Blockchain research firm nChain announced today that Jon Matonis would join as Vice President of Corporate Strategy. Matonis is a frequent commentator on Bitcoin issues and is also a Founding Director of the Bitcoin Foundation.
Also read: Blockstream: We Did Not Patent SegWit
Matonis has written about cryptocurrency for publications like Forbes, CoinDesk and American Banker. His 2012 article “Could Bitcoin Become the Currency of System D?” introduced many early adopters to the community.
“Jon was immediately attractive to nChain. During his notable career, he has consistently led the integration of financial services and cryptography. His work has included foreign currency trading for Visa International, financial platform sales for RSA’s VeriSign – securing its first $5 million in revenue – and end-to-end encrypted messaging for Hush Communications where as CEO he recruited PGP’s Phil Zimmermann as Hushmail’s Chief Cryptographer.”
Davis added that Matonis’ Bitcoin philosophy is “fully in line with nChain’s vision of on-chain scalability with decentralisation, advanced native scripting for the construction of smart contracts, and a dedicated move away from monolithic software.”
nChain Known for Craig Wright, Blockchain Patents
nChain captured attention a few weeks ago with its acquisition by a European private equity fund — and for employing one Dr. Craig Wright. Wright is nChain’s Chief Scientist and has assisted the company with dozens of blockchain-related patent applications. However the firm has said he is neither a director nor shareholder.
nChain supports larger transaction blocks and on-blockchain scaling in general. Of particular note, Matonis himself described the company as a “strong and effective counterbalance to Blockstream”:
Bitcoin now has a strong and effective counterbalance to Blockstream Corp (Montreal) https://t.co/GbPmRj7HFf
— Jon Matonis (@jonmatonis) May 2, 2017
Continuing that thought, he stated his aim is to help individuals “liberate themselves from the current centralizing, rent-seeking chokepoints.”
Matonis’ Career in IT and Finance
The Bitcoin wiki notes Matonis’ career outside cryptocurrency includes senior influential posts at Sumitomo Bank, Visa, VeriSign, as well as Hushmail.
He was named Person of the Year by Digital Gold Currency Magazine in 2011, and in 2015 he joined the Editorial Board for cryptocurrency and blockchain technology journal Ledger. He will continue to serve in that role and publish his opinions regularly.
Is this a good hire for nChain? What does it mean for Blockstream and the scaling debate in general? Let us know.
Images via Twitter, nChain