How an aerospace student became a Web3 entrepreneur

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A pop­u­lar adage says that the path to suc­cess is not a straight line. Some­times, it leads to var­i­ous detours along the way, like learn­ing about devel­op­ing air­craft, being a writer, keep­ing an eye on Bit­coin (BTC), and explor­ing the blockchain space. 

In a Coin­tele­graph inter­view, Ahmet Usta shared his jour­ney from being fas­ci­nat­ed by tech­nol­o­gy since he was a child to becom­ing the founder of sev­er­al suc­cess­ful Web3 projects focus­ing on blockchain gam­ing and non­fun­gi­ble tokens (NFTs).

Usta stud­ied aero­space engi­neer­ing at Istan­bul Tech­ni­cal Uni­ver­si­ty in Turkey main­ly because of his pas­sion for tech­nol­o­gy. After that, he pur­sued a career in infor­ma­tion tech­nol­o­gy and worked for var­i­ous busi­ness­es. Ten years lat­er, Usta found him­self in a weird sit­u­a­tion. He said: 

“By some strange coin­ci­dence, I found myself as a tech­nol­o­gy writer and edi­tor. I’ve writ­ten about tech­nol­o­gy for Bloomberg Busi­ness­week Turkey and a vari­ety of oth­er publications.”

Then came Bit­coin, cap­tur­ing Usta’s atten­tion as he “kept a close eye on it.” Being enticed by the tech­nol­o­gy behind the cryp­tocur­ren­cy, Usta co-authored Turkey’s first book on blockchain and then pur­sued gigs as a blockchain spe­cial­ist, giv­ing speech­es, sem­i­nars, and train­ing com­pa­nies on the topic. 

Back in 2021, the entre­pre­neur worked on a blockchain gam­ing project that inte­grat­ed NFTs. After find­ing suc­cess, he turned over the project to his part­ner to focus on a more long-term busi­ness called ELYT, which recent­ly raised fresh funds to con­nect brands and influ­encers to Web3 technology.

When asked why he thinks it’s impor­tant for brands to uti­lize Web3 tech­nolo­gies like NFTs, Usta said that NFT tech­nol­o­gy is more than an appli­ca­tion. It’s a new way of think­ing. He explained that: 

“Inno­va­tion begins to sprout as soon as you can begin to think in this new way. The rest is sim­ply an engi­neer­ing and busi­ness prob­lem. The key is to be able to cre­ate real busi­ness mod­els from a fresh perspective.”

The exec­u­tive also said that the pos­si­bil­i­ties in terms of NFT use cas­es are lim­it­ed only by peo­ple’s imag­i­na­tion. “The mon­key visu­als and game assets are noth­ing more than a tiny snow­ball rolling on the ice­berg vis­i­ble above the water,” he said. 

Relat­ed: Intel­lec­tu­al prop­er­ty has an awk­ward fit in Web3 decen­tral­iza­tion — Lawyers

Usta believes that there are many oppor­tu­ni­ties opened up by Web3. Accord­ing to him, Bit­coin, Ethereum, NFTs and decen­tral­ized finance (DeFi) all have their roles to play in the world. He explained that: 

“Bit­coin enabled the keep­ing of records with­out the need for a cen­tral­ized struc­ture. For the first time in human his­to­ry, this enabled a decen­tral­ized trust pro­to­col. With smart con­tracts, Ethereum has trans­formed busi­ness workflows.”

The Web3 entre­pre­neur also men­tioned that NFTs lim­it the own­er­ship of dig­i­tal assets that could oth­er­wise be repli­cat­ed indef­i­nite­ly and believes that the space will be dis­cov­er­ing var­i­ous oth­er appli­ca­tions. Mean­while, Usta also high­light­ed his con­fi­dence that DeFi will play a vital role in the future of finance. 

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