Introducing Cheng Wang
July 9, 2020
5 min read
Cheng is one of the most creative, curious, and articulate thinkers in the world of finance. We’re incredibly excited to have Cheng leverage his extensive financial and operational experience from Wall Street, to digital commerce and ensure Akash has healthy liquidity and scale to support our ambitious growth goals.
- Greg Osuri, CEO Akash Network
Building the world’s first decentralized cloud marketplace requires a master level of organizational structuring and scaling, alignment, and growth planning.
We’re thrilled to introduce our new CFO Cheng Wang. A savvy entrepreneur and operational leader, with finance chops from legendary firms like Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, Cheng has unstoppable financial and operational capabilities to help us materialize the future of the cloud.
At Akash, I saw a massive opportunity to solve a universal problem with global impact on growth and innovation–escalating cloud costs. Akash provides faster, more efficient, and 10x lower cost access to the cloud.
From Debates, to Decentralized Cloud
As the son of immigrant parents with modest means, Cheng developed a precocious financial acumen early, approaching his future through an analytical cost-benefit perspective. His parents inculcated the importance of education and hard work. Growing up, Cheng’s family did not have much.
This experience drove an early ambition and competitiveness that, combined with a keen mind, enabled Cheng to become a champion debater in high school and the recipient of a full scholarship to Macauley Honors College CUNY in New York.
If there is a person who exemplifies Akash’s core value of sovereignty, that person is Cheng, in full control of his future outcomes. Although he had a knack for debate, and considered a career in law, his pragmatism led him to a fast-track career in finance. Accepted into a competitive internship at JP Morgan, Cheng quickly progressed across Wall Street’s most renowned and storied firms, including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and Merrill Lynch.
Earlier in my career, I found myself in political and hierarchical environments, and I was driven and focused on achievement. I learned important early lessons about leadership and culture. At Goldman Sachs, I found myself surrounded by incredibly intelligent problem solvers–I learned humility there.
Cheng later served as Vice President at Royal Bank of Scotland, focusing on debt and valuations. After 8 years at financial institutions, he transitioned his operational and financial acumen to entrepreneurship. He founded multiple retail businesses before relocating to California to serve as CFO for WRKSHP, a high growth San Francisco gaming startup.
The lure of blockchain brought him to Refereum, an incentivization platform built on blockchain, and the vision of the decentralized cloud and the experienced Akash team brought him, finally, to Akash Network.
Akash attracted me for several reasons–a highly experienced and talented team with an analytical and programmatic approach, a large market with a prevalent and ubiquitous need, and the opportunity to join at an early stage where I can actually impact growth and culture.
Pioneering Token Economics and Building Culture
At Akash, Cheng leads financial and operational strategy, forecasting, internal systems, and reporting, with a sharp eye on growth planning and treasury management to anticipate turbulence and opportunities in the market. His organizational and planning dexterity enables the company to weather multiple outcomes, especially in a global climate of uncertainty.
I’m looking forward to managing the token market, ensuring token value, and engaging token holders and investors, as well as mitigating potential risks to the token and to the company. With Akash’s pioneering token economics, we’re implementing a system that hasn’t been done in capital markets–that’s exciting.
On treasury and growth management, an Achilles Heel that has felled many projects in the ecosystem, Cheng shares:
Building our markets along with our treasury is the on-going challenge for the foreseeable future. I look forward to helping us get in position to leverage our resources as optimally as possible. There are many companies with amazing opportunities, but squander their potential by mismanaging tokens, monetary capital, and human capital–that’s not going to be us.
Guiding Growth for the Decentralized Future of the Cloud
Propelled by controlling outcomes, and operating in a volatile global market, Cheng believes in growth planning and management, and proper funding to ensure more runway than is needed.
How will he help Akash achieve this?
Build a strong, healthy, and durable market for Akash Token (AKT)
Overall treasury and balance sheet management–maximizing our assets
Proper organizational scaling
Projecting that forward, I have no doubt that our future constraints will not be growth, capital, or opportunities, but time, and timing. Regarding time, we’ll have more to do and more to pursue than we actually have time for. We’ll have to constantly choose between competing opportunities. And timing is equally as important–choosing when to do or not to do is just as important as determining if we should or shouldn’t. We can sum this up as proper scaling.
A financial strategist moved, not only by metrics, but by maximizing the health and happiness of teams, Cheng shares his perspective on culture:
Culture starts from the top with the founder. I’m a firm believer that a company’s culture and values aren’t determined by some consultant or a set of books, but determined and propagated by the founder(s) and the management team. Its success or failure depends on its robustness, consistency, and clarity. Every single individual matters immensely in building the right organization. As individuals, we’re taught to believe in who we are–why shouldn’t companies and teams?