David Bleznak, founder of Totle talks about building non-custodial, peer-to-peer, transparent, and KYC-free access point for all decentralized liquidity.
Hello! What’s your background, and what are you working on?
Hi, I’m David Bleznak, the CEO and founder of Totle. My background is in real-estate investment where I saw firsthand how much power banks can have over an industry.
I gradually got into crypto after reading the Bitcoin white paper in 2013 and researching alternative investment classes for my family’s business. Sold on the concept of an alternative banking system, I started accumulating Bitcoin in 2014. By 2016 I knew we needed easier ways to interact with crypto, specifically in decentralized trading, so I started brainstorming ways to make using crypto simple. In 2017, I founded Totle.
With Totle, I wanted to improve the user experience while still staying true to the technology behind DEXs. We felt the best solution to using DEXs was to aggregate the top DEXs into one consumer dApp and API so we could unify decentralized liquidity and use that as the foundation for a new era of decentralized services.
The Totle API gives developers access to an abundance of decentralized liquidity by leveraging the combined liquidity of 13 DEXs and counting. This allows anyone using products powered by Totle to seamlessly swap, transfer, and pay with 130+ ERC-20 tokens while automatically getting the best prices available on the DEX market. Totle is completely non-custodial, peer-to-peer, transparent, and does not require KYC.
What’s Totle backstory?
I was helping my family manage a crypto portfolio when I realized there had to be an easier way to do this. I assembled a team and started building a portfolio manager that would act as a single place where crypto users could manage their tokens all while getting the benefits of decentralized exchange. In 2018, we launched the Totle Portfolio Management Tool and took our first step towards making the DEX market an accessible place.
The Totle API is really the result of the Totle Portfolio Management tool. We quickly realized how large of a barrier it could be to integrate with multiple DEXs and came to the conclusion that we could save developers in the DeFi space a lot of time and headaches by offering an API. Working with centralized exchanges may have been a quick fix at the time but they opposed the entire ethos of the Bitcoin Whitepaper and blockchain movement.
What went into building Totle?
When we first started building Totle, EtherDelta was really the only project owning the DEX space. My first time using EtherDelta, I thought it was revolutionary. It reminded me of the Bitcoin Whitepaper but adapted to handle the exchange of different currencies instead of just Bitcoin. It also reminded me of AOL in the early days: cool but a very poor user experience. Then, 0x Protocol stepped up and seemingly created a new benchmark for the DEX sector by including relayers in their system. Shortly after that, new competitors joined the space with their own way of using DEX technology.
We realized the DEX market is going to be a fragmented space.
This high-degree of fragmentation creates price discrepancies that anyone operating in the DEX market would want access to in order to get the best price available for their tokens. The issue is that accessing these opportunities demands that developers would need to embark on the confusing and time-consuming journey of integrating with numerous liquidity protocols, each with their own unique smart contracts. We wanted to simplify accessing decentralized liquidity in a way that was intuitive to all developers. We built the Totle API to act as a unified source for decentralized liquidity that autonomously manages routing orders to the best available prices. This allows developers from any background to easily start building with decentralized liquidity.
What’s your business model?
Our business model is to be the one access point for all decentralized liquidity. We don’t want to be everything in crypto; we’re instead doubling down on enabling people to easily exchange and transfer tokens through DEX aggregation.
The core philosophy of Totle is to always be taking the technically complex and making it simple for people to use, whether that’s developers or consumers. The key to mass adoption is by making products so valuable and easy to use that to use an alternative to crypto will be an inconvenience.
What’s in store for the future of Totle?
The goal for Totle’s future is to enable developers and consumers to use cryptocurrency in innovative ways that centralized systems can’t compete with. We want DeFi to not only match what the current financial system can do, but surpass it.
We have some big announcements in the coming months focused on making building in DeFi and using crypto as easy as humanly possible. To demonstrate the power of our upcoming updates, we’ve even given a sneak peek into Totle Swap, a tool which will be launching at the same time.
We’re also looking forward to talking more about developments with our existing partners, like Wyre, and new partnerships coming down the pipes with big wallets.
What are your future thoughts for the DeFi market?
DeFi has recently become synonymous with crypto lending protocols but I think it’s going to become so much more than that. There will be people eventually managing their finances and transacting entirely outside of the bank system. To get to that point, the dApps we build need to abstract a lot the complexity that’s currently intimidating for the majority of people.
Various cryptocurrencies and fiat currencies need to be able to seamlessly interact behind the scenes without users needing to manage that complexity. Developers need to be able to plug-and-play with powerful ecosystems like DEXs without needing to go through a tedious integration process and a massive learning curve. Consumers need to be able to pay with the tap of a button without understanding cryptography and decentralization along the way. These are the issues that we’re solving with Totle by combining the best parts of the DeFi space and constantly improving them.
Where can we go to learn more?
To learn more about Totle, visit our website at totle.com
Or get in touch with us directly at [email protected]