Like, furthermore, you’re a vet in this. I’d love for you to go on a little tangent on this, but the Fed just pushed it back by five years. What happens when the debt ceiling is hit and we can’t go above it anymore? What then happens to the US dollar? What happens to USA? What happens to the world? Like, the network effects from that trigger event feel like are a lot bigger than most people think, or at least want to understand. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, there will be. I think unless substantial changes are made that I don’t think are politically possible to make, there will be a breaking point. I think what a lot of people don’t understand in terms of why we the United States, I should say, has this position of being able to infinitely print money goes back to World War II. Like, we came out of that. And by we, I’m talking on the on behalf of the American people, back to back World War champs. All right? Like, hell yeah, we came out of that. Amazing. And all the countries of the world were in a lot of pain at the time they needed to rebuild, and the United States had not really been destroyed. And so everybody fixed their currency to the US dollar because the US dollar was backed by gold. And so this fixed rate agreement, everybody’s currency was looking at the dollar, and we had all the gold we were exporting during the war, and that worked. All central banks, the creation of central banks has been always to finance war. That’s why it started. The bank of England was the first one. It was created to finance war. The current central bank of the United States after Andrew Jackson respect Andrew after he killed the central bank because it had been politicized, came back in 1913 to finance World War I. Anyways, we got into some wars, Vietnam, etcetera, who essentially did a default when Nixon removed the gold currency. It’s like, now you guys have to trust us. Just the dollar, right? So the whole world has essentially been pegged to the dollar’s value. And our government has, over time, it feels like, started to abuse that because you have this ability now of this thing called seigniorage, which means that you can actually print money. You create value by printing it, which is amazing. Like you and me right now, we work our butts off to get this thing that can be printed at a thin air. That’s a wild thought, right? You have people struggling around the world to do that. 

Matt Zahab 
So literally grows on trees. Also, craig, what was that word you said? 

Craig DeWitt 
Seigniorage. 

Matt Zahab 
You just taught me a new word there. 

Craig DeWitt 
seigniorage is the ability of printing money. It is a power that is owned by whoever has the purse, and it’s essentially a tax. I can just put more money into my pocket. And theoretically, that should devalue the total amount of dollars, because an economy isn’t dollars. An economy is good services value. And like the Keynesian folks, I think, forget about that. But anyways, going back to your original point, you’re just printing this stuff, right? And then you elect a Democrat and they print a ton of it. And then you elect and a Republican and they print a ton of it. It doesn’t matter, right? And people are starting to realize, like, well, taxes are starting to look like revenue theater, right? In that it doesn’t really matter what the amount of revenue the federal government makes, like, you’re just going to print more and monetize the debt. With the Fed buying bond. It’s messy. So at some point it breaks. And I think what breaks is not the debt ceiling. I don’t think United States shoots itself on that. I think other countries looking for alternatives because everyone suffers while the United States is able to benefit from printing that money because they’re getting essentially debased because of all these ties back to the dollar. So eventually they say, like, hey, I don’t want to play in the sandbox anymore. Where do they go? So I don’t know if they go to the yuan. I don’t know if they go to a basket of currencies. What I think they do is they go to something that is actually supranational, something that is bigger than a country. And that’s like the math. That’s the physics behind blockchain. Bitcoin is a great candidate for that in terms of a central bank asset. I think XRP is great in terms of the fluid to actually move between these currencies. But I hope at least that governments don’t make the same mistake. And they say, let’s not choose another government tonight and make king. Let’s use something that has staying power. And I think that’s cryptocurrency. That’s why I love it. 

Matt Zahab 
When do you think it’s going to pop off, though? Because if you and I were chatting in 2021 when this podcast started, that was Bitcoin is chilling. I guess at its peak, it almost hit 7K. Bitcoin is absolutely ripping people. Really not a whole lot of use cases being built, in my opinion. On Ethereum and other L2s, yes, there’s tons of use cases, but on Bitcoin, not a lot of innovation actually took place. My question to you, Craig, is what sort of catalyst or what domino needs to fall or what event needs to happen? In order for the world to embrace Bitcoin as a payment platform. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah. So I thought a lot about this, Matt. Unfortunately, what I believe, a lot of pain, like, a lot of deep human suffering. And that’s why, while I do believe in the thesis, I cringe a little bit when I hear some maximalists out there kind of like, celebrating the downfall of the US dollar and this move to cryptocurrencies and on a global scale, you’re talking about millions of deaths, like, disastrous in terms of making that spooky shit. Really bad stuff. Yeah. 

Matt Zahab 
What’s it going to be, though? Is it the US dollar? Is it the debt ceiling? The housing market? Do you have a specific sort of domino that you think could do it? 

Craig DeWitt 
So what I would guess happens is you continue to print money in the United States to the point where governments around the world probably like an ascendant China says, no more, and United States steps in to export democracy somewhere to make sure that doesn’t happen. And you have a large conflagration, like a global conflagration, hopefully not nuclear, but something of that magnitude to where folks are rethinking kind of an overall monetary system. One thing that I think is very cool back in the day, somebody who I watched a lot was Roger Vaer back when he was actually Bitcoin, like, pre Bitcoin cash. His point and the reason why he talked about Bitcoin a lot was he saw it as a way of actually ending global conflict. Because what he’d say is, if governments did not have the ability of printing money in the way that they do, it’s a lot harder to finance wars. Which is like when we talked about is why central banks existed. If you can’t go on credit to finance wars, the probability of having these long protracted wars really goes away in many cases, unless it’s like a fight for survival, but there’s a surplus of resources in the world.  

Matt Zahab 
Yeah, interesting. It’s a really good point. I haven’t heard of that point before. You’re making my head spin a little there because I’m just thinking about what would that look like? Wouldn’t be good. Let’s take a quick break here, Craig. We got to give a huge shout out to our sponsor, the show PrimeXBT, and when we get back, we are going to jump into Supermojo. Till then, huge shout out to PrimeXBT, longtime sponsor of the show, longtime friends of cryptonews.com. We love them as they offer a robust trading system for both beginners and professional traders. It doesn’t matter if you’re a rookie or a vet, you can easily design and customize your layouts and widgets to best fit your trading style. PrimeXBT is also running an exclusive promotion for listeners of the Cryptonews Podcast. Use the promo code CRYPTONEWS50 to receive 50% of your deposit credited to your trading account. Again, that is CRYPTONEWS50. CRYPTONEWS50 all one word to receive 50% of your deposit credited to your trading account. Now back to the show with Craig. Craig, we’ve been absolutely buzzing on alternative payment methods, a bunch of good USD talk as well, and just potentially the end to our lovely big qualifier that we live on called the Earth. But let’s get into Supermojo. Supermojo, the platform where creators can mint an NFT collection on their own website and allow purchases with just a credit card, bunch of really cool wallet creations and self custody options as well. This is exactly what we need to go mainstream as this is a Web3 app that looks and feels like Web2. Craig, I’m going to throw it over to your side of the court here. Give me a quick rundown on Supermojo and then we’ll get into some of the nitty gritty. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah. So the beginning of Supermojo was really an understanding that with the advent of NFTs. The utility that Blockchains could be used for had grown payments is still near and dear to my heart, but NFTs really allow folks to, for the first time, experience digital ownership of assets outside of currencies. And so there’s a lot of really powerful applications of NFTs that allow brands get closer to their users or users to get access to various properties online to Providence. Just a lot of amazing stuff. The key thing locking folks out of that, though, is it’s really hard, right? You got to be in the top 1% to know how to interface with these things, and then the top 1% of the 1% not to get your face ripped off by connecting your wallet to something you shouldn’t and then having things wiped. So Supermojo allows creators to issue NFTs that have actual utility to their users, and at the same time, it allows users to really simply interface with these things just using a card and just having a cell phone and email address. And so what I get really excited about is now we have ways of letting folks experience the magic that are inherent to digital assets without having to know anything about NFTs, seed phrases, etcetera. Just a great experience. That’s the key piece that Supermojo brings to the market. 

Matt Zahab 
So truly onboarding the masses and creating a Web3 app that looks, feels, and plays like Web2. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, exactly. And I like the fact that a lot of people are talking about onboarding the masses. Our focus is not just about buying. It’s not just about holding. There’s so much more than spec regulation here. And so actually, using those NFTs to interface with the Web3 ecosystem is what we get excited about and making that as seamless as an experience that somebody like my mom, who’s got an AOL address, can log on and use and doesn’t have to know about the degen trading aspects of it at all, or even that it’s an NFT, right? Which I think right now is going through a low point in terms of how people think about that word. 

Matt Zahab 
Completely agree there. Walk me through some of the conversations that you’re having with potential partners, potential companies who want to launch an NFT collection or any type of collectible to allow their superfans to be more engaged with their brand. What are their objections? What are their pain points? And, yeah, really, just what do these conversations sound like? 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, starting from the conversations, these conversations really sound like, hey, we are a major brand that everyone has heard of. We’ve heard there’s a lot going on in Web3, and we think there’s a way for us to leverage this to get closer to our consumers. What does that actually mean? So there’s a lot of education that still needs to take place, and also that NFTs are more in many cases than just collectibles, that these are things that can actually unlock specific experiences. They’re transferable, they’re tradable. And so it’s a brand new medium for a lot of these corporates and brands to reach out to individuals on. The big problems they have is, like, let’s take one of the biggest brands in the world, like Coca Cola. They spend tons on marketing, right? But you think about how far Coca Cola is from their customers. They have the bottling plants, then they have the distribution centers, and then they have the retail wholesalers, and then they have retailers, and then you have somebody buy it. So in terms of relationship with Coca Cola, they’re so, so far removed, they don’t really have much of an interaction. And where they spend their money, where they spend billions of dollars, is they just push it through these platforms like Google and Facebook, right, which is just saturated with ads and I don’t know, maybe advertising on Facebook has somebody buy a Coke more often. I don’t I don’t know if that’s the case. Doesn’t feel like it does. But they spend billions on it. And so when I think about these major advertising platforms that you essentially have to trust that there is a good cost per click there, I think about the use of an actual NFT here and what an NFT would allow those users to do. It would allow them to have some kind of asset issued directly from Coca Cola that they can then use or redeem or attest their fandom to that brand. And now you have this direct medium for Coca Cola to be able to deliver other digital assets. Those could be tickets, too. Those could be like AMAs. Those could be redemption for physical merch. Wow. Now you have this direct line and there’s a value and a royalty system behind these. To win their trades, Coca Cola makes money, and so you flip it on its head because I think it is a better direct marketing and product experience and one that can actually drive revenue to the corporate. That’s wild. 

Matt Zahab 
That’s dubs across the board. 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah. That is wild. Now you got to overcome that is not a win. The big L is there’s a bad rap on NFTs. Yeah. The stigma disdain. Yeah. And, you know, deservedly so. I was going to say rightfully so. And rightfully so, Matt, because it did get so wrapped up in itself of speculation and toxic behavior that it turned off the newbies 

Matt Zahab 
100%. You and I are in the same yacht there maybe not a yacht, maybe ten boat. 

Craig DeWitt 
At these volumes, the dinghy. But, yeah. 

Matt Zahab 
You and I are in the kayak there. But on the whole advertising thing, that really intrigues me, especially with these big companies, right? Where it’s like, these are multinational Fortune 50, Fortune 100 companies, and they’re spending billions of dollars a year, not even so much to acquire customers. But really, just to be front of mind, at least that’s my opinion on it, where if I see a Coca Cola ad on a commercial, I don’t even really watch TV besides Sports, or if I’m walking in downtown Toronto and I see a billboard that’s not going to make me go, yo, I want to Diet Coke or I want to Coke Zero. But maybe the next time I have a choice between getting a Coke or a Pepsi when I’m out at a restaurant or whatever, maybe I will do the Coke. What I like about NFTs and what I think a lot of these brands are going to have to start doing over the next three to five years is to really giving back where it’s like loyalty programs. NFT related stuff, which is really just a synonym for loyalty programs, but something along the likes of the more money I spend, the more I get back. Or it’s like the bigger of a true fan I am. The truer of a fan. The more loyal fan I am, the more free twelve packs of Coke you’re going to send me or Coke Merch you’re going to send me, right? I feel like that would just increase the LTV of the customer. That would increase a lot of churn. Would it get you a whole lot of new customers? No, because you’re not going to have touch points with them, but it’s going to at least keep the ones you have and make them even more loyal. And this is really like this is just the ethos of non fungible tokens at its core. It’s just a way to get people hella more engaged and hopefully increase your LTV per customer. That’s just my two cent on the matter. 

Craig DeWitt 
That engagement economy piece is so critical and I also think one thing it does help you get in terms of new customers is it can turn superfans into absolute evangelists. You can actually turn an evangelist and you’ve seen proto aspects of that. Even through things like Board Ape Yacht Club or a blue chip NFT collection, people begin to evangelize it in many cases because they’re pumping bags and they want that asset to appreciate. But that same kind of formulation, a corporation looks at that and says, I want that. You know, I want somebody to do an unboxing video of them getting a new Coca Cola jacket. That becomes a really critical place to play. Now in terms of selling the NFTs, they may make money from that, but really I think it helps them sell more of the stuff that they already sell. 

Matt Zahab 
100%. What about the name? Why Supermojo? I love the name. It’s very catchy. It’s in your face. It’s got a nice ring to it. But why Supermojo of all names? 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, so originally thought NFTs were pretty stupid. I was so heads down on like central bank payments. We’re talking billions of dollars. Like man, that’s what crypto is. JPEGs on a blockchain. Like a joke, right? 

Matt Zahab 
A billion dollar joke. 

Craig DeWitt 
At the time it wasn’t. Yeah, at the time it wasn’t. And then it was like 2019, 2020. Start playing with them. And my AHA moment was when I actually realized that there was something there, there was something real there and I felt the magic of it. And so Supermojo was really how do you help the world actually see and touch the magic of NFTs? And that’s where Mojo came from. Like there was some serious mojo in this asset that was going to allow folks to interface with it and then do new things and for brands, interface everything we talked about. Like, man there’s mojo there. And so Supermojo is like how you just supersize it. So Supermojo plus the domain was available. So that’s a plus. And we have a not just the XYZ, so there’s a flex for you.  

Matt Zahab 
I’m on the website right now. Yeah, not XYZ or .IO, but the Social is available too. 

Craig DeWitt 
Not Twitter. Somebody had gotten that a long time ago. I think someone in Brazil, because they made like one post about soccer teams. Apparently Elon is going to open up these accounts that have been dormant for years and years. I’m just waiting for that. 

Matt Zahab 
I also think that’d be an easy way for Twitter to make some extra money. Like take 10% of all transactions and make it like, you know. Where anyone can offer you again, this can go into Elon’s whole thing for X.com or whatever he calls his Twitter payment platform that’s coming out. I don’t know what it’s going to be, but it’s something. I believe the parent company is called X, but it’s like, I’m sure you and the team want to buy at Supermojo. Like, maybe this guy would accept 20K, but he probably doesn’t check his DMs. What if there’s an easy way for him to get pinged via Twitter, being like, hey, Craig and the squad want to give you 20 racks. You know, you give 10%, 2K goes to Elon and the team. You get to keep 18, and Craig’s happy. You’re happy. Elon’s happy. Elon, if you’re listening, you can hire me. I’ll move into the Canada office. But you probably dissolved by now, but we’ll go from there. 

Craig DeWitt 
Also, 20K is not my opening offer. So for the dude who actually owns that is not my opening offer. 

Matt Zahab 
200. Yeah. give me 1% of that. 

Craig DeWitt 
Applebee’s gift card. 

Matt Zahab 
Good old Applebee’s. Craig, you’ve crushed this. I’ve had so much fun. We are getting tight for time. We have one last segment on the show, hot take factory. You and I jump in, we let a couple hot takes fly. I can tell that you got a bunch. I’m sure you’re not going to give me the spiciest ones possible, so give me a couple. Maybe not suicide hot, but we’ll talk hot and honey hot takes you out. 

Craig DeWitt 
Got you. 

Matt Zahab 
Doesn’t have to be crypto. It can be anything in life. But give me a couple of good sound points. 

Craig DeWitt 
Crypto is life, man. This is the same thing for me. Here’s my hot take. SEC gets their ass kicked in the Ripple case. Absolutely get their ass kicked in the Ripple case. But the ruling comes out in such a way that XRP is alone cleared as a non security in the United States. Meaning that with all the other stuff that the SEC is pulling suing exchanges, suing other coins are going to sue some big ones as well. That only BTC and XRP have legal clarity in the United States for a two year period. 

Matt Zahab 
Just taking some show notes on that one. 

Craig DeWitt 
That would be like the turnaround of a century, right? Go from like, getting beat up by the government to being the only one with clarity because you spent $250 or $200 million fighting this case. 

Matt Zahab 
Is that how much Ripple spent? 

Craig DeWitt 
Yeah, it’s a public number, but yeah, like $200 million. And so the SEC is going to go down the line killing people. 

Matt Zahab 
Of course. And if the gov were to incorporate one of the blockchains as a payment network I mean, with how long this case has been and I’m sure again, I don’t know shit about this, so I’m completely talking on my ass here, but I assume that Ripple would have to hand over every piece of documentation in company history. So they literally have a 360 degree view of everything. You know what I mean? So it’s like if they’re going to give it to someone, it’s like we’ve already been battling with you for X amount of years. We’ve already seen everything us have to offer. I feel like it could be a little easier on the integration side on the learning curve. 

Craig DeWitt 
I think there’s definitely something there. The thing that I get excited about is the irony of the SEC. Going after a decentralized coin, trying to destroy it, but at the same time, because they lose giving. It like this massive, essentially, regulatory moat which is now this clarity, because the courts have said it now you got to go down the line with all these other coins and spend $200 million dollars to get there. And so I think that’s a distinct possibility. 

Matt Zahab 
If this happens. I mean, you’re a pretty darn good storyteller. You might have to hit up Netflix and Hulu, HBO, Disney, all the big boys, and be the first one to start a series or a movie on this because that has award winning show written all over it. 

Craig DeWitt 
I think so. That would be like the final season twist there. 

Matt Zahab 
Yeah. Get Leo to star in there as Craig. 

Craig DeWitt 
Thank you. Yeah, thank you. I was wondering who was going to play me, but yeah. 

Matt Zahab 
Had a product. I love that. Craig, what an episode, man. This was way too much fun. Truly had a blast being with you. Learned a ton. Taught me a couple of new words as well. We love to see it. Open invite for round two can’t wait. Until then, please let our listeners know where they can find you and Supermojo online and on socials. 

Craig DeWitt 
Cool. You can find Supermojo at, supermojo.com or on Twitter @realsupermojo. You can find me I’m @CryptoCwby on Twitter. That’s best way to get a hold of me. 

Matt Zahab 
Wow, that’s a sweet domain. Crypto cowboy no, nothing else. 

Craig DeWitt 
Nothing else. 

Matt Zahab 
Wow. Nice domain there, Craig. Appreciate it, man. Blast and can’t wait for round two.

Craig DeWitt 
Later. 

Matt Zahab 
Folks, what an episode with Craig DeWitt, Co-Founder and Head of Product at Supermojo. Truly an incredible episode. Taught me so much. I hope he taught you a bunch as well. Some great knowledge bombs left, right and center. We’d love to see it. If you enjoyed this, and I hope you did, please do subscribe. It would mean the world to my team and I. Speaking to the team love you guys. Thank you so much for everything. And Justas my amazing sound editor, you are the GOAT. Appreciate you as always. Until the listeners love you guys. Keep on growing those bags and keep on staying healthy, wealthy and happy. Bye for now. And they’ll talk to me.

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