New True Digital CEO Thomas Kin Leaves World’s Largest Hedge Fund At Bridgewater For Crypto Startup
Thomas Kim, CEO Of True Digital, Sits Down For Interview With The Block On His Transition From Hedge Funds To Fintech
The Block is one of the most reliable publications for blockchain, cryptocurrency, and fintech news, which led them to interview Thomas Kim, formerly a manager with Bridgewater. Now, Kim has made the move to True Digital as a CEO, and The Block decided to discuss the motivation for his departure from hedge funds, and what makes a fintech startup so enticing.
According to Kim, the transition was not a difficult choice at all. After a single meeting with founder Sunil Hirani of True digital, it was like he had an epiphany, as he learned about their goals of tokenizing fiat through a blockchain payment system. He said that their work is “not just a conceptual thing and that he believes that the grip on reality that they have with the ebbs and flows of the financial system is their greatest feature. With the ability to anticipate the interest that financial institutions have in crypto assets, Kim believes that their impact will allow the fintech startup to do “big things.”
The firm was only founded a year ago, but it follows the sentiment that Kim has continually expressed, that cryptocurrency will be a major part of the financial world’s future, especially went it comes to payments and transfers. He’s even been as bold as to call these changes “a movement.”
Kim made his start on Wall Street with Lehman Brothers, and his experience in this type of traditional finance has equipped him with a new perspective that can help in his new CEO position.
He said, “If you look at today’s current banking structure, there’s a lot of friction when dealing with payments and transfers…I’ve been in and around, and thinking about, and a part of this problem more broadly.”
Working overseas as well, he’s seen the climate around the financial economies around the world, and it is clear that the remittance systems in place in third-world countries is not beneficial. The costs are high, and Kim brings attention to his constant belief in the way these things work – “there’s got to be a better way to do this.”
Now, Kim believes that he should be impacting the institutional financial sector with the rising of an effective and necessary ecosystem. With this implementation, Kim does not believe that the world he will do will only be for the sake of True Digital. Instead, the “corporate level” is just one step in the progress.
Overall, Kim believes that he already has a firm understanding of his take at True Digital, and there is still plenty of things that he wants to see through at this point. One of his priorities is the launch of a physically deliverable Bitcoin-USD swap that is approved by the CFTC, which is coming soon. The startup’s hope is that they will end up beating Bakkt to the market.
One of the other main priorities that Kim has right now is to help banks worldwide to use the True Digital technology for various currencies. True Digital would fork the Ethereum blockchain into smaller private blockchains that are linked with each bank, rather than leaving the banks to go off on their own as JP Morgan has done with the JPM Coin.
Still, the path to do this may be harder than expected. Many of the departures from Wall Street lately have been due to the differences between traditional finance and cryptocurrency that have yet to be resolved. Perhaps that is why Kim understands that this transition isn’t for everyone. He commented that the opportunity and the potential gain, along with the conviction for cryptocurrency, are the necessary tools for both running a new crypto company and impacting the world.