Women’s talents crucial to Web3 development: IVS forum

Left: Tess Hau, founder of Tess Ventures and moderator of the forum; Right: Wendy Huang, cofounder of Nyan Heroes

Women have their own advantages when it comes to building community-driven Web3 businesses, a group of female business leaders have told a forum.

The forum, entitled “Women empowering Web3,” was held as part of the Infinity Ventures Summit (IVS), the largest C-level startup conference in Japan. This year’s event, held on July 7 in Naha, included its first crypto conference.

In the area of game development, Wendy Huang, cofounder and chief marketing officer of Nyan Heroes, a blockchain-based game title, suggested that having female advisors in a team would help it come up with well-thought-out solutions. Huang, better known as Wengie, is a singer, influencer and voice actress who has more than 14 million subscribers on her Youtube channel.

When she first came into the gaming space years ago, most advisors were men with rich development and technology experiences. Now in the age of Web3, it was important to have more female advisors, Huang said. 

“If we’re gonna win in Web3 and make Web3 commercial and mass market, you have to look after the people. It’s emotional, it’s about feelings. It’s about the real product, like, what is the experience?” Huang said. 

Female advisors with sound qualities on the emotional side could bring in different perspectives and complement other intelligent people who were good at logical thinking or analysing numbers, she said. 

“I think a good part of advisory is to have all angles covered,” she said. “It’s not just about who is the best, but it’s like, can you see from all sides and make sure all risks are taken care of.”

Huang said many women made big differences to the web through companies, but in their own ways, and not necessarily by the standard path. More young women would be encouraged to work in Web3-related areas when women now active in the industry showed them that Web3 could also be a path for them, she said.

Jen Bilango, who heads the corporate strategy and growth department at Blockchain Space, a data aggregator for guilds in Web3, shared her experience of advising guilds that were prominently owned and managed by men. The company has helped almost 24,000 guilds with 2 million players to scale in the metaverse.

“It plants the seeds. Women are able to strategize, and women are able to bounce ideas off them,” she said.

Bilango agreed that Web3 companies and guilds should hire more women to senior positions to enhance diversity in opinions. This was important because guilds were the starting points for Web3 projects and they understood the community best, she said.

One problem facing crypto projects right now was that they largely remained confined to a small group of people. But crypto adoption saw a surge in the Philippines thanks to the guilds who localised project ideas and taught their family members and friends. She said that reports showed that of 1 million players of blockchain game Axie Infinity in the country, 80% were new to Web3. 

As these players came onboard through Web3 and crypto but not traditional financial institutions, women could put their advantages – in nurturing, building communities and understanding consumers’ interest – to good use, Bilango said. 

Justine Lu, cofounder and chief executive of Lootex Technology, a Taiwan-based company which runs a marketplace for blockchain-based in-game items, said women might find themselves preoccupied with a slew of roles and responsibilities, including those as a mother and wife in a family. 

A key to keeping their goals in sight was to think of their core values. “The core values are like the north star when you are lost. It’s going to guide you when you face a dilemma,” Lu said.