How Humanity Protocol CEO drove his previous firm to insolvency

The CEO of Humanity Protocol, a reported $1 billion ‘Worldcoin rival’ that’s raised $30 million, almost bankrupted his $1.5 billion smartphone firm, burning through $170 million in investor funds.

Terence Kwok founded Hong Kong-based Tink Labs in 2012. The Unicorn company raised millions in funding to provide hotels with smartphones for guests to use during their stay. 

His goal was to give guests an alternative to roaming charges, improve their hotel experience, and sell gathered data on customer preferences.

However, the Financial Times (FT) reports that his firm began to operate at a loss of £9.06 million in 2017. This was reportedly due to multiple factors, including his policy of aggressive expansion, roaming charges becoming cheaper and more accessible, and hotels not wanting to pay for the phones he had given out.

Terence Kwok’s Tink Labs liquidated 

According to a former employee, Tink Labs investor SoftBank forced it to abruptly stop a major project over concerns the firm was “funnelling money from the joint venture in Japan to stay afloat in other regions.”

Kwok reportedly struggled to pay employees and contractors and eventually ordered mass layoffs before closing Tink Labs on August 1. Laid-off employees reportedlysmeared cake all over the walls and floor,” as they left the firm’s Oxford offices. 

Tink Labs’ European arm began winding up in January 2020 before undergoing insolvency proceedings. The former head of various Tink Labs human resource operations told FT, “I never thought it would last but I didn’t think it would close so quickly.” She also told the FT that Kwok only cared about “making money.”

Terence Kwok CEO of human palm ID crypto firm

Last year, Kwok launched Humanity Protocol, a blockchain-based identity firm that relies on scanning the palms of people’s hands as a means of identification.

The firm reportedly raised $30 million in funding from Kingsway Capital, Animoca Brands,, and Shima Capital, and has already reached Unicorn status.

Humanity Protocol claims iris scans, utilized by Worldcoin, are a “lucrative target for hackers.”

Kwok told Bloomberg that Humanity Protocol will use its own crypto token to pay for verification fees. The funding round reportedly ensures investors’ future tokens through a simple agreement for future tokens (SAFT). 

A test network will reportedly be launched in the second quarter and an infrared camera is being worked on that will allow your phone to scan your veins as an extra layer of security. He claims to have a waitlist of 500,000 people for the project

Read more: Worldcoin’s orb revamp hopes to be less Black Mirror, more Apple

Coindesk dubbed Humanity Protocol a ‘Worldcoin rival.’ Indeed, it’s similar to Worldcoin’s ‘proof of personhood’ system. Kwok calls his concept ‘Proof of Humanity,’ and told Bloomberg that unlike Worldcoin or Face ID, “It’s not your face and it’s also not your eyeballs. It’s much less dystopian.”

Got a tip? Send us an email or ProtonMail. For more informed news, follow us on XBluesky, and Google News, or subscribe to our YouTube channel.