Getting to Know Topl: Kim Raath, President

Paige Nicolaou
Sep 10, 2018 · 3 min read

Hi! I am Kim. Before being the first Rice University student to simultaneously pursue an M.A. in Economics and a Ph.D. in Statistics, I grew up in South Africa. I originally came to the United States on an NCAA Division I Track and Field Scholarship and studied Mathematics.

I started graduate school after working for a development organization where I was frequently made aware of the need for access to low-cost capital throughout the developing world. This drive for making an immediate hands-on difference was further ignited after I met Chris, my co-founder and the CEO of Topl, during my first semester at Rice University. The idea for Topl came from some of the conversations that first began inside the Center for Computational Finance and Economic Systems (CoFES) of which I am currently a Ph.D. student affiliate.

Getting Started with Topl

I am one of the co-founders and President at Topl. My role has evolved into contributing to operational decision-making and taking most of our investor relations responsibility. I work closely with our CEO to find new opportunities for Topl, and help to weigh the risks and benefits of each potential new venture with whom we seek to partner. I also lead the design of all financial instruments and models within the investment protocol. What I love most about what I do is the potential of making a broader impact, while simultaneously creating intellectual merit through the academic papers we write to explain and justify our achievements. Achieving both these criteria at the same time has been a life goal for me so, right now, there is nothing else I would rather be doing.

Having been an athlete for most of my life, I know that the one thing that makes an individual believe they can achieve a lot more than anticipated is having a solid team to support them. That is exactly what we have at Topl. We are all part owners of our protocol, so the success of our team also means success for the individuals who comprise it.

We have also diligently been working to make sure our technology has as solid a foundation as our team does. So we are strong, and we solve a very real and pressing problem. We have built the tool that allows anyone in the world access to impact investment opportunities all around the world. Now with this T(eam) & T(echnology) combination, our limits lie beyond the sky.

This is a photo taken in 2009 in Kota, Rajasthan, India. This was during the gap year I took after high school. It has been almost 9 years since I met all these wonderful girls and they have forever changed who I am. Looking back to the experience of backpacking all around the world is what motivates me and the reason I know what we are doing at Topl could change the world!

My favorite thing about Topl is that we truly do empower growth by enabling access to investment. After graduating high school, I joined a volunteer organization focused on serving underrepresented nations by rebuilding and developing communities. While traveling and serving throughout the world, I wanted to take action, however, I was not capable of changing the local economy myself. But what we have built with Topl allows each individual within their local economy to take action for themselves, for the benefit of everyone around them. And being a part of creating this access is truly my favorite thing about Topl.


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