When we think about crypto, we normally think of people who are incredibly tech-savvy, those who can set up their own mining rig or staking node and the like, or who have extra capital that they want to preserve or aggressively grow.

Crypto has definitely changed lives and is changing how we think about trust & financial services. However, I can’t help but think that crypto, so far, has only benefited a certain segment of the population. We as a team believe that crypto must benefit as many people as possible.

The first largest hurdle to getting access to crypto is having a financial account, whether it be a bank account or a mobile money account. The second is access to the internet.

This brings us to the first part of our model — Mobile Prepaid Users.

Mobile Prepaid Users

The majority of internet users all around the world are prepaid users. The experience is that they go to a retailer (whether it be a formal retailer or a small mom-and-pop), purchase mobile prepaid credits, and redeem a telco product which gives SMS, call minutes, and internet access. There are around 3.8 billion smartphone users and 5.8 billion prepaid SIMs.

Annually, mobile prepaid users spend US$659+ billion globally on prepaid credits. From a user perspective, the average revenue per user (ARPU) is around a few dollars a month.

Data from connectingafrica.com

While ARPU in emerging markets like Africa may seem low compared to the spend of the usual crypto enthusiast, simply investing a dollar into crypto will have significant impact.

Simulation of $1 worth of $MATIC bought per month for 12 months starting January 2020

Let’s take a person from Ghana. Ghana’s minimum wage is 11.82 Ghanaian Cedis (GHS) or around 2.03 USD. Let’s say this person invests $1 to buy $MATIC tokens per month for 1 year starting on January 1, 2020. By the time January 1, 2021 rolls around, they would have a 19% increase in their capital. If they held until May 1, 2021, they would have US$540.37 from their initial capital of $12, a 45x increase and more than a year’s wages!

As altcoins usually enter the market with sub-$1 prices, individuals with only $1 to spare can participate in crypto and potentially experience a life-changing windfall. Now, imagine 3.8b users buying tokens worth $1 every month — imagine the changed lives and the intense buy pressure!

Mobile Prepaid as Digital Stored Value

That’s great and all, but how can people without bank accounts or mobile wallets get that $1 in the crypto market?

The key lies in mobile prepaid. At its core, mobile prepaid is simply the digitization of fiat value. Given its pervasiveness, it’s the most popular way that people can convert real-world money into digital value. When prepaid credits are bought by the user, they are free to send and sell them to others, much like cash.

The idea of treating mobile prepaid credits as an alternative in cash is not new. During my telco days, we had explored the possibility of enabling the exchange of prepaid credits to cash. The reason why the free exchange of prepaid credits to cash and vice-versa has not been implemented is regulation — if airtime credits are pegged to fiat, it will need to be regulated as e-money. This will collapse the on-ground distribution network of telcos, introducing controls and extra processes that will not be viable or cost-efficient (imagine having to go through a KYC process to purchase a SIM card).

No such restrictions exist between prepaid credits and crypto, allowing prepaid credits to be used freely for the purchase of tokens. The key is how to manage liquidity coming from the telcos to the crypto market.

How XLD will Bridge the Gap to Crypto

The XLD platform will have two main parts — the XLoad app, our primary consumer-facing app, and our DeFi app.

The goal of the XLoad app is to enable users to earn crypto by engaging with our platform, partner projects, and purchasing prepaid credits. All that a user needs to do is to download the app, and start using it to earn crypto.

  • Earn XLD tokens by buying prepaid credits from the XLoad app (‘cashback’ model)
  • Earn tokens by completing in-app quests (app houses dynamic ‘quests’ that users must complete for tokens)
  • Earn tokens by playing games (in-game rewards exchanged for XLD tokens)
  • Participate in airdrops (participate in project communities and get rewarded)
  • Pay for IRL products (e.g. prepaid airtime, utility bills, etc.)
  • Buy XLD Token directly using prepaid credits

Users must claim their earned tokens by linking their Metamask wallet to our DeFi app. The XLD platform will help guide users to set up their wallets. Once users have XLD, they can participate in DeFi through our DeFi app:

  • Swap with other tokens (cross-chain)
  • Participate in the XLD Liquidity Mining Program
  • … and other DeFi use cases to come

The XLD embeds itself in the digital day-to-day activities of the user. We aim to be the first interaction with the crypto world for those who are not yet a part of it. The most important part of this model — users don’t need a financial account to acquire crypto. Just a phone, a browser, and internet access.

Gabby Dizon, one of our advisors and Co-Founder & CEO of Yield Guild Games, says that for users to buy into crypto, the important thing is to do everything to help the user get their first crypto balance that they can start using.

How XLD will Help Crypto Projects & Partners

A key part of our model is to partner with other crypto projects. One of the things that we have proven through our XLoad platform is that we have a strong, highly-engaged community. We have more than 1.7M+ users within our family of apps, and see that they are up to 10x more engaged compared to the market.

One of the primary goals of emerging projects is to grow their communities. What we will provide within our platform is a guided approach to drive our users to engage in their ecosystem through Quests. Quests are similar to the tasks that you need to complete in mobile games for rewards such as leaving a rating in the App Store or liking a social media page.

We will also build additional features like sweepstakes and mini-games for users to earn more of their tokens. What we require from our partners, though, is an allocation of tokens that we can distribute to our users.

Not only will we work with crypto projects, we will work with telcos as well as companies that provide some sort of rewards program (i.e. games, retailers with loyalty programs, etc.). We are building a SDK that they can deploy to exchange their rewards points/system for XLD or our other rewards mechanisms.

In Summary

Through XLD, we aim to help 3.8B+ new users get started with crypto and help grow other crypto projects through user acquisition & engagement. We believe that XLD is the solution to accelerate the growth of the crypto space by including everyone who has access to mobile prepaid credit.

Get to know more about Ian and follow him on Twitter at @IanLivesCrypto.

Sources:
- Taken from Bankmycell.com report
- Data from GSMA Intelligence, data as of 2020

For more updates, follow us here on Medium or join our XLD Community to get the latest news on The XLD Token.

Twitter
Telegram

Stablecoin-based ecosystem driving financial inclusion through real-world financial services.