March 27, 2020

079: Cryptic Wisdom - Colin Platt

079: Cryptic Wisdom - Colin Platt

Colin Platt joins the show to talk to Pete Townsend about leaving behind his early career in the capital markets, the crossover of solving entrepreneurial problems and solving global political problems, the professional merits of podcasting, hating and loving writing, his view on economics....and his grasp of the Swedish language!

This week we’re catching up with Colin Platt, whose LinkedIn profile describes him as a “crypto performance artist” in addition to being an independent consultant, but where you really want to follow him is on Twitter @colingplatt and on his blog on Medium.

Colin works with innovative companies on technology and business strategy with a focus on cryptocurrencies and distributed ledger technologies, and is also a founder of entrepreneurial ventures. Colin and Pete connected after Pete had his own awakening on blockchain and distributed ledger technologies back in 2014, and they were both at BNP Paribas for a while before they met in 2015.  Pete remembers how Colin’s departing email from BNP Paribas way back then said “I’m going to give this entrepreneur thing a shot,” and Colin's leap was one of the inspirations for Pete's own leap.   Fast-forward five years and about 200 podcast episodes later between the two of them - Colin mostly on Blockchain Insider and Pete mostly right here on MoneyNeverSleeps - the two pals get into: 

  • Colin's history in the corporate world, his awakening with cryptocurrency, and his inspiration to take the leap.
  • The "do I or don't I" question when it comes to following a problem that could create some great traction when you solve that problem, but it's a dramatically different problem than the one you set out to solve.
  • That fantastic feeling when you finish a project and the client turns around and says,"OK, I absolutely didn't think about this, and this changes everything I need to do now," and seeing them light up on the success of really understanding something differently.
  • Seeing a client 3-6 months down the road after you've worked with them, and they say "We pivoted and then really got traction with this, and we couldn't have done it without you."  
  • The professional benefits of stage presence and presentation skills from doing tons of podcast episodes
  • On blogging:  "Being able to write is a superpower - it doesn't have to be anywhere special - LinkedIn, Medium, wherever.  Write a blog about something and just continually write 600-800 words every couple of weeks and put it out there."
  • On writing in general:  "I always hated writing when I was in university and in high school. Then I realized that I actually quite enjoy it now because it's that time where for a couple of hours I just get to block everything out and just kind of mentally puke all over a page and then go clean it up."
  • On the economic effects of this global pandemic we're going through:  "I think one of the things that I got really interested in early on with bitcoin or ether as an asset class is this notion that you can actually see where everything is and how it works.  That parlays quite quickly into having money that is more traceable on the one hand, but at the same time less controllable. It's got to be something that starts to rear its head."
  • On economic stimuli:  "Fortunately, or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it, as more money is pumped into the system, you're going to have people that demand transparency [on where it goes]."
  • On money:  "I think people in the real world are starting to understand more and more about what money is and how it's created. And not everybody is comfortable with that system."
  • On inflation:  "Rightly or wrongly, and I'm not saying that the system is doomed to fail, but I think over the long term, keeping your money in cash means you will lose money to inflation, and not everybody's aware of that. Your options are either invest in productive assets or in inflation hedges. If enough people invest into these inflation hedges like gold or bitcoin or ether, even potentially, that can help save some of their value. We can have economic debates around whether that's productive for the economy or not."
  • Colin's status as the richest man alive (tongue firmly implanted in cheek) and "creating a coin that was worth $3.6 quadrillion, which is thirty three thousand six hundred thousand trillion, so a really big number."

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