Zodia Custody Names Former Bitstamp Head Julian Sawyer as CEO

Julian Sawyer left his role as CEO of Bitstamp in May last year.
Image source: Jernej Lasic

Quick take:

  • Sawyer brings over 30 years of experience in consulting, TradFi, fintech and crypto.
  • Sawyer will replace Maxime de Guillebon as CEO of Zodia Custody.
  • He co-founded UK fintech startup, Starling Bank.

Zodia Custody, a London-based crypto custodian and subsidiary of Standard Chartered, has appointed Julian Sawyer as its new CEO. 

He will replace Maxime de Guillebon, an internal hire who spent more than 14 years at Standard Chartered and worked at SC Ventures, the bank’s investment unit, before joining Zodia Custody. 

Sawyer made a sudden departure from Bitstamp over differences in in May last year after 18 months with the crypto exchange. During his time as CEO, he was responsible for setting company strategy and direction, expanding Bitstamp’s presence on a global scale, and building and leading Bitstamp’s executive team, amongst other tasks.

Sawyer brings over 30 years of experience in consulting, TradFi, fintech and crypto. In 1999, he founded Bluerock Consulting, a financial services management consultancy and led the company as CEO until its sale in 2011. He was also head of the Cards & Payments service line.

He also co-founded UK fintech startup, Starling Bank, where he served as chief operating officer for four years. Sawyer made his move into the crypto industry in 2019, when he joined crypto exchange Gemini as managing director for Europe.

The appointment follows Zodia’s recent launch of its new service, Interchange, to protect customer assets from crypto exchange insolvency. Interchange will hold clients’ assets which are, at the same time, mirrored on crypto exchanges for trading.

Commenting on his appointment via LinkedIn, Sawyer said: “I’m excited to announce that I have recently joined Zodia Custody as CEO. The business prides itself on being one of the leading institutional crypto custodians with both FCA and CBI registrations backed by Standard Chartered Bank and Northern Trust Corporation. I am looking forward to working with the talented team at Zodia to drive the business forward.”



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