The technology industry has experienced immense growth since the tech boom in the 1960s, research consultancy firm IDC projects the global information technology industry is on pace to reach $5.2 trillion by the end of 2020. Despite the rapid expansion and economic growth, the tech industry lags in one key area, gender diversity. Statista reports women in the United States hold 26% of computing-related jobs, and 48% of women in STEM jobs reported discrimination in the recruitment and hiring process. The numbers are even more staggering for women of color. Three percent of African-American women hold computing-related positions, six percent of such roles are held by Asian women, and two percent held by Hispanic women.
Our next feature on Cred’s Women In Crypto series is listed in Forbes 2018 Top 50 Women in Tech for her work in the blockchain industry. Galia Benartzi is the co-founder of Bancor, an on-chain liquidity protocol that enables automated, decentralized token exchange on Ethereum and across blockchains. The Bancor wallet facilitates seamless crypto to crypto conversions, supporting over 8,000 tokens and, to date, has processed over a billion conversions across 120 Ethereum-based currencies.
Driven by the belief that “freedom of currency is a human right,” Bancor enables innovative applications to create, convert, discover and use digital assets. In 2017 Bancor raised $153 million worth of ether through an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) over the course of three hours, making it at the time the largest single-day token sale.
In response to an outside hack against Bancor that resulted in a loss of $13.5 million, Benartzi helped forge the Crypto Defenders Alliance. The CDA aims to “be a self-governing coalition of exchanges, blockchain projects and cybersecurity organizations dedicated to stopping fraud, theft, and liquidation of stolen digital assets through deep industry collaboration, best practices, and open-source software.”
In addition to co-founding Bancor, Galia is a Venture Partner at Founders Fund, a Venture Capital firm with a portfolio of many Silicon Valley giants, including Facebook, Palantir, SpaceX, Airbnb, and Climate Corporation. Galia has held several executive roles, including serving as co-founder and CEO of Particle Code (now Appcelerator), a cross-platform mobile application software, and co-founding Mytopia, the first smartphone social gaming company.
Galia holds a BA in Comparative Literature from Dartmouth College and an MA in International Economics from SAIS Johns Hopkins. In addition to her decades of fintech experience at an executive level, Galia is the creator of the Eden 2 Zion Reality, an initiative by the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, which facilitates international leadership journeys that seek to improve lives, strengthen communities and advance equity. She is also a founding member of Powder Mountain, the largest ski resort by acreage in the United States.
Galia Benartzi is a shining example of what comes when the fintech industry is exposed to diverse backgrounds, and women hold executive positions. At Cred, our foundations as a company are rooted in the ideals of fairness and inclusivity, which is why we continue our Women in Crypto series, spotlighting pioneering women such as Galia in the blockchain industry.