In Brief

  • LunchMoney.io is a crypto alternative to Yelp that launched three years ago.
  • It was listed on Uniswap and pivoted to DeFi.
  • The company is among a new wave of DeFi projects started by black entrepreneurs.

Founded in 2017 by Adrian Triplett and Jeffery Varnado, LunchMoney is a Yelp alternative that rewards users with LMY tokens when they upload reviews of eateries they visit. The company also happens to be among a growing list of DeFi-related companies founded and run by black people.

“We see LunchMoney as a hybrid mix between DeFi and CeFi. It’s ‘decentralized,’ as in the tech, and token, and ‘CeFi,’ as in there is a governing body behind the project that makes decisions,” Triplett told Decrypt.

DeFi has made it possible for projects to find liquidity through platforms such as Uniswap and LunchMoney's LMY. An ERC-20 token, it has been listed on several of these exchanges in recent weeks, contributing to the already crowded DeFi craze.

Listing LMY

“We listed LMY on Uniswap to provide instant liquidity for our holders and users,” Varnado said. Added Triplett: “We felt that Uniswap offered an easy on ramp for people to get in and out of LunchMoney without the stipulations of central exchanges.”

The LMY token listing on exchanges exposes the token to a broader investor pool. Initially, if someone wanted to get LMY tokens, they had to go through the LunchMoney.io website.

"LMY has played a significant part in the growth of LunchMoney by utilizing our token, we benefit from the growing number of adopters as well as crypto vets who use crypto regularly with our easy to use dapp," Triplett said.

Black entrepreneurs coming to the forefront

Black entrepreneurs have been in the blockchain space for many years, most working behind the scenes in technology and programming. But in recent years these entrepreneurs have come to the fore with projects attempting to answer real-world questions, and to provide value to the unbanked.

“Being a Black entrepreneur is definitely tough in the crypto space,” Varnado said. “We feel that we do not get the same level of respect or level of appreciation as other projects who are not making the kind of progress we are making. Oftentimes other non-black projects have millions of investment dollars behind them without proof of concept.”

“Being a black entrepreneur in the Defi/Crypto space has had its challenges,” said Triplett. “I think the difficulties we run across are people actually taking us seriously as a company due to either a lack of technical knowledge or the funding needed in this space to make a real impact.”

The future of LunchMoney

LunchMoney’s LMY is listed on eight exchanges: Folgery.com, VinDax, SouthXchange, Uniswap, VCC Exchange, BITStorage, XT.com, and Cat.Ex. The company is moving to expand its reach via partnerships with TheCryptoBill.com, a paper wallet company; ivendPay, a vending machine company that accepts crypto as payment; and BlockCard, a cryptocurrency-based credit card company.

“As LunchMoney aims to be integrated into ATMs, Payment Systems, and Point of Sale hardware, it allows many to be exposed to LMY, unleashing the possibilities to scale further," Varnado said.

LunchMoney's new user interface is coming soon.

Disclaimer

The views and opinions expressed by the author are for informational purposes only and do not constitute financial, investment, or other advice.