DeFi Visions: Alex Shevchenko
In DeFi Visions, a series of video interviews, the 1inch Network talks to the most prominent people in the DeFi space. This post offers key insights from a recent interview with Alex Shevchenko, CEO at Aurora.
Alex has been leading Aurora, an EVM scaling solution allowing developers to operate their apps on an Ethereum-compatible platform, since its spin-off from NEAR in 2021.
Incidentally, Alex’s first job, right after his PhD, was with a BTC mining company back in 2015.
“They asked me, ‘What about BTC? Have you heard about this stuff?’ I didn’t know much, but it took just a couple of days to immerse myself into the values of blockchain — transparency, resistance to censorship and keeping control in the users’ hands,” he recalls.
There is one more value Alex is particularly excited about, which, he says, is the constant delivery of new products. “During 2021, we released Rainbow bridge in March and Aurora in May. And in June, Aurora was spun off as a separate entity. A super-quick succession of events actually determines values that we have in Aurora,” he elaborates.
According to Alex, scalability and user experience should be two main focuses and “one only makes sense with the other.”
“I really believe that NEAR’s approach, which includes a sharded blockchain with a common environment and synchronous processing in call transactions, is a way to go,” he adds.
“ZKs make a lot of sense too, but they must mature a little,” he goes on to say. “Now, it is risky to implement this tech in production because we are losing control of the code. But mature ZKs and sharded blockchains will solve the scalability problem in the future.”
Aurora is governed by a DAO. And Alex says he finds it an extremely great development fundamentally. “[But] unfortunately, since the tech is very complicated, DAOs are not that efficient. When we make the tech look like Twitter for DAOs, everything will be simpler,” Alex notes.
“But DAOs are the right way to go. As we know, only democratic establishments governing the countries can lead to progress,” he adds.
Moving to the subject of stablecoins, Alex stresses that algorithmic stablecoins “are here to stay.”
“From my side, DAI is also kind of close to algorithmic. Their market cap stands at six billion, and liquidation bots are working great, even after the drop. We will see their development further,” he explains.
Alex says he believes that different DeFi ecosystems should “stop fighting and dancing on the bones of the failed projects to progress the power of decentralization.”
“Otherwise, IT giants will take our ideas and include them in their value proposition,” he adds. “And it will be hard to explain how we differ from them.”
Alex brings up Apple’s ad displaying just one word — ‘Privacy.’ “We are also talking about privacy in crypto quite a lot,” he explains. “Obviously, Apple’s privacy solutions are absolutely different. However, the narrative is already there.”
Meanwhile, Alex says he has his own vision of ideal regulation and he would “really encourage governments to implement the Dubai model — create a hub where things are going to be transparent.”
“Such hubs will get insane amounts of capital, and the GDP of these countries will increase. And it will drive mass adoption,” he goes on to say.
Alex stresses he is super excited about the current bear market as this is the time when “the market is cleaning itself.” Alex compares bearish cycles with forest fires that destroy everything except sequoias, whose thick trunks protect them.
“What is happening is an insane forest fire where the strongest trees will stand and develop more rapidly,” he concludes. “It is needed to burn down scammers and weak projects.”
Watch the full interview with Alex Shevchenko on The 1inch Network’s YouTube channel.