Alex Lee’s unique background and varied international experiences combine to make him a valuable and exciting addition to the unFederalReserve team.
Alex graduated from Northeastern University in Boston, MA with a degree in Cultural Anthropology and a specialization in Indigenous Cultures. While this might seem unrelated to a career in high tech, this education and research actually had a major impact on Alex’s perspective on global economies, cultures and technology. After graduation, Alex spent two years in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries working at Harvard School of Public Health and Quintiles — the world’s largest CRO at the time. In 1999, Alex moved to Southern California to join a startup where he spent the next four years helping approximately 10% of the U.S.’ radio stations develop their first online presences.
Then in 2003, Alex relocated to Beijing, China where he spent the next 13 years working in the domain name industry. At first, he acted primarily as an advisor to CNNIC, the Chinese government’s domain name registry, and then as an entrepreneur founding two companies: a domain name registrar and a domain name registry. During that time, he also advised several public U.S. companies on their China strategies and invested in various Chinese technology startups. Alex returned to the U.S. in 2015 and later took on leadership roles at the U.S. arm of China’s largest advertising conglomerate, Blue Focus Communication Group.
Alex has been focusing his time on blockchain technology since 2018, with an emphasis on financial industry applications. Together with partners, Alex founded Liquidigy.com, a security token issuance and investment platform. He also began investing in cryptocurrencies and blockchain-related ventures, and continues to focus on Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and Non-fungible Tokens (NFTs).
Most recently, Alex traveled to Dubai for the World Blockchain Summit and networked (pictured) along with the unFederalReserve team.
We sat down with Alex for a Q&A to learn all about what’s on his mind:
What got you interested in the crypto/blockchain space?
I must give credit and thanks to my two business partners from China who urged me to get involved with blockchain and cryptocurrencies back in 2018. I was reluctant at first, especially since at the time, the great BTC crash of 2018 had just happened and to someone not familiar with the space, it seemed like the end was near. However, after learning more about the technology, I saw the potential it had to completely change the world in a positive way and went “all-in.”
What do you think are the main impediments to widespread adoption of blockchain technology within financial institutions?
The number one impediment is without question education. There is still a relatively high barrier to entry for non-technical people, but that will be resolved by the further development of the technologies into more user-friendly applications. We experienced the same thing with the Internet as we know it today. In the late 90’s and early 2000’s, even email applications were too complicated for most people. But as history has shown, humans are quite adept at learning new technologies, and I believe this will also be the case with decentralized applications.
What do you consider to be the unique value proposition of unFederalReserve that you think will help to address these impediments?
unFed is uniquely positioned to be the type of bridge between technology and real-world, everyday usage. The executive team’s experience and expertise in both the traditional finance industry and technology industry are a combination that is often overlooked by teams who focus too much on one side. I truly believe that in order to be great you must have talented people from both industries.