Q&A Recap with CEO Celso Pitta

Hello BTCjam members,

Last week we had a LIVE Q&A session with our CEO, Celso Pitta in order to answer questions from our community regarding BTCjam’s plans for the future, and also to get some feedback on how we can improve the platform.

Our goal here is to be 100% transparent with our members and give a voice to the community. We believe that this is a step forward for the communication aspect of the platform; user feedback is important and can result in better returns for our investors as well as better loan rates for our borrowers, which is the ultimate goal at BTCjam.

The session took place on Wednesday, September 30th at 7pm.
If you didn’t get the chance to view the live session you can check out the video on YouTube or below:

Below you’ll find 26 questions that we answered during the live session. We’ve included the usernames and the original questions for your convenience.

  1. David (5:17 min)
    Any plans to add images to loan requests?
  2. Apr Guy (6:43 min)
    When will you fix your APR calculation to be mathematically correct?
  3. Cindy (9:09 min)
    First, gotta say love the vision. It’s a tough market to figure out as evidenced by the thread here. Crowd mentality is difficult to deal with – how do you screen the loan and borrower base?
  4. Gene Kavner (9:20 min)
    One of the biggest challenges you guys have is there is very little consequence for a bad borrower to not repay. Is there anything you are planning to do to add major consequences to defaulting?
  5. AlejandrodelM (9:28 min)
    You have borrowers and lenders using your platform from all over the world. How many languages does your team of credit analysts speak?
  6. Wilberforce Ngugi (11:23 min)
    Why are loans staying in review for so long?
  7. David Wilson (12:31 min)
    What about an option with early payments lowering the amount of interest paid?
  8. Gene (12:37 min)
    Let’s say you verify everything and the borrow still defaults. What is the next step towards recurring for the lenders? AKA: when borrowers don’t pay
  9. Martijn van Rooij (15:07 min)
    Great initiative! As an investor, I am satisfied with the AutoInvest functionality, distributing investments in BTC in small 0.05BTC chunks … how do you see the growth rate of loans available?
  10. Wilberforce Ngugi (18:14 min)
    You passed my question earlier about communication, there is a need of improved member support team communication, at least the response time from when a member emails the support team.
  11. Apr Guy (19:54 min)
    Why should a borrower choose your platform when most other platforms do NOT charge an early repayment penalty (Prosper, Lending Club, etc.)?
  12. Cindy Bozz (21:35 min)
    AutoInvest has been a huge time saver and also has done a nice job for my btc portfolio – also the support team has been pretty quick in my experience – keep it up and i look forward to great things.
  13. Dominic (22:35 min)
    What keeps you up at night?
  14. Apr Guy (24:00 min)
    Looking at your statistics page, the volume is slowing down over the past 6 months or so. What are your plans to accelerate growth?
  15. Dante Monaldo (25:20 min)
    Any plans to allow the BTCjam credit score to be used outside of BTCjam loans?
  16. AsinfoA (26:29 min)
    Why are short term loans so expensive?
  17. Pedro Cardoso (28:36 min)
    How can I be sure that you’ll be around next year? I’m funding loans that will be paid in 12 months from now.
  18. Gene Kavner (29:44 min)
    Any plans to introduce an API that allows querying of historical loans, payment history and investment history so that 3rd parties could provide better analytical tools?
  19. Dominique Godefroy (30:38 min)
    Are you planning to add collateral features to strengthen credit score e.g., asset deposit?
  20. Apr Guy (31:24 min)
    Where did the company name come from?
  21. AsinfoA (32:04 min)
    Any plans to build reputation loans? (locked to withdraw)
  22. jagdish halde (33:20 min)
    Why can’t we talk to other users directly?
  23. Craig Caruso (35:24 min)
    How can we better protect ourselves from scammers and arbitration?
  24. Michael Milbrat (36:50 min)
    I have around .1BTC in my btcjam wallet, how would you suggest investing it at your site?
  25. sgtpickle7 (Bitfinancefund) (37:20 min)
    Will you allow all lenders to issue bonds for exchange again?
  26. AsinfoA (38:02 min)
    Are you a regulated company(like banks are)? Are you obligated to follow some regulation/compliance?

We hope that we answered your questions as well, and if we didn’t, stay tuned because we’re planning to have live sessions on a regular basis so we can stay close to our community.

We would love to hear your thoughts on this. Should we keep doing it? Is it helpful? What times and days of the week do you prefer?
Leave your comments below or in the YouTube video comments section.

Finally, for those who haven’t registered on BTCjam, go ahead and sign up to check out your rates and get your loan with fixed payments that you can afford.

Talk to you soon,
– Yuri Moreno

How Greeks Can Get a Loan Today

Despite banks being shut down.

woman looking for money

With Greece being on the brink of leaving the Eurozone more than ever since their financial crisis started in 2008, banks have literally closed their doors in order to prevent a collapse.

Tough limits on withdrawals from ATMs are enforced and capital controls will be in place until at least July 7th after the Greek citizens’ vote to remain in the European Union and accept the high level of austerity measures. Amid all these economic short-fallings, the Greeks are flocking towards Bitcoin.

CNN reports:

“Ten times as many Greeks are registering to trade bitcoins on the German marketplace Bitcoin.de than usual, according to CEO Oliver Flaskaemper. Bitcoin trades from Greece have shot up 79% from their ten-week average on Bitstamp, the world’s third-largest exchange.”

The banks are clearly not doing much lending either, and with the press in a frenzy over the politician’s take on Greece’s imminent default, we are not hearing about the struggle faced by the 11 million citizens. The 11 million that will be voting for themselves to stay in the EU or not. The Greek citizens who are shrouded with uncertainty and waiting in the ATM lines that are to the street to get cash to pay for their bills, food, and childcare.

Harnessing bitcoin as a tool for international credit, BTCjam, a global lending network, can service a loan for a Greek today using a proven, and unique credit model.

The process is simple.

Enroll in 5 Minutes.  Apply for a loan.  Get your loan.

If you want to convert your bitcoin to local currency, you can send your bitcoin directly to an exchange for local currency.  To payback the loan, you send local currency to your exchange account and then send the bitcoin to your BTCjam account.

Get your loan today.

Or, grow your coins and get returns up to 19% APR.

Need a new PC for Video Editing?  Get a Bitcoin Loan on BTCjam!

shutterstock_184631579John heard of BTCjam way back when he got started with Bitcoin, but he’d never tried it.  At one point he and his business partner even considered using the platform to purchase mining equipment, but never got around to getting the loan.  But in December, John got into Cloud Mining in a big way, this led him back… to BTCjam.

John needed a loan to purchase a new PC for video editing.  John makes educational webinars, but needed to reduce his videos from 3 hour seminars to short 3-5 minute clips and to do that he was gonna need a new PC.  To get a loan for the new PC, John turned to BTCjam.

John was experienced in Bitcoin, but he’d never taken out a loan in Bitcoin before.  His first attempt was unsuccessful.  He created a 365 day loan with monthly payments and an interest rate of 2%. As John freely admits, “That was a mistake on my part, because the payment terms weren’t very enticing to investors.”  Not one to be easily discouraged, John tried again, this time creating a six month loan with weekly payments and an interest rate of 1%.  He knew the rate might shutterstock_185325812be low, but he wanted to achieve a balance between rewarding investors and keeping his own rates low.  It took about a week or so, but John’s loan funded successfully.

John received his Bitcoin almost instantly after the loan funded and purchased a new PC and video camera for his business.  He hasn’t edited the videos yet, but he says that his new PC is “pretty amazing” and he’s already had inquiries from customers about additional video work.  When asked if he would use BTCjam again, John said that “BTCjam is my favorite P2P site for borrowing money and I would definitely use shutterstock_14557777BTCjam again.”

Thanks John and thank you to the investors, we couldn’t do this without you.

Until Next Time….

Keep on Jamming!

If you need a bitcoin loan, borrow on BTCjam!  If you want to invest, invest on BTCjam!

BTCjam mentioned in The Guardian: Are virtual currencies a plus for poor countries?

shutterstock_239971570

March 9, 2015The Guardian

ZF Could you tell me a bit about the story of BitPesa? How did you come into being?

ER Sure. I came to Kenya in 2009 to work as a microfinance rating analyst and what you saw was the institutions that successfully incorporated mobile money is their operating expense figures suddenly started to plummet. So, it was a really exciting time seeing this new technology have real change in the way businesses can be built and structured. You know, when I explain bitcoin to people back home in the US or here at my other home in Kenya, I find they get it at the same level. Here they just say oh, an international M-Pesa, and back home they’re like, oh OK, it’s sort of like PayPal but not really. So it’s interesting to see how quickly it’s picked up here.

EM My name is Eliud Mungai, I am a Kenyan entrepreneur. Bitcoins I’ve been using since October 2014. BitPesa, I started using in December. I started using it for speculative stuff, buying bitcoins and just checking on the price to see how it’s moving and then I discovered about a platform called BTCjam, it aided in my micro-lending, I actually do micro-lending on the side, so I got into this platform and I found another valuable use for my bitcoins. So once I started using BTCjam and the trading became the conversion of the bitcoins to Kenya shillings frequent, that’s when I started using BitPesa.

ZF At this point bitcoin isn’t that well known in Africa. How do you plan to deal with that?

ER Well, we’ve been building a community here in Kenya, which is exciting, so in early 2014 we would have weekly or monthly meet-ups where there’d be like three people, five people, but pretty soon by six months in we had a kick-off event with 120 people.

EM BitPesa, I use it let’s say like two times in a week. The biggest transactions I’ve done with it is for conversion, I’ve been able to get a loan to fund my retail business from BTCjam and I was able to convert, because it was a big bitcoin amount, I was able to convert it choosing BitPesa into Kenya shillings. And also now because I refer a lot of my customers who have been lending to BTCjam the amount that they need to be lent I convert it to bitcoin, so I use BitPesa on a weekly basis because I usually try to get at least two customers in a week, I convert their Kenya shillings to bitcoin so that I can lend to my customers.

BTCjam featured in Blockchain from O’Reilly Books

BTCjamBlockchainBook

There is a clear need for an analog to and innovation around traditional financial products and services for Bitcoin– for example, Bitcoin savings accounts and lending (perhaps through user-selected rules regarding fractional reserve levels).  BTCjam (https://btcjam.com/) is an example of such decentralized blockchain-based peer-to-peer lending.

Purchase Blockchain from O’Reilly Books at Amazon.com

BTCjam mentioned in CheapAir’s People of Bitcoin

People of Bitcoin  The Mad Maverick   CheapAir

Q: Can you share a bit about who inspires you in the Bitcoin space?

A: I’ve  recently been inspired by Celso Pitta, the CEO of BTCjam. Celso had credit problems in college and the credit system in his home country of Brazil is profoundly unfair, charging borrowers 200% interest for a standard loan. Celso was motivated by these troubles to found BTCjam, which is a new peer-to-peer bitcoin lending website that allows anyone on Earth to give or take a loan in Bitcoin. It’s a really exciting idea and I think using bitcoin to fund loans could really expand access to credit and improve the world. I believe in this so much so that I’ve recently joined BTCjam as their Community Manager. I’m very excited about BTCjam.

CheapAir, People of Bitcoin: The “Mad Maverick”

Need a down payment for a new car?  Get a loan on BTCjam!

BTCJam Car Loan

Tony first heard about BTCjam at a Bitcoin Meetup group in Los Angeles.  He liked the idea of P2P Lending right away.  It reminded him of the “freedom philosophy” that excited him about Bitcoin in the first place.

Back in June of 2011, Tony’s friend sent him an article about “fake internet money”, but the more Tony read about Bitcoin, the less it seemed like a fake and the more it seemed like something that could transform the banking system.  Tony read everything he could about Bitcoin until one day it just clicked – and he’s been buying, spending and promoting Bitcoin ever since.

In July, Tony ran into trouble.  His old car suddenly broke down.  He needed a new car immediately to get to work and to see his new girlfriend and without one, Tony could lose his job and maybe even his girlfriend.  Tony knew what to do.  He turned to BTCjam and created a loan listing to borrow money for a nice down payment for a pre-owned car. With BTCjam’s low rates for borrowers, he would actually save money in the long run, by borrowing money for his down payment at a lower interest rate than most banks would have lended it to him.

Tony’s loan funded quickly.  His loan funded easily because he completed his BTCjam profile and received personal referrals from his friends.  He was diligent in responding to comments from investors and was honest about himself in his loan description.  He explained his plans to buy the car in detail and how he would pay his loan back.  Tony is an open book and we think it was key in helping investors confidently investing in his loan.

Once his loan funded, Tony had no problems converting the Bitcoin into dollars and withdrawing it for the down payment on his car.  Tony purchased a sporty dark blue 2013 Ford Focus hatchback, and he says it’s a lot of fun.  We can also confirm that it’s been nine months since he got his loan on BTCjam and Tony still has the car, the job and the girlfriend!  Way to go Tony.  Thanks for borrowing with BTCjam…  and thanks to the investors of BTCjam for funding Tony’s loan!

Until Next Time….  Keep on Jamming!

If you need bitcoin, borrow bitcoin on BTCjam!  If you want to invest, invest on BTCjam!