We talked to Adel Ghouma, Co-founder and Chief Business Officer at Crypto Voucher about cryptocurrencies and here is what he said about it.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Adel Ghouma: COVID-19 times were very challenging for most of us worldwide. The virus changed our life routine and isolated us from society and even our families. I spent less time with family and more time working. However, I’m very fortunate that this health crisis didn’t affect my loved ones and me.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Crypto Voucher.
Adel Ghouma: I spent the last 12 years in the e-commerce business, building my own start-ups, or being part of other companies. I have accumulated extensive experience in e-commerce, online payments, cryptocurrencies, FinTech, and gaming.
I founded Crypto Voucher in 2017 with my business partner Peter Stanio. The idea was really simple, and we wanted to create a platform that will enable anyone to buy cryptocurrencies easily and conveniently.
How does Crypto Voucher innovate?
Adel Ghouma: We provide an easy and simple process of buying cryptocurrency; we believe that small amounts of crypto should be possible to buy as easily as you purchase things from amazon or any other online shop without any verifications.
Our vision is to make cryptocurrencies accessible for the mainstream, with the increased value of BTC, people should always be able to buy 10 euro or 25 euros in BTC hassle-free.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Adel Ghouma: The pandemic has accelerated the crypto growth; more people turned into buying BTC, which resulted in the exceptional growth of BTC that we saw in the last months. Therefore, we had to work more to cope with growth and market changes. The challenge was that the teams were working remotely, and it took us extra efforts to coordinate and communicate very complex projects among different teams. But it was good exercise for all of us to improve our processes and communication skills.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Adel Ghouma: As I mentioned, the Bitcoin value grew substantially, which affected the transaction fees on the blockchain that boomed especially after the halving event. On some days, BTC withdrawal fees exceeded $12. We focus mainly on mainstream users that buy crypto for small amounts of 10 or 25 euros. Such an increase in the fees imposed on us a very hard situation as we charge customers only 2.5 euros as a maximum to withdraw Bitcoin to their own wallets.
We decided to stay true to our vision to enable the mainstream to buy small amounts of crypto, and we kept the withdrawal fees at the same level of 2.5 euros even if we will be paying the difference in the price ourselves.
This choice affected our financials reports, but we gained more and more users, especially through recommendations of our existent customers. The lesson we learned is that; if you stay true to your vision, your existent customers are your most powerful marketing tool.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety, how do you project yourself and Crypto Voucher in the future?
Adel Ghouma: When it comes to stress and anxiety, we have some simple tricks we use to turn stress into productive energy. We organize work efficiently. Whenever there is a stressful situation, we always ask ourselves 2 questions; can we do something to fix the situation, and if we can what are our options?
If we can do something to fix it, we will list down the options and choose the best one for our company and clients. If the situation is out of our control, we simply move on and think about how can reduce our dependency on external factors. In both scenarios, we turn the negative vibes of the stress or anxiety into a plan of action.
We have very ambitious plans for the future to drive crypto adoption among the mainstream. We’re strong believers in the crypto industry, and we believe that it’s only the beginning of a new financial era. We want to play a part in shaping this financial transformation.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Adel Ghouma: We specialize in selling crypto in small amounts for the normal John Smith, who has a very minimal understanding of the crypto industry. He wants to start somewhere buying and holding a piece of it hassle-free. Moreover, we provide in our blog very informative content to understand the crypto industry and how it works.
This is a niche market that we’re specializing in it. When it comes to competition, we believe that some of our customers after trying their first purchases and absorb the fundamentals of the crypto industry will need more complex services like trading on exchanges. We don’t provide these services so that they will look for them on other different platforms like Binance. However, we don’t see this as a competition as our goal is to be the entry-level platform for crypto enthusiasts. We see it more like we complete each other with other platforms.
Your final thoughts?
Adel Ghouma: The COVID-19 crisis was a very unfortunate event for most of the businesses. However, it accelerated innovation and improved the way we as Entrepreneurs work and adapt to changing circumstances.
My message is that we all have to stay positive even in the most challenging times where opportunities are less but more rewarding to seize.