Jack An, Analyst (安良方 / 分析師)
Jack is an Analyst covering AppWorks Accelerator. Before joining the team, he was a co-founder and early team member at two InsurTech startups, where he developed a passion in user experience and product development. Previous to his startup journey he worked as a commercial property underwriter at Chubb Insurance in New Zealand. Jack graduated with a Bachelor of Music from Waikato University where he studied classical piano. He loves to cook, read and is a practicing stoic.
Decentralized finance (DeFi) is without a doubt one of the most revolutionary inventions of the 21st century. The “decentralization” part of DeFi refers to the core qualities of blockchain technology – censorship resistance, permissionlessness, and trustlessness. As long as one can connect to the internet, one can access to and ultimately benefit from financial goods and services. A basic need that most of us in the developed world often take for granted.
Factors like having a stable currency that does not lose purchasing power abruptly, or having a variety of yield generating financial instruments that protect and add to our wealth – these are issues that many people in developing economies face. It is frightening to consider losing access to technologies that can secure your financial nest. And that’s why building a resilient DeFi system is extremely important.
Apart from the underlying blockchain network that computes and supports DeFi, “stablecoins” – a digital currency whose value is pegged to a real-world currency, most commonly the US Dollar – plays an instrumental role in DeFi because it provides a consistent manner of storing and transmitting value, a necessity for all financial operations.
Nevertheless, stablecoins are not all created equal due to the fact they use different methods to peg their value to the dollar. Some stablecoins are centralized, giving control to a single authority, which can lead to censorship, manipulation, or act as a single point of failure, ultimately weakening the entire DeFi system.
This is why we are thrilled to be supporting Marius Ciubotariu, co-founder of Hubble Protocol. Marius and his colleagues are developing a decentralized stablecoin system that aims to create a fully censorship-resistant stablecoin that can stand the test of time, to securely facilitate the DeFi ecosystem in the long run.
Connecting the dots backwards
Marius started his journey in technology early. At the age of 13, devoted to making money with his mind, he began learning how to code and participated in many coding olympiads and contests in his childhood. Marius’ passion for technology continued, and by the time he turned 16, he was already taking on projects as a software developer to support himself and earned a sizable income.
Initially, it was a straight path to becoming a software engineer after college. However, at the suggestion of his father, he decided to pursue an undergraduate in business instead. Marius’s fascination with finance and economics led him to become a sales analyst at Bloomberg in 2016. Through analyzing markets and trends, he saw the future where “software eats the world” and didn’t want to sit on the sidelines and watch this happen.
Marius made the jump within Bloomberg to begin developing the technology that runs the products Bloomberg were selling, as well as attempting to launch multiple software products outside of work. He became Bloomberg’s internal Rust champion, shipping their first-ever Rust-based infrastructure project. At the same time, Marius began studying blockchain and was intrigued with AMMs and lending products that offered real-world utilities, as well as the multidisciplinary requirements needed to establish them.
Marius recognized the importance of DeFi and the role stablecoins play in this emerging field, which is why he is taking on the difficult task of developing a censorship-resistant, permissionless, and trustless stablecoin. Looking back, his ambition and perseverance to excel and his expertise in engineering and finance creates the perfect combination for the foundation of Hubble Protocol.
Stablecoins adoption continues to soar
When customers put up over-collateralized loans, Hubble Protocol issues “USDH” stablecoins. To do so in a decentralized manner, the platform must also include mechanisms to self-govern and rebalance loans at risk. Building a resilient infrastructure capable of timely managing loan positions in the face of crypto’s rapid price changes is no easy feat in and of itself.
However, attracting individuals to take out over-collateralized loans is also a difficult task. Hubble’s goal together with Marius’s experience is to create winning strategies as structured products that are principal-guaranteed that maximize return. Furthermore, the team is also working on tools that will eventually support under-collateralized loans in order to attract a larger market of consumers and expand the total DeFi market.
The stablecoin market has expanded dramatically, with the total value of stablecoins issued reaching around US$185 billion in April 2022, up from US$30 billion in the beginning of 2021. This bodes well for the Hubble protocol, which itself is dedicated to developing the most resilient and commonly used stablecoin.
Fighting the good fight
The Hubble protocol team is focused on building a DeFi platform the right way the first time, given the early stages of DeFi and the constant regulatory challenges. It is essential to maintain an open and censorship-resistant DeFi ecosystem to ensure that access to financial products remains a basic human right. As supporters of the Hubble protocol team, we are excited about what they are building and are looking forward to being part of their journey.
We look for strong founders who are using innovative technologies like DeFi to address real-world problems. We’re thrilled to work with Marius and his team at Hubble Protocol as they continue to spread the fundamental value of DeFi and blockchain to all around the world.
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