CryptoPotato had the chance to talk to Mayur Kamat – the Head of Product at the world’s leading exchange – Binance.
Speaking on the company’s culture, he said that Binance is very hands-on, with CZ and other founders personally working on some individual products.
Interestingly, Kamat comes with experience from tech moguls such as Microsoft, Google, and Agoda, so let’s dive into the full interview.
Q1: Can you please tell us more about your background and when was it that you stumbled upon cryptocurrencies?
I am fairly new to crypto. Only started after I interviewed with Binance. Have always been fascinated by the industry and its potential, but like a lot of folks, I also had some healthy skepticism for some aspects. I decided the best way to know how it will change the world is by doing it, so here I am.
Your experience includes working at tech heavyweights like Google, Microsoft, Agoda, and others. How does one make such a radical shift to the relatively nascent crypto industry?
Building products, at its core, is not very dissimilar across industries. We still need to focus on the user experience, find product-market fit, improve onboarding, look at user engagement and retention, build great platforms for users to educate, engage and communicate and last but not least, trust and security. These are equally important in Web3, I’d say even more so. My experience in some of the big tech companies hopefully will bring some maturity to our already excellent products.
On a personal front, it has been a fantastic educational experience for me. Binance is also a very hands-on culture. CZ, Yi, and other founders personally work on a few individual products, so it is expected of all leaders at Binance to be in the details and keep innovating for our users. It is always fun to build products yourself!
2022 was a wild ride. Being the Head of Product at Binance, can you give us the year’s highs and lows for the Binance ecosystem?
Highs – adoption. We brought in a lot of users, companies, and governments to Web 3 in 2022.
Lows – a few bad actors setting us back on user trust.
If you had to bring one main takeaway from 2022 – what would it be?
Always do right by the user. It is not always easy, and you will not always be recognized or appreciated for it. But it will always win in the long term. If you lose sight of this and chase short-term goals/gains, it will eventually catch up to you.
What was the biggest product that Binance released in 2022 in terms of customer impact?
I’d call out 3:
- Compliance/Regulatory products for onboarding users
- Binance Pay and its work in pushing crypto payment adoption
- Binance Earn and how simple it has made it for users to earn passive income on their crypto investments.
What’s the Binance product that you are (personally) most excited about?
I am very excited about SBTs – Binance BAB Token has already seen massive adoption. The concept of Identity on Chain has been discussed for a long time, but it has always been hypothetical. With BAB, it already works! Identity is a key problem to be solved for mass adoption (see what Google/Facebook login did for Web2). If we can solve this for Web3, we will accelerate the adoption pretty significantly.
You’ve combined Flexible Savings, Locked Savings, and Locked Staking products into a one-stop platform known as Simple Earn. Yield-generating products have come under massive scrutiny in 2022. Did you feel an impact?
I’ll say what I said before. Do right by the users. Always. As long as we do that, our products will be fine. With Simple Earn, we have made it easy for users to stake their crypto. We do not offer crazy, unsustainable yields. It may make us look less attractive to some users, but fundamentally sound investors understand and appreciate it. And that’s what will matter in the long run.
Moving into 2023: What can we expect from Binance?
Lots more product innovation! CZ has asked us to launch a new product/feature every day. We will see how well we do on this.
Perhaps a bit out of the blue but – what is it like working with CZ?
CZ is unlike any leader I have worked for. One – he is connected with the community. He is so closely connected that sometimes he knows about product issues before I do (something I am working on!). Two – he is extremely humble and in the details. He will work personally on some of our important products, which keeps all the Product Managers on their toes. He also lives and breathes the Binance mission of financial freedom and inclusion. We build products for users in 200+ countries, not just those who will make us more revenue. That makes building products more meaningful and rewarding!
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