Felix Holzapfel - Top 10 Global Thought Leader in Digital Transformation.
Digital entrepreneur Felix Holzapfel and crypto artist Nate Hill teamed up to produce the first crypto art book cover, using Hill’s “Back to our World” piece. Felix sat down with Tech Inside Out to tell us more.
Describe who you are and what you do in 256 characters (a Tweet’s length).
Felix Holzapfel: Per Thinkers360, I am a Top 10 Global Thought Leader in Digital Transformation. I love thinking fast, strategically, and outside the box; playing devil’s advocate and inspiring and enabling people to make a difference. That’s what I’m passionate about!
How did you get involved in the digital industry?
Felix Holzapfel: My professional career began in 1997 at an IT systems company while I was still attending school. In 2002, I founded the digital marketing agency conceptbakery with my brother Klaus. We were privileged to work for some of the world’s leading brands (Fortune 500, DAX 30, and SMB entities). After we established an international agency alliance, our business became part of Zone. We became shareholders and members of senior management. Cognizant, one of the world’s leading IT services providers, bought Zone in 2017. In the meantime, my brother and I founded Quovabiz, an entrepreneurial platform to bring our passion projects to life.
What made you think of the idea or what inspired you to write your latest book, Catch-42?
Felix Holzapfel: I had published several books about technology, trends, and the shift in our media landscape—all professional books targeting professional audiences. During my career, I encountered experts who were astonished at what’s possible today if we use the entire bandwidth of the technology at our fingertips.
For many outside my tech bubble, these possibilities may feel like science fiction even though they are already a reality. I side with those who believe that artificial intelligence (AI), quantum computing, biotechnology, genetic engineering, nanotechnology, and robotics will change all our lives fundamentally. That’s why I believe we are well-advised to encourage everyone to learn about the status quo and potential uses of these converging technologies and how they will transform our society, our way of life, and perhaps even our species.
For years, I have wanted to write a book that encourages everyone to think—from radical new perspectives—how humanity, technology, the economy, and society might develop in the future. Recently, I finally had the time to do so.
How did you come to use NFTs to promote and sell your book?
Felix Holzapfel: As with every new technology, NFTs still have a few teething problems to be ironed out before they fully hit the mainstream market. But once these issues are resolved, the technology has the potential to disrupt different industries and current standards. The publishing industry could be one of the first categories affected by this change.
That’s how the idea emerged to team up with Australian digital-and-crypto artist Nate Hill to produce the first crypto-art book cover for a tech thriller. In addition, we are planning further activities that include a limited NFT edition as a fundraiser for the NGO Paradigm Initiative that focuses on digital inclusion in Africa. We are also planning online challenges where users can earn their first NFT. The target of this collaboration is to highlight the opportunities for nonfungible tokens (NFT) and blockchain technology in the creative and publishing industries—and beyond.
What upcoming plans do you have?
Felix Holzapfel: Right now, I’m focused on promoting Catch-42 and the book’s message in North America. If the project succeeds, the next step is to pursue other markets by translating Catch-42 into more languages. Who knows? Maybe I’ll have the opportunity to write more books like Catch-42 in the future.
Besides being an author, I’m happy to be involved in several other exciting projects like building sustainable net zero-emission houses with my brother or accompanying companies on their growth path. For example, I’m an investor and member of the advisory board of a start-up that uses high-tech satellite technology on a cloud-based platform, to optimize African farmers’ productivity and profitability within a low-tech environment.
Best case, I can simultaneously establish this healthy mix of being a thought leader and doing hands-on projects over the next couple of years. Currently, I just love this sort of variety in my professional life.
Felix Holzapfel is a Top 10 Global Thought Leader in Digital Transformation. He teamed up with Australian digital and crypto artist Nate Hill to produce the first crypto art book cover, using Hill’s “Back to our World” piece. Together, they offer an exclusive limited-edition NFT containing the book cover’s artwork and a signed copy of the book within an auction on Superrare.co, one of the leading platforms for crypto art. The auction takes place before the official release date of the book and before the book will be available on traditional sales channels like Amazon.