Mr. Parag S. Kode is a multitasking personality, who balances different businesses in a very smooth way and with equal zeal. Initially, in 2005, Parag worked in the sales department of one of the IT companies in the city. Since 2003, he was also running a shop selling Airtel Prepaid SIM cards. From 2009 onwards, he started giving out SIM cards of other mobile network companies as well. Gradually, Parag entered into the online money transfer business using the app namely ‘t-wallet’ in 2015. Explaining the features of t-wallet, Parag said, “It is a B2B (Business to business) payment option for people to pay their mobile bills in a smooth way. It is the first multiple and multi level cash back portal offering several features for rendering the clients with a secure, user friendly and quick online payments platform People can directly pay electricity bills here. Currently, around 10,000 retailers across the country are using this portal. It is popular in metropolises in the states like Telangana and Kerala.”
Parag is now looking forward to expand this business in multiple districts and multiple sectors such as travel bookings, bus, railway or flight bookings, and many other areas. The local level retailers will be connected to it. It will be a B2C (Business to Customer) option.
Besides successfully running the t-wallet app, Parag also offers consultancy for blockchain technology and cryptocurrency since 2015. While the world is going online day-by-day, laymen are still unaware of the blockchain technology. Highlighting the significance of blockchain technology Parag said, “Blockchain is already a growing technology. Many companies are using it at a large scale. All the new ventures and projects are being done using blockchain technology.” He also cited an example of Chhattisgarh- the state that has taken bold initiatives to deliver proactive e-governance to its citizens.
Elaborating more on the blockchain, Parag said, “As we know, the blockchain is a decentralized, distributed and public digital ledger that is used to record transactions across many computers so that any involved record cannot be altered retroactively, without the alteration of all subsequent blocks.”
Commenting on the benefits of Blockchain, he said many industry leaders have already achieved significant business benefits, including greater transparency, enhanced security, improved traceability, increased efficiency and speed of transactions, and reduced costs.
When asked is the blockchain anonymous, Parag said, “Because a blockchain ledger is public, maintaining anonymity is hard, especially in the case of Bitcoin. Hence, Bitcoin (and most crypto currencies) are not completely anonymous. Many people trading in cryptocurrency prefer their transactions to be anonymous for various reasons.”
Meanwhile, Parag also threw light on the cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrency is a tradable digital asset or digital form of money, built on blockchain technology that only exists online. At its simplest a cryptocurrency works by logging transactions into a database to work out how much of that currency each individual, or their address, is holding.
“As far as cryptocurrency is concerned, peer to peer business is going on in India. But bank to bank transactions are yet to start. If regulations and guidelines are in place, in future, we will be benefitted by cryptocurrency,” he said. Some people look at it as an investment. But unlike gold, one can’t sell out a cryptocurrency. Parag recommended not viewing at cryptocurrency as a ‘currency’, but look at it as a ‘commodity’. In the countries like US cryptocurrency is used like any other currency like a dollar. In the countries including the UK, Singapore, Malaysia etc also cryptocurrency is legal, he stated.
Cryptocurrency has been in use in India since 2009, but it is popularized after 2016-17. “It is like a share market, where we can trade through different currencies. As per our vision and mission, coins get increased. But unlike the share market, which is safeguarded by SEBI, cryptocurrency is not a secured market.” Due to uncertainty and lack of awareness, Parag recommended investing only 10 percent of your total investment in cryptocurrency and rest of the investment can be done in other sectors.
Parag not only is enjoying his sphere of businesses, but also encouraging others to look at it as a career option. “The future of all the businesses will be online. Thus it is having a potential to grow and accommodate as many stakeholders as it can. Especially, there are many career opportunities abroad. What we need is to cope up and adapt ourselves to the new technology,” he said.