We’ve reached a point in the history of cryptocurrency where it has become increasingly difficult to buy goods and services in a decentralized way. While the technological and economic advancements are exciting, there is a need to enhance the social experience of using cryptocurrency so that it is more convenient and enjoyable. A good example of this is the payment app network, CopPay. It is difficult to use and not so user-friendly, but in the end, it gives the user the potential to have full control of their funds and spend them in any way they see fit. In this post I’ll describe how I’m bringing these to life in my app, Ray Youssef.
Crypto payments are just around the corner. And the best way to make them happen is to give the average Joe the ability to use cryptocurrency inside apps. With this blog post we’ll show you how to enable payment types like NFC, QR, and even MST to make crypto payments easier than ever.
Ray Youssef is a professional businessman who has been in the crypto world for the last 3 years and has a lot of experience in it. Ray is an expert in business and finance, specializing in cryptocurrency. As a crypto enthusiast, Ray often shares his insights about cryptocurrency and blockchain technology on his blog.
Despite 11 company failures, Ray Youssef is now the executive director of the Built With Bitcoin Foundation, which builds Bitcoin-funded schools throughout Africa, and the CEO of Paxful, which helps millions of people purchase and trade bitcoin. Youssef, on the other hand, confesses to robbing hardware shops for a Catholic school after Hurricane Katrina and claims to have been shot as a suspected CIA spy during the Egyptian Revolution.
He just came from El Salvador, where he spent time at Bitcoin Beach, where even youngsters, he claims, use Bitcoin (BTC). Because 70% of El Salvador’s population does not have a bank account, crypto payment services are critical. Peer-to-peer financial networks, according to Youssef, are a source of optimism for the poor world.
Every path leads to Bitcoin.
Youssef rejected Bitcoin as “geek money” when he first heard about it in 2011. He had more urgent concerns that year, when he departed the relative luxury of New York to assist the Egyptian revolution. He proceeded to the heart of the demonstrations in downtown Cairo’s Tahrir Square, where he “almost perished on the first night of very insane fighting” before being detained by the military as a suspected CIA operative. “I could write a book on it in one night,” he added, his chuckle mysterious.
Griff Green, who formerly guarded voting booths in Catalonia, and Amir Taaki, who fought with the Kurdish YPG, are examples of crypto leaders who have thrown themselves into revolutions. However, after he returned to the United States, he started integrating his revolution experiences and questioning many aspects of society.
Nigeria’s energy will have a global impact. Nothing can stop peer to peer, since the young have already started constructing a pan African financial settlement layer using #bitcoin. Africa is currently at the forefront of the new financial world and cryptocurrency adoption. Let us all show them how much we care. pic.twitter.com/uufSnLKUZz https://t.co/kTSFDdYwUl pic.twitter.com/uufSnLKUZz
June 12, 2023 — Ray “Adewale Uwaifo” Youssef (@raypaxful)
Money was one of the rabbit holes he descended. “I began asking questions about money: Where does it originate from? Where does it go?” he said. He “began to view history through a completely different prism” soon after that. That’s when he went back to Bitcoin, believing he’d find answers there.
It seems that crypto draws revolutionaries, who may believe that blockchain would bring about a technical or financial revolution. “What are the other Bitcoiners like?” he pondered when he arrived to Bitcoin Center NYC for his first meeting in 2013. Is it true that they are on the same path as me?”
He sounded like a pilgrim telling a story of a distant shrine where they’d hoped to meet fellow searchers of truth as he described the incident. Artur Schaback, his soon-to-be business partner, was the only other tall man in the room, “so we got along, and we really connected over the idea that Bitcoin might assist the small guy,” he says. They began working on a Bitcoin retail solution soon after, but it wasn’t simple.
“We were short on cash and had to pick between our business and a place to live.”
“They ended themselves homeless, surfing couches,” the two explorers said. Youssef thought he had reached rock bottom and wanted to get assistance, but he was afraid of his mother learning about his predicament. He prayed and fasted for a month. “I had to be really humiliated and ask God for assistance — I was shattered, defeated, and I received a very special night – it was Ramadan’s Night of Power,” he reflected sadly. Whatever he was going through at the time, it was a watershed moment for Youssef.
Youssef came to the United States with his family when he was two years old, and by the age of eight, he was already doing odd jobs. He began studying history at Baruch College in New York in 1996, but his true love was computers. At the age of 19, he received his first computer and immediately began “teaching myself to code and creating startups.” He spent two years as a senior software developer at YadaYada, an early smartphone startup, before starting his own business. The first was an attempt to distribute coupons through text texts, but the concept failed to gain momentum.
However, the young entrepreneur quickly had his first taste of success when he switched to digital ringtones. MatrixM, his new business, “went from like $0 to $1 million sales in less than six months.”
“The main issue was that the customers who wanted ringtones were mainly unbanked – teenagers.”
Even though he got off to a good start, the following decade was not kind to him. Youssef best encapsulates this tumultuous period in his life on LinkedIn, where he lists his position as “Entrepreneur” with “11 failed companies and many lessons gained.” It says a lot about him that he didn’t give up throughout that period. Despite years of failure, his first achievement, which might be ascribed to pure chance, encouraged him to trust in himself. Whether or not he was a capable entrepreneur after his first success, he had undoubtedly put in the effort to become one after his 11th failure.
Youssef realized while working at MatrixM that peer-to-peer technology, which was still in its infancy at the time, was the key to gaining access to ringtones and a large audience – users could upload as well as download ringtones. Peer-to-peer services like Uber and Airbnb have now “become part of our everyday lives,” according to Youssef. Peer-to-peer lending will follow suit in the near future. He added, “Humanity has been waiting for this one for a long time.” While wealthy nations may gain, according to Youssef, the demand in developing economies, such as in most of Africa, is far higher.
He called the problems individuals experience with money transactions “mind-boggling,” noting that “even if they have a bank account and a bank card, they can only spend $100 a month with your Visa card.” This implies that transferring money in and out of Africa may rapidly become a headache, since merchants, for example, are unable to readily purchase products from China. He stated in an irritated tone, “They have to go through like three or four hops, convert their money into USD on the black market, then find a method to get that into a bank account that can really transfer the money since their personal accounts cannot.”
Later in 2015, he learned of a way to profit by selling gift cards for Bitcoin. Youssef was skeptical, but out of desperation, he decided to give it a go. “I felt it was a ruse, but it worked, so we expanded it,” he said, still astonished. Once their system was up and running, Youssef and Schaback decided to create a platform for exchanging bitcoin for gift cards, which they saw as “the greatest method to onboard the unbanked” into the cryptocurrency world. Paxful became online after 72 hours of development.
Youssef remembers taking a customer support call from a “desperate woman” who needed to buy $2.50 worth of BTC to pay for an online classified post. She was down to her last $13 and didn’t have a bank account, so she had no clue how to purchase Bitcoin since no businesses catered to individuals in her situation. Youssef directed her to a neighboring pharmacy to get a $10 Walmart gift card as her children cried in the background.
“‘All right, I’ll take you through the whole process of converting a Walmart gift card to Bitcoin and then transferring Bitcoin to that address.’ It took two hours – it was exhausting.”
The experience was eye-opening, as it demonstrated the actual difficulties faced by people without access to conventional financial services who attempt to utilize contemporary internet-based services. “That’s why Paxful is on top – we’re ready to do things that others won’t, like travel to places where others won’t, like Nigeria,” Youssef said, alluding to the fact that tiny transactions yield little profit. Because of his origins, he feels a strong connection to Africa, he added. “All along, my goal was to assist Africa,” he declared.
Paxful now enables users to purchase and sell bitcoin in a variety of ways. It is profitable and has over 6 million users, with “nearly 500 employees in nine offices across the world” supporting it. He thinks the platform will become popular soon, particularly in Nigeria, which is the company’s largest market and where Youssef lives part-time. “They will be the ones to propel the rest of Africa ahead. As if he were a Nigerian himself, Youssef proudly said, “Nigeria is the Lion of Africa.” Youssef thinks it will soon be Africa’s Silicon Valley.
Bitcoin was used to create this website.
Youssef is the executive director of the Built with Bitcoin Foundation, which seeks to construct 100 schools across the globe in support of local communities, an idea inspired by his experience after Hurricane Katrina in Louisiana in August 2005. When Youssef witnessed the damage on the television, he made the decision to “get down there personally.”
On the ground, he discovered that different charities were of little use. “Finally, in the French Quarter, I found these five Dominican nuns. They had a school and asked me to assist them in rebuilding and reopening it.” Youssef scavenged construction materials and supplies around the city, placing himself in grave risk at times. He met a trucker at one point, and “Me and him actually ended up robbing a Lowes [hardware store] to bring supplies to the school,” he says.
“I had a number of experiences during this period, including one when I was almost murdered by the police, who thought I was a looter roaming around the city.”
The school’s reopening, according to Youssef, was critical in assisting the city’s reopening after the catastrophe, as the police and fire departments “wouldn’t have come back if they couldn’t send their children back to school.” He recognized that schools are an important part of community development and civilisation. “That’s where the concept for Constructed with Bitcoin came from – a hundred schools in the next five years, and we’ve already built three,” he said. Three schools have been constructed thus far by the organization. Aside from schools, there is an emphasis on sustainable farming and the construction of wells to ensure that communities have access to safe drinking water.
Donate to help us achieve our goal of constructing 100 schools across the world.
We inaugurated our newest school in Kenya this week, giving local youngsters easier access to education and paving the path for a better future.
In the bio, there’s a donation link. pic.twitter.com/qMbZPgZl1z
June 29, 2023 — Built With Bitcoin Foundation (@builtwithbtc)
92 percent of donations flow straight into initiatives, according to the website. One of the most recent school initiatives in Rwanda was carried out in cooperation with the Zam Zam Water Foundation. While the construction of schools and wells undoubtedly helps communities to thrive, the notion that the spread of cryptocurrencies may aid in the formation of more strong local and globally linked economies is a far recent one. Youssef described himself as a Bitcoin optimist.
Bitcoin is a digital currency.
The worldwide press was dubious when El Salvador’s president, Nayib Bukele, recently declared Bitcoin as the country’s official currency. Youssef was one of the CEOs who traveled to the nation in the weeks after the announcement, no likely in the hopes of expanding Paxful’s market.
According to him, the new Bitcoin Law, which provides all residents with a $30 BTC airdrop, helps the general public. Nonetheless, he observed that when he “took a photo-op at the airport with a group of police guards who are not working for me,” “the old nobility of El Salvador came out” to criticize him as a colonizer.
Youssef believes that this is just the beginning, as Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies will “spread to Costa Rica, Guatemala, Panama, Honduras, and ultimately Mexico and all of Central America – we’re seeing it very clearly.”
Ray Youssef is the CEO of Stellar.org, which is a blockchain platform that facilitates fast, cheap and reliable cross-border payments. Stellar was launched in 2014 and is already used by a number of banks and financial institutions around the world. In the last year, it has attracted more than $3 billion in funding and has enabled more than 20 million payments to be sent over the network.. Read more about dan schulman net worth and let us know what you think.
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