We are super excited at Infinite X Labs because today we’re launching the first interview from the “In the BlockLight”. We are honored to have such an amazing and cheerful person as Sofiane to be one of the first joined the series.
He’s the founder of one of the most innovative ideas in the blockchain industry…, but we’ll stop here and let him tell us more about it.
You’re probably already excited to learn more, so let’s go!
I’m Sofiane Delloue, founder of the NEWCOIN.Network, I grew up in Paris and live now in Prague and a bit all around the world (blockchain life).
You are an entrepreneur, digital marketer, and an artist. What/Who is your inspiration and why?
A lot of people inspire me, especially Seth Godin, Peter Thiel, Kanye West. I think Kanye is very special to me because his journey and vision are quite similar to mine: came from a modest background and hustled his way to the top and he doesn’t see the separation between music, fashion and business, he’s just being Kanye and that’s exactly the vision behind NEW LIFE. Why do we need to have a separation between coders and fashion influencers? At the end of the day, it all comes down to creativity and courage, values that are very important to me.
What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done?
Depends what you mean by craziest but my biggest accomplishment is to have built a fashion website that became the most visited in France which made me enter the top of the fashion world, where people sometimes struggle for twenty years to climb their way to the system, in less than a year. This happened thanks to SEO and the lack of good digital marketing at the regular fashion publications.
You participated in several EOS Hackathons around the world. Can you share your experience from there and what would advise people who are going to participate in the upcoming EOS Hackathon in San Francisco this November?
First feedback is I can confirm you that the people behind EOS, the block.one team and the community is made of exceptional people. They have a sense of perfection and hard work and when I hear paranoid people spreading dumb FUD about them it makes me laugh. If there is one legit coin in the whole space, I would give the first prize to EOS. Which is also why I’m involved. It’s not just hype, there is an amazing amount of intelligence and good will in there and that’s what I felt all the way, participating three hackathons.
Regarding the hackathon itself, I would say don’t focus too much on the coding part. In less than 24 hours, judges are not expecting you to build a perfect product, but on the other hand, judges will expect you to have what it takes to succeed at your project, which includes: a good vision and understanding of both the EOS blockchain and its potential use cases, your creativity, your capacity to collaborate and communicate with other teams and finally the capacity to pitch it.
You are a founder at New Life. Share us the story behind it – how it all started and what’s your mission?
It started out of frustration: I was running two businesses around the marketing of fashion publishing and brands, working with great companies like Vogue, Kenzo, Chanel and what I felt is that the internet was used as a medium or a distribution channel but not as what it actually is: a new paradigm.
That’s what frustrates me the most with industrialists going online: they are so deeply absorbed by the day to day, they can’t take a step back and realize internet could disrupt everything in much deeper manner. When the internet arrived, industrialists saw it as a digitalization of industries, so magazines became digital magazines, commerce became e-commerce and so on. In fact, we have to reconsider everything and see how we can build businesses, cultures, and technologies that leverage the full potential of the internet. Hence the NEW LIFE. And actually the same could be said about blockchain. Don’t build “decentralized” clones of existing startups, but rather how to use decentralization to make it better.
Tell us more about NewCoin Network and why you decided to use EOS Blockchain?
The NEWCOIN.Network is the blockchain infrastructure we will use to build a network of marketplaces, all using the same token, the NEWCOIN.
When we started NEW LIFE, it was centralized, using PayPal. Then came the idea to use a blockchain database in order to give our users the immutability and transparency that is required when you offer a passive income model supposed to last forever.
We looked at many blockchains, Waves had its wallet and easy deployment of tokens but no ability to build smart contracts. Ethereum was too expensive and designed mostly for ICO. I couldn’t find an actual use case with micropayments. Then I approached IOTA which offered a great solution for micropayments and cheap transactions, but simultaneously I found out about EOS and the project behind. I contacted Brendan who found the idea of NEW LIFE interesting, so I decided to wait for them to be ready, and fun story, I was the first person to register at the first hackathon in Hong Kong.
What is the most challenging thing in building a company in the blockchain industry?
I would say it’s the immutability of smart contracts. Basically, you have to make sure that what you’re building now will not conflict with what you will want your product to be in the future.
The second biggest challenge I would say is regulations. We’re dealing with highly disruptive technologies that have implications in many areas including finance, copyrights, business, and the regulators are not ready yet, which means there is a sword of Damocles above the head of any blockchain founder.
What we can expect from New Life/NewCoin Network the following months? Would you tease something?
Collaborations with big names in the fashion and music industry, the launch of our second marketplace called NEW WEB and hopefully raising the necessary capital to accelerate our growth.
What ignited your spark?
I’ve always been competitive, as a child athlete and teenage entrepreneur. I would say what motivates me the most is the understanding of the value of life and the limited time we have to accomplish our goals. I feel deeply connected and aligned with my mission which is to bring peace and prosperity to the world by building a new technological and cultural paradigm that will empower and connect people.
You are a person with a lot of experience as an entrepreneur and you have worked with companies like Vogue Paris, Kenzo, Chanel. What is the most valuable thing you have learned the hard way being an entrepreneur?
What I learned the hard way has very little to do with the fashion world, I would say it’s kinda universal: being an entrepreneur has nothing to do with what we think. We think it’s about having a great idea and everything is gonna work. In fact, it’s almost the opposite. Great ideas are scary to people. People are actually living in fear, and an entrepreneur has to deliver safety to everyone and take all the fear away. I made the mistake to think that everyone was exactly like me, and I had to learn empathy. The second thing I learned the hard way is to not be attached too much to your project. On two occasions, I received offers to merge or sell the magazine and I didn’t, and it was stupid.
What advice you will give to all young entrepreneurs currently starting their journey?
Make sure you understand how hard it is and how strong you need to be, always over-deliver and don’t underestimate the power of reputation and networks. I’ve seen many young people lacking loyalty and thinking short term, and then ten years later you see the difference between people who can rely on their network and those who can’t.
“I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become.”
― Carl Gustav Jung
What drives you to keep going when it’s really tough?
I don’t see anything else I could do with my life. It’s like love; when you find it, you can’t leave, you just literally can’t do it, physically, mentally.
How can people reach you?
Where they can meet you?
Prague, Paris, London, Hong Kong
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