The American Dream: The Road to Financial Freedom
Celsius founder and CEO Alex Mashinsky shares his experience as an immigrant in America working to fulfill his own American Dream.
I came to the United States in 1989. I craved the “American Dream.” I read about our inalienable right to the “pursuit of happiness” in the Declaration of Independence. The choice to move was a no-brainer. When I arrived, I hustled. I worked hard with little money in my pocket to prove myself to the world. And I was heard. I met executives at massive companies and made them listen to me. I founded eight NYC start-ups two of which became unicorns, bringing wealth to my investors, me and my employees. We achieved the American Dream.
I don’t believe this dream is alive today. The opportunities I was awarded are not available to 99% of Americans. Today, the “American Dream” is only true for the richest 33,000 Americans. Systemic poverty and abundant credit-fueled consumerism have left Americans with massive debt, despair and no way out. If you look at the top 10 wealthiest individuals in America you may think your vision is off. Only white men top the charts and I promise you, it is not because of any inherent superiority. The rewards available to the already wealthy 1% are simply not available to the rest of the world. This system makes the wealthy wealthier and hurts everyone else.
Who is at the root of this inequity? Banks. Banks are robbing everyone blind. There are fewer banks in the US today than at any time in the past 100 years, yet the top 4 banks make more profit than ever before. Most of this profit comes from doing the wrong thing. They simply do not act in your best interest. Last year the top banks charged the poorest Americans $34,000,000,000 in overdraft fees. J.P. Morgan alone made more than $30,000,000,000 in profit, giving most of that to its few shareholders, not to its depositors as simple interest income.
When I talk to the younger generations, this comes as no surprise. I am met with exasperation and defeat: who is going to fix this? How can we convince these colossal companies to act in our interest instead of their own? How can anyone stand up to these giants?
This problem is not unique. In the 1990s companies like AT&T made the most money by charging customers $3 a minute to call their family. They behaved like taking advantage of customers was their exclusive right. Today we all use my invention, Voice over IP (VoIP), with services such as WhatsApp and pay nothing to connect globally. The same thing is going to happen with banks. MOIP (Money over IP) will take over If we all stop giving banks our money for free and instead place it with people who act in our best interest, the banks — like AT&T — will quickly lose their power and sell all those fancy buildings they have their names on.
As I watch the America I knew shift into a foreign land, I have made it my mission to change the cycle. My VOIP patent just expired after 25 years so I decided to dedicate the next 25 to MOIP the world. At my new company, Celsius Network, we are on a mission to bring financial freedom to the world in a new way using new rails that benefits us all on equal terms. To offer cash loans at low interest rates, because we all need help sometimes. To offer high interest income returns and treat the $10 depositor the same as the $10,000,000 one.
It is time for America to dream again. It is time to have your money work for you as hard as you work for your money. — Alex Mashinsky, October 2019.
Alex is one of the inventors of VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) with a foundational patent dating back to 1994 and is now working on MOIP (Money Over Internet Protocol) technology. Over 35 patents have been issued to Alex, relating to exchanges, VOIP protocols, messaging and communication. As a serial entrepreneur and founder of seven New York City-based startups, Alex has raised more than $1 billion and exited over $3 billion. Alex founded two of New York City’s top 10 venture-backed exits since 2000: one of his first companies, Arbinet, IPO’d in 2004 with a market capitalization of over $750 million; and another venture, Transit Wireless, was valued at $1.2 billion at the time of exit.
About Celsius Network
Celsius Network is a democratized interest income and lending platform accessible via a mobile app. Built on the belief that financial services should only do what is in the best interests of the community, Celsius is a modern platform where membership provides access to curated financial services that are not available through traditional financial institutions. Crypto holders can earn interest by transferring their coins to their Celsius Wallet and borrow USD against their crypto collateral at interest rates as low as 4.95% APR.
Download the Celsius Network app and start earning interest on your crypto today ➡️ celsiusnetwork.app.link