Prominent Russian oligarch Alexander Lebedev is set to launch a new decentralized finance (DeFi) “cryptobank” – and could spearhead a USD 15 million investment in the new venture.
Lebedev, whose fortune was estimated at a cool USD 3.1 billion back in 2008 by Forbes, is the former head of the Russain National Reserve Bank, and a stakeholder in conglomerates like Aeroflot, Sberbank and Gazprom. He owns a UK media empire that includes the British newspapers the Evening Standard and the Independent and sold his National Reserve Bank holdings last year.
Per RBC, Lebedev has partnered with the head of the Garantex crypto exchange, Sergey Mendeleev, for the new project, provisionally named InDeFinEco. The mogul told RBC that the project will be based in Switzerland and that funding “will be launched in the next few months,” adding that an initial round of USD 10-15 million would be pumped into the new company.
And Lebedev said he hoped the project would break into the world’s top 10 DeFi projects, claiming that the initial cash boost would be spent on minor development costs and creating a basket of reserves that could be used to launch and underpin a stablecoin.
“From a development perspective, DeFi projects do not require serious investment. My partners and I are ready to finance a startup. However, we will need to fund the issue of a stablecoin to keep the system operational. That’s where we will need […] USD 10-15 million.”
Lebedev added that his new project was “not specifically aimed at the Russian market,” even though it would originate in his home country.
He added that the “cryptobank” would aim to provide the following services:
- Lending with stablecoins secured by cryptoassets with the opportunity to earn on deposits
- Cryptoasset management services to “generate more profitability” for customers
- Complex financial products based on tokens and cryptoassets (including options and derivatives for gold and real estate markets).