Former UK Chancellor Philip Hammond joins crypto firm Copper

Lord Hammond, as a senior adviser, will provide strategic advice to the Copper team

Lord Philip Hammond                                 
Lord Philip Hammond – Photo: Shutterstock
                                

Former Chancellor of the Exchequer Lord Philip Hammond has joined Copper, a UK group that specialises in cryptocurrency custody and trading for institutional investors, as a senior adviser.

Lord Hammond will provide strategic advice to the Copper team, as the company expands globally. The company, which was set up in 2018, announced the launch of its US east coast office in August this year, and has plans to expand into Asia as well.

$75m funding round

The firm’s plans to grow globally follow a $75m (£55m) funding round in June 2021, which was led by Alan Howard, co-founder of Brevan Howard Asset Management, and venture capital firms Dawn Capital and Target Global.    

Lord Hammond’s focus will be on promoting the UK as a global leader in digital asset technology. Copper believes its growth over the last 18 months is evidence of a “growing appetite from institutional investors for digital assets”.    

The firm said: “This early work in connecting traditional finance with distributed ledger technology lays the groundwork for the eventual transition for all assets.”

Lord Hammond, as a member of the British Conservative Party and a Life Peer, is one of only three people to have served continuously in the UK cabinet from 2010 to 2019. Lord Hammond served under Prime Ministers David Cameron and Theresa May as Chancellor of the Exchequer from 2016 to 2019, Foreign Secretary from 2014 to 2016 and Defence Secretary from 2011 to 2014.

“A true pioneer”

Lord Hammond said:  “Copper is a true pioneer of digital asset investment technology, innovating the highest standards of security and trading for financial institutions.

“But the really exciting opportunity lies in the application of this technology to revolutionise the way financial services are delivered. If we can bring together the best of Britain – entrepreneurs, industry, government and regulators – to create and enable a blockchain-based ecosystem for financial services, we will secure the UK’s global leadership in this field for decades ahead.”

Dmitry Tokarev, chief executive officer (CEO) of Copper,  said : “We are delighted to welcome Lord Hammond to the Copper team. Over the last 18 months, Copper has grown exponentially, now serving over  400 institutional clients. We would like to drive growth in our client base within a regulatory framework which will allow us to thrive globally from our London headquarters. 

“With Lord Hammond’s expertise adding to the strength of our team, we look forward to growing Copper and further enhancing the UK’s digital asset technology offering,” concluded Tokarev.

Further reading: House of Lords inquiry into central bank digital currencies

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