It is Crypto season, Bitcoin is currently trading at $66,426 and it is all everyone is talking about. In this week’s episode of Views, we had a chat with Ayo, a crypto trader, who tells us interesting things about what trading in crypto means and what the highs and lows are.
What do you do?
I’m into digital exchange and trading (cryptocurrency).
Okay, what this means is that I buy and sell cryptocurrency (the likes of Bitcoin-BTC, Ethereum-ETH and others)
Oh okay, I get it now. What was growing up like for you?
Growing up was fun, and some days, it wasn’t. There were bitter-sweet experiences, but altogether, I am grateful to God for having such experiences. It has shaped me into who I am today. I grew up in a family of 5 but lost my dad at a very tender age, so I had just my mum and my two elder brothers as support. I’m the last born, by the way.
How did that shape you?
I got to start thinking and making the right decisions as well as taking responsibilities at an early age. My mum couldn’t do everything for me as she was really busy trying to provide and take care of all our needs – fending for all 3 boys – by herself and my brothers were not ready to treat me like a child. I was given tasks beyond my age bracket just so I could learn what life meant, at least how they put it to me then.
The lessons plus chores were not all that easy compared to what children of my age were doing. These exercises help mould my take and perception of life in general
Ah ah! So what would you say is your take and perception about life?
What you want and think you deserve won’t come to you except you go after it, putting everything on the line just to make sure you succeed. And even if you don’t succeed, which I don’t pray for anyone, you will learn lessons that will be vital for when you try again.
And don’t use your present situation as an excuse for a failed future cos you could have done more.
Insightful. Tell me about how you dabbled into cryptocurrency exchange.
I started in January 2019. I was at my place of primary assignment as I was serving (NYSC) at that time. A colleague of mine who was also a corp member and was already into the crypto exchange was having a deal so he couldn’t attend to the official task we were having. He begged me to help him do his portion of the assignment as he was concluding a transaction.
So I helped him and after the close of work, I inquired about what he was into. He was so open that I would never have thought anybody would relate what they do to somebody they didn’t know just like that. He went as far as telling me he had just made over ₦70,000 from the said transaction. I was so keen on knowing what he did and how he generated much profit just like that and after the discussion, the journey started for me too. Mind you, he bought me food from the said transaction. Big boy food.
Loool, Let’s talk about your journey.
Where do I start from? Okay, he advised me to have at least a small capital to start with as it is imperative for one to have money to run the business successfully. As at that time, all I had was my house rent which wasn’t complete. But I wanted to key into this opportunity and start making money like the guy. So I risked getting an apartment with the ₦100k I had and started the business. The rest as they say is history
Rent money! Were you not scared about losing it? What if it was a scam?
My brother, at that point, I had tried so many other ventures that didn’t turn out well, so I didn’t mind the risk and I also knew that I would be seeing him every day, so I had no fear.
At first, he suggested buying into his account and we would balance it up later, but I was sceptical about it so I asked what other options were available. He told me the more convenient option was to use my money to buy, then I’d sell it to him at a profit margin he would give me. That option was cool for me so I took that
Though with that option I incurred a ₦30,000 loss on my first week of buying and selling. I know that what’s good and going to last for life wouldn’t come that easy, I already gathered that knowledge while growing up. I was shaken at first but I wasn’t ready to give up, at least not that early. The second week I learnt from the mistakes of the first week and I was able to cut down my losses to around ₦13,000… In the third week, I was more sure and fully vested in the business than I was in my first and second week. That 3rd week I made my capital back and an extra ₦5,000 plus.
Yaaayyy a profit at last!
That was like the first money I’d made in a long while without begging anybody for it or was handed over to me as a gift
Mind you I had done some jobs or businesses in the past that at one point or the other gave me ₦5,000 or more. But they were too demanding, I gave my sweat and blood to make that money. This profit was just from the confines of me pressing my phone and replying to messages. It was the coolest stressless money I’d made… Though now it’s no longer stressless.
What was the process like?
The business is someone offers to sell to you, you offer to buy at a particular price, now once you both agree on that price, you buy the coins from them. How I make my own money is that I am going to accumulate a certain amount, and once I have exhausted my naira, I transfer my coins to the person that taught me, he then buys that particular amount with a profit.
Let me explain it to you using an analogy, somebody wants to sell $100 worth of BTC, and I give the person a rate of ₦550 per dollar, meaning that on every dollar, I would be paying ₦550, so for the 100 dollars, I’d be paying ₦55,000. I then sell it to my client at ₦560 per dollar so I have made ₦10 on each dollar. It was worth ₦550 and now I am selling at ₦560. If I sell him 200 BTC, It means I have made ₦2000.
Oh, I get it now So what happens if, for instance, you buy the BTC today at ₦550 and tomorrow the price has dropped to like ₦520?
That is why I said it was easy money then, but at the moment it is stressful. Yes, in this instance that you cited, there is always a fluctuation in price, either the price goes up or it comes down. The price is never stagnant and that is the number 1 rule of the business. In a situation where you buy at ₦550 and tomorrow, you are seeing offers for ₦545, now this is where the market survey comes in. You’d know if to hold on to what you have in hand for maybe another 24 hours, or would the price fluctuate back to 550 or would it keep going down. Initially, when I started, I wasn’t doing any market survey. but as my capital was increasing, that was when I started doing market surveys.
What are the highs of crypto exchange?
Ah, I have gained a lot, I have gained exposure. I have gained money which is the key principle of starting the business,. I have made money, my ₦100,000 investment in 2019 is worth millions of naira right now and I am grateful to God. Even though there are some challenges in the business, as it unfolds that is how we deal with it. There is no blueprint. Tomorrow can come with something new, you just have to paddle your canoe the best way you can in that situation.
Yes to Making Money, So what are the challenges?
There are plenty of lows, I was scammed twice in the business. I went to zero twice. The first one was; you know, because there are levels to this vendor thing, the end-users who buy BTC from us are the Chinese. That being said, the main challenge is people buying coins without paying.
How’s that possible?
Yeah, it is interesting to know that someone you have been dealing with for six months can scam you. I tell people that familiarity sometimes in the business is bad because the person that scammed me the first time was through a friend.
I was trying to expand my reach after I realised that the person that taught me was offering me a lower rate compared to what was outside. So I tried to balance that, by looking for people that are selling at favourable rates. That was when I met someone that was buying from me at a reasonable price, we did business five times and I decided to give him a big transaction, that was when he scammed me, by blocking me. I was talking about 1.5 million. At the time, that was all I had in my months of sleepless nights and hard work.
Omoh After all that stress?
The person took away all I had made, and I had to start all over again. You know what was funny? I thought that was the last time anyone would scam me, and like Dejavu I got scammed again.
Yeah, he is a vendor too, I sold coins to him and he blocked me without giving me a reason. They always never have reasons. They saw the coins, took it and decided not to pay me for some reason. If you do get them, They will tell you unreasonable reasons, as someone else scammed them, so they are retailing, excuses like that. Those are the lows in the business.
How’s your business doing today?
As I said, I have made more, plenty of it my 100,000 is now worth millions of naira in my bank account, I have a huge client base and I am grateful to God.
What advice do you have for beginners that might want to venture into crypto?
The advice that I give to people that are about to venture into crypto is that you will make money but it does not come easy. It requires some sacrifices, some contributions, some efforts. You just need to be tenacious about what you want, you need to put in your all. If you want to make money, you will but you already know that making money does not come easy, so be ready for some ups and downs.