Catching up with Velas CEO, Farkhad Shagulyamov: An open conversation on the company’s upcoming developments
Velas community lead Alex, sits down with the CEO Farkhad Shagulyamov to answer the communities’ questions. They discuss a range of topics including future integrations, new product rollouts, long run benefits of the VLX token, and ways the technology is improving. Prospective collaborations with other chains are mentioned, updates to the wallet, and the CEO strategy to become the top 10 blockchain in the next 5 years.
A: Hello everyone again, it is me, Alex, Velas Community Lead, hope you are doing good and today we have the best guest you can imagine. This is our CEO, Farkhad Shagulyamov. Hello Farkhad, once again, I hope you are doing good as well.
F: Hello, hello, glad to be here.
A: We are also glad to have you here. I guess this will be on the regular basis from now on. Maybe we will do the same stuff with Shirly, Roman, and other guys quarterly, like every three months, maybe more often, maybe less. Let’s see how it goes.
F: Yeah, for sure, whenever there are any questions or requests from the community, we will be happy to have open communication and share what we are doing. The fact that I was not present in the last chats is because I have been extremely busy, working on developing the Velas ecosystem.
A: Well, I guess it is just to keep healthy relationships between the owners and their community, when once per three months we just chat a bit and let guys know what’s going on.
F: Yeah, yeah, of course. We will be happy to share with you and the community of the project what we are working on while developing the ecosystem.
A: Alright. So, let’s start with the questions. All the questions I have are collected from the community members, which I sorted out and made a list. And if your questions are not there, sorry, but I had 200 questions to choose from and I do not think Farkhad would be able to answer all of them today.
F: We will try to do as many as we can.
A: I promise it will not last long. There were a lot of requests that Bluezilla is no longer an official partner of Velas. And there was no official statement from us either. What’s going with Bluezilla?
F: Everything stays the same. We have never had formal partnerships, Bluezilla was just supporting Velas blockchain and they launched VelasPad and various projects, so everything is the same, we just never had a formal partnership, that is why legally we were suggested to take it from the website.
A: Alright, the next one is pretty interesting.
Will Velas cooperate with any nation, national government, like what Tezos has done with the Ukrainian government. Any plans on that?
F: So, for sure, we are monitoring everything in the space, and since Velas’ technologies are built out and ready for implementation. We are planning to speak with governments, with large institutions, and governmental entities to be able to use the Velas protocol. So definitely, we are already thinking about this, I can’t tell you yet which countries, but the plan is to move further to big and heavier real-life industries and demonstrate that blockchain technology can be efficiently used.
A: Thank you. Question number 3, I guess.
The number of ‘commits’ by Velas AG went down massively from 100–300 daily commits in Q2 2021 to a maximum of 60 so far in 2022, was this due to the war in Ukraine?
F: That can be easily explained. That has nothing to do with the war in Ukraine. This is simply because the amount of commits you see in the repository for Q2 2021 includes all commits from the Solana repository. So, when we pull the commit statistics it will change. But there is always a lag because when Solana updates come in, they get adapted to Velas and the commit statistics will change again.
A: Makes sense to me.
F: I mean yeah, obviously, what is going on in Ukraine is very terrible. As you know, the part of the development team is from Ukraine, but right now a lot of team members are out of Ukraine and those that are still in Ukraine are in safe territories where there is no war activities. Everyone is settled down and everybody is in work mode, so we just hope that everybody just stays safe and we try to support our team as much as we can down there.
A: Yeah, and I can confirm that as a part of the Ukrainian team.
Next question is that some of the original investors are disappointed and they have supported you for a long time. Could you please update us on 3 main products (Bitorbit, Vault, Account)?
F: I will start with Bitorbit. It was designated to a separate team. The active development of the actual technology has been built out and right now there is a new separate team being formed, they are preparing all the marketing materials and they will start sharing all updates of what is going on. But that is something we look at with great interest and hope that this product will be delivered in the way it was promised and hopefully better, which will make the whole ecosystem better.
Velas Account right now is almost done, it is being tested, on different sites, on different sources. I guess there will be more updates coming as well, once the testing is done and we are going to have real use-cases that are ready to use Velas Account. Those updates will be coming shortly, this is the product we are excited about.
And then, Velas Vault. That is still being worked on, the developing process is actively going on, it is in beta testing now, so we are going through testing and more updates are going to come and hopefully the product will materialize into life.
A: Thank you for the answer.
So, the next question is that almost 80% of investors have just focused on the price of the token in the short term instead of understanding the real value of the project. Can you tell us what are the motivations and benefits for investors to hold the Velas token in the long term?
F: We are building the ecosystem for the long term. We are not trying to do anything short-term. The Velas team took its time to perfect the technology and stability of the blockchain. Now is a time of growth and implementation. So we are trying for the blockchain to be used by many quality projects and with as much utility as possible. We are positioning ourselves as the fastest EVM blockchain right now and we are working with a lot of projects. We are trying to partner with communities, and with other blockchains to find mutually beneficial scenarios.
As for the investors in Velas, Velas is pretty much undervalued. As the ecosystem is young, and it is growing, we have huge potential. First of all, because of our tech stack, with a clear advantage of the fastest EVM, cross-chain, and then in general we try to line ourselves with big partnerships and move into vectors that we believe are going to perform very well in the coming year. For us, that is the NFT market, DeFi market, gamification, esports, and in general, the implementation of blockchain in real-life use cases.
The Velas team is working very hard to enter the different markets.
Within the NFT sector, we’re entering motorsports quite heavily. After the Ferrari sponsorship, we got a lot of different brands from different sports leagues and active discussion regarding NFTs, metaverse, and fan-token integration.
So all these things are coming up and we are trying to pack the Velas ecosystem with all the toolkits which are not there. We are looking at all the top blockchains and the standards and protocols they are using and trying to integrate similar solutions into the Velas ecosystem. So I think all these things are being actively worked on and it is definitely something to watch out for as integrations go live and the products start rolling out.
A: Yeah, I agree. With all the above you have also answered one more question,
“What is the Velas new CEO strategy to reach the top 10 blockchains in 5 years?”
I guess you have also answered this.
F: Yeah, that is the vision. So, first of all, that was positioning ourselves as a greener blockchain since we are PoS, we are trying to be certified as carbon neutral. We are really going into corporate worldwide because our blockchain has such high throughput and the transaction cost is so low that the blockchain can be implemented in the real-life industry at low cost and would make sense for large corporations. So we are trying to align ourselves with big players, with institutions, and leave open-source technology for the world to build on.
A: Thank you.
F: And as well, just to add one more thing, we are also looking to partner with other protocols and other blockchains, other communities, because we are interoperable, our vision is to be chain agnostic and there are a lot of benefits working with other chains. Velas now bridges to all large blockchains that cross funnels users and digital assets and gives mutually beneficial scenarios for blockchains. That is something we are actively working on as well.
A: Cool, this also answers one more question: if we are going to accept more chains, the answer is yes, we move in this direction as well.
F: Yeah, we are in active discussions with some of the biggest players.
A: Ok, we have covered Bluezilla. Alright, so there is one more question I see a lot:
Velas token is inflationary, so is Solana. But Solana didn’t release all tokens at one time. Why did Velas release all supply? In the community I see newcomers asking about the tokenomics, and potential investors do turn their back on supply and inflation. What is your view on this? Are there plans for implementing deflationary mechanisms in the future? This seems to be the main source of “FUD”.
F: Well, yeah, we are inflationary and we are not going to change this model yet. All PoS chains are inflationary chains. But inflation is going down every year. So, we started with 8 percent inflation and it is going down every year. Compared to others, we are still conservative considering the other blockchains. And in that aspect, I do not see a big issue. We are actively looking at possible scenarios, to potentially change the model, but as for now, we have not reached such a consensus so we are still looking at the market.
A: Yes, I agree. Next one:
Some of the community members think that the company is not fully public and open enough (ie: not the whole team is not named publicly on the website), which might be not beneficial for both Velas and its investors. How could you comment on this?
F: Well, it is pretty simple. The days of having your whole team public, I think that is way in the past. It was typical for people raising money in ICO stages. Velas is already an established company, with an established ecosystem. The reason why we do not publish all our team members is very simple. First of all, it is for their security and also to prevent poaching. Because we have very good developers and we have a very strong team in Velas, we do not want other companies approaching them. And secondly, we are not actively raising funds and therefore it should not be public, people should not be harassed, and so forth. There are certain designated members that are in contact with the community, support, high-level management, marketing, community management, and so on. I think enough information is coming through these channels and these people and is also why not every team member should be accessible to the public.
A: Even though we have LinkedIn, you can filter, find the company, and you can find almost all the people who work for us. It is not everyone, but still, for those who say we are not public enough, we are.
F: I understand, but I do not think any big blockchain will have all their staff public, so those are small start-ups that are raising funds. That is pretty much standard practice in the industry, I guess we’ve grown to the point we do not need to share that information.
A: Yeah, thank you. The next one is:
If we are going to have any partnership with the long dapps? So they can implement Velas or just with any similar or innovative DeFi dapps? So are we searching for such partnerships?
F: Yes, I mean, constantly we see a lot of different teams, building different products, especially on the DeFi side. I`ve had updates from my team that there are external teams that are finalizing a lot of new solutions. For example, I heard about Compound Fork, it’s about to be launched. I don`t know if you guys heard of the VeleroDAO project, there is a stable coin…
A: I know Velero, we had an AMA session with them
F: There is another external team. They are building something like the Anchor Protocol. We are more than happy to collaborate with different teams that are willing to take upon themselves the development.
Velas has different programs through which we can support development. I mean, grant programs, we also have an ecosystem fund that is being set up right now. That’s going to be close to the end of 2022.
A $250,000 ecosystem fund that will take equity positions in projects at an early stage that are being built on the Velas blockchain and somehow enhance the Velas ecosystem through this tool, plus technical integration, support, and marketing if the project enhances our ecosystem. So, all this is available for teams to come on board and build on Velas.
A: Guys you are welcome to come and build something on Velas.
F: There is also a small update, I don’t know if you guys saw, there is an integration with Gnosis Safe. It’s quite an interesting tool for everybody.
A: Yes, we will publish it soon. I have two more questions. Next one is very popular.
When Binance? I’m not talking about Binance, I’m asking if we are searching for our way on the top exchanges.
F: Yes, so definitely, Velas right now is looking to get onto tier 1 exchanges. The focus is on liquidity to track a better community. We are in active discussions with most of the top-tier exchanges.
Officially, I can’t share a list right now, but we are in active discussions and things are looking positive because Velas is growing as a brand and ecosystem and a lot of platforms would like to see us there.
A: That is some great news. I have the last question from the list.
How Velas will continue to improve its technology and if we are limited in covering TPS, are we going higher or not?
F: So the TPS definitely will be going higher as the hardware improves every year, so definitely there are going to be improvements on the blockchain. I mean there are no real cases just yet to load a blockchain in such high-frequency transactions but hopefully, with our partnerships, we will go further and further.
The team is working very hard to develop all the products and always improve the stability of blockchain and security. Upgrading the nodes and just making the user interface much easier and simpler for people to use. We are trying to come up with a new version of the wallet, which has a lot of improvements.
A: That was also one of the questions.
F: Yes, there are going to be a lot of changes in the wallet, it will be a much lighter wallet. It will be working quicker while keeping all the security features it already has so we are very excited to share it with the community hopefully very soon. The team is working hard to finally release a new version of the product.
A: So, thank you Farkhad for answering these questions. That was all from my side. Probably we have 5 more minutes to speak with the community.
F: Sounds good.
Santiago: As a creator, I want to ask:
If you guys have been in contact with oracles? Which can help improve and deliver more tools for developers which can expand the ecosystem.
F: We`ve been speaking to several oracles. Three different oracles. Chainlink is not one of them. Their integration time and cost are extremely high and extremely lengthy. First one is Dia, if our CTO will confirm that.
Roman, CTO: Yep. We have Dia, Band, and Tellor. And one of them is Cryprosat which is based on cosmic radiation to bring more randomness to the chain if we are talking to random oracles.
A: Cool. Santiago, thank you for the question.
Community member: There are a lot of rumors going around about Velas and Amazon services. Maybe you could throw some hints in there?
F: No, we are not doing anything with Amazon. That’s all just rumors
A: One more guy to speak.
JonhDAO: Can you elaborate more about the Velas collaboration with Ferrari?
F: Yeah sure. Velas has a partnership with Ferrari and it’s multi-layered. First, we are the sponsors of the Ferrari team and the title sponsor, and partners of their e-sports team. So the partnership goes from one part of the branding and exposure for Velas to me.
The cars and merchandise give us a big boost in terms of branding and positioning. There are a lot of vectors that we are exploring with Ferrari and that includes NFTs and different variations using the Velas blockchain and processes of actual development and Ferrari supply chain and also, we are speaking with the sales team.
We want to know how they reach their fans in different ways, because not only with them but generally after we signed the deal we have a lot of other companies and projects coming. They want Velas’ support and help to take on the NFT and metaverse side, that’s something we are actively exploring. The way we want to do it is to have real uses for NFTs. So, the NFT`s written in such a way that they can be deployed in games, e-sports, metaverses, and bring this engagement and these experiences to people, fans, and users all around the world. And we are trying to partner up with big game companies to support us.
A: Thank you guys for being here. Thank you Farkhad. Thank you Roman. I’ll be very happy to speak with you in the future, have a good one!