JPMorgan Chase & Co. has employed a brand new head of digital property regulatory coverage, lower than a month after CEO Jamie Dimon informed lawmakers that cryptocurrencies are “decentralized Ponzi schemes.”

Aaron Iovine joined the corporate this week as government director for digital property regulatory coverage, a newly created position, a JPMorgan spokeswoman confirmed. He was beforehand head of coverage and regulatory for cryptocurrency lender Celsius Community Ltd., whose bankruptcy filing has roiled the digital asset market.

JPMorgan is seeking to construct out its coverage ranks within the evolving digital asset house amid elevated regulatory scrutiny and a downturn in cryptocurrency values.

Iovine didn’t reply to a remark request.

Dimon and different JPMorgan executives have been vocal critics of digital property.

Dimon’s “Ponzi schemes” remark got here Sept. 21 in congressional testimony, throughout which he known as himself a “main skeptic on crypto tokens.” Takis Georgakopoulos, international head of funds at JPMorgan, told Bloomberg Television final month that he sees “little or no” demand for cryptocurrencies as a cost instrument.

JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon testifies at Senate Banking, Housing, and City Affairs Committee listening to on Sept. 22, 2022.

Photograph: Al Drago/Bloomberg

Along with hiring Iovine, JPMorgan this month posted an opening for a digital property counsel place with its company and funding financial institution in New York.

Stacey Friedman, who has been JPMorgan’s common counsel since 2015, didn’t reply to a request for remark in regards to the New York-based monetary providers big’s curiosity in lawyers familiar with distributed ledger applied sciences.

Iovine will work with JPMorgan’s regulatory affairs group, which a 12 months in the past welcomed aboard former Davis Polk & Wardwell senior affiliate Sharon Yang as a managing director and international head of regulatory affairs. Yang beforehand served as a deputy assistant secretary for worldwide monetary markets on the Treasury Division.

Celsius employed Iovine earlier this 12 months from Cross River Financial institution, a digital asset-friendly regional lender. The corporate lately introduced on Benjamin Melnicki from Robinhood Markets Inc. to be its head of cryptocurrency compliance and regulatory.

Iovine, who like Melnicki can also be an lawyer, spent practically three years at Cross River, the place he led coverage and regulatory affairs. Cross River employed Iovine in 2019 after he spent practically a 12 months as a senior regulatory analyst on the legislation agency White & Case.

Through the first quarter of this 12 months, Iovine was part of a Cross River crew that lobbied Congress on “common points targeted on monetary providers, fintech partnerships, and the Paycheck Safety Program,” in accordance with a public filing.

Iovine departed Fort Lee, N.J.-based Cross River in February to hitch Celsius, in accordance with his LinkedIn profile. A web based bio touts Iovine’s experience “exploring the way forward for monetary providers whereas working on the intersection of legislation, coverage, and regulation.”

He left Celsius in September, two months after the cryptocurrency rewards-earning and lending platform filed for bankruptcy in New York.

The Chapter 11 case has already generated large legal bills for Kirkland & Ellis—court docket filings show the latter has obtained a minimum of $3.5 million in retainer funds—and different corporations. It has additionally sparked fraud accusations towards London-based Celsius by a former firm worker, who the debtor has accused of deception.

A chapter docket for the Celsius case exhibits that Iovine’s title seems on a list of thousands of unsecured creditors with claims towards the corporate. Amongst them are Ron Deutsch, a former counsel at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison employed final 12 months by Celsius to be its common counsel and head of mergers and acquisitions.


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