Stone & Chalk Melbourne-based cryptocurrency startup, Elbaite, was founded in 2017; enabling Australians to exchange cryptocurrency with fewer fees, more trust and control, and better trade conditions.
Their exchange platform is the first in the world to combine fiat escrow with blockchain verifications and support for multiple blockchains, allowing for direct Peer-to-Peer (P2P) and secure trades.
We chatted with Elbaite's Founder Mortaza Tollo, and mentor Rod Tasker, whose strong background in financial consulting made him a perfect match for Mortaza and Elbaite. They explained the company's success story and how S&C's in-house mentor program is helping Elbaite move forward.
How Elbaite works
Elbaite is a peer-to-peer exchange platform for traders to directly buy and sell cryptocurrency safely and securely. P2P transactions not only reduce fees, but more importantly increase safety and security for the end-users.
Rod explains that “Elbaite keeps traders' information private, and the transaction is always 'atomic', meaning the seller gets the money if and only the buyer receives the cryptocurrency.”
There are many great ways for beginners to start investing or trading cryptocurrency, but Mortaza says there are fewer options for sophisticated investors or traders: “Elbaite provides an exchange platform for large volume traders who place security, safety, and control of their assets as priorities. We connect traders, provide the escrow functionalities, blockchain verification and instant payment options that allow secure and quick transactions."
"Elbaite is also completely free for sellers, with no hidden charges and only a 1% fee for buy orders. Furthermore, since Elbaite never holds a client's cryptocurrency, there are no withdrawal or deposit fees, and we provide instant payment options”. Consequently, Elbaite is one of the cheapest options for buyers and the best option for sellers.
Mortaza says they believe the best place to store cryptocurrency is with the owner of the cryptocurrency as envisioned by the Bitcoin whitepaper released in 2008. “Elbaite users can store their cryptocurrency on their mobile, computer, or encrypted hardware wallets, or any other way that best suits their situation.”
He goes on to add that when you buy cryptocurrency on Elbaite, the seller will directly send the cryptocurrency to your personal wallet. “You can then immediately use this cryptocurrency to pay for goods, trade it or send it to a friend. There's no need to wait to withdraw it from an exchange or pay a withdrawal fee.”
Furthermore, when you sell on Elbaite, your cryptocurrency is with you at all times until a buyer places an order and pays for it. “You control the transfer to the buyer, and Elbaite does the rest. This means users don't need to risk storing the cryptocurrency on the exchange, or first sending the cryptocurrency to the exchange then waiting until the exchange confirms that it's been received.”
Stone & Chalk mentor program
Mentoring and being part of a community are both extremely important in building early-stage startups.
After organizing seed funding from crypto-savvy investors, Elbaite is now preparing its Series A investment in 2020. The seed capital raised allowed Elbaite to focus on its value proposition, developing partnerships, enhancing the customer journey, and growing sales.
Through curated communities, Stone & Chalk's mentor program enables a perfect framework for startups to access capital, talent, expertise, customers, insights, and community support; facilitating the path to success.
Both Rod and Mortaza agree that the S&C mentor program gave Elbaite the chance to gather feedback, refine the business model, develop partnerships and reach networks beyond just finance.
The most important advice Mortaza was given through the mentor program was that “business at its core is providing value for your customers. Every feature and every product should either increase the value proposition or make it easier to provide it.”
This has set the path for Elbaite's Series A investment plans in 2020. Rod clarifies that “we are focused on building trades through the Elbaite platform, being careful to track progress and understand what's working and what isn't, and how we can make the smallest changes that make the biggest difference. Our aim is to have a compelling growth story after about six months of intense promotions to our target demographics, based on key measurements such as 'cost to acquire' and 'lifetime value creation'.”
What's next for Elbaite?
You might be wondering 'what's the Bitcoin Price Chart (BTC) price on Elbaite?'.
That's exactly what they're aiming for: to be the exchange of choice for experienced and sophisticated traders moving from cryptocurrency to fiat, or vice versa, with ambitions to expand to other jurisdictions and currencies.