The Cryptonomist interviewed Alexander Höptner, Chief Executive Officer at BitMEX, one of the most-known crypto exchanges to talk about their carbon neutral effort, DeFi, NFTs and more.
Interview with Alexander Höptner, BitMEX CEO
Can you tell us more regarding your effort to become carbon neutral?
BitMEX is going carbon neutral because it is the right thing to do. We are building a future where cryptocurrencies are integral to the world’s financial system – and that future needs to be sustainable. We are very passionate about fighting climate change at BitMEX, and many others in the crypto space inspired us to take this vital step.
We are working with Global Digital Finance and other similar organisations to make these changes across our business and are always looking for more partners in this endeavour. In my opinion, any progress you can make, no matter how small, on big problems like climate change is worth the effort. We have started this process by purchasing carbon credits to become carbon neutral and will be able to share more soon on our next steps.
Where do you see you have more trading traffic? Which countries and why?
Cryptocurrency trading activity in many regions is on an upward trend, which we would expect to see after such a meteoric 2021 increase in the retail crypto sector. APAC is, as always, a large market for all kinds of trading, and we see sustained growth in European markets as well.
This year’s unique and exciting trend is the rise in cryptocurrency trading and investment in developing countries. I do not doubt that in 2022, we will see even more interest and trading growth in these countries.
Do you believe cryptos need more regulation?
I believe that as crypto becomes ubiquitous in finance, gaming, mobility, real estate, social media, and other sectors, it will inevitably become more regulated. The x-factor in all of this will be how much mutual understanding can we help develop in the meantime between industry, users, and regulators to ensure the regulation is smart and not stifling. We must be collaborative and not lose sight of the fundamental improvements that crypto brings over other technologies – its security, its accessibility, its low costs, and transparency.
What do you think about the future of DeFi?
The world of DeFi is so vast and agile that its future can go any number of ways. No matter what, it will be incredibly dynamic and can disrupt many sectors.
I believe we will see soon that, as more people realise the yield potential of DeFi (through activities like yield farming and staking), they will make DeFi a part of their investing strategy alongside traditional avenues and banking.
Are NFT a bubble?
I do not believe NFTs are a bubble. I think certain NFT collections might not continue to grow in value (or may cease being traded), but NFT technology is here to stay. Skeptics miss the potential of NFTs when they focus only on the hyper-speculative or frivolous part of the NFT world.
But if you look deeper, NFTs have a broad portfolio of applications for real-world assets like art, collectables, and even real estate. We will continue to see NFTs grow as an asset class and technology sector.
Can you tell us more about your earn program?
This month we announced the launch of our Earn program, BitMEX EARN. This interest-bearing product offers the highest annual percentage rate (APR) of all public Earn products, with interest payouts ranging from 14-100% APR.
We are also the only Earn product that is 100% backed – our insurance fund guarantees all payouts. Our first product on BitMEX EARN is Tether, and we are planning even more Earn products in the medium and long term. We will share more on this soon.