It was announced today by London-based bitcoin wallet company Blockchain that Antony Jenkins has joined the company as an independent director on its board.
As reported by the Wall Street Journal, serving on the board with Mr. Jenkins will be the firm’s co-founders, CEO Peter Smith and President Nick Cary, plus venture capitalist Jeremy Liew of Lightspeed Venture Partners and Michael Jackson, the former operating chief of Skype.
Mr. Jenkins was quoted as saying: “You’ll see more economic pressure building up in the [banking] industry. There is going to be massive transformation, and it is going to be unpredictable.”
Peter Smith, Blockchain CEO, and co-founder issued the following statement per the company blog:
It is with great pleasure that I welcome Antony Jenkins to Blockchain, where he will serve alongside Michael Jackson as an independent director on our board.
Antony and I were seated next to one another at a dinner we co-hosted with Lepe Partners. We fell into a deep conversation about impending collision between the finance industry and technology.
Few people have seen the financial system from Antony’s vantage point. He was a senior leader in the banking industry – spanning the turbulent 2000’s – including his time at the helm of Barclays Group. If anyone knows how the current system works, it is Antony. More importantly, it is his dedication to modernizing that system that gets both of us incredibly excited.
On November 24th 2015, Antony gave a speech at Chatham House in which he laid out the change coming to the financial services sector and its potential impact on the UK. It’s well worth watching – it is a radical, courageous speech from a former top five global bank CEO. It certainly won’t result in many dinner party invitations or cushy board positions, but it is the truth. Change is coming and it will be radical, disruptive, and painful at times.
I wanted to collaborate with Antony for a simple reason: wisdom to navigate crossing the chasm from a simple, burgeoning technology to enabling a whole new financial ecosystem. From a timing perspective, it felt right. From our humble origins in York, our software now powers more transactions each week (hundreds of thousands) than any other privately held technology company I’m aware of and, as a result, we manage an increasingly complex global operation. Antony is one of the few that’s led a company that already does this and at a far greater scale — I’m looking forward to learning how to do it.
Antony recently launched his own startup, 10x Future Technologies. So in a way, you could say we are meeting in the middle – one of us building a world leading financial platform with guidance from someone who has actually run one, and one of us attempting to teach the other a thing or two about leading a small group of people out to change the world.
I’m humbled Antony is joining us on our journey, excited to be a part of his, and delighted to share the news with you, our users, who make what we do everyday possible.