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Kraken CEO Jesse Powell to Step Down

Kraken co-founder CEO Jesse Powell is set to exit his position as CEO of the major exchange platform. Amid speculation that various controversies have prompted the move, Powell claims this decision has been in talks for over a year. 

Powell Is Not Leaving Kraken Entirely

The avid crypto advocate shared that he plans to remain active within the crypto platform. Powell will step into a new role as the company’s first chairman of the board. He reportedly intends to shift his attention to improving Kraken’s releases, customer experience, and industry advocacy.

Regarding his reasons for stepping down, Powell claims functioning as CEO has grown more tasking as Kraken expands. 

As the company has gotten bigger, it’s just gotten to be more draining on me, less fun.” He said. “ I still plan to stay very engaged with the company as the largest shareholder and member of the board.”

COO Ripley Will Take Over as CEO

Kraken revealed in their announcement that the present Chief Operating Officer Dave Ripley will come into Powell’s former role. The transfer of duties will take place over the next couple of months as the company hunts for a new COO. 

Notably, Powell has expressed full support for Ripley as he fills his old shoes. As stated earlier, Powell had reportedly communicated his plans to leave since last year. After sorting through various options, Kraken eventually settled on Ripley as a suitable replacement. 

Dave’s proven leadership and experience give me great confidence that he’s the ideal successor and the best person to lead Kraken through its next era of growth,” the former CEO commented. 

Recent Controversies around Powell and Kraken

Interestingly, Powell who is known for his outspoken nature has come under fire multiple times this past year. The Kraken co-creator faced some criticism at the start of the year after the exchange refused to cut off Russian users. This came after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, with Powell highlighting the “libertarian values” of the crypto space as he explained his decision.

He also drew negative attention after asking Kraken’s dissatisfied woke staff members to leave the firm. Furthermore, according to some reports, the US Department launched a probe into the platform. This came amid allegations that Kraken was breaking federal bans by accepting Iranian clients. 

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Powell rebuffed this and has also denied that the aforementioned issues prompted his exit.

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