Jed McCaleb is a serial entrepreneur and a co-founder of the nonprofit Stellar.org, the parent company of Stellar, a worldwide financial network designed to increase economic participation and make the financial infrastructure more accessible to all. He leads technical development with this organization. He has also advised at the Machine Intelligence Research Institute since March of 2015.
The idea for Stellar came from the success of Bitcoin, the world’s most prominent cryptocurrency. Instead of just creating a new currency to increase financial accessibility, Stellar links different institutions to each other, such as Bitcoin and major financial institutions. According to World Bank, 2.5 billion people (approximately half of the world’s adult population) do not have a bank account, which makes the transfer of money highly difficult and expensive. This expense is a large challenge for these unbanked individuals, as they are typically too poor to afford the costs associated with a bank account. The mission of Stellar is to tie financial institutions together and make the transfer of money accessible to all. Stellar is already in use by nonprofits, such as the Praekelt Foundation, which is using Stellar to help girls in South Africa save money.
Prior to his roles at Stellar and the Machine Intelligence Research Institute, Jed McCaleb was the founder of ripple.com, a company that enables banks to initiate direct transactions with each other. He also founded the Code Collective and was the founder and CTO of MetaMachine, a company that launched projects including a decentralized file sharing system, and eDonkey, the first large-scale DHT implementation. Jed McCaleb is passionate about decentralizing the financial system of the world and improving accessibility. He believes that it isn’t much harder to do something with a global impact than something that only impacts a specific niche. He is very excited by the future of artificial intelligence, knowing that it will soon be able to solve many problems and increase the quality of life for many people, considering it the biggest change in technology since the agricultural revolution. Jed McCaleb focuses on products that will be revolutionary, and Stellar is expanding to create that financial revolution.