Multicoin Capital Hires First General Counsel as Talk of Crypto Regulation Ramps Up

Greg Xethalis joined the venture capital firm in July after a decade of crypto-focused work in private practice.

Sep 30, 2021 at 2:01 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 30, 2021 at 5:04 p.m. UTC

Venture firm Multicoin Capital is adding to its legal ranks at a time when global regulators are putting crypto squarely under the microscope.

“Obviously, we’re at an inflection point for the regulation of digital assets in the U.S. and around the world,” Greg Xethalis, Multicoin’s general counsel and chief compliance officer, said in an interview with CoinDesk. It’s the firm’s first in-house lawyer, a company spokesman confirmed.

The New York-based Xethalis, formerly of Chapman and Cutler LLP, has long tackled crypto’s square-peg-round-hole regulatory status. He worked with the Winklevoss brothers in 2012 to submit the first bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF) application to U.S. regulators (the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has still yet to approve a single bid).

Xethalis’ move in-house comes as other prominent venture fims in the crypto space steel their ranks with legal minds and ex-regulators. Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) has ramped up its rhetoric in recent months, with general partner and former federal prosecutor Katie Haun taking SEC Chair Gary Gensler to task as recently as this week.

For his part, Xethalis will assume the mantle of keeping compliance top of mind at Multicoin, both for the firm itself and in an advisory capacity for its many investments.

“We do want to be a strong advocate for the space and our portfolio companies,” he said.

In a blog post shared early with CoinDesk, Multicoin added:

“Crypto is entering mainstream awareness, and we are growing our team so that we can support entrepreneurs as effectively as possible, and engage broader stakeholders as one of the largest investment firms in the space.”

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Zack Seward is CoinDesk's deputy global news editor. He holds BTC, ETH, UNI, ATOM and a couple NFTs above CoinDesk's disclosure threshold of $1,000.