A “killer app” for consumers is what will be needed to bring the decentralized finance (DeFi) sector to a level that draws in a mainstream audience, said Ripple Lab’s head of DeFi markets Boris Alergant.
Alergant made the comments during a panel at the Blockchain Futurist Conference titled “The Future of Decentralized Finance” on Tuesday, which was covered by Cointelegraph reporters on the ground in Toronto, Canada.
Alongside Alergant, Aventus Ventures CEO Kevin Hobbs, FLUIDEFI co-founder and CEO Lisa Loud, and Teller Finance CEO and co-founder Ryan Berkin also featured on the panel.
The general sentiment among the panelists was that centralized finance institutions will ultimately push DeFi toward mainstream adoption. Alergant suggested that growth will likely come from a user-friendly CeFi app that offers exposure to DeFi services:
“For an average user, you tell your mom how to go out and stake on Aave or ETH [...] and this is a process. She doesn’t know how to use MetaMask, but she wants to generate that yield somehow. She wants to transact but she doesn’t know how to do it.”
“So I think institutional adoption is where it’s going, and the institutions are what is going to enable [...] that killer app for consumers to really bring crypto and DeFi to the next level.”
FLUIDEFI co-founder and CEO Loud expressed a similar view, noting how the everyday person eventually adopted the internet despite not understanding the internet protocol suite, also known as TCP/IP:
“We all use the internet right? The internet was a paradigm shift for us, but we don’t know how to use TCP/IP. Right now, everybody who uses DeFi knows how to use the protocols, it’s not sustainable, it’s not a good model for adoption.”
“If we look at two years, I see institutions investing more in DeFi and I see companies making simpler user experiences,” she added.
The Ripple executive also outlined that the DeFi sector will soon work hand in hand with the CeFi sector to provide financial services to customers.
“DeFi will ultimately supplement and complement CeFi. In the end you don’t really care if a trade is done through decentralized means in a centralized exchange. I just want the best damn execution,” he said.
Related: Decentralized finance faces multiple barriers to mainstream adoption
The Blockchain Futurist Conference is the largest annual blockchain and crypto conference in Toronto, Canada, and is running until Wednesday, marking the fifth year of the event. This year’s event is expected to see Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin speak there despite appearing at the Korea Blockchain Week only two days ago.