Behind the establishment of KuCoin are two technology nerds who were pioneers in the blockchain. He started programming at the age of eight and founded his first startup at the age of 16. In 2012, Michael heard about Bitcoin (BTC) from his boss Eric at the private equity firm IDG Capital and immediately started mining. While trying to sell some bitcoin on the Mt.Gox exchange, which at the time was the largest market in the world, he found it difficult to navigate for newcomers.
At the end of 2013, after realizing the potential of encryption, Michael and Eric wrote their first code at a coffee shop. In 2017, they decided to focus entirely on the foundation and created the “People Exchange” company KuCoin.
Cointelegraph spoke with Johnny Liu, CEO of KuCoin, about the struggles and successes of one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges.
How has KuCoin changed over time?
Following KuCoin’s rapid growth in 2018, we received $ 20 million in funding from IDG Capital and Matrix Partners. In 2019, we launched innovative products such as KuCoin 2.0, Spotlight, KuCoin Futures, Earn (formerly known as Pool-X) and margin trading. Thanks to this, KuCoin has evolved from a crypto exchange that offers only instant trading services to a platform that offers a wide range of crypto financial services.
We are constantly updating our products. As a result, we now offer over 640 tradable assets, have become one of the best true altcoin exchange sites and are among the top five on CoinMarketCap. Forbes consultant named KuCoin the best cryptocurrency trading platform in 2021.
In 2022, Motley Fool named The Ascent KuCoin the best cryptocurrency app for its fans.
What was the biggest battle the stock market had to overcome and how did it succeed?
I think the biggest challenge for a stock exchange or a crypto company is to balance and allocate the company’s limited resources – whether to invest more in research and development to develop more products, or to invest more in marketing and sales to gain a larger market share.
At one point, KuCoin faced this dilemma. After the cryptocurrency industry entered a bear market in 2018 and the sector declined, we were faced with two options: invest more in market expansion or prepare for the long term by improving our infrastructure and strengthening our team.
KuCoin chose the latter in the end. Since then, we have launched a completely new series of innovative products.
What is KuCoin’s biggest achievement to date?
KuCoin has been committed to facilitating the free global flow of digital value, as well as engaging everyone in cryptocurrency since its inception.
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Over the past four years of development, we have grown from a founding team of seven to nearly 600 employees worldwide and more than 10 million registered users serving users in more than 200 countries and regions around the world.
Behind these numbers lies the trust and support of every KuCoin user, and I believe this is KuCoin’s most valuable asset and our most outstanding achievement.
What updates and products should KuCoin users expect this year?
This year, as the best cryptocurrency exchange, we will extract more cryptocurrencies, research and experiment with social and social commerce features.
The decentralized KuCoin ecosystem has evolved over time, and we have achieved results in a number of areas, including public networks, wallets, non-fungible tokens (NFT) and GameFi. Then we will expand the decentralized ecosystem KuCoin.
On the other hand, we plan to provide users with more decentralized products, such as our own decentralized trading solutions. As a member of the public KuCoin Community Chain (KCC) KCC network, we will also contribute to its further development. On the other hand, we will also expand KuCoin’s reach in the decentralized area, especially in metaverse, Web 3.0 and other important areas in the future. In addition, we will work to build a broader and more diverse ecosystem through incubation, investments and acquisitions.
The cryptocurrency industry seems to be in a bear market with some opinions expressing a possible “cryptocurrency winter.” How do you think this will affect the development and adoption of the crypto industry, given the interest we have seen in the last couple of years?
First, I believe that the cryptocurrency market is in a correction rather than a bear market. Secondly, I look at the downturn in the market from a development point of view. Lower is needed in the short term to develop things and increase long-term growth.
The short-term stagnation actually contributes to the long-term growth in the industry. Over the last two years, the place has had a rapid development.