The Cryptonomist interviewed the Italian company Conio, in the person of its General Manager Orlando Merone, to talk about the latest developments in the wallet and its many products.
Conio is rapidly expanding its product range, what are your next goals?
In the last few months we have introduced many new features in Conio, revolutionising the user experience of our app and adding 12 new digital assets in the market section. Then we released the crypto-to-crypto conversion functionality, which allows you to change the composition of your portfolio without any additional buying or selling, just by exchanging tokens. The continuous development of our technology will allow us to add up to 50 assets in the app by the end of the year and to extend our custody solution, already validated with more than 400,000 retail clients, to EVM-based blockchains such as Ethereum, Polygon and Avalanche in the near future.
So your focus remains on asset custody, why is it so important?
Since its creation, Conio’s mission has been to offer a secure and affordable custody solution, both for private clients and for banks and financial institutions that choose it to operate in the world of digital assets. It is precisely the latter that are currently showing a growing interest in custody solutions dedicated to an increasing number of digital assets, and Conio is already at the forefront by extending its technology, already established on Bitcoin and Algorand, to EVM-based blockchains.
In our vision, the tokenization of financial services will lead, within a few years, to the replacement of most current accounts in Europe with ‘universal’ wallets based on blockchain technology, necessary to support new forms of bank money and new tokenized financial assets.
Speaking of security, Conio has developed a multi-signature solution. Can you explain the need for this and the benefits it offers?
The custody of digital assets poses a fundamental dilemma: on the one hand, entrusting the custody of one’s funds to third parties exposes users to significant risks such as hacking, sudden platform shutdowns and mismanagement of funds, especially when we are talking about centralised entities such as exchanges. On the other hand, self-custody of private keys can lead to irreversible loss of assets if the keys themselves are lost.
The technology developed by Conio aims to fill this gap, balancing the need for security and accessibility for users. The 2 of 3 multi-signature system used by Conio combines the advantages of self-custody, including the elimination of counterparty risk, with the security of being able to recover one’s funds at any time.
Do customers understand and value this solution?
This solution is a flagship in the industry and allows us to be the preferred partner for banks and institutions which, by definition, have to put security at the heart of their business decisions. Moreover, this technology is also increasingly known and appreciated by private clients, who choose to transfer their funds to Conio, leaving the centralised custody of the exchanges, precisely in order to ensure an adequate level of protection. The recent “misadventures” of some stock exchanges have shown that custody cannot be neglected at the risk of losing all or part of one’s funds.
Several milestones have been achieved by Conio in this 2023, shall we mention the main ones?
This year, Conio was selected as one of six Italian fintech companies in the Visa Innovation Program Europe 2023, the programme for collaboration and acceleration of innovative companies in Europe that aims to promote innovation in the financial and payments sector. Conio has demonstrated expertise and business models with international scalability potential.
We have also been named a Sample Vendor in the Blockchain Wallets category in the Gartner® Hype Cycle for Blockchain and Web3 for the third consecutive year.
These recognitions not only allow us to consolidate the position we have built up in the Italian market in recent years, but are also an effective means of preparing fertile ground for expanding our boundaries when MiCar comes into force.
We are looking forward to 2023 as a year of renewal and consolidation, and we intend to continue in this direction in this last quarter and certainly throughout the coming year, with important new partnerships and features on the way.