Why I joined Moov—Graham McBain

Why did I join a fintech company after spending so many years working in cryptocurrency? For many people, this path seems backward, if not downright heretical. After spending so much energy working to build a new financial system why did I choose to work on the old one?

The truth is if you want to build a legally compliant business in cryptocurrency you’re going to interface with the world of traditional banking. The biggest players in the crypto space are all the most highly regulated. So while researching a business idea I began to investigate how to programmatically interface with traditional banking infrastructure.

What came from that search was two distinct categories of offerings. First, there were banks that had built their own “open” API’s which seemed to be anything but open. One bank’s developer page had “get started” links that didn’t actually work. The other category was tech startups that were reselling bank services via API and at an astronomical markup. The developer experience was great but the price made it cost-prohibitive, especially for an early-stage bootstrapped company.

It was while searching for alternatives to these Banking-as-a-Service providers that I stumbled across Moov. Here was a company solving a problem I had in a manner that I was accustomed to, open source software. After joining the Moov Slack group it was immediately clear they were onto something.

People from some of the largest companies in finance were here helping each other solve problems they all shared. All of this collaboration because for one of the first times in Fintech someone decided to put the community before the company.

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Despite or maybe because of the large valuations given to fintech’s these days, the industry has been slow to adopt the open source model. Even while companies like MongoDB and RedHat have proven their viability in the cloud segment. What is clear from the early success of the Moov community is that OSS will work in fintech.

After first evaluating Moov as a vendor I realized that I could accomplish more if I joined the team. My motivation for getting involved in cryptocurrency was to create an open and fair financial system. We’re doing that at Moov. We’re taking some of the oldest and most antiquated systems on the internet and turning them into fast flexible infrastructure.

I’ve always loved the concept of “strong beliefs, loosely held." My strong belief was that the world needed a new payment rail in order to create more financial opportunities. While I still believe that, I now realize that our traditional infrastructure needs to be brought up to par if the future is going to accelerate the way I believe it should. 

You may have heard the saying “every company will be a fintech company.” At Moov we’re making that transition easier for everyone. Whether you’re into crypto or any other vertical I encourage you to join our Slack group and connect with our community. The future of fintech is happening and we’d love you to be along for the ride.