Our vision and where we see the world heading

In this post, I’ll share our long term vision for Goldfinch. To explain it, though, we first need to talk about bigger trends at play.

In this post, I’ll share our long term vision for Goldfinch. To explain it, though, we first need to talk about bigger trends at play. At the heart of everything we’re building is a much broader thesis we have about how the global economy is shifting.

Our thesis is made of two core beliefs. The first is that over the coming decade, decreasing bond yields will drive investors to demand new investment opportunities. The second is that over this same period, global economic activity will move on chain, making every transaction programmable.

Put these two beliefs together, and you might guess our conclusion: these investors will scramble to invest in these now-programmable, globally-accessible transactions. This will finance vast portions of the global economy, dramatically expanding access to capital. And we’ll need a protocol to do it — that’s what we’re building with Goldfinch.

I’ll dive into these beliefs more deeply, and then share how Goldfinch fits in.

Belief #1: Investors will demand new sources of yield

Our first core belief is that depressed yields in traditional markets will drive investors to demand new sources of yield. This all starts with bond yields reaching their lowest levels — ever:

For over a century, bonds have served as a foundation of yield. This has created a fallback for passive capital that put pressure on other markets to beat those returns. But as bond rates hit zero and even turn negative, this will trigger a massive shift. Capital will look to other markets like stocks, inflating those asset prices and reducing yields across the board.

And yet, even as bond yields disappear, pockets of reliable returns remain. Private credit funds continue to post strong performance, often 8–10%+, driven by private deals with private companies. The catch is that it’s an insider’s game, and you need to be part of a tiny sliver of wealthy individuals and institutions to participate.

We think this can only last for so long. As yields diminish in public markets, the broader investor base will look elsewhere and demand access. One early sign of this is the increasing retail interest in stock markets. Another example is the craze around yield farming on DeFi over the past year. We think this is just the beginning of a much bigger trend.

Belief #2: Every transaction will become programmable

Our second core belief is that global economic activity will migrate to crypto, making every transaction programmable. For many of us already deep in this space, that isn’t a novel idea. The expectation (or faith) that the world will eventually move to crypto is so ingrained in the industry that we sometimes take it for granted. But now it’s actually happening because consumers and businesses are beginning to view crypto as a hedge against monetary policy.

The obvious examples are companies like Tesla and Microstrategy recently purchasing bitcoin. However we’re also seeing it firsthand in our conversations with potential borrowers. In Nigeria, for example, we’re talking to three separate fintechs that are actively considering or building crypto accounts for their customers. One of them is even moving a portion of their own balance sheet to crypto as part of their treasury management.

The interesting part is that they aren’t doing it to speculate in crypto. Rather, it’s the opposite — they’re using crypto because they view it as safer and more stable than their local currency.

It’s also notable that this demand spans both consumers and merchants. Because as consumers start holding crypto and merchants start holding crypto, it’s inevitable they’ll start transacting with each other directly in crypto, too. And not just within their own country, but across borders. The network effects of this will be immense, and we believe it will be the catalyst for the global adoption of crypto-native commerce.

The Future: Anyone can lend to any transaction

Take the transactions between consumers and merchants becoming openly programmable, and add to that a wave of demand from investors, and we have the kindling for a paradigm shift. This will lead to a new system where anyone is able to extend a loan for any transaction in the world.

It will be like open sourcing Visa’s payment rails. People will start receiving their income on chain and paying merchants on chain, and that will open up a much wider design space for how we can finance that activity. Imagine if it wasn’t just huge banks that could provide credit for these transactions, but anyone in the world, or even a smart contract.

To provide an example that extrapolates this to its extreme, consider someone who needs to get their bike fixed. A smart contract could send the capital directly to one of the on-chain-approved repair shops. And since that person receives their income on chain, they could permit that smart contract to take the repayment directly out of their paycheck.

The credit risk would be low — far lower than anything possible today — because the capital would be used for a verifiable purpose, by someone who has provable income, with a repayment mechanism that is automatically enforceable.

Given those assurances, someone on the other side of the world could feel comfortable funding that transaction even without intimate knowledge of the borrower. Or they could fund the strategy that handles many of those types of transactions. Or the system that handles many of those strategies. And tying it back to that wave of investors demanding new opportunities, many will line up to participate.

The Goldfinch Vision

All of this will require a protocol to organize this new marketplace. That protocol, ultimately, is what we’re building with Goldfinch.

Our long term mission is to create an open credit platform that empowers financial inclusion. We believe that if we get the mechanics and economic incentives right, we can harness these two broader trends into a highly scalable system. It will allow many people all over the world to finance the economic activity of many other people all over the world, especially in places where the flow of capital has traditionally been inefficient.

It won’t happen overnight. We’re in it for the long haul. If you’re interested and want to help us get there, we’re actively hiring, or join our community on Discord.