Cryptocurrency startups are luring more and more investment bankers. The latest is Richard Kim, who is leaving Goldman Sachs Group Inc., where he was an executive VP based in London, to be the new Chief Operating Officer of Galaxy Digital, a crypto merchant bank.
Kim joins Mike Novogratz, who worked with Goldman Sachs in the 1990’s, and Luka Jankovic, who worked with Wall Street bank as a hedge-fund analyst, at Galaxy Digital as the company builds up its managing staff to face swinging cryptocurrency prices and a market in development.
The movement doesn’t come as a surprise to those that have read the profile that The New Yorker published on Novogratz, where the executive told reporter Gary Shteyngart, “We hired Goldman’s best guy in blockchain.”
But, as it results, the signing of Mr. Kim is not an isolated case in the new stage of cryptocurrency companies. For instance, last January BlockTower Capital recruited a former Goldman executive, Michael Bucella, where he joined Former Goldman’s vice president, Matt Goetz, who founded BlockTower last year.
Also, James Radecki, who was a managing director at the investment bank, left Goldman Sachs in 2016 to work with cryptocurrency and is now global head of business development at Cumberland Mining, a trader of cryptocurrencies.
As the number of crypto funds rose from 167 last year to the 245 this year, these types of announcements will continue to emerge as Wall Street minds begin to embrace the cryptocurrency value to manage hedge funds. For Galaxy Digital, which is categorized by Novogratz as “the Goldman Sachs of crypto,” there is still more build-up as they prepare to launch after his founder paused the process last year. “We are still feverishly building out a full merchant bank for crypto, i.e., I am still very bullish on the space,” said Novogratz to CNBC.