The Podcast: Meet the Minds Behind Paxful

On the latest episode of the Podcast, our host Zach Doty sat down with Ray Youssef and Artur Schaback of Paxful. Zach, Youssef and Schaback discussed Paxful’s services, branded as the “Uber” of buying bitcoin.

Also read: The Podcast: Timo Schlaefer of Crypto Facilities 

Paxful: The ‘Uber’ of Bitcoin

Paxful logo

Calling themselves “PayPal + Uber,” as well as “the peoples [sic] Wall Street,” Paxful allows people to purchase bitcoins instantly in a peer-to-peer fashion, facilitating trades between people looking to buy and sell.

In the last 6 months, with their “Pay with Paxful” button, the company has done over $20 million USD in trading volume.

Paxful gained recognition in 2015 when they helped sex workers on Backpage integrate bitcoin into their businesses after Visa and MasterCard cut off their services to the online classified website.

After being cut off from Visa and MasterCard, the backpage website began accepting bitcoin, and linked to to help users find educational resources on the digital currency. Yousef says that his company was the second site listed on, leading to a flood of Backpage users calling in to Paxful trying to get information on Bitcoin.

Youssef recalls the barrage of customer service phone calls he received from “desperate, single mothers” trying to figure out how to use bitcoin so they could continue to work, pay their bills and feed their children. These phone calls made Youssef realize how hard it actually was for “normal people” to use bitcoin, inspiring him to make Paxful a powerful resource for beginners.

Since then, the company has continued to grow, fostering a large peer-to-peer network of bitcoin users helping one another trade the digital currency.

Paxful is ran by a team of six people, lead by co-founders Ray Youssef and Artur Schaback.

Youssef “has been a serial entrepreneur since 2001,” while Schaback “earned his stripes building out the tech around financial infrastructure.” The two started working together after meeting at a Bitcoin conference.

After their first failed venture, they started Paxful, which has blossomed into a promising young Bitcoin company.

To listen to Zach’s conversation with Youssef and Schaback in its entirety, check out the podcast here:

Be sure to tune in to the next episode of the Podcast!

Tags in this story
Artur Schaback, Backpage, MasterCard, Paxful, Ray Youssef, VISA

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