UREEQA Adds Experienced and Versatile Executive Rakan Aown as VP of Business Development
New UREEQA Vice President of Business Development Rakan Aown is so confident in the company’s platform, vision and personnel that he didn’t think twice about leaving a job he cherished at a Big Four consulting firm to join the UREEQA team.
Aown, who has more than 30 years’ experience across numerous industries, has spent over 13 years at KPMG, where he most recently served as Director of Market Relations in Boston.
But now he’s leaving the firm he loved because he believes strongly in the trajectory of the crypto and digital content industries, UREEQA’s position in those industries, and the abilities of UREEQA CEO Harsch Khandelwal.
“UREEQA’s platform is designed to ensure a Creator’s work is protected,” he said. “It’s not, ‘Mint an NFT and make a million bucks.’ It’s about protecting work, preserving rights, ensuring that all of that is backed by a Package of Proof. It’s on the blockchain and it’s there forever. This is a great thing that we’re doing. I think it’s going to change the world and how we do things, and that’s across all creative mediums.”
Aown is excited to join forces with Khandelwal — the two go back a decade and a half and hold each other in extremely high esteem — and he shares the CEO’s passion for the altruistic element associated with UREEQA, which is focused first and foremost on advocating for Creators when it comes to their rights.
“It’s a crazy, booming market and you can’t go online without seeing something about NFTs, crypto or blockchain,” Aown said. “But what honestly really attracted me to this was the ability to support the artists and help them protect and monetize their work.”
When Metallica famously took on Napster at the turn of the century, Aown remembers the uproar from artists making big money, complaining about the unauthorized use and sale of their work. He’s realized quickly that people (including himself) “didn’t fully understand what these artists go through” in the creative process. Plus, the reality is many Creators who are ripped off aren’t financially set like Lars Ulrich.
Now, Aown in his position, has the ability and is determined to essentially go to bat for Creators. He’s appalled that, according to a recent study, 85 percent of all images on the internet are used without permission, and his general approach to his new job is warm and spirited.
“I’m a big believer in reciprocity — opening doors for people, making introductions, doing what I can to pay it forward,” he said. “Because in the end, I know that if people benefit from my contacts and my ability to connect, the world’s a happier place. And that’s pretty much how I landed here.”
He’s off to a good start. In one particular meeting with a music industry representative last week, both parties pondered the seemingly endless possibilities for Creators that could stem from UREEQA’s platform. Before hanging up, the rep told Aown that their phone conversation was the best call he’d had all year.
“UREEQA has made a point of bringing in the best and brightest from a wide variety of industries and Rakan Aown is no exception,” Khandelwal said. “I’ve known him a long time and I can confidently say that his reputation as a brilliant businessman and executive doesn’t do justice to his skillset. We are honored and delighted to have him on board, and we know our Creators and partners will benefit significantly from his presence.”
As for Aown’s ultimate goal? It’s quite simple.
“In the end,” he said, “I want Creators to say, ‘Yeah, UREEQA did this for us.’”
The UREEQA platform strives to protect Creators’ work, their rights and their revenue by harnessing the power of blockchain technology.
Established in Canada in 2020, UREEQA will modernize the inefficient and bureaucratic systems currently in place for copyright, patent, industrial design and trademark protection. By building a robust and compelling Package of Proof for source creative work, UREEQA only mints Validated NFTs to represent creative rights. This helps keep buyers safe by giving them confidence that the work they are purchasing was minted by the smart contract approved by the Creator of the work and is therefore authentic.
UREEQA provides value and opportunities for its Creators, Validators and Tokenholders via URQA, the token at the heart of the UREEQA ecosystem.
Statements in this article, including any statements relating to UREEQA’s future plans and objectives or expected results, may include forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on numerous assumptions and are subject to all of the risks and uncertainties inherent in technology development and commercialization. As a result, actual results may vary materially from those described in the forward-looking statements.