2021 Year in Review: A Letter From Our Cofounder & CEO of Request

December 23, 2021

Our Co-founder and CEO of Request, Christophe Lassuyt, reflects on the accomplishments of 2021 and looks ahead to the plans for the coming year, and beyond.

Dear Request enthusiasts,

I write this letter to express how truly grateful I am for our community of users, partners, collaborators, and contributors. 

Each year, I marvel at how people from all around the world continue to rally together around a shared vision of a future. One where our financial and economic systems work in service of the many, rather than the few.

Crypto is not just an exciting alternative asset class for investors. It is fundamentally transforming the way we live, work and play. But being able to account for and easily manage financial operations in crypto is still incredibly hard - for both organizations and individuals. 

Request has been building tools to change that, starting by helping DAOs, metaverse projects, and other crypto-natives send and pay thousands of crypto invoices with ease. But that is just the tip of the iceberg. If we are to build a composable ecosystem of tools that will enable crypto assets to truly become a part of our everyday lives, we cannot do it alone. 

My team and I are incredibly proud of the different parts you all have played this year. Whether you were contributing to the open source protocol for payment requests (Request Network), taking an interest in the token (REQ), or an avid user of the invoicing and payment application (Request Finance). Every little bit has helped, in ways you could not have imagined.

2021 saw significant growth for Request - both at the app level: Request Finance, and the protocol level: Request Network. For those who may not be familiar, Request Finance is to Request Network what Consensys is to Ethereum. Request Network is the open source technology that Request Finance is building apps on. 

Request has come a long way

In January, there were only 603 transactions in total on the Request Network protocol, with less than 10 businesses using the Request Finance app. The total amount of crypto payments made on the platform at the time was just over $1M.

Today, the Request Network protocol is projected to reach +4,500 transactions per month by the end of the year, with each month seeing new all-time highs in payment activity. 

Furthermore, the Request Finance app now helps over 1,000 businesses in managing their crypto payments and financial operations. That’s a 100x growth in our users this year, with the total cumulative payments amount now exceeding $160M. 

When we started in January, the app only supported 11 currencies. Today, with a growing list of 40+ currencies, 10+ fiat currencies, across 10+ blockchains available as payment options, many more businesses across different Web 3.0 ecosystems can pay each other seamlessly.

Simplify crypto payments for your business today

We’re building a fast growing Web 3.0 product that people love

Our users’ needs are at the core of what we do every day. We developed new product features from the many conversations we’ve had with our users including their votes which have been casted on Snapshot with the REQ token. Special mention to the teams from leading blockchain projects that use Request Finance like The Sandbox, Aave and Gnosis. 

The constant feedback we get from all of you, has helped us build features that have dramatically simplified invoicing and payments in crypto. Here are some examples of how our users’ feedback has shaped Request Finance:

- Denominating invoices in fiat, while getting paid in crypto with Chainlink’s Price Feed: https://request.network/en/2021/06/08/request-chainlink-unlocking-crypto-payments/ 

- Enabling a batch payment of hundreds of crypto invoices that are paid simultaneously to different wallet addresses with the Gnosis Safe: https://www.request.finance/post/pay-multiple-crypto-invoices-with-batch-payment 

- Sending pre-filled invoice templates with your business info to your suppliers in order to save time and avoid errors: https://www.request.finance/post/invoiceme-send-pre-filled-invoice-templates-to-suppliers-save-time-and-avoid-errors

- Automating the bookkeeping and accounting of blockchain-based transactions with Cryptio: https://www.request.finance/post/request-and-cryptio-partner-to-simplify-accounting-with-cryptocurrency 

- Allowing invoices to be paid in EUR via SEPA bank transfer while final payment is received in crypto with Monerium: https://youtu.be/3eqg1AHbO-M

We’re just getting started…

We’re on track to reach 10,000 happy users for Request Finance by the end of 2022.

But we’re not going to be able to build everything by ourselves. Web 3.0 is about co-building composable components to advance the community and the technology.

That’s why in 2022, we’re going to drive efforts at the protocol level to onboard new builders on top of the same technology. This will enable interoperability between financial applications across different blockchain ecosystems, and reduce the duplication of work among innovators. In the coming year, the Request Network protocol will also continue powering payments with new currencies and new payment networks. 

At the app level, Request Finance will continue building new beta features which will be open for early access users to test for free. Some of these new features we’ve lined up include a tool for recording and claiming business expenses, and a payroll solution to make managing global teams with crypto easier. Other features slated for later in the year include things like escrow, payment streaming, and reputation scoring.

Of course, every roadmap will encounter unforeseen hurdles that will require us to adapt. The blockchain space is perhaps one of the fastest growing, and rapidly evolving industries in tech; from regulatory changes, to capital flows, and the emergence of new technologies. 

But this is not our first rodeo. Throughout the many bull runs and crypto winters, and the fickle tides of FUD and hopium - our mission remains unchanged. We will continue to keep our feet firmly planted on the ground, and our minds focused on building the things people need and love.

As crypto continues to transform our economies, redefine our careers, and shape our societies, I’m excited to work alongside all of you in the coming year to build the foundations of this future. 

I thank you all again for your support, and I welcome you to join us in the next leg of the Request journey.

With great excitement,

Christophe Lassuyt
Cofounder & CEO of Request

Happy holidays from the Request team!
Christophe
Co-Founder
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