Cryptocurrency industry calls in Headland for major public affairs push

Written by Rod Muir on 4 April 2018 in News

CryptoUK has been set up by seven firms as authorities weigh up a potential clamp-down.

The UK’s first self-regulatory trade body for the cryptocurrency industry has brought in external public affairs help as it looks to engage with politicians and regulators.

Seven cryptocurrency companies joined forces earlier this year to set up the CryptoUK group in a bid to inject more legitimacy and transparency into the sector.

Now the new trade body has appointed corporate and public affairs firm Headland to provide public affairs and media relations services.

It comes as authorities weigh up a potential clamp-down, with the European Central Bank expressing concern and the general manager of the Bank for International Settlements calling bitcoin “a combination of a bubble, a Ponzi scheme and an environmental disaster”. Others have flagged the use of cryptocurrencies for money laundering and terrorism finance due to their inherent anonymity.

Founding members of CryptoUK include: BlockEx; CEX.IO; Coinbase; CoinShares; Coinfloor; CommerceBlock; CryptoCompare; and eToro.

Having already supported some of the industry’s leading members in establishing the trade body, Headland will now work with them to engage with politicians and regulators about future regulation and the potential for the new technology in the UK. This will include developing CryptoUK’s Code of Conduct as a blue print for a future regulatory framework.

Headland director Toby Pellew said: “Cryptocurrencies are an incredibly topical area of policy discussion – one which is seeing increasing levels of scrutiny amongst regulators and politicians.

“We’re therefore delighted to have been chosen to support CryptoUK in developing their industry contribution to this debate, as they seek to champion best practice in support of consumers and position the UK as a leader for this exciting blockchain technology.”

Headland is known as a financial and corporate agency, but recently boosted it public affairs firepower by hiring Tesco head of international government affairs Simon Burton as a partner to focus on its public affairs offering. Last year, the agency raised eyebrows when it took the retained PepsioCo public affairs account from Fleishman Hillard Fishburn.



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