Former Strate CEO becomes blockchain ambassador

Monica Singer, blockchain business ambassador for ConsenSys.

Monica Singer, blockchain business ambassador for ConsenSys.

Monica Singer, former CEO of Strate, South Africa's central securities depository (CSD), has been appointed by Consensus Systems (ConsenSys) as a blockchain business ambassador.

New York-based start-up ConsenSys was founded in early 2015 as a software foundry to develop decentralised software services and applications that operate on the Ethereum blockchain.

Singer refers to the position as "creator of opportunities or evangelist". Singer says she is an educator seeking to raise awareness of the magic of blockchain.

"I will connect the pain points to the solutions that this technology, when built in the Ethereum ecosystem, could bring to your business with the assistance of the ConsenSys team which I am so proud of working with."

Singer left Strate at the end of August after being with the organisation for almost two decades. During her tenure, she was responsible for the introduction of electronic settlement for the local capital market and ensured Strate became recognised as one of the most progressive CSDs around the globe, says ConsenSys.

She also headed up the launch of Strate division Fractal Solutions, which continues to pursue a number of initiatives in the local blockchain space, it adds.

"I'm a firm believer that the DLT [decentralised ledger technology] will replace the way we clear and settle transactions, making CSDs in their current form obsolete. Custodian banks and central clearing parties will not have the same role to play if they don't adapt. The technology to make this possible is being developed as we speak," Singer says.

"I joined ConsenSys so I could be part of this worldwide team that will introduce these changes."

Confidence is growing among financial institutions that blockchain technologies will ultimately transform how services are conducted, operated and delivered, says Singer.

The World Economic Forum predicts that at least 10% of global gross domestic product is expected to be generated on blockchain platforms by 2025.

As VP of the Africa and Middle East Depositories Association, together with her role in the World Forum of CSDs, America's Central Securities Depositories Association and her contribution in the last 18 years to the International Securities Services Association, Singer will be able to leverage her expertise and vast network to share ideas at an international level, says ConsenSys.

Singer is a nominee for the Markets Media Women in Finance Award that will be announced in November. This year, she was named SA's most influential woman in business in the category of business service, run by CEO Magazine. She also won the 2006 Absa/Jewish Report business achiever award in the category of unlisted companies.

According to her LinkedIn page, Singer was chairperson of MaAfrica Tikkun Endowment Trust, and worked as a consultant for the World Bank. She was also a director for the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants.

She holds a bachelor of accountant from the University of the Witwatersrand.