General Counsel of Cointelegraph, Zachary Kelman discusses bitcoin regulation, investing, and geopolitics of digital currencies.



Guest Biography

Zachary Kelman is the managing partner of crypto-native boutique law firm Kelman PLLC as well as General Counsel for Cointelegraph, the world’s foremost source of news and information on the future of finance. A New York-licensed attorney specializing in the politica, legal, regulatory issues surrounding Bitcoin, digital currencies, and blockchain technology, Kelman is a thought leader with frequent contributions Cointelegraph and a popular guest on leading podcasts, especially On the Brink with Castle Island with Nic Carter of Castle Island Ventures.

He provides a critical international perspective on how monetary policy and the legacy financial system continue to deal with the rise of crypto assets, commenting on subjects ranging from how stablecoins threaten the correspondent banking system to how United States government initiatives like “Operation Choke Point” affect financial inclusion and the efforts of crypto-asset companies to run their businesses.

Kelman began his legal career working in-house for major financial institutions such as Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley in areas including Anti-Money Laundering (AML), Know Your Customer (KYC) and similar critical legal areas essential to legacy financial infrastructure. His intimate knowledge of international transaction monitoring mechanisms uniquely positions him to advise emerging fintech and venture capital crypto companies.

Kelman came to prominence in 2014 when he drafted H.R. 5892, the Online Market Protection Act of 2014 — designed to exempt on-chain transactions from most U.S. regulations — which was submitted to Congress that year. He also serves as a member of the Florida Blockchain Business Association's Legislative Committee, having contributed to the development of two bills (H.B. 1351 and S.B. 1758) designed to position Florida as a leading destination for blockchain and cryptocurrency ventures.

He formerly acted as chief legal officer and director of Caribbean crypto exchange Bitt, where he worked with Caribbean governments to design early legislation promoting the adoption of crypto assets in the region. He acted similarly for Southeast Asian digital-asset firm, working with the central bank of the Philippines to design legislation in 2017.

In this episode, you'll learn:

  • About US regulations and cryptocurrencies
  • Which countries see crypto as an opportunity while others are less welcoming
  • The importance for crypto investors to have a macro thesis and maintain diversification in their portfolios.

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Special thanks to Jim Kimo West for the music.