Who’s Who In Crypto: Stephen Hess, CEO of Metaplex Studios
There’s a fast-growing adoption of Solana non-fungible tokens (NFTs) as they’re seen as more affordable, faster, and easier for creators to build out Web3 projects over its Ethereum rival.
With this fast adoption, developers using the blockchain must have access to the tools needed to build metaverses, NFT projects, and provide a seamless experience for users.
CryptoVista spoke with Stephen Hess, the CEO of Metaplex Studios, a business that build ecosystems for NFT marketplaces, games, art, and other collectables on the Solana blockchain.
What are your priorities for the next 12 months?
To create a people-first metaverse. Serving creators across the spectrum by delivering new on-chain programs and tools for developers, such as Candy Machine, Auction House, Packs and Gumdrop, that give users more control over how their NFTs are structured, minted, and experienced.
What does crypto mean to you, and what drew you to it?
Crypto and Web3 have unleashed a host of new innovations that will touch every business and individual in the world. We can think of Web3 technologies as the umbrella category and crypto being the underlying enabler of decentralized protocols and applications. Crypto plays a critical role in the decentralized economy, which serves as the backbone for future decentralized technologies like the Metaverse and NFTs. What drew me into crypto was the opportunity that it held, from re-platforming and upgrading the world’s financial infrastructure to enabling the next generation of creators across art, music and entertainment.
What is your long-term view of crypto?
Every asset that can be tokenised, will be tokenised. From concert tickets to gaming, songs lyrics, melodies and mortgages. The blockchain is creating a ledger of proof of digital ownership necessary to users in the ever becoming tech-focused world due to its ability to hold information securely, provide fractional ownership and create faster transaction processes. In addition, we will continue to see Web2 companies transition into the Metaverse as well as more Web3 companies emerge, allowing users a totally different and original experience.
What advice would you give people investing in crypto (or looking to invest for the first time)?
Do your own research! The same way that you wouldn’t buy a house without an inspection, don’t just ape into any crypto or NFT without carefully inspecting their Web presence, quality of their Website, Discord community, technical documents and any investors or partners.
How do you feel about the way the world is regulating crypto?
There is more progress being made around the world as regulators seek to better understand how blockchain can be leveraged to upgrade existing systems or be used to facilitate new economic growth. This has been a very big change of pace from the sentiment that regulators had about bitcoin and cryptocurrencies even five years ago, so it gives us confidence that more regulatory clarity will be what unlocks global participation in Web3.