Andre Cronje Wiki (Bio, Net Worth, Background, Yearn Finance)

Andre Cronje.
Courtesy of CoinMarketCap.com.

 

Who Is Andre Cronje?

Andre Cronje is a South African software developer and cryptocurrency/DeFi (decentralized finance) entrepreneur who is best known as the founder of Yearn Finance.

CoinMarketCap writes that Cronje has participated in high-profile DeFi projects such as Akropolish, Cover, Cream V2, Pickle, PowerPool, and Sushiswap. CoinMarketCap also calls Cronje one of the most influential people in the DeFi space.

On his LinkedIn page, Cronje humorously describes himself as follows:

I’m a lab accident away from becoming a super villain…. that lab accident really needs to show up sometime soon now…

 

Andre Cronje Bio And Background

Andre Cronje’s LinkedIn page states that he graduated from Stellenbosch University in 2003 with a bachelor degree in Law. In 2005, he studied computer science and information systems at Computer Training Institute (CTI) Education Group. From June 2005 to September 2006, he worked as a lecturer at CTI.

After CTI, Cronje became heavily involved in technical projects, working as a Technical Team Leader at Vodacom (October 2006 – December 2008), Mobile Developer at Mapplications (September 2009 – June 2010), and Software Architect at Full Facing (August 2013 – July 2015).

In recent years, Cronje worked in the cryptocurrency industry, having held positions such as Blockchain Protocol Advisor at BitDiem (March 2018 – September 2018), Blockchain Infrastructure Engineer at CryptoCurve (April 2018 – March 2019), and Technology Analyst at Lemniscap (June 2018 – June 2019).

CoinMarketCap summarizes Cronje’s career before Yearn Finance as follows:

He moved into telecoms developing big data, high transactional infrastructure, before delving into mobile security and cryptography. His last five years have been spent building bespoke FinTech solutions and leveraging blockchain technology to provide cost-reducing financial products to the unbanked sector in Africa.

As of May 5, 2021, Cronje held a number of positions, including freelance DeFi architect at Ethereum Foundation and Architect at his company Yearn Finance.

 

Cronje in the DeFi space

In an interview with Paradigm, Cronje said that he had progressed into blockchain from fintech (financial technology):

. . . from there [CTI] [I] moved to Vodacom, building telecom systems (GGSN, ISN), built mesh networks in Africa, went into big data, neural nets, moved onto fintech, and from there just naturally progressed into blockchain, originally as a researcher, and then finally as an engineer.

In 2016 and 2017, Cronje became attracted to decentralized ledger technologies due to their promises to solve problems in mesh computer networks, big data, and machine learning. However, though recognizing the potential of DeFi, Cronje was skeptical of its condition:

After getting involved in the space, I realized that it was mostly marketing hype and lies, but at the core, decentralized technology is still powerful, so has been sticking around ever since.

CoinDesk adds that Cronje became interested in crypto near the end of the 2017 Bitcoin bull run. After his business partner of the time left him for a honeymoon, Cronje started studying crypto whitepapers and GitHub repositories.

Cronje admits that he’d “probably still be doing the same stuff we’d been doing the last five years” if his business partner didn’t get married.

As his interest in cryptocurrencies grew, Cronje began doing code reviews for CryptoBriefing. He would also soon start working for the ICO-funded project Fantom, a South Korean blockchain platform. At the time, he was already frustrated by the token culture. He said on the YouTube show Oh Hey Matty in March 2019:

There’s so much time, energy and capital wasted playing the token game as opposed to playing the product game, which in the long term has a benefit for the token.

He nonetheless decided to help “people with crypto tokens get more crypto tokens”, launching Yearn. Cronje said in a July 2020 episode of the FTX Podcast that the project started since he was trying to manage his little stablecoin portfolio as a savings account.

CoinDesk writes that on Erica Kang’s YouTube show at the end of September 2020, Cronje compared DeFi in 2020 to the ICO (initial coin offering) boom of late 2017:

We’re sort of in the same space now, where everything thinks they need a token. They really think they need a yield farm.

In a June 2019 episode of the Crypto Zombie YouTube show, Cronje said that he believes the DeFi industry is overhyped, and he also regretted “the cynical fixation on gains”.

By 2019, Cronje saw people either leave the crypto industry or “grow jaded”.

People have realized the product is a lie, adoption is a lie – all of those things [are] kind of garbage – and the token is the new product.

In spite of his stance on the DeFi industry’s atmosphere, Cronje pushed the first commit of Yearn Finance on January 20, 2020, operating on his own.

 

Cronje’s Yearn Finance Platform

The homepage of Cronje's Yearn Finance platform.
Courtesy of Yearn.fi.

 

Andre Cronje’s renown skyrocketed after he launched Yearn Finance in early 2020. Yearn Finance allows digital asset holders to invest cryptocurrency in the platform in exchange for returns. The annual growth of invested assets on Yearn ranged from as low as 1% to as high as 45% for some assets as of May 5, 2021.

The governance token of Yearn Finance – in other words, the token that allows its holders to influence the future of the platform – is Yearn Finance (YFI).

Cointelegraph writes that upon the fair launch of Yearn in July 2020, all YFI tokens were distributed to liquidity providers. None were reserved for the founding team of Yearn.

While Cronje has since labeled such a distribution method a “mistake,” it brought the founder cult-like levels of adoration and earned him comparisons to Bitcoin founder Satoshi Nakamoto.

However, after $15 million was taken from a bonding curve contract for Eminence – a project Cronje was working on – in late September 2020, tension occurred between Cronje and the community.

In late November, Yearn “roared back”, announcing a string of collaborations/acquisitions/mergers with a “half dozen DeFi” projects. This reinforced the role of Yearn as the driver of innovation in DeFi.

 

Andre Cronje Net Worth

There is no credible information about Andre Cronje’s net worth online. However, a number of stats pertaining to his projects are known.

Although Cronje released YFI as a “completely valueless 0 supply token”, its price increased by 35,000% within a week after appearing on Hayden Adams’ Uniswap platform.

As of December 2020, there was $650 million worth of crypto assets staked in Yearn, according to CoinDesk.

 

Andre Cronje Online Presence And Publicity

Andre Cronje is present on Twitter, where he is quite active.

 

Cronje is also active on the Medium blog platform, occasionally publishing crypto guides and articles on recent trends in the industry.

Cointelegraph placed Cronje on the #2 spot in its The Cointelegraph Top 100 list of the most notable people in blockchain in 2021. Considering that Cointelegraph ranked “All of us” #1, Cronje was effectively the most notable individual on the list.

Hayden AdamsRaoul PalSergey NazarovAnthony Pompliano, Scott Melker, and Changpeng Zhao are some of the other crypto entrepreneurs on Cointelegraph’s top 100 list.

 

 

 

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