Komainu appoints Robert Johnson as CTO

Rick Steves

“Upsides – digital assets have tremendous potential, particularly now L2s+sensible consensus algorithms+sharding etc look to be solving the on-chain scale issues. Komainu are a terrific bunch of people with institutional backing. Downsides – degradation of signal to noise in my inbox post this announcement”, the new Komainu CTO said on LinkedIn.

Komainu has announced the appointment of industry veteran Robert Johnson as its new Chief Technology Officer. Johnson joins the firm from Coremont, where he served as CTO and Partner.

Johnson brings over two decades of experience in financial services to the table, having worked 18 years on the trade floor at MUFG Securities, overseeing their international front office technology and quantitative teams. His role will be critical as Komainu seeks to bolster its position as a leader in institutional-grade digital asset infrastructure.

In a statement about his new position, Johnson expressed enthusiasm about the intersection of digital asset architecture and institutional demands. “Recent technological advances in the scaling capabilities and consensus mechanisms associated with digital asset architectures are opening the ‘digital door’ to a diverse range of assets,” Johnson said. “Coupling the demands from institutions for security of their digital assets with the reduction in processing costs offered by new digital infrastructure makes this an exciting time to be bringing streamlined custodial services to market.”

“Digital assets have tremendous potential, particularly now L2s+sensible consensus algorithms+sharding, etc”

Johnson will be based in Komainu’s London office and is expected to play a pivotal role in guiding the firm’s technical strategy, development, and technological growth.

In a LinkedIn post, Johnson outlined both the potential and challenges of his new role. “I have a new role to fill my days (evenings, nights, etc),” Johnson wrote. “Upsides – digital assets have tremendous potential, particularly now L2s+sensible consensus algorithms+sharding etc look to be solving the on-chain scale issues. Komainu are a terrific bunch of people with institutional backing. Downsides – degradation of signal to noise in my inbox post this announcement.”

Komainu’s decision to bring Johnson on board comes at a time when the global financial services industry is increasingly looking to integrate blockchain and digital assets into mainstream offerings. Johnson’s dual expertise in traditional finance and emerging digital technologies positions him as an ideal figure to bridge these two worlds.

For Komainu, the addition of Johnson is not just a new hire but a strategic move aimed at further cementing its role as a disruptor in the rapidly evolving landscape of digital asset management.

Komainu authorized to operate as a custodian wallet provider in the UK

The news comes a few days after Komainu announced it has secured authorization from the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to operate as a custodian wallet provider. The registration complies with the UK’s Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information of the Payer) regulations established in 2017.

This FCA clearance enables Komainu to expand its crypto-custody services within the UK and to offer collateral management services through its proprietary Komainu Connect platform.

In an era where traditional financial structures and decentralized finance (DeFi) are inching closer to integration, Komainu’s FCA registration is not only timely but also strategically positioned.

Komainu has been regulated by the Jersey Financial Services Commission (JFSC) since November 2019 and has recently added new licenses to its portfolio. The digital asset custodian was granted a VASP license by Dubai’s Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA) and was added to Italy’s OAM registry, allowing it to extend its services to Italian institutional clients. Moreover, Komainu has been operational in Singapore since 2021.

Established in 2018, Komainu was created to address a significant gap in the market: the need for a secure, compliant digital asset custody service for institutional investors. The firm provides custody services for a range of entities, including exchanges, financial institutions, asset managers, corporations, and even government agencies.

Komainu operates as a joint venture between Nomura, digital asset manager CoinShares, and digital asset security company Ledger. With regulatory compliance and multi-asset support at the core of its services, Komainu aims to bridge traditional financial mechanisms with advanced security protocols suitable for next-generation institutional custody. The company’s international footprint spans Jersey, London, Dublin, Dubai, and Singapore, making it a truly global enterprise.

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