22 February 2022 |

Future of Crypto Is Female With Defy Trends


Daniela Henao, Chief Operating Officer, Defy Trends

Defy Trends launched its Ambassador Program to increase the number of women who invest and work in crypto. 

Defy Trends is a startup that provides AI-backed analytics to retail and institutional investors. It was launched last year by CEO Imge Su Cetin, COO Daniela Henao, and CFO Elena Garidis.

The initiative is critical for the future of crypto assets to bring equity to financial systems. Without more women in leadership seats, crypto is going to look and operate like the white-male-dominated traditional financial system. That’s the opposite of what we want blockchain technology to do.

Yet, the gender disparities are clear. Less than 5% of crypto entrepreneurs are female including Flori Marquez of BlockFi, Yi He of Binance, Kelly L. Loeffler formerly of Bakkt, and Beryl Li of Yield Guild Games.

Crypto is not only a viable asset class for investing but a business sector worth pursuing a career. We, as an industry, need to empower more women with knowledge of crypto. Then, we need to start communicating this industry as a career path (especially to girls while they’re in school).

Inspired by Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In Circles, the Ambassador Program creates groups across the globe (from Miami and LA to Japan and Colombia) of like-minded women that will support each other, learn skills, share ideas and build a community.

Defy Trends is looking for chapter leaders in cities all over the world. Chapter leaders get resources including training, guidance, and a monthly stipend for community events.

What the COO told me

I caught up with Defy Trends COO Daniela to learn more about the details. Enjoy an edited (for clarity and brevity) version of my chat with Daniela.

Nicole: Why approach the gender gap in crypto with this Ambassador program?

Daniela: Our mission is to empower people to participate in this space. The program came to be as a result of really trying to understand what is the most impactful way and the most effective way to reach our global community.

We’re all woman founders, and we wanted to create an initiative that reached women globally. So we got together and we, of course, thought about regular marketing and social media. But what we wanted to do was to reach these women independently and to add value to their lives. 

Even though we have a really powerful team, it’s impossible for us to go to every country in the world and reach thousands of women personally. The program can do that with chapter leaders.

Nicole: What are your expectations of a chapter leader?

Daniela: These chapter leaders get briefed on topics, which are entrepreneurship, leadership, and cryptocurrencies. Then they teach their communities about these topics, which not only then creates that connection, and that value exchange, but it also creates a person-to-person relationship.

The women can come together and support each other in their development, and their financial literacy at the end, which is what we want. The crypto space has so much opportunity, and we want women to see they can partake in this opportunity.

So the first thing a chapter leader receives is the curriculum, which goes over leadership, empowerment, and crypto education. So we’re using all of these different topics to tie them back to essentially changing the mindset of women to know we are worthy of participating in this space.

Nicole: What type of leader are you looking for?

Daniela: You don’t have to be a specific age or be a CEO. Chapter leaders have the drive, determination, time, and the ability to learn. We’ll give you everything that you need, we’ll give you all the skills.

We’re also talking with universities. If you’re a student who wants to bring this to your college, that’s also welcome.

So there isn’t a one-size-fits-all. This is for women who want to learn themselves and empower their communities. This is for women who believe that through community that’s how we grow.

Nicole: What message for women and the crypto industry are you sending with this program?

Daniela: We’re saying you are going to be able to build a career here. Women are not as likely to take risks, and sometimes because of that, we don’t follow our true passions.

It’s really important to emphasize leadership here and then give women access to opportunities that may not be so broadly available. So for example, I’m in many different groups chats with women in the crypto space that are looking to hire talent.

The idea is to give them the access to change that mindset of scarcity and go towards an abundance mindset. And then allow you to also enter these opportunities by literally physically putting them in front of you.

This is the space that likes to talk about decentralization and empowerment. So let’s do it.

Interested in being a chapter leader? You can reach out directly to Defy Trends here: https://www.defytrends.io/contact.

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