AMA Recap: ESP Coin
- Time: December 3rd, 2021 at 2PM UTC
- Project name: ESP Coin
- Host: Henry from BSC Army
- Guest speakers: Eric | Founder & CEO of ESP Coin
- Main content:
- Part 1: Project Overview
- Part 2: Tokenomics
- Part 3: Security
- Part 4: Comunity
- Part 5: Roadmap
- Part 6: Community Q&A
Part 1: PROJECT OVERVIEW
1. Can you introduce yourself and also your project?
Eric: Yes, I’m Eric Lloyd from the ESP project. I’m the managing director and also the managing director of digital ST which is the overall company that holds the intellectual product property for all the different platforms that we’re involved with ESP. Primarily we’re focused on education digital payments and renewable energy projects that utilize our ERC-based token.
2. How did you get the idea of the name in the first place?
Eric: Sure actually it just really was an amalgamation of the different business cases that we’re looking at, e for education, s for solar which is the renewable energy side, and p for digital payments, so putting that together just ESP sounds good and ESP kind of lends itself into the intelligence side of things which is great for our educational audience and that’s probably their biggest and largest use case where we have a couple of different platforms, one called ‘talk to an expert’ which is a content delivery platform and our school connect platform which is a student information management system.
3. How long have you been developing this project?
Eric: On the educational side, we’ve been working on that for a couple of years now and one of the requirements is that we needed a way to be able to incorporate people in developing nations that want to take part in online services but remain on the bank. There’s over 1.7 billion people unbanked in the developing world and bringing out an educational platform that we want all students to be able to use. We needed some way for them to interact with the system and take advantage of online services and this is where the token really comes into its own. Though these people remain unbanked, almost all of them have a smartphone today so anybody with a smartphone has the ability to add a digital wallet and then make the token available and then partake in all these different online applications, so it was a really big driver for us to create the coin in the first place.
4. Can you explain further why you choose to develop your coins in the educational aspect?
Eric: It’s a utility token, so first and foremost it’s a form of payment, and again addressing the 1.7 billion that remain unbanked, allows them to partake in the application moving forward. There are lots of different benefits for having a token for instance for our student information management system which is a single application for parents teachers and students to work together with their functions like being able to students to pay for lunches or books or field trips parents can pay for tuition fees or any additional fees for the school and they can do it all from the convenience of their phone. So the parents can fund various activities or accounts for the child who has access either through a smartphone or even through a barcode to pay for elements at school. So the child doesn’t have to carry real fiat currency around, so that’s a safety aspect, especially when you’re a younger child so that’s number one on our content delivery platform. One of the problems that we have with trying to bring to market a very low-cost product is we run into all the localization problems of getting merchant payments and not the fees associated with processing and then again making it available to everybody. If 1.7 billion people do not have access to a credit card it means that they’re blocked from using these online services, so we’re trying to democratize that and make it available for everybody. The other thing is with the content platform, we also have a decentralized version of that so if content creators put their content on the platform they will be able to earn tokens for the content that is viewed by paying customers in the decentralized version of the application. There can also be advertisers where advertisers will pay money into the platform and the content consumers can earn tokens by viewing advertising content so it provides an interesting mechanism where advertisers can pay directly and know that they’re getting viewership exactly where they need it right and everything’s facilitated through the use of the token, bypassing both borders as well as all the different merchant handling fees and processes associated with typical credit card transactions.
5. Beside you as the CEO, the founders, how many team members do you have and working for you right now?
Eric: We’re a small team. We have seven core individuals spread across the world actually in Vietnam, Dubai, Croatia, France, Ireland, and myself here in Canada. We have about 15 others that are supporters or advisors or content developers into the various business cases so some of it’s specifically the management of the token, the marketing aspect, but more importantly is what we’re doing on the business case units the ‘talk to expert’, the school connect our digital payment platforms which we’re going to bring into Africa initially, and again on the renewable energy side, creating a decentralized application there that will fund residential solar projects. We have a bunch of openings happening for developing for these different platforms. So right now we have marketing people and developers that are creating these business use cases. Once we start to hit that Alpha and Beta stage then we’re going to bring people on board for onboarding and additional marketing sales resources, so the team is growing. I expect by the end of the first quarter of 2022, there will be about a team of 22 to 23. So we have some pretty big expansion planned. This was going to happen a little bit earlier. But as everybody knows Covit has been a bit of a headwind for many people, we will have a development community in Vietnam that we’re setting up and currently, they’re faced with some real challenges there, that hopefully now they’re getting passed.
Henry: I don’t know what it’s about to you but to me, it’s like a very big plan and you’re so a big team is coming ahead.
Eric: You’re absolutely right. It’s not just the token itself. The token is a part of our overall strategy, but really it’s all these different business case units, so we’re really running a couple of parallel businesses simultaneously: token school connect, talk to expert, digital payments and you wonder why are we so diverse, there are so many different things, it all comes back to some of our key technology where we’re utilizing it in all the business cases and this is our ability to have huge scalability in terms of millions of simultaneous users as well as transaction volume capability of so hundreds of millions of transactions per day and the technology has to be architected in a very specific way in order to have those kinds of that infrastructure roll out and support those volume and the reason why we are working to that kind of scale is again we’re targeting the developing nations of the world where we have to ultimately bring out a very low cost product and the only way you can do that is with massive scale and that’s why we’ve always structured it this way.
Part 2: TOKENOMICS
6. Can you explain your token distribution?
Eric: We’ve tried to keep it as simple as possible, because it’s a utility token. We didn’t want to burden it with a lot of transfer tax fees of 10 or 12 percent, and then all these percentages get divided up everywhere when you do. That really reduces its utility as a form of payment so we decided to bring that all the way down to a one percent transfer tax and of that one percent, fifty percent of that fee is being burned immediately by the contract and the other fifty percent is randomly distributed among a token holder. So basically every once in a while a token holder will get an airdrop of some of a half a percent of a particular transaction, so it’s a way of incentivizing people to hold the token and continue to drive adoption. In terms of the token distribution, we’ve forcibly kept our inside seed holders limited to 12 and a half percent of the circulating population leaving the rest for actual business use outside of the founders and this was also important because we don’t want to have a situation where you see out and again the market, the ability for a lot of rug pulls and these types of things we’re really sensitive to making sure that we’re protecting the public and that the token is a viable token as a utility token in the market space.
7. Can you give me three key points to convince the investor to invest in your project for the long term?
Eric: I think the primary difference that we see us against many other these other tokens is that we’re backed by real businesses, something that is going to drive profit back into the token base through buyback and burn programs and it’s supporting the token long term. So there’s long-term viability for the price and value of the token. The second thing is the markets that we’re entering. For instance, the educational market as we discussed earlier in Vietnam is 21 million students, in Brazil we’re close to where actually we have an agreement where we’re announcing that we’ll have access to 30 million students there, 600 000 in Dubai another 21 million students in the Philippines and of course the jewel of the crown is India at over 330 million students. Especially our student information management system school connect gets out there these are our target markets and they’re very big, so the long-term prospects of the application itself are great, so I think that this in itself is a real strong case for the growth of the coin and third thing, in terms of why, I think is one of credibility and what we’re doing. You can see everything that we do is very transparent, we’re very cognizant about how our token is being held and how its value is affected in the public. Our tokenomics are really dry focused on value for the holder and that they’re not penalized for for using the token as well as you’ll see all our communication, we’re very open, my name’s published, our team members names are published on the website, our Linkedin is there, so you see real people behind the project and you see us on these live AMAs youtube videos interviews with others. So we have a very public front-facing I don’t wanna call it marketing but face the company that everybody sees and I see that as being a real difference with our youtube channel and whatnot with a lot of other projects, I think this gives a lot of credibility and confidence to the investor base that: there’s a real team behind what we’re doing we have real strategy on how we’re going after each and every one of these business case units and it’s all supportive for an overall goal of enhancing value for the token.
Part 3: SECURITY
8. There are a lot of scam projects out there so how does the security system work to guarantee your user wallet and also the trust in your project?
Eric: That’s security, it has to be built into all aspects of the company, not just the platforms we’re creating but even how we conduct ourselves. Currently, we protect the held tokens in our treasury in an offline wallet that’s only accessible by a single computer from a single iPhone by only two people. And they’re on opposite ends of the earth so if one person gets hit by a bus, unfortunately. It’s again safe forever and it’s still available so that the public is not impacted by somebody going away, But the fact is that we have virtually singular access to the tokens means that they’re secure all right. When we talk about the different digital platforms that we’re bringing online of course they’re going to have integrated wallets in those applications which means that we’ll have private keys for each one of those wallets. So there’s a lot of technical means that you have to put in place from a cyber securities perspective in order to keep that secure so again. Keys are encrypted separately from the actual application that is online where and how we do the signing. I’m not going to get into the mechanics of that because that gives away one of the security layers but security is done in layers. It’s just not one single thing, not one silver bullet that addresses that you have to have password security and then what you do on the application side with obfuscating your code and then salting and encrypting your critical data. All these different types of things we have to build that all into, Every layer of the system we’ll have open APIs, we have closed APIs. We have secure networks internally and this is in the cloud so how do you do that well we’d use that with providers providing certain VPNs that are internal to the system so that’s all great technology speak. Most people won’t understand all the different technical nuances that are there but again we take a very stepwise and layered approach to security because the last thing we need is to have some type of breach that will impact the trust of the community. We are so dependent on the community for really the success of the overall ecosystem.
Part 4: COMMUNITY
9. How is your community growing and how where does the community appear?
Eric: We’re on all the social media channels, so you’ve listed them, Twitter, Facebook Telegram. We’ve got Reddit, we use media mostly for a lot of our announcements or whatnot then they get reflected everywhere else day to day discussions happen on Telegram. I myself spend quite a bit of time trying to interact with the community, I think it’s really important that we answer the questions that are asked and we try to do that as much as possible, and again it’s that openness that breeds some trust over time we’re probably technologists or at least mine’s a technology background so our marketing is probably the weaker link of the overall team and so we’re now focusing on trying to bring more marketing resources to try to grow out the various communities because they’re the ones that really are the bread and blood of our success. Without the community, there’s no use for them as a token so the growth of that community is really high. On our list we’re really focused on more engagement, bringing, growing the community in terms of population but also in terms of quality of the content that we’re putting out there, the video that we’re putting on youtube. We did a lot of AMA sessions earlier we’re starting to progress that now into bringing content online to showcase what we’re doing and I think we’ll see a video a little bit later about that. There are a number of things that we’re doing. We’re also about to announce today actually going live with an airdrop campaign and a social media campaign to really get the word out to start to grow the community because we’re at that tipping point from when we’re on the exchange. We’re getting ready to bring our first platforms to life, it’s now all about community engagement so that’s really the primary focus.
10. How do you focus your project on the non-crypto user?
Eric: In fact one of the key things that we have to do is make crypto easy and almost transparent everybody’s taught in today’s day. There’s quite a process to turn fiat into crypt crypto than trading here and all these different exchanges when you get to the level of the average user ESPecially in the educational space, to ask them to go through exchanges and all these different things in order to get crypto and then put it in their wallet. We have to turn that into a very simple day-to-day process just as simple as using your ATM card to make a withdrawal and so it’s really important that the applications that we build kind of put all the mechanics of the cryptocurrency in the background and it just happens. This is an underlying feature of what’s going on so much as we hate to say this to the crypto community that we’re not putting you in the forefront. We’re putting it behind the scenes because we have to make it simple for the user. It’s got to be simple to pay this much here and then behind that all the cryptocurrency transactions happen now at the end of the day. ESPecially on their talk to expert platforms where you have content creators that want to earn and they’re gonna be paid in crypto. We have to provide mechanisms and exchanges more than what we have today in order for them to realize that crypto is back in the fiat currency where they can take advantage of it. In everyday life, when we talk about the digital payment space, we’ll be building complete ecosystems that use the token in East Africa. We’ll be part of an electronic cash register network where the token can be used as a form of exchange in which. Then, they can send tokens anywhere in the world. The nice thing is when you’re part of that ECR network each ecr terminal also becomes a flat exchange point making the conversion from fiat to cryptocurrency very simple right. We have to keep it simple for the basic population because I’ll tell you with our stakeholders. They’re having a Devi of a time depending on where they are located around the world of converting this currency and then maybe USDT is not available at that exchange and getting it on to currently on bitmart or on unit swap or whatever we’re doing before. It’s a complicated process and for a lot of people that have never touched crypto.
Part 5: ROADMAP
11. How has the business been doing and where are you now on your roadmap?
Eric: We’ve minted the coin, we’ve got our security audit done. We began the various coin-specific marketing activities so those elements are complete. We’re on an exchange with bitmart and that was a big hurdle for us. That really kind of legitimizes the coin and makes it more available to the public through much larger communities. So, now we’ve been listed with coin market cap and coin gecko, these were big milestones for us. Those are complete of course we’re looking down the road where we want to support multiple chains. That’s part of our build-out process. We need layer 2 support because the gas cost of ether makes digital payments or micropayments almost impossible because of the fees associated with doing that. So again that’s handled by the various ecosystems that we’re deploying on that’s coming up and then really the next focus is also getting these different business use cases up and live.
So that’s the first one of course school connect which is really going to be the largest ecosystem for us. We’re about 16 to 18 weeks away from getting that out as a first alpha product. We have a big announcement of the access of 30 million students in Brazil where we want to get that deployed in 2022, so these are very big opportunities that are our focus to get closed on now. A lot is going on on the roadmap to advance it but now it’s really getting those business cases to live well through the words and also take a look at the videos of the trailer of the project. I’m really excited and can’t wait for the introduction and for the alphabet alpha test later this December..
12. During the time you developed the project, are there any challenges that your team faced?
Eric: I mean there are always challenges again. I think alluded to this a little bit earlier marketing is a challenge for us and technologists who understand technology and blockchain, this application and servers, and all this stuff, but getting it out there and getting the growth out there. Especially in the cryptocurrency space, I’ve got 30 years in technology on the embedded systems platform and that’s a pretty hard market because it’s very niche and you have to go after. It virtually feeds on the road to personally get that word out there but in the cryptocurrency space obviously, you’re appealing to a much broader audience and their needs somewhat are very investor-oriented much more about roles. Over a shorter period of time, there’s lots of look at the long-term nature of both the role of what they can get out of the token and supporting the project itself. We’ve kind of struggled a little bit because of some changes in the way of timeline and getting on the exchange. We’re delayed by about three months because of some economic changes in space, so we had to pivot a little bit and that was a big challenge for us to get that right and to try to get adoption out. Therefore we always have the early adopters that love us but get into the early majority where people are actually picking it up and getting used and comfortable with it. That’s a struggle that we have now and so we’re bringing resources on board to grow the community and get the word out and really get a much larger support base for the token and think that’s a big challenge for us. Of course, the other one is we’re running three or four parallel businesses and just managing the workload across that we have an HR expert in Vietnam. That is out there sourcing the right people for us but that’s a long process again even at 20 or 22 people. Everyone is a major contribution to the effort we got to make sure that we have great people so that it’s always easier to fire than higher as people say and the hiring process is not that easy right so again there are business challenges there are marketing challenges no different than anybody else but I think we have a good team in place and we’re aligned to a very specific set of goals that we want to get to something that’s our guiding light and we’ll get there wow okay totally agree with you because that is like a common difficulties common challenges that every project faced when starting up new things and bring it into the success okay so that’s the eric answers covered quite enough about ESP.
Part 6: COMMUNITY Q&A
13. Will ESP coin bring its transparency to live only on the Ethereum chain or do you have a plan to take your idea to other chains such as BSC or Polkadot?
Eric: Absolutely we have multi-chain support in mind that’s on a road map. One of the important things that we’ll have is to make sure that there is low friction or no friction. I don’t think no friction exists but a low friction gateway between the various chains so you can transparently move back and forth. That’s very much on our roadmap now whether that’s going to be BSC or Cardano again. Each one has its attractive nature to it, BSC has much lower transaction pricing and still means it mirrors what’s going on with. There is so the ERC 20 style contract works well with other smart contracts also. We’re also looking further down the road and also bringing out a native coin. The reason for that is that we need to have a governance system for the decentralized apps that exist on chains. This is really important in the renewable energy space where basically you have a lending platform and micro-investment coming. In approval of security collateral for projects that will be financing all that stuff has to have a nice kind of work together. In a good governance system, it’s totally automated, so there’s no single point of control and so we don’t see it yet. Tezos is close to their governance platform. Of course with the proof-of-stake approach, we might look at doing something similar to a fork or one of the other projects then melding it to what we need in the renewable energy space. In the talk, experts say space is a decentralized platform, we need to have either through smart contracts or through a governance system the ability to self-adjudicate. The appropriateness of video content that’s posted right if something’s offensive or if there’s hate speech in, is it a copyright violation whatever it might be we have to have a community of basically counselors or administrators. I don’t call them administrators but judges that will judge on mass say 30 people judge. If it’s more than 80 percent then that will be the decision whether that content is allowed or barred. It’s getting those kinds of thresholds right and how big of the evaluator community you’re going to have. That’s part of setting that system up but those are really that’s getting into a lot of complex discussion about how to do that on a per-platform nature. We have figured out that secret sauce not quite yet. We know what it needs to be, what it needs to do but the actual mechanics of making that work are still open because we’re hopeful. That solution exists in the current marketplace because I’m a big believer in let’s not reinvent the wheel, let’s utilize what’s out there but what’s out there isn’t exactly. What we need yet and we’ll see how that goes but certainly I’ve gone off on a tangent here. A little bit of multi-chain support is absolutely necessary whether it’s BSC or Polkadot. We will need a layer two solution to address the ethernet sort of the ether gas prices being just too high on a per transaction basis, so a lot of that stuff is coming and that’s actually near term.
14. What is the difference between an open and closed system as is related to educational content delivery on ESP?
Eric: A closed system is where basically we control everything from a commercial perspective on our student information management system. It’s only people interacting with our platform that will be using the token, users meaning parents and even the schools can take the token obviously off the app and use it wherever they like. Generally speaking, control and management of the token internally are entirely closed and controlled by us. Maybe a better example is our talk to expert platform that’s gonna be a closed system where we’re entirely in control of the quality and the content that’s going on. We will say yes or no to content creators. We set the pricing and all that stuff is done by us in a closed system. The decentralized version of talk to experts is an open system meaning that a governance system needs to be in place in order to again adjudicate the appropriateness of video content. But it’ll be up to the creators to set their own prices and anybody can add content that’s not closed off to anybody. It’s available to the entire world whereas in a closed system we’re targeting a very specific community. For instance, our school connect platform initially we’re gonna launch in Vietnam so that’s primarily focused only on Vietnam and it’s closed in that perspective.
15. Do you have any coin burn and buyback system that you have already mentioned earlier and the second part is do you have any plan to increase the value of the token and attract investors to invest?
Eric: Obviously, we have the buy-back sort of the burn program that’s built into the token contract itself. We also have a policy in place and you can see that on our white paper where the various business units are utilized. The coin will be putting a portion of the profit back into the project. The project will use 90 percent of that profit to buy back and burn the tokens until we get the token circulation down to 50 billion from the 500 billion which we originally minted. This is one way that we’re going to effectively drive the value of the individual token up because we’re increasing its scarcity as we’re doing the buyback and burn program but it’ll be done over. An extended period of time in a controlled fashion because you also have to remember that this is a utility token used for payment so having wild fluctuations as we see now in the early adopter phase makes it difficult to be used as a form of digital payment because nobody will want to hold the coin for an extended period of time. If it changes too much in price or if we have a slow ramp or predictable ramp as what we’ll expect to see over time with the token. That’s both good for the investor and it’s great for the value of anybody that’s using it as a utility.
16. How can you influence the payment process of schools and parents when cryptocurrency is still not recognized in many countries?
Eric: So we will be operating first of all in regions where it is accepted or means that people are using it. There’s no localized law that prevents us from doing what the other side of it is like. For instance, on the school connect platform when you’ve obfuscated, the behind-the-scenes actions of the cryptocurrency it’s just the way it functions. It really isn’t treated so specifically as a cryptocurrency. The only thing that we end up having to do on the front end is that again some types of how we receive payment into the platform may be different. If we’re in a region that doesn’t allow cryptocurrency then we can only accept fiat currency and then internally it’s still cryptocurrency that’s managing the internal transactions. But generally speaking, we’re operating in places wherein countries have exchanges, in fact, it really is going to be one of the other things that we need to make sure that exists. In those countries that we operate in, there are convenient points of exchange where they can easily create the token, get it in their digital wallet, and transfer it to the application. However it needs to go on the expert side and they can receive the coin and convert it back into fiat currency, that’s really important as well for its success.
17. What is the most ambitious goal of your project and could you share with us any upcoming updates?
Eric: I’d say the ambitious part of our project is really the timeline. We’ve really put things compressed to try to do things more quickly and we’ve run into our own roadblocks already with the exchange. Being a couple of months late, Covid has certainly not been beneficial to the timeline as well so that’s probably our biggest challenge. We’re stakeholders and on the commercial side of the business and we all have certain gates that we have to get through, so those are our challenges technically. The technology is well proven out and we’ve been developing that for quite some time. We’re less stressed about the technology piece but just having all the other business elements kind of coalesce into. One thing that is a big challenge is the ambition and ambitious part in terms of updates. We have a couple of big news releases coming either today or tomorrow and the next couple of days mentioned the one about Brazil. That’s a really big announcement for us. I can’t say that getting access to 30 million students is again for us. An available market of 150 million dollars per year is really significant and having great adoption in a country like Brazil then becomes a showpiece for the rest of the world. That’s so important to us it’s very amazing. We’re really happy that we’ve got some news releases about digital payments in East Africa and all of Africa. Some partnerships that we have there because again we can’t do everything ourselves. We do need partners for the agreement in Brazil and a partnership of the agreement in Africa is a partnership with other people. We’re providing that underlying technology but they’re doing the marketing aspect and actually getting it out. That’s important and then we’ve got a 500 USDT giveaway that we’re doing for joining and following our Twitter or retweeting joining telegram and all this stuff. So, we’ll be giving a giveaway to a select group of people, but 50 lucky winners we’ll get on board and that’s just launching today. They’ll be so that’s a big step again focusing on now building the community because as these platforms start to go live we also need an audience that’s ready for them.
Up to now, ESP Coin has had outstanding growth with an ever-expanding ecosystem, promising to thrive in the near future.
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