Brian Reisbeck: Chief Compliance Officer at Coinme Comments on International Regulatory Environment for Cryptocurrency

We recently caught up with Brian Reisbeck, the newly appointed Chief Compliance Officer at Coinme, a cryptocurrency cash exchange in the United States.

Brian Reisbeck has joined Coinme as CCO and will help lead the firm’s compliance program and guide the organization in “maintaining regulatory compliance standards during the next stage of its growth and international expansion.”

Neil Bergquist, CEO and co-founder of Coinme, had noted last month:

“Coinme is excited to welcome Brian Reisbeck to the company as part of our ongoing commitment to develop and maintain industry-leading compliance systems and controls. With Brian’s unique experience in helping launch Robinhood’s crypto exchange, we’re eager to support more companies that want to offer crypto-services while continuing to offer safe and secure crypto-services to Coinme’s enterprise partners like Coinstar and MoneyGram.”

Reisbeck is a 20 year veteran in the financial services industry, “having served as the chief compliance officer at a major U.S.-based crypto exchange, where he managed and supervised compliance and regulatory programs.”

Prior to that role, Reisbeck “discovered his passion for cryptocurrency while serving as the anti-money laundering compliance officer for Robinhood.” There, he helped “launch its crypto trading platform and implemented, managed, and supervised the firm’s enterprise-wide anti-money laundering and compliance programs.”

He is also “a member of the largest international membership organization for anti-financial crime professionals, the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists (ACAMS).”

During the last few years, Coinme has expanded “to offer the sale of Bitcoin with cash at thousands of U.S. locations in 48 states.”

In 2021, the firm had received licenses “to operate in Florida, North Carolina, Connecticut, and Alaska.” This year, the firm’s key focus will be “to continue working with regulators as it is poised for national and international expansion and onboarding new partners to make access to crypto with cash instant, affordable, simple, and trusted.”

Our conversation with Brian Reisbeck is shared below.

Crowdfund Insider: What attracted you to Coinme and what goal/goals do you hope to accomplish in your new role?

Brian Reisbeck: I am looking forward to utilizing my expertise to help the company further push our mission in providing a trusted and accessible way to purchase digital currency for our customers. The goal here is to build a company that is able to service a segment of the market that is unbanked/underbanked. This attracted me to Coinme because it helps people that are not traditionally involved in financial services systems.

Coinme already has a great culture of compliance. My team as it stands is roughly around 10 employees. Right now, we’re looking to grow that. My goal is to continue to help build the compliance program in addition to expanding my team to meet the company’s growth. Coming into Coinme, I was definitely impressed by the culture of compliance that already existed. I look forward to just building upon that, and meeting the challenges ahead. There is a lot of innovation happening, and many new ideas are being realized across the industry. As a result, the regulatory environment will continue to change constantly. We look forward to there being a more concrete regulatory roadmap in the future to guide compliance and further innovation.

Crowdfund Insider: What are your thoughts on the compliance talent pool in crypto.

Will it be hard to scale your team?

Brian Reisbeck: It could be challenging. A good fit for the roles I’m looking for would be someone who both has a traditional finance background and understands crypto, which can be difficult, since its such a new industry. Anyone looking for senior manager or vice president-level candidates may have a hard time finding talent.

This is because there are not a lot of people who have that crypto exposure. As the years go by, that may not be the case. However, right now in the compliance space, it can be challenging to find the right individuals who have some crypto experience.

Crowdfund Insider: How do international regulatory environments differ from the U.S.? Are they more challenging?

Brian Reisbeck: The main challenge with the global expansion is each country and its regulatory environment are different and will have varying rules and regulations. Here in the United States, the crypto industry operates with limited regulatory clarity, however, there are still compliance standards to meet.

For example, each state has its own regulations we have to meet in order for Coinme to operate there. This challenge can be amplified when looking at the regulatory environments in different countries. There needs to be a lot of time and effort put into analyzing these global markets to ensure the most compliant approach as we enter them.

Crowdfund Insider: Do you anticipate any regulatory changes in 2022 for the crypto industry?

Brian Reisbeck: I expect to continue to see many changes for the year as we see wider adoption of crypto across the globe. I foresee new regulatory tax reporting rules for customers and companies alike in addition to stricter laws regarding money laundering to both identify and prevent it. Regulations can literally change on a dime, so it’s becoming more important than ever to continue to know who is transacting with us. We have to have the ability to quickly comply with regulations as they happen so we remain ahead of the curve.

Crowdfund Insider: What are your thoughts on Biden’s recent executive order?

Brian Reisbeck: The crypto markets, in general, seemed to take this news positively as they perceived this order as the beginning of the pathway to creating a more robust regulatory framework for cryptocurrency.  Currently, I have a neutral stance on it as I see his executive order as mostly exploratory in nature.

Obviously, this stance could change in one direction or the other based on the methods used in investigating the use case for cryptocurrency and the findings that come from this inquiry.  My hopes are that we get clarity on the many issues that currently exist from trying to fit cryptocurrency regulation into existing financial industry laws that in some cases were created many decades ago.

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