The amount of money in a person’s wallet should not be a barrier to his ability to access financial
products that the rich enjoy. HelloGold wants to remove affordability and accessibility from the
equation through the democratisation and digitisation of gold-based savings and financing.
I worked in Asia in 1997 during the Asian financial crisis and I saw at first-hand how “bad things can
happen to good people” at no fault of their own. As a result of the 1997 crisis, the man in the street
saw their domestic currencies hit by extreme devaluation – in the case of both the Thai baht and the
Malaysian ringgit, this was in excess of 50%; in Indonesia, the rupiah went from 2,600 to the dollar
to over 14,000 to the dollar. For someone who was earning the equivalent of US$1,500 a month, he
woke up one morning earning the equivalent of $700 a month with a devastating effect on how he
could provide for his family. The inequitable impact of these events on the people who were least
able to fend themselves and their families left a lasting impression in my mind. They suffered
disproportionately through no fault of their own, other than the simple, unavoidable fact that they
were financially excluded from the products that were available to protect the more affluent.
Fast forwarding to 2010 and up to 2015, I was the Chief Financial Officer at the World Gold Council
where I was also the principal accounting officer for the world’s largest private gold fund with
US$30b assets under management. I saw how High Net Worth Investors and funds alike had the
ability to use gold both to protect their wealth and as a form of collateral to get better financing
With the help of technology, the digitisation of gold will enable everyone, everywhere to enjoy these
same features that gold offers to the wealthy. With HGF’s gold-backed token everyone will only
need the equivalent of a fraction of a dollar to save through gold (ERC20 tokens work to 18dp). And
once they save enough in gold, they will be able to pledge it as collateral to borrow at lower interest
rates and without the need for credit history. In short, everyone can save, and everyone can have
access to affordable financing. Democratisation through digitisation.
At HelloGold we have started this journey. Our App already enables ordinary Malaysians to buy
physical investment-grade gold starting with as little as RM1. And we have partnered with Aeon
Credit to develop the gold-backed lending proposition.
Moving forward, the launch of HGF’s digital gold-backed token (GBT) will enable us to take our offer
to another level. It will allow us to accelerate financial inclusion across the world. HGF wants
technology to truly democratise gold – to empower every man, woman and child with financial
products to overcome the fundamental financial challenges that remain prevalent in many emerging
markets, both in Asia and elsewhere.
HGF is launching the Token Sale of HelloGold tokens (HGT) to support the accelerated development
and the marketing of our financial inclusion agenda. I hope that you will find this project worthy of