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Libra Networks Hires Credit Suisse Executive as General Counsel

Nov. 25, 2020, 10:00 PM

Libra Networks, a subsidiary of a digital currency network that includes Facebook Inc. and other top technology companies, has named former Credit Suisse executive Saumya Bhavsar as its new general counsel.

The subsidiary is owned by Geneva-based Libra Association, a member organization working to develop a blockchain-based payment system for financial services innovation. Libra Networks manages the operations of the licensed Libra payments system.

Bhavsar’s hiring comes after the Libra Association in August brought on Stevan Bunnell, a former general counsel at the Homeland Security Department, as its chief legal officer. Prior to that, Bunnell had worked at O’Melveny & Myers, where he co-chaired the data and privacy and security practice.

Bunnell took over following the departure of Robert Werner, who had been hired last May as the first general counsel of the Libra Association, which counts Facebook, Uber Technologies Inc., Lyft Inc. and two dozen other organizations among its members. Werner, a former Goldman Sachs Group managing director and co-head of financial crime, previously had headed the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Asset Control and Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.

Bhavsar came to Libra Networks from Credit Suisse Group in Zurich, where she was managing director, global head of regulatory affairs and group head of data protection. She also had worked as managing director at UBS, and assistant general counsel at Euroclear Bank.

She is a former senior attorney in the Enforcement and Compliance division at the Treasury’s Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. She also has worked at the European Commission and the British Parliament.

“Along with many in the banking industry, I have been watching the Libra project from afar and believe the Libra payment system is poised to transform the industry and enable unprecedented financial innovation and inclusion at a time when we need it most,” said Bhavsar, in a statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Elizabeth Olson in Washington at egolson1@gmail.com

To contact the editor on this story: Rebekah Mintzer in New York at rmintzer@bloomberglaw.com
Chris Opfer in New York at copfer@bloomberglaw.com

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