Adding Meaning to Blockchain with Dean Karakitsos

BizBoard CEO's to Watch


Considered to be the most advanced distributed database or ledger of the twenty-first century, Blockchain technology has a huge potential to drive major changes across global businesses. Not only does this technology help in saving costs, improving efficiency, and bringing transparency, but it also has solutions to the challenges faced by different industries. In short, Blockchain is improving global businesses by making companies more efficient and profitable.

Established in 2018 by founder and CEO, Dean Karakitsos, Bitquery is a set of software products that parse, index, and store blockchain data in a unified way. He shares, “We save time and resources to builders by providing access to indexed blockchain data. Which helps in faster go-to-market strategies, especially for teams building multi-chain solutions.”

With a proven history of integrating market analysis and consumer insight to capitalize on opportunities and create the products the market demands, Dean uses Blockchain to help companies enable key market segments resulting in growth in newer areas and advancements in existing ones.

Data Solutions Redefined

With the belief that blockchains will be a vital infrastructure on the internet with multiple use cases in different sectors, Dean is on a mission to provide blockchain data products to businesses for solving real-world problems. “There will be a massive demand for blockchain data to build better and transparent products. Therefore, we are building Bitquery to tackle this demand and provide a robust blockchain data infrastructure and products.”

Seeing how the blockchain ecosystem was rampantly growing, in February 2018, Dean developed Bloxy for Ethereum and provided APIs and explorers for the Ethereum blockchain. Two years later, with Bitquery, he expanded on the same concept by creating unified APIs that allow access to data from multiple blockchains. “Our USP is our ability to provide a unified Real-time API and capabilities to access data from multiple blockchains, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Solana, and Binance Smart Chain. We support more than 40 chains today,” he states.

Addressing the common misconceptions regarding Blockchain technology, Dean explains, “There are several misconceptions in the blockchain industry, but one of the most common is the belief that blockchain and cryptocurrency are the same thing. While blockchain technology is the underlying infrastructure that enables cryptocurrencies to function, blockchain has many other use cases beyond cryptocurrency.

Adding Meaning to Blockchain with Dean Karakitsos
Dean Karakitsos

Dean’s Journey

A tech entrepreneur of 20+ years, Dean formed his first company in the late ’90s in Athens, Greece. His first company Origin was the biggest market data vendor in Greece, broadcasting real-time market data to banks, investors, and financial institutions. After the market crash in 2000, he went on to form, the first electronic auction site in Greece. Later on, Dean moved to the telecom industry by creating a competitive VoIP (Voice over IP) carrier using his proprietary technology.

He shares, “I have been in the tech industry for over two decades. Started as a market data vendor, then I built a Voice over IP (VoIP) competitive carrier and later came to the blockchain space. The idea for Bitquery came about when we realized the need for blockchain data and how difficult was to pull data out of it. Bitquery was inspired by our focus on providing data queries for Bitcoin and other blockchains.” 

Since the Greek market was small, Dean decided to move to New York to expand his company. Today, the Bitquery organization operates remotely with employees present across different continents like South America, Europe, and Asia. The company is powering known blockchain projects & service providers, financial institutions, crypto exchanges & developers. “We see the trend toward blockchain adoption in various industries, such as finance, healthcare, education, gaming, and governance to name a few,” he states.

A Resolute Entrepreneur

As an entrepreneur and transformative thinker, Dean has had his brushes with resistance and hardships. He feels that failure is a natural part of any journey and can be especially common for entrepreneurs and startups. “It’s important to approach failure as an opportunity to learn and grow, rather than a reason to give up. One way to deal with failure is to reflect on what went wrong and identify specific areas for improvement. It can also be helpful to seek out feedback from others, including mentors, peers, and customers. Finally, maintaining a growth mindset and staying resilient in the face of setbacks can help you bounce back stronger and ultimately achieve your goals,” he opines.

An imperative skill leading for growth is the importance of focusing on the long-term vision while also being adaptable to change believes Dean. “In the pursuit of growth, it’s easy to become overly focused on short-term goals and lose sight of the bigger picture.” However, he maintains that it is essential to maintain a clear and inspiring vision for the future, while also being open to adjusting your strategy as circumstances change.

Dean also believes in the importance of building and maintaining a strong company culture. “A positive and supportive culture can help attract and retain top talent, foster innovation, create a sense of purpose and belonging among employees and empower employees to take ownership of their work. Leading for growth requires balancing short-term tactics with a long-term vision and a focus on building a strong culture,” he declares. 

Dean’s personal motto is – work smarter, not harder – which emphasizes the importance of efficiency and strategic thinking in order to achieve success.

"There are several misconceptions in the blockchain industry, but one of the most common is the belief that blockchain and cryptocurrency are the same thing. "

Growing as a Leader

To grow as a leader, Dean engages in various practices such as reading and learning about industry trends, reflecting on past actions and decisions, seeking feedback from others, practicing self-awareness, challenging their assumptions, and connecting with colleagues and peers. “By incorporating these practices into the daily routines, individuals can continue to develop and improve their leadership skills, gain different perspectives, and identify areas for growth,” he says. To him, effective leadership requires ongoing learning, self-reflection, and adapting and evolving over time.

“One of the best pieces of advice that I have heard but is often ignored is to focus on the user. Many technology innovators and startups get carried away with developing their products or service, but forget that the success of their business ultimately depends on how well they solve the needs and pain points of their users.” As per Dean, understanding your users and what drives their behavior is crucial to developing a product or service that truly resonates with them.”

Being successful is not a one-man game, something that Dean acknowledges daily. Without his team of thinkers and technologists working tirelessly around the globe, he would not be the successful visionary he is today. To him, it is crucial to foster an open and collaborative culture that encourages creativity and innovation. “Success is often the result of a combination of factors, including smart work, dedication, creativity, and persistence. If these factors are coming from your team then you are sitting in the winning spot,” he states.   

Advise to Founders

To other entrepreneurs and thinkers trying to disrupt their industry, Dean’s advice is to stay focused on their vision and not get distracted by short-term setbacks or failures. “Disrupting an industry is no small feat, and it requires a lot of hard work, patience, and persistence. Founders must be willing to take calculated risks, experiment, and iterate quickly to stay ahead of the competition.”

Additionally, he suggests that building a strong team and culture is key to long-term success and that founders should prioritize hiring people who are aligned with their vision and values, and who are passionate about the problems they are solving. 

“Finally, founders should always be learning and adapting to the changing landscape of their industry. Technology is constantly evolving, and staying up-to-date with the latest trends and developments is crucial to staying ahead of the competition and delivering value to their users,” concludes Karakitsos.

BizBoard CEO's to Watch, 2023