Swiss banking giant UBS has named its former APAC CTO Peter Stephens as head of blockchain, following the departure of Alex Batlin, who left the firm last week to join BNY Mellon in a similar capacity.
A veteran at the Swiss bank, Stephens has served as a spokesperson for UBS and its blockchain work. He starts his new position on 1 November, working out of the bank’s London innovation centre.
Veronica Lange, UBS head of innovation said, “Peter has been instrumental in driving blockchain and fintech initiatives out of Hong Kong and is well-versed in UBS blockchain strategy and development work. This appointment will ensure consistency of our blockchain strategy and a smooth transition in the approach of the next phase of our blockchain based business development
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Collaboration is necessary for banks to unlock the full potential of the technology activity.
Stephens has been vocal about his belief that blockchain will be a disruptive force beyond finance and believes that collaboration is necessary for banks to unlock the full potential of the technology.
He commented, “Blockchain will take business models out completely, it will create new business models. Disruption from blockchain isn’t just going to be in financial services.”
UBS opened an innovation lab in Level39’s high growth space, HighGrowth:42 in April 2015 to explore the role of blockchain technology and smart contracts in financial services.