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Faith in Crypto Exchanges Should be Earned, not Given

For my monthly message to the Liquid community for April, I want to start by talking about why I feel there’s a great shift coming in crypto.
liquid ceo mike kayamori

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For my monthly message to the Liquid community for April, I want to start by talking about why I feel there’s a great shift coming in crypto.

We’re starting to see signs of it already. This month, while we continued to make significant progress with the development of Liquid, we also found a number of allies from unexpected places.

We’re not the only ones who want to clean up the crypto space and push out the bad actors who continue to plague our sector. Others, too, are sick of the lies, deception and fraud that have become commonplace in crypto – and that’s not even taking into account the constant bickering, in-fighting and grandstanding that also goes on.

The bottom line is that crypto exchanges are finally being held to account – us included – and we welcome this.

A number of parties have been taking a long, hard look at crypto through the lens of the consumer. If you’re seeking information about crypto exchanges, at some point you’re going to come across Coinmarketcap. It’s a fantastic site that many of us visit on a daily basis. But it’s in the rankings for crypto exchanges that there’s been some controversy.

It comes down to a single question: Is crypto exchange volume real?

Real volume matters

Any exchange that ranks highly in Coinmarketcap is going to look like a reputable, popular platform, but the reality may be something else entirely. The rise of transaction mining began to plant seeds of doubt in people’s minds, as seemingly unknown exchanges suddenly shot up the ranks, creating volume out of thin air.

To their credit, the Coinmarketcap team attempted to address this issue by splitting reported volume and adjusted volume, but even this isn’t fool proof, as there’s an assumption that exchanges that offer zero fee trading are prone to wash trading, which is absolutely not the case, at least for Liquid.

This was an assumption that we saw also with Bitwise, whose report submitted to the SEC was widely circulated. Nonetheless, the fact that a reputable group had gone to great lengths to surface some much-needed home truths about crypto exchanges was a welcome change.

There have similarly been a number of other independent groups of analysts and researchers (Data Vigilantes, as our Head of North America Nick Chong refers to them) who have published reports and findings that use data to show which crypto exchanges are trustworthy.

It came as no surprise to us to see Liquid consistently ranked among the top exchanges in the world for real volume, trust and transparency.

We often talk about how we are regulated in Japan and Big 4 audited, but now, the wider crypto space is starting to see that such accolades aren’t just for trophies for a mantlepiece – they represent the very essence of everything we stand for as a global fintech company.

Here’s how we stack up in some of the reports we’ve seen over the past few weeks:

  • Cointelligence’s Cryptocurrency Exchanges List uses a ranking system to help users research cryptocurrency platforms. Liquid is ranked second among all exchanges, scoring particularly high on usability and the quality of the Liquid team.
  • Bearmarketvaluations ranks Liquid number the number 1 crypto exchange, based on various data sources.
  • We’ve been working with Blockchain Transparency Institute to get our BTI Verified status and show that Liquid’s trading volume is real, which puts us among the top 5 crypto exchanges in the world by volume.
  • SophonEx’s When Liquidity Matters report looked at recent Bitcoin price action to track real trading volume, once again highlighting authentic activity on Liquid.
  • The team from Openmarketcap includes Liquid in its rankings of trusted cryptocurrency exchanges.
  • In a blog titled Volume profile and fake volumes, Crypto Integrity looked at intraday profile and 24-hour volume change to identify suspicious trading volume among a number of top exchanges, while Liquid was highlighted as among the most trustworthy crypto exchanges.

Taking stock

We feel a great sense of pride to be consistently ranked so highly by these groups, vindicating our efforts to provide a safe and secure space for people to interact with cryptocurrencies.

It’s worth noting, however, that there are a lot of these groups and ranking sites now. More collaboration between researchers, exchanges and stakeholders will help provide users with the most reliable data possible.

We are open to working together with anyone who approaches us who shares our vision for cleaning up the crypto space.

To do this, however, we must have our own house in order. We’ve always held ourselves to the highest possible standards on our trading platform, but while Liquid continues to grow organically, we do hear the community questions and discussions around our deliverables.

What have we been doing? What are we working on? What is there to look forward to? What will be the impact on QASH?

In terms of what we’ve delivered recently, I’m extremely proud of what the Liquid team has achieved.

Tech unicorn status 🦄

As was widely reported, we achieved tech unicorn stats with the first close of our ongoing Series C funding. This is a tremendous milestone for us to reach, affirming our intention to make Liquid a dominant global brand in the crypto space.

Liquid Infinity

We just recently had the full launch of Liquid Infinity, our Bitcoin CFD product with up to 100x leverage trading. This feature complements our existing margin trading offering and is aimed at experienced traders who demand more out of their experience with us.

Liquid Pro

We completed the beta test of Liquid Pro, our new mobile app, receiving some invaluable feedback from our community. The app is now in soft launch phase, preparing for the full launch imminently. I’m confident that our users will love it.

High-profile media hits

Liquid has been in the press a lot recently, with pickup everywhere from TechCrunch and The Block to Coindesk and Coin Telegraph. In addition, I had the honor of appearing live on Bloomberg to talk about our funding raise and our plans for expansion into the US and other key markets. I was also privileged to speak at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan about Liquid and the as the outlook of financial technology.

You can watch the recording below:



What’s next?

We will continue to deliver on the products and features we believe will solidify our status as leaders in the crypto space. Right now we are preparing for the launch of our improved WebSocket layer, Liquid Tap, as well as the full launch of Liquid Pro. There’s also Quick Exchange, which will simplify the process of exchanging fiat and crypto for those who don’t want or need to use our full trading interface.

And of course, we have not forgotten about the World Book and Liquid Distributed Ledger. Development of these products has been ongoing and when we’re in a position to share more information about these key elements of Liquid, our community will be the first to know.

These products, coupled with our aggressive expansion plans, including our move into the US market, will further establish Liquid as the exceptional platform we outlined in our whitepaper.

What I want our community to really understand, though, is that we are growing up. The company we were 18 months ago when we did our ICO is very much different from the company we are today. This isn’t the time for talk, but for action, and by action I mean delivering the products that will define us. We have not stopped or slowed in that regard.

Thank you for your support.

Follow Mike Kayamori on Twitter

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