Interview with Michael Ng of Stakewith.us

We asked Michael's opinion regarding several topics such as decentralization, incentivisation, challenges and differentiation strategies in context of our Staking Ecosystem Case Study.

Stakewith.us provides secure staking services across leading blockchain projects. "Put your token to work and earn yield with us while we guarantee security and uptime." They provide efficient and convenient staking solutions to institutions allowing them to carve a branding niche as a staking company without the technical hassles.

SR: How do we ensure and incentivize further decentralization within the staking ecosystem?

MN: i) in-protocol incentives and/or disincentives - declining yield past X tokens staked, increasing yield if stake to more than Y validators;

ii) Due to how tokens are utilized as voting stakes in POS based networks, initial distribution of tokens should be as equitable as possible while preventing sybil attacks;

iii) Encouraging validators to share best practices to improve the overall quality of all validators - gives delegators comfort in knowing that all validators are trustworthy and capable.

SR: What are the biggest challenges for Proof of Stake and Staking, that we still have to overcome or may still face?

MN: While on-chain governance is the most equitable way for everyone to voice out their opinion, we think that some element of centralization is required during critical period of time to act fast and solve problems. You cannot take 2 weeks to push a critical software update to fix a bug.

SR: What do you consider to be the most important aspects to attract delegators to your staking service?

MN: We think that technology and security will eventually be commoditized and industry benchmarks will start to emerge. The key differentiator lies in how a particular validator choose to provide value to his delegators and what sort of business strategy the validator wants to employ. For StakeWith.Us, we aim to do more than just validating networks. Eventually, we aim to find a way to bootstrap transactions on validation projects via providing services/products that bring about adoption.

SR: What is your preferred terminology for rewards by staking? ROI, Staking Yield, Reward Rate, Interest Rate, Annual Percentage Rate, etc?

MN: We like to keep it laymen so anyone and everyone can understand - ROI by far is the easiest. In a few years, if POS networks take off and gains more adoption, we want to present staking in a manner that is familiar to the current masses.

SR: How can smaller Staking-as-a-Service companies differentiate themselves from large players like exchanges providing staking services (e.g. Coinbase)? Is there a danger of centralization? Binance Staking in 2019, yes or no?

MN: Provide continued value add to the community - there are many ways to do so: community updates, organize meetups, contribute to code, write articles, etc. We think exchanges, custodians and wallet servicers will dominate the staking industry so, yes, Binance staking 2019 (It is already happening via Trustwallet for a few projects).

SR: Which value-added services or products are the main focus for you at the moment? (e.g. insurance, governance dashboards, staking mobile wallet, custodial services, open source contributions, community meetups etc)?

MN: We will be pushing out our Loom Network PlasmaChain block explorer soon. We might delve into community meetups to educate our community on staking related updates and project updates. Our long term aim is to build services/products that will bring about adoption for the networks we are validating for.


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