Simon recently joined the Blocktrade team as Head of Compliance. With 18 years of experience in the field of Risk & Compliance, a Graduate Degree in Computer Science/IT and an MBA, he avails over the diverse background and versatility that the multifaceted nature of the Blockchain industry calls for.
Serving as the company’s MLRO, he ensures the compliance of Blocktrade operations with rules and provisions by regulatory authorities and trains internal staffs on all compliance and legal matters.
While we interviewed Simon to allow you to learn more about our new team member, we learnt about his love for fast rides and DJaying as well as a passion for playing chess.
Simon, thank you for taking the time. Could you tell us about your career and your professional background?
I started my professional career in 2003. Starting out in the field of Governance, Risk & Compliance, over the years I worked for numerous companies on four continents in diverse sectors ranging from Funds/Wealth Management, Commercial & Investment Banking to Law Enforcement & Military Defense. This long journey eventually led me to the field of Fintech & Digital Assets Trading.
I’m a Graduate of Computer Science/Information Technology and have an MBA from Grenoble Graduate School of Business, France with specializations in Management Consultancy. I also hold the required professional certifications applicable to my field of competence, as well as being a member of various relevant professional bodies & associations.
Can you give us a little insight into your daily tasks here at Blocktrade? What are your responsibilities?
My job title and role in Blocktrade S.A is Head of Compliance. As the Chief Compliance Officer – MLRO, my main responsibilities are to ensure that all our business activities are compliant with the guidelines and regulations of the EU/Luxembourg Financial Authorities and the CSSF.
My job description also includes responsibilities like growing and training the Compliance Department internally, as well as report to the Board and produce the Annual Compliance Report, as well as the Annual MLRO’s Report covering AML related issues. Furthermore, I am the main point of contact for the regulators and local law enforcement on Financial Crime Investigations while also being the lead for the Transaction Monitoring & Financial Crimes Team.
What would you say you enjoy most about working at Blocktrade?
While I only joined Blocktrade very recently, a prime factor that I have enjoyed about working with Blocktrade SA are the people I have met so far. I was warmly welcomed by this amazing team of Individuals upon joining their ranks. They really went out of their way to make me feel at home. I am happy to say that I enjoy working with each and every member of our team. In fact, I like the professional family feel the company portrays.
The founder’s mentality and start-up company culture are also very appealing to me. I certainly hope that it continues and remains this way as we grow and scale our operations. I like the fact that there is never a dull day! No two workdays are ever the same, every day new challenges arise which are then effectively dealt with and solved.
Let’s take a look into the future. What vision do you hold for Blocktrade?
I share in our CEO’s vision of Blocktrade growing large over time and positioning ourselves among the top 20 cryptocurrency-exchanges in the world because of the way we conduct business. It is my intention to grow with this company, taking it from strength to strength, and witness its growth and be a part of the journey.
Outside of Blocktrade, what are your personal interests and how do you like to spend your free time?
My personal life outside work mostly revolves around my wife and teenage children. Outside of that, I enjoy having a drink with friends and having loads of interesting, intelligent conversations about topics like politics, sports, music and film, or simply “banter & laughs” as we call it in my home country, the UK. I am an avid petrol head & love riding/driving fast motorcycles and cars on tracks, as well as attending motorsport events like F1 or MotoGP and music concerts in pre Covid-19 days.
I am also a DJay for Old School Hip-Hop and R’nB Music, Dance, Deep Progressive House Music and Techno music. However, these days in Luxembourg, I find myself trying to learn a new language or looking for someone to play chess with.