Didn’t think you could meet a World Masters Championship Swimmer at Consensus Festival? Think again. Stefan Rust, CEO of the aptly named Laguna will be at official Consensus satellite events DCentral (June 7-8) and Grit Daily House (June 8-10), on stage, to talk all things crypto markets, inflation, and financial stability. Intrigued by his background? There’s more.
1. An invoice got him into crypto
Stefan fell into crypto in 2012 when a developer for his company Exicon asked to be paid in Bitcoin. This prompted an OTC purchase via eBay and PayPal whose speed left the CEO agape, particularly in comparison to the sweaty walk he had just taken to cash a cheque in Hong Kong.
2. He helped bring mobile to China
Back in the 1990s, Stefan was instrumental in bringing mobile technology to China when he set up four mobile networks in the country. He sold these to China Unicom in 1999 when they needed the assets to go public, paving the way for a new wave of technological innovation.
3. When he grew up, he wanted to be a cowboy
As a young boy, Stefan’s ultimate dream was to be a cowboy, or a fireman: something on the “frontier.” This is why, he says, he got into crypto, whose wild, uncharted territory and ability to open up finance to the masses attracted the renegade entrepreneur.
4. Sir Robert Black GCMG OBE was his grandfather
Stefan’s grandfather was Sir Robert Black, who was the Governor of Singapore and then Governor of Hong Kong between 1955 and 1964. During his tenure, he ensured Hong Kong didn’t go dry by brokering a deal with China for water during the historic drought of 1962-64.
5. Android has a lot to thank him for
Stefan Rust was involved in instrumental acquisitions and investments during the lead up to launching a Java-based iPhone competitor, which his firm announced at JavaONE. This ultimately opened the door to Android and a whole new world of mobile possibilities.
6. He’s a world-class swimmer
Perhaps fitting for the CEO of “Laguna”, Stefan is a keen swimmer. In-fact, he is a world masters swimmer, claiming the title of fourth fastest in the world for 50 metre free style and sixth fastest in the world for 50 metre backstroke at the Budapest World Masters Championship.
7. He learned when to let go the hard way
Among Stefan’s key life lessons, he says knowing when to call it quits is the most important. After moving heaven, earth, and a lot of capital to keep a business venture alive that just wasn’t working, he recommends not following the “keep at it” mantra if you really shouldn’t.
8. With Laguna, he’s finally going to crack the crypto nut
Stefan is a true crypto believer, but he’s frustrated with how slow the industry has been to found the next Google or Facebook: a company that can transform the world based on new technology. With Laguna, though, he thinks he can.
9. Cookies & Cream is his favorite ice cream
When he can’t get his hands on some Hong Kong-style bubble tea, Stefan’s guilty pleasure is ice cream. And when he can’t get his hands on Molten Malteser Vanilla Fluff Flavor, he’ll settle for old fashioned Cookies & Cream.
10. He wants to liberate the world through crypto
Like a true cowboy, Stefan is not the biggest fan of lawmakers – particularly ones that are ramping-up inflation. With Truflation and Nuon, Stefan hopes to finally give the average Joanne an opportunity to preserve her wealth and build a stable financial future.
Looking to catch Stefan Rust during Consensus Festival-Austin? He’ll be at DCentral and then on stage at Grit Daily House-Consensus, especially June 10, along with Robin Guyard and Cameron Lee from Laguna. Joining them will be Rachel Wolfson (CoinTelegraph), Doug Horn (Telos), Blake Commagere (Vault12), Chad Steelberg (Veritone), James Wo (JSquare), Caitlin Long (Custodia Bank), Miles Paschini (FV Bank), Jenn Sanasie (CoinDesk) and Laila Maidan and Katie Canales from Business Insider, among others.
Alongside some of the best content during Consensus, Grit Daily House will boast Cookies & Cream ice cream, too.