The new President of the Crypto Valley Association has vowed to turn around the divided organization. Daniel Haudenschild was elected on Thursday evening together with a new board following months of unrest.
Speaking to swissinfo.ch two days after his shock departure from Swisscom Blockchain, Haudenschild said his priorities are to heal divisions, build bridges between other blockchain groups in Switzerland and bring international business and capital to Crypto Valley.
“We are in the warring states period of Japan. We haven’t done ourselves any favours in putting Switzerland forward as a fertile ground for crypto in the world. We have stopped bringing venture capital and entrepreneurs and skills and talent into the Valley,” he said.
“We need to keep Switzerland right at the vanguard of being the best place to do business. If we don’t do that, capital and talent have legs, and we already see it seeping out. I couldn’t get five venture capitalists around a table in Crypto Valley right now. They have moved on to London, Amsterdam and Berlin. We have to get them back here.”
Haudenschild is joined on the boardexternal link by CVA’s former chief executive Kevin Lally, lawyers Mattia Rattaggi and Martin Berweger plus consultant Kamales Lardi. Founding board member Soren Fog was not re-elected.
But on Thursday evening, two other serving board members, Jenna Zenk and María Gomez, indicated that they would resign. Zenk appeared to object to the board being full of lawyers and consultants rather than programmers and start-up representatives.
Switzerland’s largest blockchain representative group stands at a crossroads after a difficult period of conflict among its 1,200 members. In November, former president Oliver Bussmann and three other board members announced they would not be standing for re-election.
In a statementexternal link, they said it was time for an injection of fresh blood to take the organisation forward. But behind the scenes, divisions have been forming within the Swiss blockchain community. Some members believe that personal commercial interests were being put above blockchain’s ideals of building a better society.
Haudenschild’s full interview will shortly appear on swissinfo.ch.