#117 Kwame Rugunda – Blockchain Adoption in Africa

In this episode of the Grey Ave Podcast I interviewed Kwame Rugunda. He is a management consultant and technology entrepreneur with an interest in emerging technologies, particularly those designed to address the challenges of global development. An Electrical Engineer and Mathematician by training with experience in telecommunications, civic technology, and management consulting for governments, the United Nations and several private and non-profit organizations throughout Africa.



Had an early exposure to the 4th industrial revolution due to interest in technology and innovation, with a particular interest in blockchain and its applications. Keen on making ubiquitous the role of blockchain innovation throughout Africa, and is the CEO of CryptoSavannah, a firm focused on solutions, advisory and training in blockchain technology. Other roles held include Country Director of Dalberg Data Insights a big-data analytics firm, Chairman of the Blockchain Association of Uganda which held Africa’s largest blockchain event in May 2018, President of Government Blockchain Association, Kampala Chapter, and serves on the National Taskforce on Blockchain and 4IR Technologies. 

A graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government with Master’s Degree in Public Administration, and was a 2017 recipient the Harvard Kennedy School Lucius Littauer Award.


Links:https://btafrica.com/our-team/
https://cryptosavannah.com

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#113 JP Fabri – How Malta became the Blockchain Island

“The regulation is there as a filter to make sure that the investment opportunity presented by the issuer is real” – JP Fabri

Malta has won hearts of many people in the Blockchain space. It’s not surprising seeing some of the largest players including Binance, OKEx, Decentralized ventures and many others incorporated there. It’s true, Malta is the Blockchain Island.

Considering that blockchain technology is relatively new, there’s interest on both private and private sectors as the potential of distributed ledgers is very disruptive in many ways. In my recent conversations with government officials including Hellen Zille(Premier of the Western Cape), the issue of regulation always pops up and they mostly reference what’s happening in Malta.

Enters….Jean Paul Fabri(JP Fabri for short). An economist and one of the most active experts behind the success in Malta. JP is the Managing Director of ARQ, a specialised advisory unit that forms part of ARQ Group. He is also the Lead Partner for ARQ Group on blockchain and cryptocurrencies helping global companies set-up their operations in Malta. He has consulted 9 governments of small island states on behalf of The Commonwealth Secretariat. He worked as an economist at the Central Bank of Malta, the private cabinet of the Prime Minister of Malta and in private advisory. JP is also a Visiting Assistant Lecturer at The University of Malta.

In this episode, Grey Jabesi interviews JP Fabri and discussed:
-How did Malta became interested in Blockchain
-How Malta approached blockchain
-Why regulate
-How do they make sure regulation is not stifling innovation
-Potential and opportunities of Blockchain technology in Africa
-His views on ICOs and cryptocurrencies


 

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#111 Eli Calderón Morin – Redefining Food Stamps with All_Ebt

I had a privilege of sitting down and interview Eli Calderón Morin, A Y-Combinator Hackathon winner, Founder & CEO of All_ebt. Eli has been at the forefront of mobile disruption as an advisor and team member to some of the fastest growing and groundbreaking mobile startups on the planet: AdMob/ acq Google, SnapTell/ acq Amazon, Alohar / acq AutoNavi/ Alibaba, Mojiva, InMobi, OpenX, Lipa Learning, Appfuel, and Adtile.

Over the last decade, Eli has gained expertise in the areas of Startup Growth, Operations, Developer Evangelism, Market Expansion, Corp Dev, M&A, Strategic Partnerships, Sales Engineering, BizDev, SaaS, and Product Management. All_ebt is a smart wallet for Food Stamps. Over 54 million Americans receive SNAP (food stamp) benefits each year. They have tremendous purchasing power in aggregate, yet remain under-served by consumer technology.Serving underbanked and low-income communities and acting as a consumer on-ramp for mass crypto adoption and financial services.

I met Eli at EOS Global Hackathon Finale in Cape Town, South Africa. We discussed his previous startups, how he is redefining food stamps and he gave advise on startups.


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#110 Ben Swann – The wolf of Journalism

Ben Swann is an American television news anchor, political commentator and journalist. Initially a Baptist pastor, he became a sports producer for TV, and later a news journalist and producer, and managing editor on network affiliates, FOX, and RT America of the Russian state-owned TV network RT. Ben Swann is the founder of the Truth in Media.

He has spent 18 years working as a journalist in broadcast news, behind and in front of the camera. Swann began his journalism career in El Paso, Texas as a news photographer, quickly working his way up to prime time anchor. Along the way, Swann became a two time Emmy Award winner and two time recipient of the Edward R. Murrow Award. Covering Mexico’s drug war, Ben Swann discovered the national media was not reporting the truth of what was actually happening in Mexico’s drug war or the problems associated with the failed “War on Drugs” in the United States.

Ben Swann is now the industry leader for independent journalists, shattering the “Left vs. Right” paradigm, with a sharp focus on restoring Truth In Media.

We talked alot, some of the topics covered in this podcast were:
– His work experience with companies he worked for
– How he graduated Bachelor Degree at 16
– His career objectives
– Mexico’s drug war
– Fake news
– Truth in media




https://www.Facebook.com/BenSwannRealityCheck
https://www.Facebook.com/BenSwannLibertyisRising
https://Www.YouTube.com/BenSwannRealityCheck

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#106 Maps Maponyane – Inside the Mind of South Africa’s Top Model

Support the Grey ave Podcast on https://www.patreon.com/greyjabesi

In this episode, Grey Jabesi interviewed Maps Maponyane. Maps is one of South Africa’s favourite personalities. He is considered as one of SA’s most stylish and sexiest men and is a greatly admired media personality. Multi-talented as a tv presenter, model, actor, style icon, designer, businessman and philanthropist, he makes waves both locally and internationally. Maps is loved and followed by his fans on social media platforms because of his down to earth, professional yet warm personality. He is known for his talent, fashion sense, charm, innovation, versatility and good looks.

Maponyane was named GQ’s “Best Dressed Man” in 2011 and Cosmopolitan Magazine’s “Sexiest South African Man” in 2013.




Notable Awards obtained:
Current ambassador for Samsung
Current ambassador for Investec
GQ’s Best Dressed Men List (2011) and the youngest nominee.
GQ’s Cool 35 Guys Under 35 (2013)
Vuzu 10over10 #1 Most Stylish Man (2013
Cosmo SA Sexiest Man (2013)
SA Style Award – Most Stylish Model/Media Personality (2013)
GQ Magazine Cover (March 2015)
Philanthropy:
Community and Organisational work with NGO Doctors Without
Borders/MSF (Medecins Sans Frontieres)
Volunteer at Ethembeni Children’s Home
Bursary network

Follow maps on instagram:https://www.instagram.com/mmaponyane/?hl=en
Twitter: https://twitter.com/mapsmaponyane?lang=en

 

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#105 Ashley Wallace – Exploring Japan

In this episode, Grey jabesi interviewed Ashley Wallace from Chicago,USA. He is HR Professional currently living in Japan.In 2007 studied Japanese language and business management.He shares his experience living in Japan as black man for the past seven years.
“Black man in Japan trying to make my mark everyday JBBF Kanto Open 2013 1st Place, JBBF Kanagawa Open 2014 65kg 3rd place”




Links:
Ashley on Instagram : https://www.instagram.com/blacksunflowersamurai1914/

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#104 Maja Vujinovic – shEOS co-Founder

Maja Vujinovic is an entrepreneur, investor and a CEO of OGroup. She started her career as Director of Strategy and Corporate development at Tanex Corporation. From 2010 to 2013, she served as a Senior investment officer at Zakhem International. In 2013, she joined Riverside Advisors on a position of Consultant. From 2015 to 2018, she worked as a Chief innovation officer at GE Digital, co- Founded shEOS and OGroup where she currently serves as CEO, focusing on blockchain for enterprise.

Maja moved to the US at the age of 14 due to war. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Finance, Masters in Diplomacy/International studies and Law Degree. She has helped built government and enterprise infrastructure across industries such as mobile tech, global payments, energy and healthcare.

As a Chief Innovation Officer of Emerging Tech at General Electric Digital, she spearheaded the full framework for blockchain. She ran pilots across treasury, aviation, energy, provenance and additive manufacturing.


In this episode we discussed:
– Her war experience
– Career beginnings
– Challenges facing women in STEM
– How to approach investing in Blockchain/Crypto
– shEOS
– Possible future of Blockchain

Links:
https://www.crunchbase.com/person/maja-vujinovic#section-overview
https://www.conscious.enterprises/convos/2018/11/12/maja-vujinovic-founder-amp-ceo-of-ogroup
https://www.linkedin.com/in/majavujinovic/

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#102 Mance Harmon – Is Hedera Hashgraph better that blockchain?

In this episode, Grey Jabesi interviews Mance Harmon .Mance is an experienced technology executive and entrepreneur with more than 20 years of strategic leadership experience in multi-national corporations, government agencies, and high-tech startups, and is Co-Founder and CEO of Hedera Hashgraph. His prior experience includes serving as the Head of Architecture and Labs at Ping Identity, Founder / CEO of two tech startups, the senior executive for product security , Program Manager for a very-large scale software program for the Missile Defense Agency, the Course Director for Cybersecurity at US Air Force Academy, and research scientist in Machine Learning at Wright Laboratory. Mance received a MS in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts, and a BS in Computer Science from Mississippi State University.

Mance and his partner, Leemon Baird (who invented hashgraph), have been in the technology/security/privacy space for decades. Their latest venture, Hedera Hashgraph, is a platform that provides a new form of distributed consensus. It’s kind of like blockchain on steroids, except that it’s not a chain; it’s a graph. Also, it’s not open source; it’s patented. Their aim was to take all that is good about blockchain and create an enterprise-level platform that is faster, stable, and more secure.

In today’s episode you’ll learn:
· About Mance and Leemon’s technical and entrepreneurial background
· Why Leemon invented hashgraph
· How hashgraph differs from blockchain
· Why Mance and Leemon patented Hedera Hashgraph
· The types of applications for which hashgraph can be used
· About Hedera Hashgraph’s immediate and anticipated plans (including a cryptocurrency)



links;
https://www.crunchbase.com/person/mance-harmon
https://www.linkedin.com/in/manceharmon/

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#101 Charles Hoskinson & John O’Connor (Cardano)

In this interview. Grey Jabesi interviews Charles Hoskinson, well known as Co-founder of Cardano and Ethereum. Also featuring, was John O’Connor who is the Director of African Operations for Input Output(The parent company behind Cardano). This interview was recorded in johannesburg South Africa, where Charles was attending Africa Blockchain Conference which was hosted by Tumelo Ramaphosa.

Charles Hoskinson is a Colorado-based technology entrepreneur and mathematician. He attended Metropolitan State University of Denver and University of Colorado Boulder to study analytic number theory before moving into cryptography through industry exposure.

His professional experience includes founding three cryptocurrency-related start-ups – Invictus Innovations, Ethereum and IOHK – and he has held a variety of posts in both the public and private sectors. He was the founding chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation’s education committee and established the Cryptocurrency Research Group in 2013.

John O’connor joined IOHK after working for the Cardano Foundation as the Head of Strategy and Communications. He worked from pre-launch on a variety of business areas, including community building, communications, exchange integration, and business strategy.

John began his career working at an investment firm focused on African development. With mixed Ethio-Irish heritage, he is particularly interested in how blockchain can enhance transparency and enable business in sub-Saharan African economies. John graduated from Oxford University with a degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics. He lives between Addis Ababa and London.



Links:
Cardano Protocol: https://www.cardano.org/en/home/
Input Output: https://iohk.io/
Twitter : https://twitter.com/iohk_charles
linkedin: https://za.linkedin.com/company/cardano-foundation
Video version: https://youtu.be/zd3GCiSYUqg

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#95 Damon Bryant PhD – The Power of Behavioral Economics

Dr Damon Bryant is a business psychologist with over 15 years of experience in data analytics and psychological assessment tools. Currently the CEO of Light Pay Coin, a next generation cryptocurrency focused on digital payments in business and government.

 

His expertise is in psychological and behavioral assessments with an emphasis on AI-based systems and behavioral economics. He has derived mathematical information functions to quantify the usefulness of any observable behavior by humans or machines. He has also conceived and developed the internet-based, Smart Test Technology ® platform, an artificially intelligent assessment system.

 

His research is published in several professional journals including Applied Psychological Measurement, the Journal of Managerial Psychology, International Journal of Testing, and Psychometrika. Past honors include IBM’s Young Innovator Award for developing human resources software for use in international markets, Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology‘s Robert J. Wherry Award for research in the area of test bias, and a letter of commendation from the Louisiana State Senate for developing and administering an Internet-based, police officer assessment center after Hurricane Katrina.

 

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Books mentioned:

Fundamentals of Item Response Theory by By Ronald K. Hambleton

Item response theory for psychologists by Susan E. Embretson

Flow: An Information-Based Theory of Challenge-Skill Balance by Damon Bryant (Author), Larry Davis (Author)