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Citi’s digital asset co-heads resign with plans to create crypto startup

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On Thursday, Alex Kriete, Citi’s co-head of digital assets, announced his departure from the bank after 11 years. He indicated in his post that he intended to commit himself full-time to the development of a new cryptocurrency company. But he gave no further specifics.

Since the unit’s establishment in June 2021, Kriete and Greg Girasole have co-led the digital assets group for less than a year. Girasole also announced his departure on LinkedIn, and he and Kriete intend to launch their own blockchain-related business together. In the coming weeks, the two stated they would reveal additional information.

The notion that digital assets will “continue to increase in relevance to global capital markets and the emergence of new business models” fueled Kriete’s enthusiasm for his new endeavour. He went on to say that he has had a personal interest in blockchain-enabled digital assets for more than five years. And now he wants to “help in the maturation of this market” on his own terms.

Kriete and Girasole handled Citi’s wealth management division’s digital assets business. However, the bank’s Institutional Clients Group has its own digital assets section. Which is led by Puneet Singhvi, who was recently appointed.

Another Citi employee, Matt Zhang, has left the company to start Hivemind Capital Partners. A $1.5 billion crypto fund using Algorand as its first technology partner. In a similar corporate leadership move, Roger Bartlett, a longstanding Goldman Sachs executive, thought it was “time to embrace the crypto economy”. And left the bank to manage Coinbase‘s worldwide financial operations.

Meanwhile, JPMorgan Chase has created a virtual lounge in the Decentraland metaverse. In order to capitalise on a $1 trillion market potential, according to the bank.

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