Coinbase Ropes in Ex CryptoCom, Facebook Staffers to Head its EMEA Units
Coinbase, a crypto exchange headquartered in the US, expects to focus on the European market. The company has hired Cormac Dinan, the former general manager of CryptoCom exchange to take over as the director of Coinbase in Ireland. Dinan is among the number of five new tenants, which Coinbase has confirmed to direct its operations in European countries. In the official blog, the crypto exchange said that this recruitment is part of the ‘Go Wide and Deep’ strategy, which has been part of its agenda since the beginning of this year.
Elke Karskens, former director of partnerships at Facebook has been given the role of director of Coinbase’s UK unit. While Michael Schroeder has been appointed managing director of Coinbase Germany, Patrick Elyas and Daniel Seifert have been appointed director and regional managing director to oversee the expansion in the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) regions.
“Under their guidance, we plan to launch new products, grow our customer base, build our business, expand into new markets in the region, and continue to work closely with our external stakeholders, including policy makers, regulators, financial institutions, and our partner, Coinbase noted in the official blog post, detailing the plans for these new nominees.
Coinbase recently found itself in legal trouble in Germany. Earlier in November, Germany’s Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFIN) issued an order asking Coinbase to provide details on the business practices of its local arm. BaFin raised the issue against Germany’s Coinbase outlining parts of its operation as ‘essential’ to the conduct of banking business.
Therefore, it seems surprising, that the 10-year-old company is now accelerating efforts to increase its credibility in international markets. By hiring these experienced professionals as high-level managers in the MENA region, Coinbase has reiterated its support for cooperation with legal entities that aim to make the crypto sector safer for investors, under regulatory oversight.
“Responsible companies want laws that make sense, protect customers and encourage innovation. We strongly feel that the EMEA region is at the forefront of creating a safe and secure crypto regulatory environment,” notes Coinbase’s blog.
The crypto sector has been attracting a lot of attention in the EMEA regions.
Recently, the European Union (EU), approved the MiCA law, which is expected to enter into force in 2024. The MiCA bill aims to prevent insider dealing, illegal disclosure of inside information, and market manipulation related to crypto-assets.
In the UK, the Financial Services and Markets Bill which proposes legal disclosures about the operations of crypto firms in the UK, is currently awaiting parliamentary approval.
In regions in Africa and the UAE, the crypto sector has seen significant growth. While the UAE has established the Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA), an independent regulator of virtual assets, authorities in African countries such as Kenya and Nigeria are working with industry players such as Binance to create a profitable ecosystem for the digital asset industry to thrive.
“We strongly feel that the EMEA region is at the forefront of creating a safe and secure crypto regulatory environment. In fact, we consider it a standard setter and an example of what can be achieved when the political will is there,” added Coinbase.
Affected by market volatility, Coinbase saw several setbacks in terms of keeping its business afloat this year. Coinbase’s transaction revenue fell by 44 percent in the third quarter of 2022.
The exchange, between July and September, managed to withdraw $365.9 million (roughly Rs. 3,022 crore). This figure was almost doubled – reaching $655.2 million (about Rs. 5,411 crore) in the second half of 2022 between April and June.
Due to reduced numbers, the company had to let go of several of its employees.
Earlier this month, Coinbase laid off more than sixty employees as part of a cost-cutting measure. Last June, the company cut 18 percent of its workforce, leaving more than 1,000 workers unemployed.
In an effort to get the business back on track, Coinbase has been focusing on international expansion.
Brian Armstrong, the CEO of Coinbase had come to India earlier this year, to offer jobs to Indian developers. The company also introduced a new feature that allowed Indians to buy crypto through UPI on its platform, but had to withdraw the offer after Indian authorities said they did not approve any such feature from a third-party company.
Armstrong, at the time, had accused the RBI of putting informal pressure on crypto companies, hindering the growth of crypto in India.