Cryptocurrency custodian Fireblocks has hired Varun Paul, the former head of the Bank of England's fintech division, as its first director of digital central bank currencies (CBDC) and market infrastructure.
- Paul will lead Fireblocks' efforts to build CBDC integration infrastructure, the company announced Tuesday. He has been with the U.K. central bank for nearly 14 years, the last 15 months as head of fintech.
- He will also work with market infrastructure bodies to explore the benefits of supporting digital assets and participation in decentralized finance (DeFi).
- Fireblocks' strategy is to whet the appetite for DeFi among incumbent financial institutions.
- With central banks in nearly every major economy expressing their intention to explore the development of a CBDC - a digital version of a fiat currency for use as cash - Fireblocks is eager to lead the way in providing infrastructure and technical expertise.
- "From the development of CBDCs to the tokenization of traditional financial assets, making digital assets and blockchain technologies widely available to traditional institutions will require close collaboration with the central banking community," said Adam Levine, Fireblocks' head of corporate strategy.