Coinbase Poaches Another Top Executive Amid A Big International Market Push

Kevin O'Brien

Crypto exchange Coinbase have confirmed the hire of another top executive amid a strategy shift towards a more global focus.

Quito Zuba, who spent the last eight years of his career as the Global Head of Trading Operations at Thompson Reuters, was confirmed by Coinbase to have joined as Head of Market Operations. Zuba also recently updated his LinkedIn profile to reflect the move.

A Coinbase spokesperson told TheBlock  that Zuba is based in Chicago where some staffers are building out the exchange’s new matching engine to help connect buyers and sellers.

Chicago’s Growth In The Crypto Industry

Coinbase’s team in Chicago comprises a variety of prominent figures. The leader of the office is former CME executive Paul Bauerschmidt, who has expressed excitement about the exchange’s work in Chicago.

Bauerschmidt said the city was filled with top talent and an “incredible exchange and trading community.” CEO Fred Grede argued that Chicago’s growth inside of the crypto world has come due to people figuring out “that the real center of liquidity in these kinds of markets is right here in Chicago.”

Chicago is well-known as the home of Cboe Global Markers and the CME Group, both of whom were the firs to start trading bitcoin futures. The city is also home to a number of spot exchanges.

Coinbase has not been shy about attracting top talent to staff its offices. In October 2018, the exchange announced that Charles Schwab Board of Directors member Chris Dodds would be joining the board at Coinbase.

Coinbase’s Changing Directions Of Focus

The exchange has indicated a shift away from some of its previous - more institutionally-focused - plans, and is now focused on expanding services to global markets.

Just recently, Coinbase announced a couple of service changes that made it easier for high-volume traders located outside of the U.S.

High-volume Coinbase Pro and Prime customers in Asia and Europe now have the ability to use cross-border wire transfers to fund accounts, while select Coinbase Prime customers will have access to U.S. and European OTC trading desks.

Head of Asian institutional sales Kayvon Pirestani said the area is “home home to some of the most active retail traders in the world as well as a lot of institutional investors,” which makes Asia “super important to the crypto ecosystem," indicating that Asia will be a major player in Coinbase’s future plans.

Bloomberg also noted how some are speculating the exchange is rethinking some of its Wall Street strategies amid falling investor interest due to collapsing crypto prices.