The founder of dYdX argued that early-stage crypto projects could scale faster by not serving U.S. customers, as they won’t have to deal with the hassles of the U.S. regulatory climate.
Antonio Juliano, the founder of the decentralized exchange dYdX, thinks that crypto builders should forget about serving customers in the United States over the next five to 10 years. Instead, he said builders should experiment in other markets and return once the time is right.
In an Aug. 25 X (formerly Twitter) thread, Juliano argued that builders should prioritize markets outside the U.S., as they will face fewer hurdles as they focus on platform growth and user adoption.
Juliano’s comments were mainly focused on startups as opposed to fully established projects, and he emphasized that they could scale faster overseas in friendlier markets:
“Crypto builders should just give up serving US customers for now and try to re-enter in 5-10 years. It’s not really worth the hassle/compromises. Most of the market is overseas anyways. Innovate there, find PMF [product market fit], then come back with more leverage.”
“In the grand scheme of things barely anyone uses or cares about crypto today. I personally don’t care about any outcome except growing crypto 100x+ long term,” he added.
Many in the industry have highlighted that the U.S. suffers from a lack of clear rules and regulations around crypto, with a key example of this being the gray area surrounding the jurisdiction of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and Commodity Futures Trading Commission over the market.
As the U.S. government continues to drag its heels on establishing crypto regulation, Juliano suggested that the crypto sector needs to grow further to have more sway over U.S. policy.
As such, he argues that it makes more sense for builders or startups to focus on finding product market fits overseas before returning with the “leverage” of large user bases.
“This does not mean crypto US policy work is not important. It absolutely is as it takes a really long time (must be ready for the re-entry) and much of the world will follow the US’s lead,” he said, adding that:
“Crypto not yet having world-scale usage/product market fit means we don’t yet have much influence in policy. We need to have products with massive usage where users (voters) say ‘wait, I need this.’”
Brian Armstrong, the CEO of Coinbase — a firm that has made several efforts to help drive crypto policy in the U.S. — responded to the post by offering a different point of view: “I see your point — but I think it will be better in a much shorter time. Probably by next year if I had to guess.”
“The U.S. always gets it right, after exhausting every other option. It will heal from these wounds, no matter how hard a small group of people try to stop progress,” Armstrong said.
Wintermute CEO Evgeny Gaevoy also chimed in on the topic by agreeing with Juliano, adding: “Only I think it will be either 2-3 years if crypto is successful or never if it is not.”