Interview With Guillaume Le Saint - Co-Founder & CEO of Atato

Shauli Zacks Shauli Zacks

Guillaume Le Saint, Co-Founder & CEO of atato, discussed the company’s journey from a blockchain service provider to launching atato Custody in a recent SafetyDetectives interview. This custody solution stands out with fixed pricing, no extra fees, and innovative multi-chain management features. Atato uses Multiparty Computation (MPC) for enhanced security and focuses on compliance as a licensed custodian in Asia and Europe. Looking ahead, they see potential in stablecoin adoption, Web3-based social media, and blockchain’s role in securing digital lifestyles.

Can you talk about your journey and what motivated you to co-found atato?

Before Web3, my career was in enterprise information technology. Back in 2013, a friend introduced me to Bitcoin, and I kept a close eye on blockchain and crypto from that point. In late 2017, I figured the time was right to start building blockchain solutions for businesses, as by that time Ethereum had matured quite a lot already. Atato started as a blockchain service provider, building Ethereum based fintech solutions in South-East Asia.

In 2021, atato’s co-founder Maxime Paul and I had seen very strong demand for custody and wallets from our clients, so we decided to launch our own product, atato Custody. We received VC funding and launched our solution in January of this year.

What are the flagship services offered by atato and how do you differentiate your solution from competitors?

atato is a Custody solution that helps Web3 startups, SMEs, and VCs manage their digital assets in a licensed and compliant manner. We’re the only custody provider that is fixed price and charges no Asset Under Custody fees as well as no transaction and withdrawal fees. This difference between us and other providers ensures web3 projects enjoy predictable costs, critical to cash-flow calculations.

We’ve also recently released our Bring Your Own Chain (BYOC) & Bring Your Own Token (BYOT) features which further separate us from the crowd. BYOC makes us the only custodian to natively support EVM and non-EVM chains from within atato Custody – without code. BYOT enables projects to secure any token on atato Custody within a few clicks. Combined, this means that projects can safely manage and deploy any token across any chain through one intuitive solution and without spending additional money, time, or developer resources.

Lastly, we’re licensed and compliant across Asia & Europe and certified SOC 2 Type 2 and ISO 270001

What are the main benefits of utilising MPC technology for custodial services?

Cryptocurrency wallets rely on public-key cryptography. Securing private keys at scale has always been a challenge, not only in crypto. Crypto custodians are companies that are licensed by a financial authority to provide this service under strict regulations. MPC, or multiparty computation, allows us to build wallet security systems where the private keys never reside in any single system or location, provides very fine controls on the approval of transactions our users make, and is cheaper to operate than the alternative options.

Multiparty computation is a proven cryptography technology, with a vibrant end-user community, and is used by large institutions and enterprises throughout the Web3 industry. Using MPC, atato is able to meet our regulatory commitments, while preserving the end-user flexibility that’s necessary for businesses.

What are some of the key considerations and challenges when it comes to securing a wide range of crypto assets and blockchains?

Great question, and definitely something we can offer a unique take on, as we offer the broadest blockchain and token support among custodians.

First and foremost, the Web3 ecosystem has grown tremendously since Bitcoin’s inception 15 years ago. It is now a diverse community with retail investors, professional traders, software engineers, gamers, art collectors, and many other groups for other use-cases of the technology. While there are of course technical, regulatory, security challenges that come with providing a very broad support for tokens and chains, the key challenge is to keep-up with the growth of new communities, and ensure that our solution serves the needs of vastly different usages of the technology.

Last, to answer in more details on the security side, our work started with establishing a very strong governance and policies structure, as well as an in-house technology platform where we control the whole stack. This allows us to build solutions that are unique on the market, under the strict governance of our security principles. They include internal audits, external audits, penetration testing, bug bounties, and many other internal procedures that guarantee the security of our architecture, and ultimately our customer’s assets.

How can a custody solution support businesses trying to remain compliant and regulated?

Imagine that to start an ice cream business, you first had to open a bank to keep your company’s money. That’s insanity, but also what’s happening in the Web3 world when businesses decide that the ‘do it yourself’ approach to securing your crypto in compliance with all applicable regulations is a good option.

Our most successful clients have understood that if they want to focus their time and capital on making their businesses succeed, they must select trusted partners that are responsible for their wallets from start to finish. From security to regulatory compliance. Being a licensed custodian, atato Custody is under a strict regulatory framework in Asia and Europe, whereby the local financial regulator dictates what can and cannot be done. These comprehensive regulations cover KYC, AML, disaster recovery, business continuity, security policies, operational policies, terms of service, etc.

By working with a licensed custodian, businesses can be assured that they themselves operate in compliance with applicable regulations. On the other hand, wallet infrastructure providers, like Fireblocks, Ledger, Safe, and many others are not under any regulatory oversight as they’re solely providing hardware and software solutions.

What are some of the emerging use cases for blockchain and web3 technologies that you find particularly exciting?

In the short term, we’re seeing a growing adoption of stablecoins by businesses. The typical use cases being selling services, paying suppliers and staff. Instant, virtually free, 24×7 transfers. Once you experience it, it’s difficult to go back to traditional cross-border bank payments.

In the medium term, I personally think that Web3 is ripe for social media. The technology is ready to scale, the user-base large enough for advertising and campaigns, but the social media platforms are still lacking. Running a campaign using the Web2 social media platforms to reach a Web3 audience is like riding a horse to advertise cars, it’s awkward. Coupled with the growing desire in the Web2 world for more data and privacy controls, I think there is an opportunity.

In the long term, our vision at atato is that blockchain is one of the technologies that will enable a secure digital lifestyle. Already with DeFi, we’re seeing the impact of secure applications and secure computing. Anyone can create an unbreakable currency, or financial service with a modest investment. As the capacity of blockchain network grows, we will see this unparalleled level of security benefit other industries and use-cases as well. We call this secure computing.

About the Author

About the Author

Shauli Zacks is a tech enthusiast who has reviewed and compared hundreds of programs in multiple niches, including cybersecurity, office and productivity tools, and parental control apps. He enjoys researching and understanding what features are important to the people using these tools.

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