Former Wall Street Superstars Switch From Banking to Blockchain & FinTech Companies

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by Polina Chernykh · 3 min read
Former Wall Street Superstars Switch From Banking to Blockchain & FinTech Companies
Photo: Lin bo Yan/Flickr

The fintech is getting more attractive for investors, with some of the most successful people on Wall Street are moving to this promising industry.

Over the last year, the FinTech industry has been showing rapid growth, while the overall investment in the sector reached millions of dollars. According to CB Insights, in Q3 of 2015, the investment into FinTech startups accounted for $4.85 billion.

Moreover, some of the most influential bankers on Wall Street are entering fintech in an attempt to transform traditional financial businesses. Despite some hesitation among various banks regarding the use of the technology underlying bitcoin, some of the globe’s leading financial organizations have recognized the potential of blockchain technology.

Former JPMorgan’s executive, Blythe Masters, has recently declined an offer to lead Barclays’ investment division to concentrate on her blockchain startup Digital Asset Holdings. She is now an active supporter of the blockchain technology and compares it with the development of Internet in the 1990s.

Digital Asset Holdings is developing software based on the distributed ledger technology to help financial industry players to change the way of financial assets trading.

A few months ago, it was reported that the New York-based company acquired ledger platform Hyperledger and the Budapest-based blockchain software startup Bits of Proof.

Among other banking industry players who quit Wall Street to work in fintech are ex-CEO of Citigroup, Vikram Pandit, and former head of Morgan Stanley, John Mack.

After Pandit left Citi three years ago, he has become one of the most successful investors in fintech industry. His investment portfolio includes a wide variety of startups, including student loans company CommonBond, a provider of infrastructure to online lenders Orchard, a loans trading platform MMKT Exchange, and TransferWise, an international payments company which recently reached $1 billion in value.

Since Mr. Mack resigned from his post as Morgan Stanley CEO in 2011, he has ploughed money in a range of fintech startups, such as Orchard and Lending Club.

Last year, the ex-president of Visa, Hans Morris, opened his venture capital company Nyca Partners to fund and advise fintech startups developing alternative payment solutions. The VC firm has already invested in Affirm, which was established by PayPal co-founder Max Levchin, and crowdfunding platform Indiegogo.

Joe Saunders has also worked in a banking industry until 2012, when he retired from Visa. In 2013, he participated in the launch of Green Visor Capital, a venture capital company concentrated exclusively on financing fintech startups.

This year, Green Visor took part in a funding round started by Kash, a mobile payments startup that lets customers make purchases without going through the credit card network. Following the investment, Saunders joined the company as its chairman.

In addition, he participated in a fundraising for analytics platform DataFox and lending software provider Cloud Lending Solutions, which managed to raise $5 million and $8 million, accordingly.

Blockchain News, FinTech News, News
Polina Chernykh

Polina is an undergraduate student at Belarusian State Economic University (BSEU) where she is studying at the faculty of International Business Communication for a degree specializing in Intercultural Communication. In her spare time she enjoys drawing, music and travelling.

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