Proposal: Asia Pacific Working Group (APWG)

Philippines is part of this. We actually see the value of Play2Earn strategy as well + any research on local DAOs, P2E managers & scholars would greatly help us refine the proposal even more.

Tagging @emil_eth as he already had some initial conversation with MVI Team (@DarkForestCapital) in regards to blockchain games and Metaverse. Which you can see on this post on INDEX COOP APAC post a while back and subsequent replies;

Basically Philippines is currently parked under South East Asia Subregion (Part of ASEAN). But yes noted on this.

Thank you.

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Great work on this team APAC. This feels like a step forward in how Index operates; further infrastructure to activate more talent, increase the reach of our products and ultimately drive our AUM.

Linking this to ROI sets a strong precedent as a model for accountability and transparency, which shows the maturation of our resource allocation.

Strong support for the approach and proposal :clap:

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I will be voting FOR. From the few APAC calls I’ve attended and interactions with various team members, I can say that our APAC team is filled with highly talented and focused individuals. The APAC region is ripe for growth, and there is strong interest in IC products, evidenced by the work done by @Tudou in China.
I am looking forward to the global presence the APWG will bring under the excellent leadership of @pujimak_in.

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Thanks for the kind words and strongly support this proposal.

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Great proposal, totally support this. Much needed for Index Coop’s expansion and becoming truly ‘Glocal’ .

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Brief Table setting

  • I’m putting on my “Funding Council” hat to pose questions (See Q4 Working Group Guidance to learn more about Working Group proposal)
  • My intent is to ask the questions that ping in my mind with the hope that they help the entire Coop better understand the proposal and thinking behind it.
  • Questions are pretty much posed in the order the topic appears in the post
  • If a question doesn’t make sense or is entirely off-base, do call it out :slight_smile:

Curious, why is translation of existing resources the single “key consideration”?

It seems like this group has aspirations far beyond translations, so I find myself wondering why this is front and center.

That is exciting to hear that APAC community calls showing a steady increase!

As a thought exercise, if we wanted to double the number of participants from 9 to 18, what do you think would need to be done?

Baked into that ^ question is an assumption that increasing call participation is important. That assumption may be wrong.

I am noticing that some of the channels (including the linked Facebook & Twitter) are still quite early in developing a following.

Which channel(s) are believed to be the highest impact?

Is this ^ even a useful question? I could see one answer being, “it really depends on the specific country.”

No question here, just very interesting.

This seems like lot to tackle at once. Also, recognizing that they are each, indeed, important.

Which of these 4 areas does this group believe will need the most focus in Q4 in order to reach your goals?

Looking specifically at this section, a similar question. It looks like ya’ll intend to pursue 15 different activities.

As a thought exercise, what are the 5 activities that if focused on exclusively, you all believe will produce the most impact?

On Budget

  • Looks like you expect to add a few team members (“expected headcount”) – what roles are you all expecting to add? Why?
  • Partnerships - what exactly does “partnership” mean in this context?
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Thanks for the thought-provoking questions @gregdocter

This I can answer because the inclusion of language as a ‘key consideration’ here is limited by my own thinking, as follows. With 48 countries, and more than 2000 different languages spoken content translation must be an ongoing, operational need for APAC’s geographic expansion.

What I’ve labelled ‘key consideration’ is really more of a caveat based on available funding. We need to figure out how funding/co-funding w. LOWG will work. It’s difficult to budget when can not say how much and what content will be created (&translated) over the next three months.

In a centralised organisation, the content strategy would be planned in advance and delegated but in a decentralised and autonomous organisation, who knows when our next Hemmingway @acceleratedcapital might come through the door?

If I had to draw a critical path to attain the lofty goals set out - community capacity building is first and foremost. Before we can grow the community we are working w. POC to increase the number of opportunities listed on the jobs board @bradwmorris is developing

Community calls are key to connecting, collaborating and developing operational context, however, we want to expand opportunities for people to get up-to-speed, narrow that confidence gap and operate autonomously between community call sync’s.

To that purpose, we are proposing a research-led ‘sales funnel’ for business development to help identify and secure opportunities in the region, while also serving the purpose to help people develop industry-specific insight and context for Index products market-fit.

Tagging our content champion @tudou

People are and will always be our #1 resource so IMO community capacity is the foundation we build from, in order to achieve anything - not looking to label anyone, resources defined in terms of our shared humanity. Great question for everyone to weigh in on @pujimak_in @Lanks @Louisaraj @Vanita

I believe these groups to be necessarily interdependent. We are looking to build community capacity for institutional and business development through the onboarding and research pathways (which I personally expect to sign up for too) while providing funding for the ongoing IB BD and Growth marketing work that the team already undertakes.

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That is easy to answer. As American you are used to having one language for 328.2 million (2019) people. In APAC region we have 48 countries, whereby the most famous language is Chinese ( 1.411 billion alone in China, " There are many Chinese dialects in China, so many that it is hard to guess how many dialects actually exist. In general, dialects can be roughly classified into one of the seven large groups: Putonghua (Mandarin), Gan, Kejia (Hakka), Min, Wu, Xiang, and Yue (Cantonese)"
In addition, there are two sets of characters (simplified and traditional). While simplified characters are evolved from traditional characters, they are often not understood in the other character set.

The translation is therefore the first imminent barrier to get attraction in this part of the world.

Excellent question. See above translation! If people don’t know what they EXPECT, why would they participate?

Again, a follow-up to translation. Facebook, Twitter, or any other “Western” sites are hardly accessible in China. You need to look at the Chinese websites instead. I am not sure how far they are yet.

The main point for the APACWG is to have information available in a certain timezone so that we can spread the words in the language(s) people can understand. To get the foot into the door of a huge market, which product they had not seen before, BUT before our competitors are there first.

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What Ronald and Renee said were absolutely on point. There are a couple of things that I would like to add. Ethereum protocols, in general, have less adoption in Asia compared to the West. And consequently, we face stronger competition in this region while having modest resources, including socials channels we just started building two months ago, a newly assembled team of very few people, and a significantly smaller number of regional partnerships. Bankless and DeFi Pulse are the "household"crypto brands in Europe and North America, but they might mean nothing to someone from Thailand or Indonesia. In China and many South-East Asia markets, community awareness for passive index investing is close to non-existent. It is fair to say that APAC socials channels are underdeveloped. BUT! The other side of the APAC story is growth. Low adoption translates to high potential for growth margin. The IC community, including APAC contributors, should be hopeful of this market while remain patient. What works in existing markets might not function here. We might be surprised by which product becomes the most popular one in Asia. There are a lot of question marks, and to be honest, I do not know the answer to all of them. But it is 100% worth experimenting. I foresee APACWG as potentially the most agile WG in IC. Strategies and priorities could shift rapidly, in a good way. Currently, we know that several things have worked. First, treasury diversification investors are keen to connect us with local resources, including media outlets, DAOs and other potential investors. Second, wallet partners in this region provide us with a route to access their customers. These connections are likely to create network effects that we are yet to know of. Third, localised content has been a focus for LOWG, and APAC could tremendously benefit from existing translated content. Local BD teams are already using Chinese blogs as product factsheets when they get on investor calls with LD Capital and SevenX Ventures. APAC resources could be utilized to co-finance content efforts with LOWG or incentivise multimedia content outside of the scope of LOWG budget. What should we prioritise? All three are important, as we are still at an early stage where we are yet to isolate a specific strategy that drives the most growth.

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What is the impact of the current China FUD on the Chinese Market?
I read from the news that they closed down many Chinese crypto social media/platforms and some CEXes.

What is the plan if this gets worse? I would see this as an opportunity to use DEXes/DeFi products but I want to hear your thoughts as you live in China.

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I see that in a bigger frame. The imminent bankruptcy of Evergate, and the threat that many people lose their money, life savings of entire families - combined with the crypto crackdown (again) leave the questions: who has still money and where/how can they invest? DeFi and crypto are not controllable by the CCP, but banks are.

Hi Don, thanks for the question, an interesting one. So, what are the objectives the Chinese government hope to achieve through tightening regulations? I can think of three:

  1. Ban all PoW mining activities that rely on coal, as the country is transitioning rapidly into clean energy more aggressively than any other.

  2. Curb capital outflow, including money laundering, anonymous crossborder forex transfer, online casinos and funding for any other illegal activities.

  3. Put a lid on cryptocurrency speculation and financial bubble by preventing retail traders from buying $Doge perpetual futures contracts with 20X leverage.

What they do not want to happen is the death of blockchain and crypto innovation in the country. On the contrary, China is betting big on blockchain. I encourage you to listen to one of the Bankless podcasts.

Admittedly, there is considerable uncertainty with respect to future “crackdowns” of crypto. (Most likely there will be) But isn’t uncertainty associated with every government? Crypto, and especially DeFi, has accelerated way ahead of regulations in nearly every country. I do not think that DeFi and Index coop fall within any one of the three loopholes China want to close. Instead, like Chainlink, Polygon and SushiSwap, who have China as one of their prioritised markets, Index coop could potentially become a financial infrastructure protocol that operates cross-chain and cross-border.

Regarding the China FUD (again🤣), people in the epicenter have been calm and collected. Our ChainNews live event will be aired. Blockchain clubs in universities are mushrooming. I have contacted a newly set up student blockchain association in Tsing Hua University. We start hearing people talking about NFTs in bars and cafes. Literally every contemporary art gallery in Shanghai is hosting NFT exhibitions. Our partners in China, including LD, ChainNews and Odaily are supportive of our regional expansion initiatives.

RMB on-ramp channels have been blocked, and I am not hopeful of Chinese CEXs listing Index products any time soon. But there are various other opportunities we can explore.

Also, referring to an argument I made earlier during APAC internal discussions. Chinese institutions and blockchain service providers are increasingly serving global investors. A significant number of them have moved overseas to Singapore and other crypto-friendly countries. Our wallet partner ONTO is based in Shenzhen, China but their customer base is international. By “China”, we do not mean serving onshore Chinese investors only. We are hoping to capture opportunities in partnering with Chinese blockchain projects overseas and establishing relationships with Chinese funds, no matter where they are based.

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Hi Ronald, the Evergrande failure is unfortunate, but it probably only affects 0.01% of all households. And according to a SCMP article, the government has injected 120 billion liquidity to buffer the impact. It is estimated to drag GDP growth by 0.3% at most, as further deleveraging is expected. But at any rate, it does not change our assessment of opportunities in China.

My undergraduate thesis was about the risk of highly leveraged real estate firms in China, and it is unfortunate that nobody listened to me in the past two years🤣

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Incredible proposal @lee0007 - thorough analysis.

Crypto hasn’t really hit mainstream media in Oceania yet. An APAC WG could lead to Index COOP becoming a household name in this region as mainstream adoption ramps up.

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Really strong proposal and QnA. I continue to be strongly in support of this new WG - and look forward to seeing the results of the contributors’ work.

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120 billion, and the stock went done by 80%??? That’s far away from saving a day!
Don’t get me wrong. We should be careful how we react to this bad news. Evergrande is not the only bad news. The crackdown on ALL crypto activities is another uncertainty. Yes, it is going on already a long time. However, so far it never got better for crypto.

How can we act to make sure we do not lose in that game?

Actually, the principal reason for us to include China as one of the initially prioritised markets in this proposal is NOT that we foresee China quickly becoming a growth engine for the Coop in the next quarter. However, it is because we see a need to serve EXISTING institutional investors, DeFi partners from China. We are hoping to reinforce our relationship with these partners and potentially engage new ones. Thus, it is most ideal to approach China market with a much more coordinated effort, supported by a network of talented contributors in APAC.

I am not a fortune teller. I am not able to predict the magnitude of future crackdowns. To the best of my current knowledge of the market, the potential benefit of engaging Chinese partners outweighs the risk of financial or reputation damage to IC. We are not opening a new office in China or hiring at a large scale. So there is not much overhead cost. Budget for China represents only a fraction of APAC budget. Also, to be frank, I have had trouble understanding how a defaulting real estate developer could downsize opportunities in the blockchain space.

I agree with Ronald that we should exercise caution over this initiative. I take responsibility for my words and judgements, but they could be wrong. It seems that the last three discussions/challenges, which are always encouraged, centered around China. If there is a broader consensus in the community that we should realign APAC priorities to avoid risks associated with China, I’m happy to help with amending the proposal. It is an Asia-Pacific WG proposal after all.

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More broadly framed, developing product marketing content and events for mandarin speaking communities serves a global audience, not just China. I 100% support this priority.

Agree, there’s unforseen risks in this business and so I 100% trust our business development leads and teams to navigate and mitigate risk in the best interest of the coop.

+++

Also MAJOR budget changes coming to bring our budget request inline with what similar sized working groups proposed Q3 - which might swing the focus of conversation. Almost doubled to reflect:

  1. The number of core contributors we have delivering full-time/part-time equivalent workloads
  2. Ad hoc and job boards rewards to drive outreach efforts
  3. Surplus requests for co-funding ,translation work w. LOWG
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Hey @gregdocter,

First off thank you for this thought provoking questions and seeking clarification. Always appreciate your insight and your curiosity nature. This is the very thing that drives growth!!

I believe most of the questions has already been answered by @lee0007 , @Tudou and @Elmit. Though I’ll chime in and provide my thoughts on the below questions;

Personally I see APWG is redefining how a Working Group should operate. We’re basically the most diverse group of Owls ever assemble in Index Coop. Given that Asia + Pacific count for almost 50 countries the world and being the most populous region (more than half of Global Population; Asia and Oceanic ) .

That means with so many cultural background, across multiple sub regions, How we approach a Working Group should reflect that… from what I see it will run by being lean & flexible. Heck The Coop itself is already on the bleeding edge of culture building in the DAO is the “future of collaboration”

What @Tudou mention below really hit home the above;

and what @lee0007 below shows that we’re really living the DAO way…

To end this, even I don’t have all the answers. But I do believe in the team i’ve assemble for APWG will get the job done. In the end it’s the progress & process that inevitably create impact to the whole Index Coop protocol.

p.s. The last paragraph is a rally call to all APAC Contributors!!! Time to grind & let’s show what we’re made off!!! :fire: :fire: :fire:

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Elaborating and adding to reflect my comment on the call, in no particular order:

  1. Geography-specific functions (like translation and country BD) make a lot of sense to allocate to a WG, but would benefit by leveraging the knowledge and resources of the functional WG.
  2. Coordinating between WGs takes time, energy and management, so APWG should be conscious about taking over responsibilities and their overheads.
  3. I’d suggest a tighter scope, and simpler approach (do we need 4 geographical hubs within APWG?) with fewer, clearer actions - once up and running effectively, it can be widened.
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