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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Former UK Minister Joins Coinbase Crypto Exchange

Former British Chancellor George Osborne has taken on a new role as a global advisor to cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase. This move could be a significant one for Coinbase, providing it with more regulatory bargaining power, especially at a time when it is facing intense scrutiny in the U.S.

Osborne, who served as Britain’s chancellor of the exchequer from 2010 to 2016, joins the likes of Mark Esper, the former U.S. Secretary of Defense, and Patrick Toomey (R-PA) on Coinbase’s global advisory council. This council is in place to “advise Coinbase on our global strategy as we grow our reach around the world.” Faryar Shirzad, Coinbase’s chief policy officer, expressed his pleasure at having George Osborne join the council at this exciting time for the company.

As an advisor to Coinbase, Osborne will utilize his vast experience in business, journalism, and government to help the company establish connections with politicians and regulators to further the cause of establishing crypto-friendly regulations. Throughout his tenure as chancellor of the exchequer, Osborne introduced various policies aimed at reducing the budget deficit and stimulating business activity by cutting corporation tax.

Beyond his political career, Osborne also held the role of editor-in-chief at London’s Evening Standard newspaper and is currently a partner at Robey Warshaw LLP, a boutique investment bank. He has expressed his enthusiasm about the exciting innovations happening in the finance sector, particularly in areas such as blockchain and online transactions, and looks forward to working with Coinbase as they venture into a new era of financial services.

Osborne’s ties with Coinbase go beyond his recent appointment as a global advisor. Last year, he moderated a fireside chat with Coinbase’s CEO, Brian Armstrong, at a fintech event in London and later spoke with Coinbase’s chief financial officer at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. These interactions suggest a growing relationship between Osborne and Coinbase, showing that his current role is an extension of this existing connection.

Coinbase has been making significant moves in Europe, securing licenses in countries like France, Spain, Singapore, and Bermuda. However, it is facing challenges in the U.S., where the Securities and Exchange Commission has accused the company of violating securities laws. Coinbase firmly denies these allegations. During a previous event, Armstrong expressed openness to investing more abroad, including the possibility of relocating Coinbase’s headquarters from the U.S. to the U.K. or elsewhere if the regulatory environment in the U.S. becomes too challenging.

Coinbase’s dealings in the U.S. are closely being monitored, but with Osborne’s arrival as a global advisor, the company stands to benefit from his valuable insights and connections in the regulatory and political landscape. This could be a game-changing move for Coinbase as it navigates through complex regulatory environments and expands its global footprint.

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