An Evening with Lars, which was held 14 April 2022 at Four Points by Sheraton, Lagos, Nigeria was an engaging, insightful, and warm time with Lars Seier Christensen, Chairman of Concordium Foundation. Concordium is a pro-regulation blockchain with built-in identification in the protocol and smart contracts.
Lars Seier Christensen is a veteran banker and serial investor with up to 30 years experience in the financial industry. A Founder and Owner of Seier Capital and former Co-CEO and Co-Founder of Saxo Bank, Lars is on a visit to Nigeria to connect with the Nigerian blockchain community, and key sectors.
At An Evening with Lars, Lars shared his vision of blockchain technology adoption in Nigeria. While acknowledging that crypto adoption was significant in Nigeria, Lars emphasized the need for the Nigeria blockchain community to explore more use cases of blockchain technology in areas beyond crypto.
A Co-founder of Saxo Bank, a fully licensed and regulated Danish bank with capital market solutions for access to global investments, Lars is a veteran. He combines traditional finance and decentralized finance (DeFi), bringing safety to users. For an innovator who has been there from the beginning seeing how the Internet has evolved as far back as 1995 to date, Lars believes that blockchain is evolving the same way. Today, the Internet has become indispensable. Lars believes that the way to a safer future for the blockchain & crypto industry is in the middle, not the extremes. This calls for the need for the old and the new to collaborate to ensure that users benefit from the best of both worlds.
Asked how Concordium plans to drive blockchain adoption in Nigeria considering the current state of regulation in Nigeria particularly in the crypto space, Lars asserted that while Concordium plans to engage with relevant policymakers, he believes that promoting use cases of blockchain in other sectors beyond crypto is vital. Concordium will be introducing a hackathon where local innovators can explore various use cases. Lars is also open to funding eligible projects.
Concordium is in Nigeria for the long term, says Lars. Lars expressed his interest in encouraging and supporting blockchain innovation, education, and regulation.
“The use cases of blockchain technology beyond crypto needs to be promoted in Nigeria. We will encourage innovators to build solutions. A decentralized blockchain technology with layer-one ID built into the protocol, Concordium creates trust for users while meeting regulatory compliance. This means safety for users.”
Concordium is one of the few foreign blockchain companies registered as a corporate member of Stakeholders in Blockchain Technology Association in Nigeria (SiBAN), Nigeria’s self-regulatory blockchain association. SiBAN President, Senator Ihenyen, who was one of the dignitaries at the event, is delighted to have Lars visit Nigeria. In a correspondence with CAB, Senator Ihenyen assured that his office would work with the Concordium team towards promoting blockchain education and advocacy in Nigeria. In the SiBAN President’s words,
“As a self-regulatory body in Nigeria’s emerging blockchain industry, we are especially keen to collaborate with projects that understand and appreciate the need to not only leverage blockchain technology to create value across various sectors of the economy but also the need for players in the blockchain space to innovate responsibly, promote self-regulation, and shapen regulation. Responsible innovation deserves responsible regulation. My office will work with the Concordium leadership to see how we can together promote blockchain education and advocacy in Nigeria.”
Lars is fond of Nigeria, for many reasons. Married to a Nigerian woman, Lars said he loves the youthful, creative, and energetic population in Nigeria, and believes that the country’s potential is huge. His four daughters, Lars said, have Nigerian names as middle names and enjoy Nigerian music. Lars loves Nigerian stew.
An Evening with Lars was “an exclusive networking event aimed at synergizing with the movers and shakers of key sectors, recognizing opportunities and kicking things off to a future of great partnership”, says Concordium. It was an evening of visionary thoughts, interactive talk, networking, and plenty of smiles to the camera.