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Crypto-assets: Crossing the chasm?
The challenge crypto-assets face for an effective breakthrough is this: How can an infrastructural safe and efficient environment be put in place whereby the broader investor community feels sufficiently comfortable, in a similar manner to other more traditional asset classes such as equities, exchange-traded funds and bonds? Remarkably, the novelty of crypto-assets lies in the distributed nature of the blockchain-based networks they use rather than their investment characteristics, many of which they share many with traditional financial assets. Central securities depositories (CSDs) as infrastructures of the financial markets — and rightfully so — have them on their radar screen.
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Glen Fernandes is a senior member of the Euroclear Group Strategy team. He is responsible for assessing the fundamental economic, market and regulatory trends, the dynamics in technology and innovation ecosystem as well as driving business development opportunities to help shape Euroclear’s overall strategic and innovation direction. Glen also co-leads an international group of central securities depositories (CSDs) and custodian banks under the International Securities Services Association (ISSA) to help create a common market understanding for the adoption of digital assets and distributed ledger technologies (DLT) in capital markets. He has over 15 years of experience in capital markets and financial technology across America, Europe and Asia Pacific. Glen joined Euroclear in 2014, having earlier worked for securities services business lines at JP Morgan, Nomura and Lehman Brothers, where his work spanned key product/service development and technology enhancements. He holds a master’s in business administration from Vlerick Business School, Belgium, in addition to bachelor’s studies in electronics and telecommunications engineering.
Walter Verbeke is a senior strategist and business developer with 30 years’ experience of which more than 15 years spent in the capital markets. He recently joined the global investments company BNY Mellon as Senior Principal Corporate Strategy, advising senior management. Prior to joining BNY Mellon, he was the Global Head of Business Model and Innovation for the central securities depositories (CSDs) of the Euroclear Group, in which capacity he authored the present paper. Throughout his career, Walter has focused on core strategy work, M&A deals, and business development and strategic partnerships. He keeps a close watch on the capital markets, its key evolutions in value chains and business models of players. Digitalisation and the ongoing restructuring of markets are his particular focus. Walter has an extensive consultancy, financial markets, and telecoms background, and holds a Master of Laws, in addition to complementary studies in applied economics.