Today is Valentine’s Day, and in honor of this most romantic celebration, Cointelegraph presents five of the most remarkable unions and breaks in the crypto community in the past 12 months.
Kelly Lynn Loeffler and Bakkt
Kelly Lynn Loeffler split from the crypto world in 2019, but can you blame her? Loeffler left the Bitcoin Bakkt futures market, where she was CEO, for a place with a slightly larger dressing room: the United States Senate.
Loeffler was appointed to replace Republican Senator from Georgia Johnny Isakson, who retired for health reasons. She would help oversee the Senate’s Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), a key financial regulator. This potentially creates a conflict of interest given that Loeffler is married to Jeffrey Sprecher, founder and CEO of Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), one of the largest US stock traders regulated by the CFTC.
Anders Fogh Rasmussen and Concordium
In March, former NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen joined the Swiss identity network of the Concordium blockchain as a strategic advisor. “We are only beginning to see the benefits that blockchain technology will bring to our societies, including in our democratic processes,” said Rasmussen at the time.
One area of focus was to be Concordium’s blockchain-based voting solution, which aims to make voting faster, more reliable and more profitable. Rasmussen seems well suited to the task: he was also Prime Minister of Denmark from 2001 to 2009.
He also happened to be the 12th Secretary General of NATO from August 2009 to September 2014.
Micree Ketuan Zhan and Bitmain
Bitcoin mining giant Bitmain had to continue to search for a heart of gold last year after firing co-founder and main shareholder Micree Ketuan Zhan in October. This would have been done to “save the ship”.
It was just one of a series of events that the crypto community calls “Bitmain Drama”. Zhan started legal action against the company’s shareholders in January to restore control of his vote over the company. The dismissed co-founder later told Bitman employees that he was “firmly against the layoffs.” Bitmain plans to cut its workforce by 50% before the next half of Bitcoin (BTC) is cut.
Mark Carney and Libra
Business partnerships, like romances, are bound to have their hard times. Facebook’s Libra project is no exception.
After announcing a new digital currency project in June, Facebook lost a quarter of the project’s main partners before the end of 2019. Visa, Mastercard and PayPal each pressed the eject button.
However, 21 members remained in Libra, including Uber, Lyft, Spotify, Vodafone and the venture capitalist Andreessen Horowitz. The project also has strong supporters, including the Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, who recently said that Libra “highlights the shortcomings” of cross-border payments.
J. Christopher Giancarlo and Accenture
J. Christopher Giancarlo, former president of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), is said to have partnered with consultancy giant Accenture PLC in January to form a new think tank promoting the idea of digitizing the U.S. dollar with the technology of the block chain.
As president of the CFTC, Giancarlo was widely regarded as an advocate of blockchain technology – he even earned the nickname “Crypto Dad” for his efforts. Other founders of the Digital Dollar Foundation include Daniel Gorfine, a former CFTC official, and Giancarlo’s brother Charles.
In September Giancarlo also joined the advisory board of the Digital Chamber of Commerce, a business organization for the blockchain and digital asset community.
Valentine’s Day is celebrated with flowers and candy, but these accounts from last year remind us that business relationships, like novels, are not all sweet and light.
They have their ups and downs, their loves and their refusals, all of which must be resolved.