podcasts

Tokens Inside NFTs, with Ben Lakoff of Charged Particles

podcasts

Tokens Inside NFTs, with Ben Lakoff of Charged Particles

Charged Particles enables users to deposit digital assets inside their NFTs. In this episode of the Metaverse Podcast, host Jamie Burke speaks with Ben Lakoff, co-founder of Charged Particles, on his background, the use cases for Charged Particles, and his thoughts on regulations.

Posted by Tokens Inside NFTs, with Ben Lakoff of Charged Particles - February 2022

Background

Tokens Inside NFTs, with Ben Lakoff of Charged Particles Outlier Ventures

  • Has a background in corporate finance
  • Ended up in private equity. Did a bit of angel investing towards the end of his corporate career
  • Got into crypto because he made an angel investment into a Thai crypto exchange
  • Started his first company creating tools for crypto traders. It ended up failing as most of their treasury is in crypto during the bear market
  • After that, he did a bit of consulting and angel investing
  • Also hosts his own podcast
  • Co-Founder of Charged Particles

History Of Charged Particles

Tokens Inside NFTs, with Ben Lakoff of Charged Particles Outlier Ventures

  • Rob Secord was dreaming up Charged Particles in late 2019 — the idea of NFT holding other assets
  • He launched a Twitter account and a Discord server ideating on this concept
  • Their proof of concept came out in May 2020
  • Aavegotchi was inspired by Charged Particles, but their focus is on gaming
  • He met Rob in Gitcoin Kernel. Started as an advisor to Rob and helping him think through the business case of the project
  • Both of them worked on it throughout summer 2020
  • They ended up raising initial pre-seed funding in December 2020, followed by another seed round in February 2021
  • Launched on Mainnet and subsequently on Polygon
  • Offers an API and SDK for people to easily build using this tooling
  • They are at a pre-product-market fit stage

Oh my gosh, think of these things as compact containers, putting things inside of them in new unique ways.

Ben Lakoff

What Made Him Join Charged Particles?

  • Being an operator is over-glamorized on social media
  • Has always wondered why he would voluntarily go back to being an operator
  • Thinks that the use case and potential for Charged Particles is far too compelling

High Level Overview Of Charged Particles

  • They take NFTs and give them their own smart wallet which can hold other assets
  • The smart wallet has its own address where people can deposit tokens to it
  • Charged Particles enable people to do new unique things

Use Cases

Governance

  • Issuing NFTs with governance rights to the community
  • The NFT have a different voting weight when compared to the ERC-20 tokens of the project
  • The ERC-20 tokens could be locked into the NFT to have even more voting weight

Interest-Bearing Instruments

  • Have an integration with Aave
  • Interest-bearing assets could be deposited into an NFT
  • Originally, they called the interest “charge” and the NFT “particles.” As interest accumulates within the interest-bearing assets, it becomes a “charged particle”

“This was the idea of Charged Particles. Particles are the NFT, you add interest-bearing assets to that NFT. And as it accumulates interest, it accumulates charge and thus becomes a charged particle.

– Ben Lakoff

Organization Of Charged Particles

  • Organized into guilds
  • Book of Alchemy is a play-to-earn game built on top of Charged Particles

Tokens Inside NFTs, with Ben Lakoff of Charged Particles Outlier Ventures

  • Their music guild has been doing crazy stuff lately. They have won Unchained Music that’s doing music distribution
  • The guilds are currently centralized right now. They subscribe to the idea of progressive decentralization
  • Each guild has elected their own leader that perform autonomously from Charged Particles
  • Currently, the music, gaming, and developer guilds are the largest guilds
  • Have a couple of guilds that are focused on altruistic operatives — donors deposit assets into an NFT, with the accumulated interest being directed to a charity
  • Have an ecology guild doing tree plantings and a carbon fashion guild that sold a t-shirt with $10,000 in it as an NFT

Thoughts On Regulations

  • Crypto is bleeding edge and exists in a gray area
  • The regulations were created in 1930/1940s. Very difficult to apply them to our current world
  • Important to talk to a lawyer before doing anything in the space
  • Most things will end up being classified as securities. Hence, people have to be super careful
  • Unlocking NFTs as collaterals is also very difficult as we cannot apply a blanket price across an entire collection
  • Investor/founder tokens being placed inside an NFT makes it a security
  • Paragons DAO just launched yesterday. Their founder tokens are locked within a Charged Particles NFT. The NFT comes with a beautiful design. If the founder tokens gets withdrawn, holders would still have a very beautiful NFT

Tokens Inside NFTs, with Ben Lakoff of Charged Particles Outlier Ventures

What Excites Him About 2022?

  • Excited about the prospects of Charged Particles

Tokens Inside NFTs, with Ben Lakoff of Charged Particles Outlier Ventures

This podcast summary was prepared by The Reading Ape in collaboration with Outlier Ventures. The Reading Ape is a humble servant of the written word.

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