8DAO Chat Vol 1: Daniel Lui of Startbahn (八問 : 一）
In our very first edition of 8DAO Chat, we speak with Daniel Lui of Startbahn.
8DAO Chat: An Introduction
GM everyone, we are delighted to introduce to you 8DAO Chat, a monthly publication for you to get to know fellow 8DAO members more deeply and personally. A monthly "magazine cover" in which we feature our members and their stories.
The inspiration behind 8DAO Chat - comments from our members
“Wow. Great to see many other members are involved in interesting projects.”
“We have lots of members who are experts in their fields, how do I get to know them better?”
“Would love to hear other members' interesting stories and valuable opinions.”
We hope you enjoy learning more about fellow members! In our first edition, we feature Daniel Lui of Startbahn.
1. Hi Daniel, what are your personal beliefs and philosophy?
Some believe that one’s personal beliefs and character are responsible for guiding a person to their destination. For me, that entails finding facts in the world and embarking on uncharted explorations that I find more enjoyable than the destination itself.
2. Tell us more about your educational background.
After graduating from secondary school in Hong Kong at 17, I decided to study Economics at University of California San Diego. This grounded me in the truths of mathematics and nature. I believe numbers offer truthful reflection of the world.
During my third year at UCSD, I embarked on a backpacking trip to Europe, where I discovered a second type of truth: culture. I found culture embedded in various aspects of cities such as language, history, art, lifestyle, and people. This experience made me realize that I wanted to immerse myself in a city's culture for several years, rather than just a few weeks or months. My life’s direction was set, becoming a nomadic fact-finder on a nonstop journey.
3. More about your work background?
Post-graduation, I pursued a Master’s in Mathematics and Statistics at Cass Business School London. During which, I produced a research paper for a startup that earned me my first job in pension portfolio management. I learned about alternative investments in this role, which later led me to Merrill Lynch London, where I honed my investment skills over the course of eight years, through continuously exploring the truths behind the intertwined relationships of asset values, geopolitics, technological breakthrough, cultural changes etc.
My quest for new truths—both mathematical and cultural— then spurred me to apply for an MBA scholarship at Hitotsubashi ICS Japan. During my MBA, I worked with startups, combining knowledge with firsthand startup experience. It was a revelatory experience for me, understanding how science and culture together cultivate innovative companies and even countries.
I decided to search for jobs and opportunities via online boards such as LinkedIn, not referrals, trusting and navigating my own “modern map”. It was through such a search that I came across a job posting for SBI, a top Japanese financial conglomerate whose CEO, Mr. Kitao, was a well-known early advocate of blockchain technologies. While at SBI, I gained fintech expertise and delved into cryptocurrencies and blockchain, which the company sought to adopt. I was dispatched to study the cryptocurrency exchange market in Hong Kong.
4. What do you currently do?
Personally, I am more drawn to exploring blockchain's potential applications in the realms of art and culture in everyday life, leading to a Renaissance in the digital era. After SBI, I joined Startbahn, a company that provides blockchain solutions for cultural and creative industries. Currently, I’m the CFO, and also lead in strategic sales and partnerships, providing Startrail-based solutions to various organizations including Shueisha Manga Art Heritage, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Toyota Motor Corporation’s Toyota Automobile Museum, Odakyu Electric Railway, Tokyu Corporation, Seibu Lions, Yomiuri Giants, SBI Art Auction and more.
5. Tell us more about Startbahn.
Together with Startbahn CEO Taihei Shii, I work towards our company’s dream of blockchain infrastructure supporting the trust, credibility, and appreciation of culture and art through the use of "Startrail Registry Record" (SRR) tokens (NFTs). SRRs serve as a registry for physical and digital art, collectibles and IP content that are as rich in metadata as they are in culture, with only KYC’d issuers being able to issue these tokens.
At Startbahn, Startrail's applications are diverse, ranging from API integration for NFT marketplace to scan-to-collect NFTs via QR codes for mass community building at events and exhibitions IRL. Through utilizing Startrail, these companies are able to scale their cultural and creative businesses quickly, in both the web3 world and the real-world.
My future goal is to continue to expand adoption of Startrail and to further apply seamless blockchain technology to everyday life and utilities, such as payments, ticketing, and coupons, providing end-to-end solutions to cultural and creative industries, from preserving their valuable assets to building follower communities.
6. How is your experience in 8DAO so far?
I’m a big fan of the 8DAO community, which provides me with the opportunity to connect with so many fellow experts in blockchain, NFTs, and crypto, and I appreciate the learning through valuable conversations with fellow members.
I hope for the opportunity to engage with more business partners to discuss different models, approaches, and development, as well as with general members and users to explore the practical applications of blockchain in their daily lives. My ultimate goal is to accelerate the adoption of blockchain technology in daily life, and to sustainable art and cultural industries, leading to a renaissance in the digital era.
Looking forward to continuing to grow along with the 8DAO community!
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