Facebook’s Libra Hires HSBC Veteran As Managing Director

Facebook's Libra Hires HSBC Veteran As Managing Director

The Libra Association has named James Emmett as managing director of Libra Networks, the association’s operating company subsidiary.

The association said in a news release that “Emmett is a highly experienced financial services leader with a wealth of global experience in business, strategy, technology and operations, gained through his 25 years with HSBC.”

Emmett previously was the top executive of HSBC Bank plc and Europe, where he was responsible for HSBC’s UK Wholesale Bank and operations across Continental Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa and Bermuda. Before his CEO role, he served as COO of HSBC Bank.

Emmett has “deep substantive expertise and operational experience,” said Stuart Levey, CEO of the Libra Association, in the release. Levey added that he is confident that Emmett’s “leadership will help make Libra’s vision a reality.”

“I am delighted to be joining Libra Networks with a mission to enhance financial innovation,” said Emmett.

Libra Association, launched in June 2019, describes itself as an “independent member organization.” The group, based in Geneva, Switzerland, was founded by Facebook to launch the social media company’s entry into digital currency.

“The success of the Libra project lies with the extended community that supports it,” noted an organization blog post.

The association named Levey to the CEO post in May. At the time, he was serving as chief legal officer of HSBC.

Other recent hires at the Libra Association have included Steve Bunnell as chief legal officer and Sterling Daines as chief compliance officer.

Meanwhile, digital assets continue to gain legitimacy in the financial services world. In addition, government entities have become interested in “stablecoin” technology.

On the heels of the U.S. Mint’s decision to phase out the production of pennies next year, a partner at Andreessen Horowitz, a California-based venture capital firm, said money will be digital by 2030. Kathryn Haun predicted that cash is on its way out.