Jesse Powell, the Co-founder and CEO of cryptocurrency exchange, Kraken, spoke about the ongoing Coinbase-Neutrino controversy via his official Twitter handle. However, Powell wasn’t the only person to speak on the issue as several other cryptocurrency influencers and developers, including Monero’s Lead Developer, Riccardo Spagni have come out to speak on the matter.
Coinbase, one of the biggest cryptocurrency exchange platforms in the US, has been facing a lot of criticism for acquiring Neutrino, an Italy-based blockchain analytics firm. The reason the blockchain firm has drawn the resentment of the cryptocurrency community is the core team’s involvement with the HackingTeam.
The firm HackingTeam is well-known for their involvement with several governments and leading companies. The firm were severely criticized in the past for selling surveillance tools and services to government authorities, especially countries with poor human rights records such as Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Venezuela.
The individuals associated with the HackingTeam included the CEO Giancarlo, CTO Alberto Ornaghi and the CRO Marco Valleri. When the above information came to light, a majority of the cryptocurrency community chanted #DeleteCoinbase on social media platforms such as Twitter and Reddit.
Nonetheless, Coinbase took a much bigger hit after the revelation that Neutrino was acquired mainly because their current providers were selling client data to third-party sources and a decision was made to regain control. More so, the platform’s failure in disclosing such crucial information to its users was frowned upon by the whole community.
Interestingly, the CEO of Kraken, Jesse Powell, also joined the heated discussion. He revealed that Neutrino was placed last in terms of a product during Kraken’s recent evaluation process, alongside Cipher Trace, Elliptic Forensics and Bitfury Crystal. He said,
“I asked our Compliance team what they thought of Neutrino. Fortunately, they’d just completed an evaluation. Neutrino came in last place on product (out of the 5) but was disqualified anyway due to the risks. However, other factors are important in M&A: cost, culture fit.”
Riccardo Spagni, popularly known as FluffyPony, said,
Siddecision, a Redditor, said,
“So Kraken looks at Neutrino and sees a disaster waiting to happen, Coinbase sees it and thinks its somehow a great buy opportunity. Ha! Kinda glad I’ve stuck with Kraken now.”
Gotanitche, another Redditor, said,
“Hands down a better exchange and I use them BUT it’s a shitty PR stunt and it’s becoming a regular trend for him to blurt out after the fact to gain more market share. Too much like TRON.”
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