Digital asset platform Asset Layer became a strategic partner of global blockchain technology company nChain. The announcement comes just months after Christen Ager-Hanssen became the group CEO of nChain. I had the chance to catch up with the CEO of Asset Layer, Jackson Laskey, to discuss the deal.
I love this company @assetlayer They just become a strategic partner of @nChain and we have chooses to work and invest in them because the team is exceptional and we already built amazing solutions with them @THEREALESMITTY Welcome to the nChain family of amazing companies. pic.twitter.com/XqMMBHR8rb
— Christen Ager-Hanssen (@agerhanssen) February 16, 2023
Why did Asset Layer form a partnership with nChain?
Jackson Laskey: I think there’s a strong mutual acceleration with our new partnership. Asset Layer is the right product for a lot of the projects nChain is working on, and the support and opportunity they can provide us will turn Asset Layer into a better product serving far more people much sooner than we could do on our own.
Beyond the product/opportunity fit, there was a strong cultural alignment. Both nChain and Asset Layer are fully focused on providing value and utility to customers. This has made a meeting of the minds very seamless between our teams.
What value does Christen Ager-Hanssen specifically bring to this partnership?
Jackson Laskey: I have been in the BSV space for around four years. During that time, I’ve developed a relationship with many people and companies in the space. Until a couple of months ago, nChain was an exception. nChain had been a black box to us.
Without Christen’s leadership, this deal would have never happened. From talking with many nChain team members over the past few weeks, it’s become clear that nChain has undergone an impressive cultural transformation which, to me, is an extremely positive one. Learning about this transformation as well as learning more about the specifics of nChain’s direction from Christen himself, gave me a lot of confidence that nChain, under Christen’s leadership, was the right partner for Asset Layer.
How does this partnership change Asset Layer’s focus as a company in 2023?
Jackson Laskey: The partnership with nChain gives Asset Layer access to a different type of customer than we had been targeting previously. Before, we were fully focused on startups, particularly Web3 games. We will now also have an opportunity to serve larger enterprise customers. This will place greater demands on our team in several ways, but I’m confident that it will accelerate the overall development of our product for all of our customers, enterprise and startup alike.
Web3 is still so new that I think there is a strong synergy between enterprises and startups. Startups are a source of innovation, and enterprise is a source of professionalization. Serving both will help us create a product that is both innovative, but also holds up to a high standard.
I also think that Web3 enabled interoperability can help create new opportunities for smaller and larger businesses to collaborate. At Asset Layer, we have always been passionate about creator economies. Typically, a creator economy revolves around some larger application which is the foundation of the economy. Then many smaller applications are built which supplement the overall ecosystem. Roblox is a great example. In this way, serving larger enterprises through our partnership with nChain promises to provide new opportunities for the smaller teams that we have been working with to this point.
Which other companies part of the nChain global family do you potentially see Asset Layer having synergy with (for example, UNISOT or Transmira)?
Jackson Laskey: It’s too early to say for sure, but I have existing relationships with most of these companies, and we had already been in the process of dreaming up amazing Web3 applications before nChain became a unifying force. I’m sure there will be plenty of collaboration as a result of these partnerships, which those who have been following Christen will understand was very much by design.
Ager-Hanssen tagged E. Smitty in his announcement tweet; how would Asset Layer potentially be involved in tokenizing the music industry?
Do you see more opportunities in B2B or B2C clients moving forward?
Jackson Laskey: Asset Layer has always been a B2B2C platform. We provide solutions for both app builders (API, no-code tool, cloud/blockchain storage, etc.) and users (wallet solution built on HandCash, marketplace, etc.). In general, we are focused on serving B2C applications. There would definitely be B2B use cases for Asset Layer, but overall, I think our strengths map more to B2C applications like gaming, consumer rewards, digital collectibles, and digital media.
Where do you see the most lucrative opportunities and industries for Asset Layer to disrupt?
Jackson Laskey: I’ve long felt that gaming would be the industry-defining vertical. I think this is partly because gaming is the clearest, most flexible way of giving utility to digital collectibles, and Web3 technology is so disruptive to gaming, mainly through interoperability. Accordingly, I see gaming being an essential part of any Web3 application ecosystem, even if a particular user or NFT originates from an entertainment or eCommerce application.
We have a very flexible platform for NFTs, but we’ve always made sure to provide the features games, and gamers need. We have strong familiarity with these needs through building Duro Dogs and working with customers like Haste Arcade. Many of the teams now building with Asset Layer are creating games, including a number of games that extend Duro Dogs using our creator economy features!
Thank you, Jackson, for taking the time to answer my questions. I hope the readers learned more about the nChain partnership with Asset Layer.
Watch: Scaling Games on Layer One Why It Matters
New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.