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Kraken Hires Ex-BlockFi VP, Samia Bayou, as Head of Prime Finance

by Solomon Oladipupo
  • Bayou brings about 18 years of industry experience to the role.
  • The executive's appointment comes despite continued crypto job cuts in 2023.
Kraken Hires Ex-BlockFi VP, Samia Bayou, as Head of Prime Finance
Samia Bayou is Kraken's new Head of Prime Finance and OTC Sales for EMEA
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Kraken, a US-based cryptocurrency exchange, has hired Samia Bayou, the former Vice President and Global Head of Private Clients at the digital asset lender BlockFi, as its new Head of Prime Finance and OTC Sales for the EMEA.

Bayou announced her appointment on LinkedIn on Friday. However, her LinkedIn profile shows she assumed the role in December last year. Bayou left her role at BlockFi in September last year after one year and five months.

The senior executive, who has worked for leading financial institutions, such as Société Générale Private Banking, UBS, Merrill Lynch and Citi, brings about 18 years of experience to the role.

“Kraken is building bridges from the old financial world to the new - crypto prime financing, OTC spot and derivative markets are poised for growth with institutions entering the ecosystem looking for a reliable and stable partner,” Bayou wrote on LinkedIn, explaining why she decided to “board Kraken’s rocket ship.”

Bayou’s Career Experience

Before BlockFi, Bayou worked as a Senior Investment Advisor to the Chairman and Managing Director at the UK-based Single Family Office. She fulfilled the role for over four and a half years.

Between 2015 and 2016, she was a Senior Private Banker in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) for Société Générale Private Banking, the wealth management arm of Société Générale. However, she spent an even longer stint at UBS, serving as a Client Advisor for the MENA Markets for the Switzerland-headquartered investment banking company. She worked at UBS for seven years and five months between September 2007 and January 2015.

Additionally, Bayou served as a Financial Advisor at the International desk of Merrill Lynch and previously worked as a Junior Relationship Manager for Citi's MENA clients. She fulfilled these roles between 2004 and 2006.

Crypto Job Cut Presses On into 2023

Kraken’s appointment of Bayou comes at a time the crypto industry is seeing continued industry job cuts from last year. On Friday, Singapore-based Crypto.com announced that it would shred its team by 30%.

Furthermore, Seychelles-based Huobi and remote-first American Coinbase announced job cuts some days ago. Kraken cut its global workforce by 30% in late November last year. On top of that, the crypto exchange plans to shut down its Japanese operations by January 31 citing harsh crypto market conditions.

Kraken, a US-based cryptocurrency exchange, has hired Samia Bayou, the former Vice President and Global Head of Private Clients at the digital asset lender BlockFi, as its new Head of Prime Finance and OTC Sales for the EMEA.

Bayou announced her appointment on LinkedIn on Friday. However, her LinkedIn profile shows she assumed the role in December last year. Bayou left her role at BlockFi in September last year after one year and five months.

The senior executive, who has worked for leading financial institutions, such as Société Générale Private Banking, UBS, Merrill Lynch and Citi, brings about 18 years of experience to the role.

“Kraken is building bridges from the old financial world to the new - crypto prime financing, OTC spot and derivative markets are poised for growth with institutions entering the ecosystem looking for a reliable and stable partner,” Bayou wrote on LinkedIn, explaining why she decided to “board Kraken’s rocket ship.”

Bayou’s Career Experience

Before BlockFi, Bayou worked as a Senior Investment Advisor to the Chairman and Managing Director at the UK-based Single Family Office. She fulfilled the role for over four and a half years.

Between 2015 and 2016, she was a Senior Private Banker in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) for Société Générale Private Banking, the wealth management arm of Société Générale. However, she spent an even longer stint at UBS, serving as a Client Advisor for the MENA Markets for the Switzerland-headquartered investment banking company. She worked at UBS for seven years and five months between September 2007 and January 2015.

Additionally, Bayou served as a Financial Advisor at the International desk of Merrill Lynch and previously worked as a Junior Relationship Manager for Citi's MENA clients. She fulfilled these roles between 2004 and 2006.

Crypto Job Cut Presses On into 2023

Kraken’s appointment of Bayou comes at a time the crypto industry is seeing continued industry job cuts from last year. On Friday, Singapore-based Crypto.com announced that it would shred its team by 30%.

Furthermore, Seychelles-based Huobi and remote-first American Coinbase announced job cuts some days ago. Kraken cut its global workforce by 30% in late November last year. On top of that, the crypto exchange plans to shut down its Japanese operations by January 31 citing harsh crypto market conditions.

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