Argent Wallet is a non-custodial wallet for Ethereum tokens that aims to be the most secure and simple "Smart Wallet" for crypto.
What's a smart wallet? By leveraging smart contracts, Argent Wallet has innovated a whole new class of wallet, offering users uniquely user-friendly features like a social recovery tool (instead of your standard 24-word backup phrase), daily withdrawal limits, and human-readable addresses.
To find out how Argent is changing the experience of holding crypto, we talked to Co-Founder and CEO Itamar Lesuisse.
How did you discover crypto?
I started to focus on it after I sold my last startup, Peak, the leading brain training app. My now co-founders, Julien, who was previously in quantum information, and Gerald, also a co-founder of Peak with me, were sharing notes on the technology and could sense there was something special about it. Making our first transactions felt like magic. But equally we could see that the UX and security had a long way to go. We thought we could fix that.
We focused on Ethereum as opposed to other blockchains due to the strength of the community and the endless possibilities the platform provides.
For those who haven't discovered Argent yet, can you give us your elevator pitch?
Argent is the only self-custody wallet that combines the security of a hardware wallet with the user experience of Revolut/Robinhood. In one tap you can exchange, earn interest and invest. And you enjoy peace of mind from trusted contacts, daily limits and no seed phrases. Our mission is to help everyone to control and benefit from their digital assets and identity.
DeFi has blown up in the last year, how has all of this looked from Argent's end?
Busy! We integrated the best DeFi Dapps - e.g. Uniswap, Yearn - natively, so you can use them in only a tap. As a result our user growth and assets grew significantly, with $180m now in Argent wallets. While we do have people completely new to the space, we're seeing an increasing number of wallets with $100K plus in them as experienced crypto engineers and founders have ever more confidence in our security model.
On the less positive side, gas costs have been very high across Ethereum. Our focus for this year is cutting them massively with Layer 2.
How is progress looking with the Ethereum 2.0 integration?
Ethereum 2.0 is making good progress but too far off for any integration work. Our focus instead is on Layer 2. We want to build the best Layer 2 experience in the world, and in doing so help crypto to reach a more mainstream audience globally. We're aiming to launch that this summer.
Congratulations on getting the nod from Vitalik a few weeks ago! Can you tell us more about what he was getting at and how Argent's Social Recovery feature fits in?
Vitalik was pointing out that a wallet such as Argent makes big improvements to the security and UX of previous generations of wallets, including hardware wallets. He described how we solve two big problems: recovery and theft.
For recovery, we use what Vitalik calls "social recovery". This is where you choose trusted contacts to help you recover your wallet if you lose your device. It replaces seed phrases, until now the default option for recovering a non-custodial wallet.
For theft, Vitalik referred to our daily limit system. In his words, "To protect against theft, the wallet has a daily limit: transactions up to that amount are instant but transactions above that amount require guardians (trusted contacts or devices) to approve to finalize the withdrawal."
What is Argent building right now that you're most excited about?
As mentioned above, without a doubt I'm most excited by our efforts to make Ethereum much, much cheaper to use. We want DeFi to be quick and cheap so anyone can use it, regardless of their wallet size.
Why did Argent choose MoonPay to help execute on its vision?
We chose MoonPay due to the breadth of their geographic coverage, the value offered to consumers and the pace the team moved compared to competitors.