We had the pleasure of hosting William Richter, Marketing Lead at SORAMITSU, for an informative AMA session where he answered the community’s questions about SORAMITSU’s plans for the decentralized future and the open source DEX that they are building on Klaytn. Listen to the AMA session below or read on for our recap!
Note: Some of the text have been edited for grammar and clarity.
Date & Time: April 13th at 4pm SGT / 5pm KST
Platform: Twitter Spaces
Speakers: William Richter from SORAMITSU
Host: Sofy, Community Manager at Klaytn Foundation
Sofy: Happy Wednesday to all! Welcome once again to another AMA session with us. I am Sofy, community manager for Klaytn and it is indeed my pleasure to be your host for today’s session. Thank you so much everyone for taking time to be here.
Today’s session will be divided into 2 parts. We will begin with an introduction from William of SORAMITSU , followed by questions from the community that we have gathered. Without further ado, let’s welcome William!
Please do introduce yourself to the community and I am sure we would love to know more about SORAMITSU.
William: Hello! My name is William Richter and I am marketing lead in SORAMITSU. I have an MA in Media from the University of Amsterdam. My main areas of interest are metadata and privacy, and I got fully immersed in the blockchain industry at the end of 2020, I think around that time ETH was at about 600USD, so it definitely feels like it was a long time ago.
SORAMITSU is a global technology company delivering blockchain-based solutions for enterprises, universities, and governments. From the creation of domestic and cross-border payment systems, to the development of our own decentralized autonomous economy, our projects and use case studies represent the next-generation of fintech.
Sofy: Since its founding in 2016, SORAMITSU has devoted itself to the blockchain industry. Where did SORAMITSU originate from and how does the company’s work culture differ from others?
William: SORAMITSU’s origins can be traced back to the sky… In the words of our group founder and personal inspiration Dr. Makoto Takemiya, “In the same way that taking to the skies gave us insights about our physical world, blockchain technology can provide insights into our digital world.”
SORAMITSU seeks to harness the power of the next generation of blockchains to empower people, help with decision making, automation, and safe management of assets; because ultimately, our goal is to make the world a better place.
The culture we have at SORAMITSU as a company is very unique, we like to think BIG while at the same time remain grounded, as we are driven by results. The team is very diverse, we have 150 people split across 7 countries, so the mix of cultures and perspectives is great, however, collaboration with ethics and integrity is very important for us.
Sofy: What are some of the company’s core values and how do they relate to its mission of building a better world through decentralized technology?
William: That’s a great question! Our core values definitely go hand in hand with our mission: we value simplicity, clear communication, and being straightforward and honest with those we work with. When it comes to building a better world, it is important to own what you do, while being very customer focused. In the end, we are building toward creating a better world for everyone.
Sofy: Can you share a brief overview of SORAMITSU’s progress and what SORAMITSU plans to accomplish in 2022?
William: Definitely! We are working to make this Year of the Tiger one of the most productive yet! I can’t share many details, as you can imagine, but some of the highlights include:
Significant improvements to the Hyperledger Iroha DLT, support and improvements to Bakong, such as more convenient KYC for users, password recovery assistance and more surprises… We have some valuable initial findings in our ongoing CBDC research in Laos and Oceania, along with new infrastructure projects, including in the cross-border settlement space.
We are looking to have new joint ventures with public and private consortia, and this year we will also reach the next phase in development of the SORA DeFi ecosystem, and if that was not enough, our CEO Makoto Takemiya will be participating in this year’s Global Blockchain Business Council Blockchain Central panel in Davos, Switzerland, where he will talk about the future of money!
This is only a hint of the ongoing work for this year, and of course we can’t forget the collaboration with Klaytn, which we hope is only the start of a very long-term commitment!
Sofy: To learn more about SORAMITSU’s vibrant ecosystem, could you please share with the community about some of the partnerships SORAMITSU has formed that led them to where they are today?
William: Sure thing! Where to begin though? We have participated in plenty of great collaborations. If I had to list the most important ones, I would begin with the Hyperledger Foundation, which is part of the Linux Foundation. As the original developers of the Hyperledger Iroha DLT, we collaborated with the National Bank of Cambodia, where we developed a payment infrastructure named Bakong, which is the first of its kind. We also collaborated with the Japan International Cooperation Agency to lead a feasibility study on central bank digital currency in Laos. Finally, we are also collaborating with SORA, the decentralized economic system. Personally, I find this one quite interesting as it is quite a different environment to work with when you compare it to someone like the National Bank of Cambodia. Although, if the Klaytn community is interested, they can look at our 2021 Year in Review publication for more details on these and other collaborations.
Sofy: SORAMITSU has developed a digital currency for the National Bank of Cambodia, a closed-loop payment system for the University of Aizu in Japan, an identity verification system prototype for Bank Central Asia in Indonesia and finalists in the Monetary Authority of Singapore CBDC Challenge. SORAMITSU seems to be moving towards global expansion. What geographic expansion plans does SORAMITSU have in place?
William: We plan to take over the world! Just kidding… A lot of our work focuses on the Asian continent. With research and development ongoing in a lot of Asian countries that people in the west dismiss, or aren’t even aware exist. As a global company with Japanese origins, it makes sense to begin our work in the Asian region, as there are plenty of opportunities to improve the lives of people in the region, and, ideally, get rid of the notion that innovation is mostly happening in the global west.
Sofy: What made SORAMITSU decide to build on Klaytn and how will this benefit SORAMITSU?
William: We have a shared vision and goals to benefit people through blockchain-based decentralized technology, so we believe that both parties benefit from this collaboration. On our side, the benefits will come from working together to develop a better world for people, where blockchain technology will help foster innovation and inclusion.
Sofy: Both SORAMITSU and Klaytn share the vision of building decentralized systems and empowering participation and opportunity for all. Klaytn is excited to welcome SORAMITSU as a valuable strategic partner to build the first open-source decentralized exchange on our blockchain. What are your thoughts on this partnership?
William: Personally, I think it is a great partnership that benefits the entire Klaytn community. At SORAMITSU we work towards achieving decentralized and open source technologies that benefit all the people who use them. We are very excited to build a decentralized exchange architecture backbone for Klaytn that is cutting edge and future-proof.
This is only the beginning of the great things that a partnership with Klaytn will bring!
Sofy: What is SORAMITSU’s reason to create an open source DEX?
William: Concretely speaking, the reason would be to foster true decentralization, while providing a transparent and inclusive platform for users and developers alike, in addition to providing a further means to aggregate liquidity to the tokens in the Klaytn ecosystem.
Sofy: What are some of the exciting features of the DEX that will be built on Klaytn?
- Fungible token swapping
- Staking and liquidity provision
- Token-based governance
- And token minting
We will also have cool analytics tools, ranging from dashboards and graph API to see your data better. More functionalities will be considered down the pipeline.
Sofy: Impermanent loss is the risk associated with providing liquidity to DEXs. What is SORAMITSU’s approach on how to manage this aspect or probably provide advances on how to lower impermanent loss?
William: A lot of the issues with impermanent loss comes from the fluctuation of tokens prices while providing liquidity. In this sense the best suggestion I can give to minimise the risks would be to provide liquidity to a stable token. It’s not a silver bullet, but it helps.
Sofy: How do you guys plan to drive liquidity into the DEX?
William: We are building the backbone infrastructure for the DEX, but will not be operating the DEX itself. With that said, I think there is a lot of untapped value in the Klaytn network and having a DEX that drives that value into building up the Klaytn economy will incentivize a lot of users to provide liquidity.
Sofy: How would SORAMITSU’s DEX attract institutional investment in DeFi?
William: I think the answer to this question is very similar to the previous one. We have no influence on the eventual operation of the DEX, but we hope that institutions can appreciate the value of decentralization, open-source technologies, and try to be part of these innovations. We are designing the DEX with creating value for the Klaytn ecosystem in mind, so institutions that are excited about contributing to Klaytn in the long term will likely want to take part in using the DEX and integrating it into their apps and dApps.
Sofy: Where can the community find a feature list of the upcoming DEX?
William: If anyone is interested in learning about the proposed features in detail, you can take a look at the accepted proposal for this project.
Sofy: In what ways are Fintech innovations, such as SORAMITSU, disrupting the payments industry?
William: Japan-based SORAMITSU rolled out a next-generation payment network that enables real-time payments online and via smartphones. The venture’s blockchain platform is faster, cheaper and addresses development issues such as when people are “unbanked.” In Cambodia, for example, 78 percent of the population over 15 years old do not have access to banking services. In six months, the platform enrolled thousands of real users.
SORAMITSU’s Project Bakong lets participating banks and customers transact directly and more efficiently through a platform that is monitored by Cambodia’s central bank. It’s the ultimate stamp of approval. The company is also rolling out mobile solutions that give Cambodia’s unbanked population access to payment services via smartphone.
Sofy: Do you think decentralized technology is a sustainable and most viable approach for the future of the blockchain industry?
William: I think it is the most sustainable and viable approach for the future of any industry to be completely honest.
Sofy: Do you have any final thoughts you’d like to share with our community?
William: I think we have pretty much covered everything in this session, but if you want to know more about SORAMITSU and the work we’re doing to make the world a better place through decentralized technologies, check out our website or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn!
Many thanks to William Richter from SORAMITSU for taking time out of his busy schedule for our AMA! To find out more about Klaytn and join our growing global community, please follow these links below: