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Meet the Boss – Exclusive Interview with Lympo CEO Ada Jonuse

Lympo is a blockchain-powered health and wellness ecosystem where users are rewarded for healthy lifestyle activities by being able to earn system tokens and use those tokens for other wellness-related activities and services.

The ecosystem’s functionality is enabled by the exchange of tokens between parties. Here is how it works:
A consumer opens the Lympo digital fitness wallet, connects it with their favorite health apps and wearables and participates in challenges on the platform, like, running 5k to get LYM token rewards. Another way to participate is to purchase online or offline services by personal trainers, dieticians or physical therapists and to follow the health program proposed by these professionals. Anything that can be tracked can be a part of the program like steps, sleeping rhythm, heart rate and once the goals are reached, a consumer gets coin rewards. Lympo users can monetize the data they aggregated over the time by allowing third parties to access it and get rewarded for that as well.

The consumer can then pay for other goods and services rendered in the healthy lifestyle ecosystem with the LYM token, like healthy food, sports clothes and even receive health insurance discounts. Lympo is adding blockchain and token functionality to an existing platform connecting over 500 personal trainers in Lithuania as the service expands to California and Australia.

We recently sat down with Ada Jonuse, the CEO of Lympo to have a chat with her about the project as well as finding out his thoughts and insights.

Hi, Ada. Thanks for joining us today. Can you tell us more about yourself and Lympo?

My vision that Lympo.io is an effective tool to incentivize people to be healthier

I started Lympo a bit more than a year ago in Lithuania. After living more than a decade abroad I decided to come back and do something innovative in my country. It started as a platform to find the best personal trainer based on the user’s geolocation and ratings. It saw a huge expansion in Lithuania with more than 500 trainers on our platform and a B2B deal with the biggest gym chain in the country which made us a post-revenue company in 12 months. I actually wanted to become a politician before, but I find it so exciting what I do know. And then this autumn Lympo was selected as one of the emerging Eastern European tech stars by Google, Financial Times and other partners of the New Europe 100 list.

First off, why did you decide to add blockchain to the existing Lympo platform? What was your thought process behind it? Did you plan to do this from the beginning or did the technology suddenly present itself as you were building the platform using more “traditional” technology.

I got more and more interested in blockchain last spring. I was learning a lot about the disruptive potential of the technology and how blockchain can change so many sectors. Like with everyone who is new in the space, I was so amazed and that was all I was talking and thinking about. My friends thought it is a kind of a sect. At the same time, we were building a community of personal trainers. We asked them what motivates people to reach their goals, because we wanted that as many people as possible use our platform and we can create value for the trainers. One of the things we have often heard were rewards. Even if the rewards are useless points, they motivate people. Then I thought why don’t we have a whole system of incentives based on token rewards and connected to the data we track on phones and wearables. This is how the idea of Lympo.io was born.

Tell us about how you came up with the idea of Lympo.
Did you face a problem within the industry or do you think there is a gap in the market for Lympo to fill?

It was actually my co-founder of Lympo.lt, Laurynas Gumbis. He is a physical therapist. He was spending a lot of time with one of his clients working on a back trauma. During these hours they realized it would be great if every one of us had a personal trainer, a professional that helps us to be healthy and fit. That client later became our angel investment. I learned that it is not enough to exercise, but it is important to have some professional advice the hard way: after finishing my first 20 k run I had a foot trauma.

What do you think is the biggest problem Lympo will solve and why is the problem important to solve?

My vision that Lympo.io is an effective tool to incentivize people to be healthier. The number 1 cause of death globally, cardiovascular diseases, which costs us more than 17 million deaths every year and which represents 31% of global deaths are actually preventable by a healthy lifestyle. Being physically fit is an important part of it. We sit too much, we do not exercise, we eat bad food even at such a technologically advanced age. If using the Lympo digital wallet which rewards users for reaching their personal healthy lifestyle goals using the information we track on our phones and wearables can change the behavior of its users by at least a little bit, I believe that our mission is fulfilled.

Lympo is moving into a very regulated space. While the records are “healthy lifestyle” focussed, there is clearly a healthcare aspect to all of this. How are you planning on addressing privacy issues?

As the data coming from the fitness and wellness apps and wearables is not considered as sensitive as the electronic medical records, we are lucky that the strictest regulations, like the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) act in the U.S., does not apply in Lympo’s case. However, we believe that security is key to the success of our platform and are choosing the most secure data storage providers.

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In the whitepaper, you mention your expansion plans to California which has some of the strictest state regulation in the U.S. about privacy and consumer rights. How do you plan to address different regulatory issues that your platform is about to face in multiple jurisdictions – starting with privacy.

The expansion process with taking place step by step including more and more jurisdictions. The service Lympo will provide is not exceptional neither in the type of the data our clients will be able to submit nor in its volume. Therefore, I am confident that by following the best examples and the existing regulations, we will be able to address these concerns.

Regulation-wise, are there any other big “nightmare” scenarios for you? Including a theoretical dramatic fall or bottoming out in the price of cryptocurrency? Do you think the system is appealing enough that people will use it as part of a “habit” or “lifestyle” habit anyway? Or does success depend on the coin having a certain “fiat” worth?

As LYM tokens are utility tokens, we do not see any risks concerning our type of tokens. Of course, there are many scenarios that can hurt the whole crypto space, but the service that Lympo will offer and especially the health and fitness data that our users will be able to monetize have value no matter the price of cryptocurrencies. My passion is our product and its potential. Our success depends on delivering the best product which motivates people to be healthier. With enough players in the ecosystem seeing the value of Lympo services, the “fiat” price is secondary.

You mention other potential participants (such as insurance companies and employers) who would be a part of the platform. How would they have access to this data that is being aggregated by users? For example, would insurers offer premium discounts to those who attained a certain level of fitness goals? How would that work with employers?

Health insurances are both interested in accessing the data their clients produce and in incentivizing healthy lifestyle. We will offer both partnership and an opportunity to integrate our infrastructure as a tool to reward clients for a healthy lifestyle. Employers will be able to offer, for example, healthy lifestyle challenges and reward the achieved goals with LYM tokens through the Lympo platform. Our advantage is that we can offer a system that really concentrates on concrete fitness efforts instead of one-size-fits-all solutions like just buying a gym membership for the employees. In this case, the employers would not get the access to the data itself, but just a way to distribute the rewards in an effective manner.

What’s something that you believed to be true for a long time until you found out that you were wrong, or if you don’t like that dichotomy of right versus wrong, what’s something significant that you really changed your mind about over time?

For a very long time, I believed that I should concentrate on having perfect skills in anything I do and know everything about it. I went a challenging and long way to realize that I can always find people with the skills needed who will be better than me and that my main focus is working on my own mindset for personal and professional goals. We can only achieve things that we can imagine. How to be able to imagine more? I don’t know yet, but I work on it every day.

What has been your happiest moment so far working on Lympo?
On the flipside, what has been the most painful, or perhaps the most regretful decision you’ve made with Lympo?

The happiest moments were the last few weeks when I saw our community on Lympo Telegram channel growing from 400 to 3400 people. I got so many messages from people from all over the world who are excited about our product and want to use it: a soccer club owner from Toronto, a SPA owner from Denver, a gym chain representative from New Zealand, a children doctor from Australia, a physical therapist from Nigeria. I see that so many people in the crypto space are only focused on the price of a token. With Lympo, I experience every day the excitement about the product and this is awesome. It takes so much courage to share your business plan with more than 3000 people and the feedback so far has been incredible.

I don’t look back and regret as long as I feel that I learned something from that situation. I wish I launched Lympo token sale earlier and would be much further in the product development now. It took me almost 6 months to believe that the vision and the plan we have is good enough. I spoke with so many people and identified all possible drawbacks. Now I understand that, of course, it is good to have doubts, but if I and my team believe that we can make Lympo work, we will achieve this goal.

Is Lympo already working with notable businesses or firms? Are there any future partnerships in process?
If yes, can you explain briefly about it?

Lympo has a few partners now that are interested in accepting the token as a payment method and we are expanding this network. Right now our partners are a wholesale healthy food platform Smackway.com and a client management tool for fitness professionals Gympro.com with more than 3000 fitness trainers using it.

Tell us more about the LYM token.
What is its function on the platform and what can token-holders expect from it in the future?

LYM tokens will have 3 main functionalities on our platform:

  1. LYM tokens will be rewarded to our users who achieved their healthy lifestyle goals.
    They can do so by submitting the data from a tracking app or by checking in to a particular location which has some token value like a training session in a gym.
  2. LYM tokens will be used to purchase healthy lifestyle goods and services.
    We will start with an existing platform to find the best personal trainer and expand to including more partners.
  3. LYM tokens can be invested in new innovative fitness and wellness startups.
    Lympo investment branch will list the best startups seeking to crowdfund which will be ranked and reviewed by our ecosystem members: people and businesses who know best what the industry really needs.

What do you think is the biggest challenge or obstacle Lympo will face? How do you plan to tackle that challenge?

The biggest challenge will be to find many talented and passionate people to expand our team as fast as possible. That is why I decided to move Lympo headquarters to Berlin, a city with a very lively international blockchain and startup community.

Moving on to more personal stuff, what does a typical day in your life look like?

In the recent year, I gave up this idea of having a routine life. I constantly move between Berlin and Vilnius, I run both the existing Lympo platform in Lithuania and the Lympo.io digital fitness wallet development, I travel a lot to expand my network and often speak in various entrepreneurship events or organize events on blockchain myself. My event series “What the heck is blockchain?” with female only speakers on blockchain had a great success in Vilnius, Berlin, and Brussels. I volunteer as one of the founders of the project aiming to provide every Lithuanian fifth-grader with a BBC micro:bit to learn to code.

I am part of the founding team of a platform for women professionals www.womenat.com and also an advisor to a peer-to-peer decentralized lending platform ETHLend. I do my best to ensure that I either do some yoga or meditate every day to find peace and silence in between all of these activities.

Can you express one personal opinion of yours about the blockchain? It doesn’t matter if it’s negative or positive, we just want to hear your thoughts on it.

I believe that the real potential of blockchain is in developing countries that lack many structures existing in the developed parts of the world. Land registries, vaccination registries, ID services based on blockchain can change the lives of hundreds of millions of people.

Finally, what other personal goals (besides your career) do you have in life? Is there anything else in life you want to achieve?

I want to be more present, less distracted by the meaningless noise and more connected to the people who live a free and fulfilled life.

That concludes our Interview with Ada Jonuse

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