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Leadership

Board of Directors

Mike Edwards, Non-Executive Chairman

Mike Edwards, Non-Executive Chairman, has started and invested in technology companies for over 20 years. Mike has invested in more than 40 technology startups including Punch’d, which was sold to Google; Summify, which was acquired by Twitter; Wander, which was acquired by Yahoo; AreaConnect, which was sold to Marchex; Wylie Interactive, which was acquired by Zynga; and PasswordBox, which was acquired by Intel.

Mike is actively involved in growing and supporting the crypto currency start-up community and connecting local entrepreneurs with the right investors, mentors and influencers in Silicon Valley, New York, Europe and Asia. Mike co-founded Growlab, a seed stage accelerator focussing on consumer facing digital product, which later merged with Extreme Startups to create Canada’s Highline accelerator; and co-founded, and is a board member of, Creative Labs, a venture capital backed start-up foundry that builds consumer technology companies by leveraging the Creative Artist Agency’s access to talent and audience. Mike was also the co-founder and President of Argo Blockchain plc, the first cryptocurrency company to be admitted to the Main Market, which had a market capitalisation of £1bn in February 2021.

Philip Blows, Chief Executive Officer

Philip Blows was appointed CEO on 26 October 2021 and brings more than 15 years of leadership experience in the fintech and asset management sectors where he spearheaded the scaling-up of online trading platforms at several leading companies. His previous experience includes as Sales Director at Wealth Wizards, a UK robo-advice platform; senior foreign exchange adviser at Continental Capital Markets S.A and head of trading at Moneycorp. Philip graduated from the University of Leeds and went on to gain an MBA from the University of Geneva. He holds several internationally recognised financial certifications and qualifications, including an Investment Management Certificate from the CFA Institute and has been certified a Blockchain Expert by the Blockchain Council. He is also the author of a personal finance book, The Money Triangle.

Digby Try, Executive Director

Digby Try has a track record of over 20 years in senior management roles in the currency, payments and fintech sectors in both the UK and US, with specific responsibility for revenue and business development. Before joining Dispersion Holdings, he was Head of Global Sales at OpenPayd, a technology-led banking and payments platform for businesses, where he specialised in delivering fiat banking rails to the crypto industry and worked alongside many of the world’s leading exchanges. His previous experience includes seven years as Vice President of Sales EMEA at Currencycloud, which was subsequently acquired by Visa for £700m; three years as business development manager at Moneycorp and five years at HiFX (now XE.com), including as head of dealing in the US. Digby is a graduate of the University of East Anglia.

Mark Rutledge, Non-Executive Director

Mark has over 25 years of experience as a serial entrepreneur, C-level executive and strategic adviser with a particular expertise in structuring and financing early-stage start-ups. In the initial stages of his career, Mark practised securities and entertainment law, acting for clients such as Viacom, Disney, Paramount, Time Warner, and Canal+, and arranging over $100M in production and equity financings. He is currently CEO of Carraway Capital Corp., and co-founder and President of Sosido Networks Inc., a pre-eminent knowledge-sharing community for health-care professionals. He was until recently a Director of Leaf Mobile Inc, (TSE: LEAF), and is currently a director of Pioneer Media Holdings Inc. (CSE: PNER) an investment company focused on eSports and mobile gaming, helping to take both companies public. He is also a director of Aja Ventures Inc., an investment company focused on psychedelic therapies and longevity, as well as Streaks Gaming Plc. He has been active in the cryptoasset space since 2011.

Nicholas Lyth, Chief Financial Officer

Nicholas Lyth is a UK based, experienced board director and qualified accountant with over five years’ experience advising a number of quoted companies including AIM-listed companies Univision Engineering Ltd, Altona Energy plc and Taihua plc. Prior to his recent public company experience, Mr. Lyth was Group Finance and Purchasing Director of Belle Group, a manufacturer of engineering equipment operating across Europe, the US and Asia. He was also Head of Finance at Fothergill Group, a UK manufacturer of technical industrial fabrics, between 1996 and 2003. In his early career, Nick was a management accountant at Courtaulds plc and Rotunda plc.

Dr. Philipp Kallerhoff

Philipp Kallerhoff serves as an Executive Director and Chief Investment Officer of AQRU. He has over 15 years of experience in managing hedge funds and fintech companies. He founded AQRU’s wholly owned subsidiary, DeFi Yield Technologies Inc. in 2021, where he developed smart contract technology for yield generation. He also founded Protos Asset Management in 2017, a Swiss provider of cryptocurrency and DeFi exposure. Prior to founding Protos, Philipp worked for multiple hedge funds including Harcourt Investment Consulting/Vontobel Asset Management AG and founded another fintech company, Jumiya Inc. Philipp is an alumnus of the Graduate Studies Program at Singularity University and has a Doctorate in Computational Neuroscience, as well as a Diplom in Engineering and Management and a Diplom in Psychology and a Vordiplom in Physics from TU Berlin, Germany.

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