CakeCodes’ BitMaker App rewards consumers with Bitcoin and Ethereum to try new products and perform additional small tasks for businesses. Thanks to cryptocurrencies, the face of the advertising industry is about to take a different form.
CCN spoke to Simon Yu, co-founder and CEO of CakeCodes.
CCN: In a nutshell what is CakeCodes’ BitMaker app all about?
Simon Yu: BitMaker rewards users free bitcoins (and now Ethereum as well) when they try new games and apps. It’s a fun way for users to try cool new products and be rewarded free cryptocurrency in the process. We’re only on Android with no seed raise so far but we have over 700,000+ downloads and we have active users in 187 countries. What we’re doing is unique because, typically an average person can be exposed up to 5,000 ads a day but because there are so many ads being thrown at people’s faces, it’s not as effective. We’re letting users opt-in to trying new products for some free bitcoin and it’s been extremely popular and growing fast
CCN: So what actually inspired this?
SY: So two main reasons. 1) My cofounder and I believe that bitcoin, cryptocurrency, and blockchain has so much disruption potential and is extremely exciting. But before our app was launched, there was no way to acquire bitcoins unless you mine it (which is too complicated for an average person) and risk your money buying it. But because mining was too complicated and average people who didn’t know about bitcoin didn’t want to risk their money to buy bitcoin (due to negative press on silk road and exchanges being hacked) we figured we could create an easy way for users to earn bitcoin to get exposed to it.
2) On the other side, there’s a huge potential in global advertising as it is a $600B industry, however, there are just too many advertisements floating around now that the dollars spent are extremely ineffective. The end goal of companies is to get users to try out their products (which there are lots of great products out there) but the money is going to media companies instead of the users themselves. We thought why not just let the users earn some money when they decide to try new products? It’s extremely simple and we proved there are millions of people out there who are willing to try new products if they get paid for their time making the advertisement spend extremely effective.
CCN: Any challenges encountered so far?
SY: Of course. The recent one was when the average transaction to send out bitcoin continued to increase, we thought we had to shut down because we were sending out payments for $0.00 and all of a sudden it increased to $0.48 per transaction. We were sending 13,000 transactions per week and this was a critical decision. But our team especially Calvin our CTO and founder, worked extremely quickly to redo our code so we could send payments for free again. We launched Ethereum as a result and selected two main bitcoin wallets so we can send payments with a low withdrawal limit.
CCN: That’s very innovative on your part.
SY: We work fast whenever there’s an issue :)
Simon Yu: But whether it’s Hard Fork or Segwit we’re hoping something gets implemented fast to fix this issue. Bitcoin’s innovation and disruption come mainly from lowering transaction fees in our belief.
CCN: Any success story you want to share?
SY: Yes we’re extremely proud of the fact that we were able to acquire 700,000 users without raising a seed round of financing and have users in 187 countries makes us happy. We will be launching a campaign on Wefunder next month to allow anyone to own a stake in CakeCodes to help us disrupt traditional advertising and earn free cryptocurrency
CCN: Tell our readers your future plans?
SY: We’re hoping the funds will help us build an iOS app quickly, and we want to continue spreading our app globally as quickly as we can. We signed up to over 300 apps on our platform already since February 2017. There are 5 million apps out there in the market and we want to feature as many as we can.
CCN: How much do you intend to raise and are you going the ICO route?
SY: We are still debating the ICO route, but for now we’re going the traditional route. We have investors who are already part of our recent round including Bill Shihara, CEO of Bittrex
CCN: And what’s your target?
SY: We’re raising $1 million for our seed round and we’ll be using Wefunder for the public crowdfund, although we’re expecting to get most of the funds from private investors
CCN: Any message for your fans, users and investors?
SY: We’re extremely grateful for our early users and investors who have believed in our vision to help us get this far. Our idea was so different that when we first started, we didn’t get a lot of support from the general public.