- Debby Hopkins, Chief Innovation Officer at Citi and CEO of Citi Ventures
Date & time: Thursday, 10 September 2015 from 08:30 to 18:00 (EDT)
Location: The TimesCenter, 242 West 41st Street, New York, NY 10036
Consensus 2015 is CoinDesk's inaugural summit on digital currencies and blockchain tech.
Digital currencies and blockchain technology cut across multiple and diverse sectors, with the potential to impact everyone from Wall Street to the world's unbanked.
CoinDesk will convene experts and leaders across these sectors to debate real-world problems and find the solutions that cutting-edge digital currencies and blockchain tech might offer.
Organisations like PayPal, Wells Fargo, the US Department of Justice and leading technologists and investors were among the buyers of our first batch of tickets.
Explore the future of digital currencies and blockchain technology with us.
An introduction to Consensus 2015 from the CoinDesk team.
State of Blockchain
A wide-ranging overview of the state of the digital currency economy and blockchain technology from CoinDesk's lead analyst and economic historian at the London School of Economics, Garrick Hileman. This is our curtain-raiser.
Trust, Permissions, Openness: The Future of Innovation on the Blockchain
This high-level discussion on the future of building on the blockchain – or blockchains – will delve into the nature of trust on the network, permissioned and permissionless distributed ledgers and public or private chains. We're still programming this one.
Unprecedented Transparency? Law Enforcement on the Blockchain
Bitcoin is an anonymous digital currency that lets individuals trade illicit goods on the dark web, right? Not quite, if our panellists have anything to say about the matter.
Caffeinate and discuss the morning's sessions.
Finding the Critical Path to Mass Adoption
Merchant processing was once thought to be the way bitcoin and other digital currencies gained traction among consumers on the high street. But is merchant processing still the path to mass adoption? If people aren't buying coffee with bitcoin in the morning, or buying stuff online with them, how might people interact with digital currencies in the future?
A $1.6 Quadrillion Opportunity - Securities Settlement and Clearing
Using a blockchain for clearing and settlement of securities – potentially cutting waiting times from days to minutes – is one of the hottest use-cases for the technology. What's at stake is a massive market: the DTCC clears $1.6 quadrillion in transactions annually, for example.
A chance to meet your fellow attendees over a spot of lunch.
Citi Ventures 1 on 1
More details to follow.
Proof of Good? Blockchain Tech, Civic Tech and Social Impact
Hear from individuals and groups working on leveraging blockchain tech's unique properties for social impact and civic technology.
More VC Money Than The Early Internet? Blockchain Fundraising Ecosystem Trends
From accelerator programmes and incubators to corporate venture, what are investors seeing on pitch decks these days? Are the days of big funding rounds for 'universal' digital currency companies over? What are the most interesting opportunities in early stage investing in the space?
The winning team at the Makeathon held two days prior at General Assembly NYC will walk us through their fresh new use-case for digital currency and blockchain tech.
A chance to grab a coffee for that after-lunch boost.
Moving Money Cheaply: How Digital Currency Could Disrupt Global Remittances and Increase Financial Inclusion
Digital currencies and blockchain tech hold the promise of low to no transaction fees. Digital and mobile wallets could mean that unbanked populations gaining easy access to storage and distribution of funds.
Consumer Protection on the Blockchain
Digital currencies have been roiled by high-profile implosions of exchanges, elaborate Ponzi schemes, firms failing to ship their promised hardware and more. What does consumer protection look like on the blockchain?
The Tipping Point: Could Micropayments Take Digital Currencies Mainstream?
Micropayments haven’t succeeded in the traditional payments space, but this hasn’t stopped them from taking hold in the digital currency sphere.
A chance for refreshment before the final sessions.
Bitcoin and its Antecedents: A Look at the History and Evolution of Digital Cash
Bitcoin is far from the first attempt at creating a form of digital money with the potential to upend existing systems. Our panellists will look at bitcoin's predecessors and close cousins. Nathaniel Popper wrote the book Digital Gold, which delves into bitcoin's genesis; Christopher Allen is an internet security expert who has been involved in digital cash systems including Digicash for decades, while Garrick Hileman is CoinDesk's lead analyst and an economic historian at the LSE, specialising in alternative and private monies.
What's Wall Street Doing With Blockchains?
Wall Street's embrace of blockchain tech has been the big story this year. We'll invite our panellists to present 3-minute lightning talks on the work their institutions are doing with blockchains. Then Jesse McWaters, who leads the World Economic Forum's disruptive finance project, will lead a discussion with the panellists.
Better Than Cash? The Future of Digital and Mobile Cash and Currencies
This session explores the future of cash in several diverse contexts, and how it overlaps with digital currencies and blockchain tech. Our panellists will discuss mobile money in Africa and new attempts to bring cash to mobiles using cryptocurrencies and peer-to-peer networks. The conversation is underpinned by looking at the benefits of mobile and digital money in areas looking to increase financial inclusion, and in a humanitarian aid and relief context.
Closing remarks and thank you.
Kathryn Haun, US Department of Justice
Assistant US Attorney and Digital Currency Crimes Coordinator, Northern District of California
Assistant US Attorney Kathryn Haun is the Digital Currency Crimes Coordinator for the Northern District of California at the DOJ. She also heads a multi-agency digital currency task force. She leads the case against the former agents who investigated Silk Road and led on the Ripple Labs case.
Jerry Brito, Coin Center
Jerry leads Coin Center, the research and advocacy group focused on public policy issues around cryptocurrencies. He has testified before Congress and state legislatures about cryptocurrencies and is the co-author of Bitcoin: A Primer for Policymakers and other scholarly work on the subject.
Kosta Peric, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Deputy Director, Financial Services for the Poor
Kosta focuses on digital payments at the Gates Foundation. He is a co-founder of SWIFT's Innotribe and author of 'The Castle and the Sandbox', which explains how to spark innovation at established companies.
Internet Security Pioneer
Christopher helped create key security protocols for the internet at his firm Consensus Development, where he worked on the reference implementation of the SSL 3.0 protocol and its successor, TLS. He was most recently in charge of developer relations for Blackphone, an encrypted smartphone.
Hernán Botbol, Taringa!
Director and Co-founder
Hernán Botbol is a co-founder of Taringa!, a hugely popular social network with 75 million unique monthly users that Wired has described as "the Reddit of Argentina". It is rolling out bitcoin micropayments in partnership with Xapo. Hernán is leading Taringa's international expansion.
Julio Faura, Santander
Director of R&D and Innovation
Julio focuses on cryptocurrencies and other digital financial services as head of innovation at Santander. He also contributes to the bank's fintech venture investing activity. Santander is the Eurozone's largest bank by market capitalisation.
R Jesse McWaters, World Economic Forum
Project Manager, Financial Services
Jesse leads the WEF's work on disruptive innovation in financial services. He finds ways for innovators and incumbents to collaborate. Previously he was Head of Research for Deloitte's 'Future of Canada' initiative.
Martine Niejadlik, former Chief Compliance Officer, Coinbase
Martine led Coinbase's compliance efforts during its most significant expansion period. She previously ran risk management teams at PayPal, eBay and Amazon and was a lead developer of the FICO score.
Scott Robinson, Plug and Play FinTech
Founder and Director
Scott started the fintech accelerator at Plug and Play, a global accelerator and investment firm. He has also led the firm's investments in six blockchain-related startups. Additionally, he helped start the world's oldest bitcoin meetup and the first nationally syndicated bitcoin job fair.
Nathaniel Popper, New York Times
Nathaniel is the author of 'Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money'. He covers Wall Street for the New York Times.
Oskar Miel, Rakuten FinTech Fund
Oskar works closely with fintech startups and Rakuten's financial services units, which include a bank and securities brokerage. Rakuten is also one of the world's largest e-commerce platforms, with $4.8bn in revenue last year. Oskar led investments in Bitnet and WePay for Rakuten.
Ben Parker, IRIN News
Co-Founder and CEO
Ben is leading the award-winning humanitarian news service IRIN's spin-off from the United Nations into an independent non-profit. He was previously director of communications for the UN in Somalia, head of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs for Syria and director of UN OCHA Eastern Africa offices. He helped set up IRIN in 1995.
Connie Chung, Expedia
Senior Payments Product Manager
Connie launched bitcoin payments for Expedia.com in June 2014. She has been with Expedia for over seven years.
Jalak Jobanputra, Future\Perfect Ventures
Jalak has invested in a range of blockchain-based startups, including Blockstream, BitPesa and Case through Future\Perfect Ventures. Previously, she managed a portfolio focused on emerging markets at Omidyar Network and was a senior vice president at the New York City Investment Fund.
Houman Shadab, New York Law School
Professor of Law and a Fellow at Coin Center
Houman is an expert on financial law and regulation. He is currently focused on financial services technology, including the legal framework around distributed ledgers and smart contracts. He has testified before the federal government several times, including on bitcoin derivatives.
Anne Shere Wallwork, US Department of the Treasury
Senior Counselor for Strategic Policy, Office of Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes (TFFC)
Anne is charged with identifying and developing strategies to address emerging and persistent money laundering and terrorist financing threats involving new payments mechanisms, while also facilitating financial inclusion and innovation. Previously, she was TFFC's Senior Counselor for Asia and Senior Representative to the National Counter-Terrorism Center.
Bill Barhydt, Abra
Founder and CEO
Bill founded Abra, a digital cash, peer-to-peer money transfer network. He gave the first TED talk on bitcoin in February 2012, when one bitcoin was trading at $4. He is a founding board member of the International Diaspora Engagement Alliance (IDEA), with the US Department of State and USAID. previously, Bill won a Technology Pioneer award from the World Economic Forum as founder of WebSentric and has worked for Netscape, Goldman Sachs, NASA and the CIA in addition to co-founding several startups.
Blythe Masters, Digital Asset Holdings
Blythe leads Digital Asset Holdings, which uses distributed ledgers to track and settle mainstream financial assets in a cryptographically secure environment. She is also chair of the board of Santander Consumer USA Holdings. Previously, she was JP Morgan's head of Global Commodities.
John Edge, RedRose
John focuses on financial services businesses with social impact and transformative potential at RedRose. He is also co-chairman of the Whitechapel Think Tank, with Jeremy Wilson of Barclays, a forum for financial institutions to discuss blockchain technologies, and co-founder of Identity2020, a system to generate digital identity documents for any child born after 2020.
Steven Malby, Commonwealth Secretariat
Head of Law Development Section, Rule of Law Division
Steven plays a leading role in supporting the Commonwealth Virtual Currencies Working Group, which has been tasked by member states to inquire into the prevalence and use of virtual currencies in the Commonwealth. The Working Group is also considering development of technical guidance on how member states should respond to virtual currencies. Steven previously worked with the Organised Crime Branch of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) where he led the 2013 United Nations Comprehensive Study on Cybercrime and the UNODC Global Programme on Cybercrime.
David Tait, Commonwealth Secretariat
Cybercrime Policy Analyst, Rule of Law Division
David provides policy analysis and legal research in the Commonwealth's Rule of Law Division, specifically the Commonwealth Cybercrime Initiative. He plays a leading role in supporting the Commonwealth Virtual Currencies Working Group, which has been tasked by member states to inquire into the prevalence and use of virtual currencies in the Commonwealth. The Working Group is also considering development of technical guidance on how member states should respond to virtual currencies. David previously served with the Prosecution at the Special Court of Sierra Leone in The Hague.
Tigran Gambaryan, IRS Criminal Investigation
Special Agent, Oakland Field Office
Tigran was assigned to the investigation involving former DEA and Secret Service agents who were members of the Baltimore Silk Road Task Force, as well as the investigation of Ripple Labs. Tigran's specialty is in cyber and digital currency crimes. He is the liaison to the IRS-CI Cyber Crimes Unit.
Dan Morehead, Pantera Capital
Chief Executive Officer and Chairman, BitStamp
Dan runs Pantera Capital, which invests directly in bitcoin and companies in the space. Pantera is among the earliest and most prolific investors in the field. Previously, Dan co-founded Atriax, an electronic foreign exchange platform, and was chief financial officer and head of macro trading at Tiger Management.
Michael J Casey, MIT Media Lab's Digital Currency Initiative
Michael is the co-author, with Paul Vigna, of The Age of Cryptocurrency: How Bitcoin and Digital Money and Challenging the Global Economic Order. Previously, he was a senior columnist covering global finance at the Wall Street Journal. He has covered currencies, bonds, equities and economic policy for the Journal and Dow Jones Newswires in a career spanning five continents. Michael also wrote The Unfair Trade and Che's Afterlife.
Anjney Midha, KPCB Edge
Anjney leads KPCB Edge, a seed-stage fund focused on emerging technologies including blockchains, virtual reality and drones. Before founding Edge, Anjney was the youngest partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, where he was involved in the firm's investments in RelateIQ, Magic Leap and more.
James E Newsome, Delta Strategy Group
Partner and Advisor, BitFury Group
Jim is a former chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and president and chief executive of the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX), leading the NYMEX IPO and merger with the CME Group. He started Delta Strategy Group with Scott Parsons in 2010 to provide strategic consulting, political analysis, lobbying and business development to clients including hedge funds, agriculture and energy companies, pension funds and Fortune 500 companies.
Cheryl Gurz, BNY Mellon Treasury Services
Managing Director and Emerging Technology Segment Manager
Cheryl investigates emerging payment technologies for the Treasury Services business. Previously, she held leadership roles across global transaction banking, specialising in providing strategic solutions to the industry at Citi, HSBC and MBNA. Cheryl is a US patent holder and member of The Clearing House Finance Committee, BAFT NA Council and NACHA Payments Planning Committee.
Chelsea Barabas, MIT Media Lab's Digital Currency Initiative
Senior Advisor for Social Impact
Chelsea leads development of collaborations between the MIT research community and other institutions to build blockchain applications that serve the public interest. Previously, she worked on civic technology and international development projects in Africa, South America and the Middle East with a variety of organisations and research institutions including MIT's Center for Civic Media and Nuru International.
Vinny Lingham, Gyft
Founder and CEO
Vinny is the founder and CEO of three companies, Yola, Clicks2Customers and Gyft. He currently leads Gyft, a mobile gift-card company that counts Ashton Kutcher among its investors and was acquired by First Data in 2014. He is also a star of the television show Dragon's Den (Shark Tank is based on its format) in his native South Africa, and started the Silicon Cape Initiative, an NGO whose goal is to develop South Africa's Western Cape into a high-tech hub.
Bill Tai, Charles River Ventures
Partner Emeritus and Angel Investor
Bill is an active angel investor with a long track record as a venture capitalist and entrepreneur. He is chairman at Maxthon and sits on the board of BitFury, among others. He is partner emeritus at Charles River Ventures having established the firm's Silicon Valley presence. Bill is also an adjunct professor at Curtin University in western Australia, serves on the Tech Pioneer Committee of the World Economic Forum and works with Susi Mai as co-creator of Mai Tai Global, a non-profit with a mission to protect the ocean and its ecosystems.
Maxine Ryan, Charles River Ventures
Co-founder and Chief Operations Officer
Maxine is a co-founder of Hong Kong-based Bitspark, a cash-in, cash-out blockchain remittance solution that serves six countries. Bitspark's mission is to become "SWIFT for the unbanked" through a cloud-based blockchain remittance platform for money-transfer operators in emerging markets. Bitspark is a member of the Accenture FinTech Innovation Lab Asia-Pacific 2015 and a winner of the SWIFT Innotribe Startup Challenge Showcase 2015 in Singapore.
Brad Peterson, Nasdaq
Executive Vice President and Chief Information Officer
Brad runs the Global Technology Services group, which develops innovative, cost-efficient and short time-to-market technology solutions to business partners and customers around the world. Previously, Brad was CIO and EVP at Schwab Technology Services. He has also served as CIO at eBay and was Managing Director and COO at Epoch Securities after its merger with Goldman Sachs.
Morgan McKenney, Citi Treasury and Trade Solutions
Global Business Head, Cross-Currency Payments
Morgan is global business head for cross-currency payments at Citi, enabling corporate, financial institutions and public sector clients to make payments globally. Previously she was Chief Operating Officer of Global Treasury and Trade Solutions at Citi. Before that she was COO for Transaction Services in Europe, Middle East and Africa and Chief Financial Officer of Citi Transaction Services globally.
Jason Weinstein, Steptoe & Johnson
Partner and Advisor, BitFury Group
Jason is a litigator who focuses on white-collar criminal defence and government investigations and matters related to privacy, cybersecurity and financial technologies. He is a former deputy assistant attorney general in the Criminal Division of the US Department of Justice and a former federal prosecutor.
Olawale Ayeni, Orange Silicon Valley
Wale leads early-stage startup investment activity in the US for Orange Telecoms. Previously he was with JP Morgan's Technology Investment Banking group in San Francisco. Before that he was a microprocessor design engineer with Intel where he worked on it CSI chip architecture. He also worked on aspects of the first Snapdragon chipsets at Qualcomm before that.
Vanessa Colella, Citi Ventures
Managing Director, Global Head of Venture Investing and Strategic Growth Initiatives
Vanessa leads strategic investments, accelerator activities and Citi-wide growth opportunities with the potential to shape the future of the company. Previously, she ran marketing for Citi's North American Consumer Bank. She was also an entrepreneur-in-residence at US Venture Partners, senior vice-president of Insights at Yahoo and a partner at McKinsey and Co. Vanessa is a charter member of Teach for America.
Fereshteh Forough, Code to Inspire
Founder and CEO
Fereshteh is an advocate of using bitcoin and the first to formally promote its use in Afghanistan, where she was born. Code to Inspire serves as a launchpad for females in Afghanistan to get involved in entrepreneurship and technological innovation. Fereshteh is also a founding member of Women's Annex Foundation. Previously, she was a professor in the computer science faculty of Herat University.
Jon Downing, Visa Europe Collab
Innovation Partner, Emerging Payments
Jon works at Visa Europe's newly launched innovation hub to help identify and commercialise the most exciting ideas in payments. He has more than 20 years experience delivering business and technology services to global financial companies, with an expertise in emerging payments.
Joe Colangelo, Consumers' Research
Joe has led Consumers' Research from its traditional role as a consumer-product testing organisation to a leading consumer policy think-tank. It focuses on the impact of technological advances on the consumer protection and regulatory landscapes. It recently hosted a bitcoin-focused workshop in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire. Previously, Joe founded Golden Coast Mead, a beverage company, and was a Surface Warfare Officer in the US Navy.
Alan Grundy, International Rescue Committee
Cash and Vouchers Coordinator, Emergency Response Team
Alan designed the International Rescue Committee's global payment strategy, pre-positioning agreements with financial services providers to deliver humanitarian aid to conflict and disaster affected persons around the world. He has implemented emergency responses programmes in Asia, West Africa, Eastern Europe and Latin America.
Garrick Hileman, CoinDesk
Analyst and Economic Historian, London School of Economics
Garrick is best known as an expert on monetary innovation. He leads analysis of CoinDesk's industry-defining State of Bitcoin reports and is a regular commentator on the subject in print and broadcast media. His teaching at the LSE has focused on comparative national economic performance. He also founded MacroDigest, a service that clusters economic news algorithmically. Previously, Garrick led investments for a technology incubator and did equity research and corporate finance at Montgomery Securities.
We're continually developing the speaker list for Consensus 2015. If you want to recommend a speaker, please contact Joon Ian Wong.