By Max Dunne, Director of Business Development at The Fintech Times.
Sat in the media room at BEF 2018 in San Francisco, I overheard Zach talking about the various projects he’s working on, and immediately took an interest. In his own words, Zachary Reece is a “hugger”, and this shines through not just in the warmth of his personality, and with which he embraces people; but also in the way he embraces Blockchain, and all of the possibilities for innovation it provides.
Born in Texas, and now living in LA, Zach is Managing Partner of BlockTrade Investments & CEO of Carolina Investments. First a developer, then a trader, and now a well-respected visionary; Zach is a family man by nature – his favourite food is still the Chicken N’ Dumplins his “MaMal” (Grandmother) has been making since he was “knee-high”
With a love for both Johnny Cash and Hunter S. Thompson, Zach seeks to emulate his heroes by striving to understand rather than simply exist.
So Zach, you began your career as a Lead Developer; how did you reach that point?
It was 2011 and I had come out of college on the heels of the worst economic collapse in the last century. Although I attended the well-renowned Moore School of Business, there were men on Wall Street with 50 years of experience that could not find jobs. Very much aware of this, my mindset shifted to survival; I was good with computers and decided to take my talents to the Valley. I was then lured back to Texas to become a Lead Developer for ReachLocal, who at the time were creating a new Automated Service Platform. After a successful Beta testing period the project was sold – it was then I knew I never wanted to develop software for anyone else ever again.
After the acquisition; what made you make that initial change to trading?
Being the son of a Financial Wholesaler, and the nephew of a Smith Barney Branch Manager, I knew that my passion lay in the stock market; you could say it was the family business. Shortly after leaving the Tech Space I would obtain my Series 7 and 63 Licenses.
I know you’re working on a global donation widget, tell us more about that…
We are creating the first All-In-One Donation Widget; charities simply copy and paste our code into their existing site. It is simple, easy, and dispels the MYTH that accepting donations should be hard or expensive. This will allow clients to accept fiat donations through all traditional methods, as well as allowing them to accept Crypto donations for the first time in history. Clients will have the option of accepting these Crypto donations in three ways:
- Accepting & Storing Crypto in their own Wallet: We walk each client through wallet set-up.
- Accepting Crypto in Fiat: Through OTC providers help them liquidate Crypto to Fiat.
- Accepting Crypto in Gold: Through our partners we help them convert to the world’s ‘most stable’ investment, historically speaking.
We have created the first inexpensive and efficient way for anyone and everyone to donate. Our primary goal with the use Blockchain Technology, however, is solving the $410.02 billion question, ‘Where does the money actually go?’ No longer will we allow philanthropic souls to be exploited by major charities. We have removed the error in the process, THE MIDDLEMAN. This software brings the transparency that so many charities, and charitable individuals, have yearned for. You will be able to see where your dollar went and who it helped. Whether we want to admit it or not, we are all selfish when donating in one aspect. We want to know where our money went and who it helped, and rightfully so. At Simply Give we have established a simple, easy, and transparent way to donate. Donation done right!
How did blockchain first enter your life?
Blockchain entered my life when I encountered Bitcoin 8 years ago. At that time Bitcoin was being used for unsavory purposes on the ‘Dark Web’. This sparked an exploration into why the Internet had facilitated the distribution and access of Information worldwide, however to transact you still had to bring in a 3rd Party.
Tell us about your main project BlockTrade Investments.
Alongside Mru Patel and ePropertywealth.com, we at BlockTrade Investments are creating The world’s first regulated and licensed Wealth and Lifestyle Management Blockchain Platform for everyone.
We are focused on one thing and one thing alone; giving the average investor the highest possible return on their capital, along with the flexibility of managing their banking needs in their own multicurrency Fiat and Crypto digital wallet; all backed by real assets.
We have created a vision and goal of a company that truly will become the number one platform for personal wealth management. Our team has over $100B in real experience across all functions of developments, trading, and funds management. All will be done in a seamless cost-effective model with real estate projects, coupled with leading Artificial Intelligence/Machine learning engine technology, allowing trade in crypto currencies with our highly experienced investment team, and a global offshore licenced bank with a digital wallet. The overall return for the combined portion of the Property and Crypto hedge fund will target 35 percent return on capital to the average investor, plus potential gains on the tokens value. All investments, transactions and payments will be managed via the ePW wallet and personal bank. You will be your own bank and real estate fund manager.
A blockchain private investment fund, with an options trading desk, and SEC/FINRA compliant, what’s the story?
When I began in the Blockchain Investment Space I recognised the necessity for two things;
- SEC and FINRA compliance, so our new marketplace would be considered a viable alternative investment by the establishment. This meant allowing EVERYONE to participate. This would also allow us to meet compliance requirements, allowing everyone in the regulated financial world (bankers, brokers, etc.) to participate.
- When discussing why we viewed an options desk as an immediate need, the answer was Wall Street experience. We knew the ‘traditional investment world’ would utilise every tool at its’ disposal to slow their ultimate demise. I commend them for doing so, and yet, this put on full display why we condemn their institutions and their cannibalistic tendencies. When our community made the mistake of allowing the CBOE to establish options on Bitcoin. The outcome was all too certain, Pump N’ Dump.
When we first met, I also remember you mentioning gold…
Good memory! Another aspect of our diversified portfolio is the operation of gold, oil and diamond mines in Africa. We do not simply operate in the blockchain space; there is still validity in the traditional economy – especially when you look at the Commodities Market.
And you’re in talks with NASA? What project is that for?
I am currently working on the privatisation effort encouraged by NASA, most people will recognise from past SpaceX efforts. I am working closely with Dennis Wingo on the first satellite and reusable vehicle to be fully-assembled by the ISS’s (International Space Stations) robotic arms. As well as with Dr. Peri Papadopoulos on multiple microsatellite endeavours.
What are some of the best use-cases you’ve seen for blockchain?
Charity, Supply Chains, Banking, Chain of Custody Solutions and Transparency. For example, Farm to Table Restaurants.
Conversely, what sort of blockchain projects aren’t you a fan of?
Blockchain Projects that use the technology as a gimmick. When people conclude a presentation with, ‘and we put it on the blockchain.’ it’s truly painful.
In which markets do you see blockchain achieving the greatest levels of adoption/penetration long-term?
The easy answers are the entire stock market, and the democratic election system. The NYSE should disappear along with all of its’ cohorts on capitol hill. No more fees, corruption, or collusion. Give the market and the government back to the people; your time is over.
Finally, what advice would you give to any burgeoning entrepreneurs?
‘Love More, Fear Less, and Seek to Understand All.’