Business & Finance

Bank Officials in Switzerland Migrating to Crypto World

Switzerland is widely renowned for the massive banking sector it houses. However, the crypto firms have also been expanding and hiring multiple official from these banks. The number of officials migrating from the banks to these crypto firms has been increasing with each passing day. Many Swiss people who previously worked in the financial sector have quit and moved to work in the crypto space. In particular, they have shown a lot of enthusiasm in dealing with Bitcoin. In the recent past, Swiss banks have been willing to accept cryptocurrency related businesses as account holders. Switzerland being the hub of all technological revolutions has been eager to participate in this, where several financial institutions have deemed crypto unstable and prone to fraud.

One of the recent recruits in the crypto valley has been Andrew Peel. Peel left Credit Suisse and has taken up the role of head of digital asset markets at Morgan Stanley. Numerous others have done the same. Simon Tobler, a formerly FX options trader quit Credit Suisse to join Crypto Finance as head of trading. Crypto Finance is a firm that contributes to the development of blockchain technology. The other names that are worthy of mentioning are Adrian Gut, Credit Suisse’s former head of FX agency prime broking and Pirro Morandi, efinancialcareers reports.

In the past, Swiss banks have been known to hoard the wealth of several individuals who did not want the government poking their noses into their financial matters or wanted to evade tax. Due to accumulation of such an image in the world, the Swiss banks have become rather pedant. They are avoiding taking reputational and financial risks, which include indulging into the technologies that incorporate blockchain technology.

Yassine Ben Hamida, who is the former market head at Julius Baer, and former head of financial institutions Emerging Market at Credit Suisse and is one of the immigrants to crypto technology told,

Despite the big crisis that occurred with the issue of the taxation of American assets, Switzerland still represent 25% of the global offshore market. That means Swiss banks manage 25% of all cross-border assets managed around the world, which is enormous for a country that small. Switzerland is strong but humble. There is a lot of talent and know-how in Switzerland for the development of these new technologies and their application to finance.

The greatest incorporator of all these immigrants has been the Crypto Finance Group. This company has emerged in two cities including Zurich and Zug. It was reported that the office that they work in is also called “Crypto Villa”, which has an ambiance very much similar to that of a Swiss bank. Jan Brzezek, the CEO and founder of Crypto Finance said in an interview in Zurich,

With our longstanding background in finance, we adopted the standards from traditional markets like Equity or FX and built a state-of-the-art order-execution and -routing tool, including various algo-tools for our Crypto Broker. Our strength lies in the fact that we have a great team. It is a good mix of tech guys as well as guys who come from the Swiss financial industry. That is why we can easily communicate with all the large financial intermediaries and the regulators, because we speak the same language.

The crypto enthusiasts who have moved from the banking sector to crypto dealing have also deemed Banks unimportant. Brzezek having worked at UBS issued multiple bonds over blockchain. The idea is that the assets of the clients can be kept safe and sound without the help of Banks storing it for them. The tamper proof ledger provided by blockchain ensures one thing and that is safety. Brzezek told,

Theoretically, you don’t need a bank anymore for many of the tasks they have been performing.

The core competence of a bank is to offer clients safekeeping of their assets, so [banks] will now build up custody solutions. The question is not whether they are going to do that, but when.

This interest into cryptocurrencies has now been taking over the masses in Switzerland. A few people know the true functionality and the advantages that cryptocurrencies offers, but as the exposure is continuing to grow, so is the number of people willing to pursue it. Brzezek said,

I felt like Alice in Wonderland falling into the rabbit hole when I started to understand Bitcoin. Now it is up to you, if you wish to stay in the traditional world, you are free to believe things will all stay as it is. Magic does not happen when you stay in your comfort zone. Many bankers chose to adapt to where the money is. [Banks] put their feet in the water, and they get a bit of experience, then as soon as they understand how it works, they go in, because there’s a lot of money, interests, and clients there.

Recently at the G20 meeting of Finance minister in Buenos Aires, Federal Councilor Ueli Maurer also laid emphasis on how the blockchain technology seems to be the future of the financial sector of the country. The framework to regulate stated that the cryptocurrencies should be laid out in view of the upcoming reforms that the technology will inevitably bring. Hamida further said;

Switzerland is pretty strict in terms of regulations, particularly in terms of money laundering but we are seeing a clear ‘professionalization’ in terms of crypto, and banks increasingly started to accept companies working with cryptocurrencies, or ICOs. This is developing now because there is a will to professionalize the industry.

Switzerland has seen a massive adoption of every revolutionary technology in its infancy and this latest development of official migrating to crypto world has only ensured that the same conduct can be expected from them in the days to come.

Hassaan Malik

Co-founder of BlockPublisher, Hassaan is a technologist at heart with a keen interest in blockchain, cryptos and traditional financial markets. Email: hassaan@blockpublisher.com, hassaanmalek@gmail.com

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