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Xapo Adds Visa Founder and Former Citibank CEO to Advisory Board

Op-ed - Xapo Adds Visa Founder and Former Citibank CEO to Advisory Board

Universal Bitcoin services startup Xapo has announced that former executives from Visa and Citibank, alongside a former secretary of the treasury, has joined the company’s board of directors.

In a Xapo statement, Visa founder Dee Hock, former Treasury Secretary and President Emeritus of Harvard University Lawrence H. Summers and former Citibank CEO and Chairman John Reed, said they joined the company because of the potential of Bitcoin’s technology and currency to advance financial services.

Reed highlighted how Bitcoin could change financial services, noting they have “remained largely untouched by the digital revolution.” He added that Bitcoin is a large improvement over the “historical form of currency,” highlighting the digital currency’s scarcity and divisibility.

Summers, who also serves on the board of Bitcoin startup, 21 Inc., made mention of Bitcoin’s payment network being the first time someone could send money without having to rely on a third party, which historically have been banks, clearinghouses or third-party payment networks. In a Xapo blog post, he added that this peer-to-peer (P2P) aspect could soon cause “many billions of people sending bitcoin every day as easily as they currently send a text message.”

“We live in the 21st century but are still using command and control organizational structures from the 16th century,” Hock said. “Bitcoin is one of the best examples of how a decentralized, peer-to-peer organization can solve problems that these dated organizations cannot. Like the Internet, Bitcoin is not owned or controlled by any one entity, so it presents incredible opportunities for new levels of efficiency and transparency in financial transactions.”

Global Bitcoin Services

Xapo offers a suite of Bitcoin services, including a wallet and connected debit card, merchant payment processing, and secure bitcoin storage. The company is best known for its bitcoin cold storage service for individual and institutions with large amounts of bitcoin.

Since its founding in 2012, the company has raised $40 million from a large selection of tech and financial investors, including PayPal co-founder Max Levchin, Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang, Benchmark and Greylock Partners. The new additions to Xapo’s board will be joining Ribbit Capital Managing Partner Meyer Malk and Benchmark General Partner Matt Cohler, who joined the company earlier this year.