I’m Making A Switch From Traditional Finance To Crypto, And This Is Why
Into the Cryptoverse is a weekly Breach series that documents the stories of everyday people as they navigate the cryptoverse.
When did you start your crypto journey?
October 2020. I had known about crypto since 2013, and I was in university at the time. Between 2013 and 2020, I graduated from university and started a career in traditional finance. Nothing much happened after that, but I was constantly trying to figure out how to make more money from what I was earning at my job.
In 2020, I started participating in the crypto space for two primary reasons. Firstly, I had more disposable income than the previous years, and I thought it would be great to put it in crypto and see how well it would do.
Lit. What was the second reason?
The Nigerian government.
The government’s moves during the End SARs protests rubbed me off the wrong way. It didn’t make sense that regulators went after protesters and froze their bank accounts for daring to exercise their legal rights. It was also crazy that the people who made their wealth from access to traditional finance tools were trying to prevent others from accessing their money.
I get it, though. Once you control money, you control everything. However, I want to have access to the little money I make and not have to jump through regulatory hoops in the event of an account closure. This thinking directed me to adopt crypto. For starters, the government can’t touch my money here. It gives an actual feeling of financial freedom.
Man, this started as a form of protest?
No, I won’t call it a protest. The thing is, moving my money into crypto meant I wasn’t in the purview of the government anymore and couldn’t be a victim of any of their decisions. Although the global market remains in play, it will affect me the same way it affects everyone else, and my financial decisions will be the major factor that determines what I make or lose. That said, I started this with zero crypto knowledge like almost everyone else.
Interesting you mentioned that. What were the first couple of steps you took?
I found out about Luno and created a wallet on the exchange. Bitcoin was already too expensive, and the chances of getting maximum growth were low, so I went with XRP and a couple of other cheaper coins. I optimised for maximum growth, and these coins could give me that. I figured it was easier for a coin trading at $0.2 to grow to $1 than a coin trading at $60k to move to $120k.
Now I wonder what your trading strategy was.
I can’t actively point to a strategy I used when I started trading. I didn’t understand the coins and tokens or their use cases. I just knew that I would figure it out by practising and actively trading, and that’s what I did. I started pressing buttons and taking notes of the results.
In February 2021, I moved my assets to Binance and started exploring the coin and trading options there. It was a bit of a hack job, but the consistent thing about the process was that I learned from the decisions I made. If I pressed or did something and it burned me, I knew not to do it again and moved to something else. I wasn’t mad at myself for doing this either — my wins and losses were mine, and they added up to build and scale up my crypto knowledge.
That’s quite a bold move.
I’ll admit it was, but it also had to happen. As someone who has worked a 9–5 and earned in Naira for most of my adult life, crypto offered me a lifeline to do more. I was going to try everything to figure it out. Besides, crypto has only been around for about a decade, so it’s relatively easy to learn its history and catch up.
At what point would you say you got comfortable with crypto?
In July, I checked my Binance scorecard, and it said I was in the top 80% of traders on the exchange. That boosted my confidence, and it laid the foundation for the other moves I’ve made in the past couple of months.
Could you talk more about these?
I realised that I could do so many things with crypto beyond just holding coins or trading them. I could put my money to work.
Decentralised Finance. DeFi protocols are relatively safer, and the yield is almost as good as trading. I started with Pancake Swap in the first quarter of 2021 and slowly built my muscle. It’s now my primary focus, and I make most of my money from it.
Why do you think DeFi is so interesting?
It’s the little things such as the returns it gives, and these work for me because I don’t think I should have idle assets. While it’s great that the value of crypto assets can increase over time when you hold them, I also think an asset I own should be something I can stake and earn interest in.
I’m currently optimising for maximum yield, and DeFi protocols give me access to that. I know that there are some risks involved, and I might lose some money along the way. However, the odds of this happening are low, depending on the plays I make. I would also like to believe that I know enough about the crypto markets to avoid situations like this.
Why do you think so?
I’m big on information, and Crypto Twitter and my friends have helped here. Recently, my portfolio was up by 60% from buying the last dip, and I got the information that set it rolling from Twitter.
I’ve also started writing about Decentralised Finance to help my target audience — who are beginners — put their money into better places.
Fascinating. When did you start writing about crypto?
October 2021. I used to tweet my thoughts before a friend advised me to start a newsletter. As much as it is about sharing knowledge and educating people, it’s also a CV for me. I currently work in traditional finance, but I hope to switch to crypto. As it turns out, writing is a clear way to show how much you know about a subject, and it’s instrumental in this context. Many people still struggle with understanding crypto concepts, so there is value in breaking them down.
How do you imagine this will materialise?
It’s probably going to be my way into the web3/crypto space. When I apply for jobs, I attach a link to my newsletter. It’s all the proof of work I need, and it’s been positive so far. The next plan is to build on this and see where it leads.
I’m rooting for you. Speaking of your background in traditional finance, how does it influence your interest in crypto?
I’ve spent enough time on my day job to know that there’s hardly any similarity between traditional finance and crypto. At the moment, traditional finance is a job, and crypto is a lifestyle. I also know there’s so much to learn and do beyond trading coins, and that’s the primary reason I’d like to make a complete switch. Everyone is still early into the crypto game, and I’d like to be in it as soon as possible too.
I’m curious. What do you like the most about crypto?
It’s got to be the access everyone has to financial tools. For example, there are protocols in the Decentralised Finance space that have millions of dollars and offer people loans with interests as low as 5% per annum. This beats any offer you could get with traditional finance institutions. Imagine what you can achieve with that kind of access.
I don’t think you need a lot of disposable income before you can enter crypto. Sure, it helps if you earn enough money already. However, I believe that if you have enough money left to save every month, you’re in the tax bracket of people who can participate in crypto. Buy one small coin that goes on to do 5x or 10x with the disposable income you have. Depending on where you are in life, that money you make from it can change your life.
Last question, where do you imagine you will be in the cryptoverse in the next five years?
I should have worked in crypto long enough to build my products or projects. I’m chasing tokens right now, but it would be great to have people chase my tokens too. Ultimately, it’s about providing value and making money while at it. That’s the sweet spot.
Check back every Monday at 10a.m. for a new episode.
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