Five Questions with Johan Eleveld

We are excited to ask Johan Eleveld, Chief Marketing Officer of Deribit, 5 questions. He brings years of legal and creative power to the Deribit team. Get to know a little bit more about Deribit with Johan in this edition of “5 Questions”.

Questions & Answers

Q: First of all congratulations on your transition to Deribit as CMO. Can you give us a little background about where you’re coming from and how you got involved with crypto fintech?

Johan Eleveld: After finishing law school, I started working as a creative in advertising for over 15 years. John Jansen (our founder and CEO) is a long time friend of mine. He told me around 2014 that he would build the first crypto derivatives exchange in the world. That’s how I got involved.

Q: A driver of rapid growth for Deribit was delivering a stable and performant trading platform during a time where volatility would take an infamous competing platform offline. How do you see Deribit continuing to achieve strong user growth? 

Johan Eleveld: We will always be focusing on being the most technologically advanced platform. Crypto derivatives are complex products. One way to achieve user growth is to get more people interested by explaining our products better through education, hence our extensive free options course. Another way is to add less complex products to our portfolio in the near future.

Furthermore, from a development perspective, we will remain focused on continuous performance increases facilitating further user and messages per second growth and platform stability. 

Q: How should trading platforms like Deribit aim to drive efficiency while at the same time staying ahead of the curve with innovation? Is it possible to do both?

Johan Eleveld: We deliberately choose to keep our team relatively small. We believe that we have a good balance between enough innovation power and enough agility to be efficient. We like to see ourselves as a small but robust ship.

Q: We’ve seen powerful regulating bodies around the world clamp down on cryptocurrency trading in unison. Why should Deribit’s former and prospective clients embrace KYC/AML during the maturation of the cryptocurrency industry?

Johan Eleveld: I think that it’s a natural evolution. Mr Benz invented the car, and afterwards, there became a need for traffic rules. We have many big institutional clients, and no one left because we voluntarily introduced a strict KYC/AML. Our new clients wouldn’t join Deribit if we didn’t have these strict rules. Over time we have expanded our KYC/AML requirements and monitoring and we recently announced to join Veriscope to be able to abide by Travel Rule requirements. When you’ve been driving in a busy country with hardly any traffic rules, you’ll learn to appreciate them. 

Q: It was not too long ago anything crypto related would fall under a global advertising ban on the majority of traditional marketing channels. What marketing challenges do you see Deribit facing in the next 6 months?

Johan Eleveld: That isn’t easy to predict. We are based in Panama, and this week Gabriel Silva unveiled a bill to make Bitcoin a legal tender in Panama. If crypto gets more accepted by governments over time, the marketing challenges will also slowly disappear.

Our former CEO Andras Caron chose not to do aggressive marketing but relied on a reverse solicitation model where the client comes to us instead of the other way around. A wise decision. Deribit always focused on the product, education and things like excellent customer support. Some competitors may have grown faster, but got into a lot of problems also. We will try to be on the safe side, no need to poke the bear with a stick.

About Deribit

Deribit was founded in Amsterdam in 2016. It is a global cryptocurrency derivatives platform and the leading crypto options exchange by volume and open interest. High matching engine capacity, low latency, advanced risk management, and high liquidity make Deribit a unique industry player that has been tested by time and trusted by its users. It offers numerous futures and options products and is among the top crypto derivatives exchanges in the world.

For more information, visit deribit.com

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