Justin Hartzman, CEO of CoinSmart – Interview Series

Justin Hartzman, CEO of CoinSmart – Interview Series 1
Justin Hartzman, CEO of CoinSmart – Interview Series 2

Justin Hartzman, CEO of CoinSmart – Interview Series 3

Justin Hartzman, CEO of CoinSmart – Interview Series 4

Justin Hartzman is the CEO of CoinSmart, an exchange that makes cryptocurrencies accessible to Canadians, with experience at all levels of cryptocurrencies. To break down the barriers of complicated and confusing crypto transactions, CoinSmart offers a simple trading interface, educational tools and 24/7 customer support.

How did you find out about bitcoin and cryptocurrencies?

My first journey into the world of bitcoin and cryptocurrencies was born out of my desire to find a new hobby. In 2010, when we were still doing web development, someone tried to pay our team in bitcoins in exchange for a website we built for them. Flash forward to early 2017, the price of bitcoin began to rise, and by the day more and more people are recognizing it, so I decided to get back into this new world of digital currency. It can be a hobby, but it can also be an unbalanced profession if you work in a startup and earn a very small salary. Looking back is a good solution for free time.

Can you tell us about the genesis of CoinSmart?

The story is a bit like that. Passionate about this new hobby and the satellite dish market, I was in Florida with my family chatting by the pool. I got a good deal and went in. After explaining what cryptography was, I decided I needed to go out to lunch and study. An hour became 4 hours, and that became 4 days. I knew it at the time, and I had a 3 word assignment there. Make cryptocurrencies accessible. Mission accomplished.

Can you tell us about the mantra of making cryptocurrencies accessible? How important is it to keep things simple without falling into the jargon of the average consumer?

Our mission at CoinSmart is to break down the barriers and complexity of cryptocurrency transactions to better educate and inform customers about cryptocurrencies. Essentially, we have created a platform that allows anyone, regardless of experience or trading skills, to use our platform to buy or trade cryptocurrencies. We offer our customers simple solutions, training tools for all levels and 24/7 customer support. At the same time, we have all the tools for advanced traders, OTC and premium customers.

CoinSmart is one of the first Canadian exchanges to be FINTRAC (Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada) compliant. Can you tell us something about compliance and its importance?

Trust is one of the main pillars of our thesis on the accessibility of cryptocurrencies. It is therefore important for us to work side by side with the relevant authorities and to act within the regulatory framework of each jurisdiction in which we operate.

Canadians often face the problem of not knowing how to report their buy and sell orders of cryptocurrencies during the tax period. Do you offer tips or special reports on your website to make this process more transparent?

CoinSmart makes it easy for users to report their cryptocurrency transactions when tax season arrives. CoinSmart customers can upload a CSV file of their transactions to CoinTracker, a cryptocurrency tax software platform, to make it easier to track your cryptocurrency assets, transactions and taxes.

You currently focus on the Canadian market, but you said you had plans to expand internationally. Could you please elaborate on these plans?

We currently have around 30,000 confirmed customers in Canada and have recently opened our doors for a soft launch in Europe, where we are seeing an incredible amount of daily subscriptions and deposit volumes. We’re working hard to get people in the 300,000+ people queue. We also plan to expand to Australia and Latin America in the near future.

Because crypto is a global phenomenon and a 24/7 market, we find it important to have an international presence. We look forward to seeing how crypto can help streamline payments within the European financial system and better serve and protect our customers.

How do you see the future of digital assets in 5 or 10 years?

I think we are in the first half of the first inning of the crypto landscape. I think we’re just starting to see the acceleration in the context of the S-adoption curve, and that’s what makes it so exciting. We have new players, new projects, new technologies coming to the fore every day, and we are really in a new wave of digital finance, centralized and decentralized. In 5 years, I see many more institutional players involved in all aspects of the ecosystem. I think we will have a currency that makes sense of everyday spending and we will live in a much less inflationary environment. 10 years – I don’t think it’s worth speculating, things change, try to keep up.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with CoinSmart?

After creating the first North American bitcoin ETF earlier this year, CoinSmart announced several rounds of funding and recently filed for registration with the OSC and securities regulators in all other Canadian provinces and territories. CoinSmart is also actively involved in discussions regarding membership in the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC).

CoinSmart also recently appointed Joe Tosti as chief compliance officer. Joe has over 20 years of experience in compliance, trading, operations and asset planning and has worked with some of the largest government agencies in Canada. As Chief Compliance Officer, Joe will provide oversight and leadership and play a critical role in protecting clients and ensuring their financial security.

Stay tuned for exciting news about CoinSmart and its future plans.

Thank you for this great interview, I look forward to continuing this great exchange. Readers interested in learning more are invited to visit CoinSmart.

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