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Women in Fintech: Nikita Sachdev talks about blockchain & crypto

As the founder and CEO of Luna PR and Luna VC, Nikita Sachdev is passionate about investing in crypto and marketing all things fintech. The model and marketer also describes herself as a serial entrepreneur and investor.

Sachdev, who is Indian-American and based in Dubai, found success on the international modeling circuit and embarked on a career in Bollywood. But that was overshadowed by her passion for the crypto and blockchain space, when in 2017 she started working for crypto giant, Huobi. This led her to start her own fintech-focused PR and marketing agency. Today, she travels around the world speaking at universities and conferences, such as the University of Miami and the University of Oxford, to educate people on the potential of blockchain. We caught up with her to find out more.

Tell us about your business – what is the concept?

We started life as a Web3-focused PR and marketing agency, and have since continued our rapid growth with the addition of a venture capital arm and, more recently, a media. For those who don’t know what Web3 is, it’s basically the next iteration of the internet, centered around the concept of decentralization and blockchain technology. This means that we focus on all aspects of our business, including NFTs, cryptocurrencies and any other blockchain-based project. We think of original go-to-market strategies and help the average user or trader better understand these technical projects. We hope to accelerate the global adoption of blockchain solutions.

What differentiates your idea from the rest of the market?

There aren’t many PR and web3 marketing agencies out there, especially with the ability to also talk about fundraising, so we’re in high demand in our niche. We have been in space since 2017 and have worked hard to establish ourselves. We’ve worked with over 600 projects so far, including big names like eToro and Binance, which has already given us extensive experience in what is a very young and ever-evolving industry.

How did you become interested in the industry? What is your background and is there a story there?

Before switching to cryptocurrency, I was in advertising. In 2017, I was shooting a corporate video for a client; I was the host reading a teleprompter, and it was all about cryptocurrency, blockchain, ICO, etc. It seemed like different language back then, so when I asked the CEO to expand, he said “100 dollars in bitcoin in 2009 would have made me a millionaire today”. I bought Bitcoin almost instantly on the spot! I had no idea what I was doing when I started, but when I started seeing returns on my investments, my interest grew. I started studying blockchain, the technology that fundamentally underpins Bitcoin, and realized the power it had to increase transparency, trust, and efficiency on a global scale. I truly believe it can have a positive impact on virtually any industry, so I became a social media tech advocate. In 2019, I launched Luna PR due to my passion for this rising technology. My goal has always been to encourage the mass adoption of blockchain technology around the world.

What has been your biggest challenge so far – and how are you overcoming it?

Our biggest challenge has been understanding which strategies will work best in an ever-changing market that often offers no time to catch our breath. This industry is so new, and no one has really done what we do before. There’s no playbook, and we’re creating the path while we’re still at it. It proves a constant challenge to deepen our understanding, as such a variety of technological advancements emerge daily. Despite this, working and living at the cutting edge of modern technology is what motivates and engages us.

As a woman working in the tech industry, what has your experience been like so far?

My experience has been very positive. It’s definitely a male dominated space, however, since 2017 I’ve seen a lot more women entering the space and showing an interest in technology. It’s great to see how welcoming the industry has been to everyone! Web3 sees no discrimination, and with the emergence of a host of Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) devoted to the advancement of women in Web3, the industry is likely to become much more diverse in the future.

If you had any advice for other young entrepreneurs considering entering the space, what would your advice be?

I would say just dive into it! You will find your feet. The technological aspects can sometimes be daunting, but imagine 10 years ago I told you that you would use your mobile phone to call a taxi, or pay for goods and services through transactions validated by your biometrics. Everything is new at the start! So do some research, open a crypto wallet, and trade on an exchange (even if it’s just a token amount). Enter the metaverse and maybe buy an NFT from a marketplace – the best way to learn more about how the technology works is to experience it as it develops.

How do you see the future of automation unfolding in the fintech industry?

In the blockchain space, perhaps the most profound automated innovation is the concept of “smart contract”. These are programs stored on a blockchain that run automatically when predefined conditions are met. By automating (“self-executing”) the code once these conditions are met, the need for trust between individuals is removed and, with it, the need for third-party intermediaries to arbitrate transactions. Imagine if, when buying a house, all middlemen were removed and it was just a transaction on a blockchain between buyer and seller – think of time, money and the energy it would save!

What are Luna’s future plans?

We regularly develop LUNA PR and we have a strong consulting, public relations and marketing division. We work with individuals and projects at all stages of development, from early-stage startups to much more mature companies like Binance and Huobi. We aim to be a one-stop-shop for Web2 projects looking to enter the Web3 space, or for Web3 projects looking to break into the mass market. Last year, we also launched our venture capital arm, lunavc.io, and have invested in around 20 Web3-related projects since our launch. The plan is to rapidly increase the number of projects we support. We are constantly looking to leverage our skills and I am very excited about where we will be in five years.

What inspires you in fintech today?

Today, I am inspired by the power that blockchain technology has to change our society for the better. I can’t wait to see the unbanked become banked and secure cryptocurrency wallets to validate our identities rather than the current requirements of insecure passports, ID cards or passwords in Web2. I’m also glad to see that the inherent transparency of blockchain transactions is helping to mitigate financial corruption. Blockchain will be a key contributor to the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and I’m honored to be a part of it so soon!

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