Coinbase adds Shopify founder to board

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Global Inc. recently announced the addition of Shopify founder and CEO Tobias “Tobi” Lütke to its board of directors as Coinbase expands its e-commerce offerings and seeks to offer non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

If approved by the board later this week, Lütke will be added to Coinbase’s five current board members.

Shopify merchants can accept payments through Coinbase, according to a Coinbase blog post from the CEO and co-founder Brian Armstrong.

“Tobi’s experience as Founder and CEO, growing his business from a small, niche online marketplace to what has become a critical backbone of global e-commerce, will help guide Coinbase as we seek to bring crypto to more people and businesses around the world,” he said.

Coinbase has 73 million verified users. Its shares are down around 30% so far in 2022 amid an ongoing struggle for the cryptocurrency since Bitcoin hit an all-time high in November.

Lütke, who started out as a computer programmer, started an e-commerce site focused on selling snowboarding gear that eventually became Shopify in 2004. The company had revenue of $4.6 billion in 2021 Coinbase is expected to report $7.3 billion in reservations for 2021 when it reports annual results in February.

Related: SEC campaign against crypto lending extends beyond Coinbase

In September, Coinbase pulled its planned product Coinbase Lend, which was going to offer a 4% annual percentage return, after the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) threatened to sue it. It was only after Coinbase said its competitors were offering similar products that it was allowed to continue with its offer.

“By preventing Coinbase from launching the same thing that other companies already have live, they are creating an unfair market,” the company told the SEC. In December, Coinbase unveiled a similar lending product in 70 more countries.

The average FDIC-insured bank savings account paid an annual percentage return of 0.06%.

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