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Someone’s Setback Is Another’s Breakthrough: Caitlin Long’s Motivation for Avanti

Source: Harvard 

Caitlin Long, founder and CEO of Avanti Financial Group, part digital asset custodian and part traditional bank, has been an active subscriber of Bitcoin and blockchain since 2012. She later dived headfirst into the field in 2013 when an article on how to purchase and deposit Bitcoin popped into her inbox. 

Long co-founded Wyoming Blockchain Coalition in 2017 and served at the Wyoming Blockchain Task as gubernatorial appointee up until 2019. She also founded Avanti Financial Group in 2020. 

Long says that “the ‘tipping point’ for a currency seems to be when society realizes en masse why prices are really going up — namely, that the denominator of a price (the currency) is going down in value. All prices are just ratios, expressed as the value of the good (numerator) in terms of the currency (denominator).”

Avanti raised a Series A $37 million, which would proceed towards fulfilling capital requirements and expanding her engineering lineup, according to Long. 

“We have a history of breaking ranks. That’s the culture I grew up in, and it never left me,” says Long. 

In 2014, a notorious hack at Mt. Gox, a Bitcoin exchange company, persuaded Long of the necessity for an institution that can work both in traditional banking and crypto. 

She headed the charge to make the state of Wyoming a sanctuary for blockchain companies in the US. More so, Wyoming ratified 20 blockchain-enabling laws because of her help. 

As chairman and president of an enterprise blockchain start-up Symbiont, she cooperatively led a blockchain project for conveying market index data to Vanguard from 2016 to 2018. 

She began her career at a bulge bracket investment bank in New York called Salomon brothers in 1994. Soon after, she held senior roles in a financial services company in Switzerland named Credit Suisse in 1997 and later ran Morgan Stanley’s pension solution business in 2007.  

The 22-year Wall Street veteran studied her bachelor’s degree at the University of Wyoming, attended Kennedy School of Government for her masters, and graduated at Harvard Law School. 

She was born to an electrical engineering father and an elementary school teacher who taught the children of miners. As of now, she is 52 years old with a lot of knowledge and a ton to do.