- Time: November 26th, 2021 at 2PM UTC
- Project name: ShopNEXT
- Host: Kristen from Blockchain Army
- Guest speakers: Mr. Linh Lê | ShopNEXT CEO & Tony | Strategy Head of ShopNEXT
- Main content:
- Part 1: Project Overview
- Part 2: Team
- Part 3: Products & Services
- Part 4: Tokenomics
- Part 5: Security
- Part 6: Community
- Part 7: Roadmap
- Part 8: Marketing Strategy
- Part 9: Community Q&A
1. Would you like to introduce yourself a little bit?
Mr. Linh: We are from ShopNEXT, the first Shop to Earn crypto platform ever. My name is Linh, I’m the CEO.
Tony: Hi everyone, Hi Kristen. I’m Tony, the Strategy Head of ShopNEXT. Nice to meet you all.
2. Would you like to tell us the vision of ShopNEXT and also the reason why you’re here today?
Mr. Linh: We all know blockchain in general and crypto is a hot trend right now. Many people want to change but they don’t know how and where to start. From my point of view, there are two key barriers. One is complexity. Crypto is something not simple at all. New users have to know how to create a hot-cold wallet, understand how to do peer-to-peer transfer, etc. That’s the first barrier. The second barrier is credibility. Investment in crypto is not an official investment channel yet. People want to change but they don’t know how and where to start. That’s why we want to come up with the Shop to Earn model. We are the Shop to Earn crypto onboarding platform that helps new crypto users onboard crypto easily and safely. They don’t need to pay anything to own their first crypto, they can shop with ShopNEXT at more than 600 of our brand partners. Then we will reward them with their first crypto then they will have motivation to explore and learn more about crypto. In short, our vision is we want to bring crypto to the masses.
3. Where did you guys get the idea for this whole platform of Shop to Earn?
Tony: We got asked many times why we came up with the term ‘Shop to Earn’. We have groups of people who love crypto and we’ve been following the market for a long time. We’re doing eCommerce as well. We kept thinking about how we can connect those two together but it is kind of disconnected. Until today, we realized that there is a trend called Play to Earn that just started with Axie Infinity. It is great, the crypto mania, so many people around the world are crazy for the trend. Then we thought okay, why don’t we just combine what we already have which is the very smart and creative business model in the cashback industry with the beauty of the token economy of crypto. When we combine those two together, we can create something that is unique and can bring a lot of benefits to the users that is a Shop to Earn model. As Linh said earlier, people don’t need to know anything about crypto, they can just shop normally and earn the very first crypto totally free. That is the reason behind the Shop to Earn model.
4. Who came up with this idea? Who helped during the process? Who helped build up the whole team that you guys are having today? Can you tell in detail the position of each person in your team?
Mr. Linh: Let me introduce our team first. My name is Linh – the CEO of ShopNEXT and Shopiness. So basically I started Shopiness 5 years ago. This is the top mobile shopping and cashback in Vietnam. Right now we have more than 700,000 users. Every month we contribute 200 brand partners, one million transactions. Also right now we still may attend the Shopiness business and Tony is helping us to turn up the business and strategies. So besides, we have our CTO, his name is Phong. He has worked for a big eCommerce and tech company like NCT, Be and Tiki. He’s the person in charge of Technology and Systems. For the business model, we changed several times. As you know, we have great support from Binance. So long story short, our partners and the Core team discussed a lot and came up with the Shop to Earn business.
Tony: We got a lot of feedback from the Binance team during the discussions and then we got a lot of feedback from our early investors and angel investors as well. It is the collaborative effort of all the people.
5. What kind of products and services are you guys offering to the users, the market right now?
Mr. Linh: We’re quite different from other projects. We want to create the product first. Our product is available on the App Store to download for the beta testing. Basically, right now, if the user downloads the app, they can go shopping and get cashback and $NEXT. $NEXT token is our cryptocurrency used by ShopNEXT. A user will get two kinds of rewards, one is cashback, one is $NEXT. With the cashback, they can withdraw to their bank account or withdraw in crypto, like a popular cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, Ethereum, BNB and USDT through a Binance wallet. Users can use $NEXT to play games, sell it or exchange to make money. That’s the reason why we called it Shop to Earn. For the shopping site, right now users can shop at more than 600 brands in our merchant network like Shopee, Lazada, Tiki, Tokopedia. We also provide services like travel booking, mobile top-up.
Tony: Just to add a little bit more, unlike other projects who are mainly focusing on online shopping, we foresee the huge potential of offline shopping as well. We build our infrastructure ready for offline shopping. Because now there is COVID-19 so it makes online shopping so dominant and convenient but we believe that one day when everything goes back to normal, people will start to do offline shopping. That’s when we launch our offline shopping model. You can just easily go to the petrol station, a supermarket or anywhere, any coffee shop and then you just pay using our ShopNEXT app and get cashback and $NEXT. We should see the complete ecosystem including online and offline.
6. We noticed that Black Friday has just been around the corner. Did you guys have any plans for that? Did you have an event to attract the users to this special day?
Mr. Linh: Yes, right now we have a community airdrop. If the user just had the first transition successfully on ShopNEXT from today to the first week of December, we do the lucky draw and we have 1,000 prizes for 1,000 winners and the total reward is one million $NEXT tokens. That is the first activity for community
Tony: This is very easy to get in, what you need to do is very simple. You just go to the ShopNEXT app, you can find about 600 brands, just select whatever brand that you want to shop. Do the shopping normally, earn the promotion from the brand and earn some cash back from us and then be legal for the lucky draw. 1,000 $NEXT now maybe will be a lump sum of money later in the future. Who knows?
7. I wanna know more about the tokonomic distribution. How did you guys decide on the numbers and percentage of it? How was it distributed to the market, the team? Do you think it was the right decision to do so?
Tony: Let’s just start with the way that we view the tokonomics for the Shop to Earn. Just in the afternoon, a community member in the Vietnam group asked “Why do Play to Earn projects have two tokens?”. One is fixed, one is an unlimited supply. Why does ShopNEXT have just one token? How do you guys control inflation? These are very interesting questions.Me and Linh discussed a lot about it at the beginning, we changed the tokenomics many times. We learned a lot from the Play to Earn models, we saw the advantages and the disadvantages of those models. When we try to control the price of two tokens like other Play to Earn games, it’s a bit harder because they’re both efforts and you need to take care of two babies. If one of the babies falls, you fall. That’s why in ShopNEXT, we chose to just have one baby, just one token only but we control our tokenomics flexibly. For other projects, if you look into their whitepaper, they have a very fixed tokenomic, that means this is the rate they distribute the token into the market but it is fixed. After some time, you will know for sure how many tokens will be diluted into the market. For ShopNEXT, we have a very dynamic and flexible tokenomics which means we will control the dilution or the inflation of the tokens depending on the total number of active users. We are building an onboarding platform, we want to bring billions of people into crypto through ShopNEXT. We need to have very flexible tokenomics so we can contain or have one million monthly active users at the same time. That’s why we have many variables that we can change in our tokenomics so we dilute the token just according to our ecosystem to make sure when more people come to our platform, they can earn less token but in terms of value, they will earn more because the token value will increase over time. That is the logic behind. If I go into detail, it’s going to take several hours so I would recommend anyone who is watching this livestream to go to our whitepaper, docs.ShopNEXT.io. There is one section called “How to control the dilution”, this is very well-written there. If you guys have any questions or suggestions, we are open for suggestions, just feel free to join our Telegram channel and then we can discuss. We are very active in our Telegram group as well because we want to listen to our community so just ping me, we will be ready to answer your questions.
Kristen: Since a lot of other projects chose to have a designated or fixed number structure of the tokenomics but you guys said you will adjust it and be flexible with the numbers. Is it quite risky to do so?
Mr. Linh: The number of allocation for each session is fixed but the way we distribute tokens to the market is flexible. You can imagine the government controls the interest in banks or the exchange rate. That’s the act of economy. Basically, we will control and make our tokenomics flexible like that. It’s up to the number of users on our platform so we can have suitable adjustments to make sure we can control inflation and make everyone happy.
Tony: Just to add a little bit, if you think a little bit carefully then you will realize that this model will bring a lot of benefits for the early adopters. If you are the first joiner, you can earn a lot more than. That’s why our model is always beneficial for people. If you guys are hearing this livestream, I think this is a good chance for you to learn more about us and shop as much as you can until we upgrade our tokenomics then you can earn a little bit less. Now, shop more, earn more.
8. How would you guys reassure your users’ trust about the security system? How does it work to guarantee the safety of your user’s wallet?
Tony: Regarding safety, I haven’t announced it officially yet on our channel. Tomorrow we will announce. We already audited our smart contract with CertiK which is the best auditor in the market. We completed the audit quite a long time ago. The reason we did that is because we believe in security and we want to keep our users’ funds safe. This is our top priority, so we did the audit very early to make sure that we cannot do some funny things with the smart contract, with the code, to make sure that we cannot manipulate our users’ wallet and lock our user tokens if we want to. We want to make it very transparent and clear which is the spirit of blockchain. We did the audit with CertiK and we will announce this officially tomorrow.
9. Where have you been on the roadmap? Did you face any challenges in the first place? How did you guys overcome all of that? What are your solutions for upcoming goals?
Mr. Linh: We have four key milestones from now to the end of next year. So the first milestone is the mobile app launching, so we just launched it yesterday. Actually, it was in beta at the end of October but we just got the approval from Apple yesterday. Right now everyone can go on Apple Store and Google Play to download ShopNEXT. The next milestone will be the IDO on 29th of November. That is the dual IDO on two launch pads, Dao Maker and Red Kite. After that, we will focus on developing the product as Tony just shared. At the moment, we just focus on online shopping. The next milestone is to expand to in-store payment. After the panamic, hopefully we can grow our offline merchant network. Basically in the future, users just go to a coffee shop then use ShopNEXT, scan the QR code to pay and get cash back and get the crypto rewards. That is the third milestone which will happen in Q2 next year. ShopNEXT right now is available for six Southeast Asia markets: Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines and Indonesia. We will focus on Vietnam first, we want to grow the user base in Vietnam. In Q3 next year, we will expand to the rest of South Asia. After that will be the rest of Asian markets like Japan, Korea, etc. Basically that are four key milestones from now to the end of next year. Right now the first challenge is Tony and I need to sleep at the office because one of our team members has COVID-19 so we can’t go home, we have to sleep here for nights. That’s why we have the AMA live together today, so the pandemic is one of the challenges. Furthermore, the partnership could be a challenge but it’s over. Shop to Earn is very new and we are the first one to introduce this model to the world. When we went to talk to our partners and investors to persuade them to be onboard with us, they didn’t really get it because they had the passion for GameFi, NFT. They didn’t even listen to us. That’s really a challenge, we don’t know how to resolve that. But after we talk to Binance and we think we have the same vision, we are on the same page with them. Binance is the most popular cryptocurrency exchange in the world and they want to bring crypto to the masses as well. That’s also our mission. That is the reason why we have the same vision, we talked to them and they gave us a lot of support. From there we got the credibility and then a lot more partners and investors came and talked to us.
Tony: I think the partners and the investors were very difficult for us just like Linh said. We’ve been talking to many people and they don’t believe in what we are doing because they lost focus and they have a different thing to concentrate on our team. But the good thing is that we believe in what we are doing, so we never look back, we try every possible solution to move forward and then we got lucky. I don’t think any other project got a promotion from Binance that early. We got lucky and I think the one of the biggest problems for crypto right now is the onboarding. So many projects focus on one direction and then they just try to compete with each other for the users like in GameFi. What we are doing is different, we want to bring people to crypto and we don’t want to compete with any other project. We want all of our partners to onboard and if other projects are good, we will partner with them. We will introduce the service to our users, that is our mission. We don’t compete with them and we choose to go in our own directions. We don’t know the future yet, but hopefully it will bring something to crypto space because we love crypto like you guys. We want to bring something of value to the industry, not just the fancy tokens that disappear after one or two years.
10. Liquidity, transaction fees and slippage are always important factors in finance services. How does $NEXT solve the above problem to attract users?
Tony: This is one of the pinpoints of our project at the beginning because we do the crypto onboarding and we want to give them a crypto for free, but we need to have something for them to keep the crypto. Initially, we were thinking about keeping the crypto within our mobile app, but this is not what we want because if you are not controlling your token then it’s not yours. We moved to another option and then we chose Trust Wallet. We chose Trust Wallet and then we thought that users can withdraw whatever crypto cashback into the Trust Wallet. But it comes to another inference that Trust Wallet needs to spend a lot of fee on the transition, then sometimes the blockchain gets congested, then all the transactions will be blocked and it doesn’t make sense to follow that way. We want to bring the smoothest experience for people onboard. The next option is Binance Pay. They had a new function in March 2021. You guys can see the function within the Binance wallet, it allows users to send and receive crypto instantly for free. That is exactly what we are looking for. But how to approach them? We don’t know anyone from there and so I think the story of how we connected to Binace is very interesting. I think we got lucky but it’s just the moment for us.
Mr. Linh: I got the email address from the website. We said that we’re looking for a solution for our users to withdraw cryptocurrency to their wallet and we saw the new launch of Binance Pay. We asked them if we can integrate with their pay wallet and provide the services to our user, so this is a win-win. We’ll bring them new users and in return, we can get a really high quality wallet. Especially the fee because there’s no transfer fee. Then we had a message from them on Telegram and they said “Let us schedule the call to discuss further”. When we had a call, we shared more about vision again. That’s how we get connected with Binance.
Tony: I mean if anyone here just wants to open a business or have a startup idea, just feel free to ask around because Binance is very big, we are zero to them, but we asked them and they listened and responded. If you are watching the livestream and you have something cool and you want to start something new, don’t hesitate to ask around. Ask whoever can help you, don’t think that they will never reply. In our case, Binance replied to us, why would any other person doesn’t reply to you?
11. Retail industries are being affected by the COVID-19 epidemic, the purchasing power of consumers has decreased significantly. Is this a problem with ShopNEXT?
Mr. Linh: Basically that’s the challenge, but we have a backup option. As I said before, besides online shopping, we have an in-store payment. At the moment, the pandemic just has an effect on offline consumption. Three or four months ago, when I ran the Shopiness business, that business focused on online shopping. When COVID-19 came, it’s even an advantage for online shopping, so our revenue and the GMV went double that month. I think a pandemic, for sure it will bring a challenge to the business, but the more important thing is how we face that and figure out the solution.
Tony: I never did any online shopping before, until the pandemic which forced me to order online and then I became an eCommerce user. I think the story is gonna be the same for many people here. The pandemic as Linh said is creating a very big situation for most businesses, but it’s just the way we react to the situation. We need to be very reliable. I mean the business needs to be very reliable and then we need to be very adaptable, so that we can go through the situation.
12. What plans do you have for educating your customers about cryptocurrency payments?
Mr. Linh: We don’t offer cryptocurrency payment. As we said, we reward users with free crypto. For example, if you want to buy something on Shopee, you open ShopNEXT and select Shopee. When you press the button, we will drive you to the Shopee mobile app and you just shop normally. We do the system integration between ShopNEXT and Shopee so when Shopee recognizes the new transition from ShopNEXT, they will pass the data to our system, we will save that data and give the user the cash back. You just use the normal fiat to buy something on an eCommerce app or website and we just reward you with the cryptocurrency. Again, we don’t provide cryptocurrency payment yet.
13. Marketing costs in the eCommerce industry are very high. Why is the token that the project announced is only 10% for Marketing and Partner?
Tony: You are right, marketing costs in the eCommerce industry are high. I think the key thing in crypto is word of mouth. Axie Infinity didn’t do a lot of marketing to onboard users but what they did is they give a very good product with a very good model that brings benefits for the people who play the game. People will plug in into that and they say “Wow, I can earn some benefits” and then they tell their friends and their friends tell their friends. That is a very interesting and reliable model because in crypto, trust is very important. In the news about crypto, you hear mostly about scams. There’s so many scams in the industry. A lot of people are scared. Whenever people introduce you to a new project you say maybe another scam but then they say “I earned something and it looked legit. Why don’t you try?”. Then people try and become an active user and then they will introduce more people. I think that is the model that you can sustain in crypto. That’s why we have a very good referral program.
Mr. Linh: We call it a lifetime referral program. Basically when you refer a friend to join ShopNEXT, we will give you 10-20% of the rewards that your friends earn in their lifetime, like forever. We believe that it’ll be a strong motivation for our users who already tried our product and they will likely be willing to share ShopNEXT with their friends.
Tony: Just a little bit more on that question, we give a little bit more allocation for the communities because we want to organize many activities for our communities. Our community fund is 25% of the total supply. We give that fund to do a lot of activities to onboard people, reward them, keep them engaged, educate them about crypto and then give them a lot of benefits. That’s for growing the communities. Community and marketing in crypto are very similar, they actually overlap sometimes. Once you have a very strong community, you have a very strong army who can promote your project for free. That is what we are thinking. We want to build a very solid engaged community first. I think the marketing side is good but we’ll use it at the right time and with the right partner. I would say most of the partnerships in crypto are just for fantasy purposes. Most of the projects just connect with each other without any real benefit for the community. I don’t think we would enter those partnerships in the future. Whatever that’s not bringing any benefit to the community, we won’t do. I think 10% is legit and it’s more on the community side. We want our people to become our evangelists who love the project, share information about the project and support us for a long term.
14. The Asian online shopping market is thriving, but getting people to accept cryptocurrency payments is difficult because regulatory hurdles are looming. What is your solution?
Mr. Linh: We don’t step on the cryptocurrency payment area. We just do affiliate marketing and cryptocurrency reward. You guys don’t need to pay anything to get the crypto. Joining ShopNEXT doesn’t need to pay anything, shop and earn cashback and crypto for free. We are not a payment solution for crypto.
Tony: We are an onboarding platform that rewards users with free crypto.
Up to now, ShopNEXT has had outstanding growth with an ever-expanding ecosystem, promising to thrive in the near future.
Disclaimers: Writers’ opinions are solely their own, and do not constitute any financial advice, investment advice, or trading advice.
BSC Army strongly recommends that you do your own research, and seek professional advice from a financial advisor where appropriate.