Kraken Hires Lawyer Marco Santori to Ramp Up Acquisitions

Marco Santori, who helped write the SAFT framework, is leaving Blockchain.com to helm Kraken's expanding legal team.

Apr 6, 2020 at 4:10 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 8:26 a.m. UTC

Kraken is growing its legal team, starting with the crypto veteran Marco Santori.

The San-Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange, which boasts over $180 million in daily volume, announced Monday that Santori would helm its legal team as chief legal officer. In this role he will be leading a significant expansion of the team, now counting a “half-dozen quality attorneys,” he told CoinDesk in an interview.

Santori, a crypto-focused lawyer since 2013, is perhaps best known as one of the authors of the "Simple Agreement for Future Tokens" (SAFT) framework.

He said he has already set his eye on some candidates and is going to “hire aggressively," targeting experts in regulatory, commercial and policy issues, and M&A.

He did not say how many new attorneys would be joining.

"Kraken has been remarkably efficient in acquisitions in the past," Santori said, mentioning the 2016 acquisition of the blockchain startup Glidera, his former client, the CEO of which became Kraken’s chief operating officer. 

Kraken acquired Australian crypto exchange Bit Trade in January. Last summer, the exchange also bought Dan Held’s Interchange company offering portfolio management to institutional investors. New partnerships with existing crypto entities, entities in traditional financial services and other companies outside of the crypto world are to come, including new acquisitions, Santori said.

Santori has been in crypto since 2013, seved as a chairman of regulatory affairs committee at the Bitcoin Foundation and represented the group during the New York State Department of Financial Services’ BitLicense hearings. 

He also worked with Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP and Cooley LLP law firms. His most recent job was was as president and chief legal officer of Blockchain.

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