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A Look Into the $6 Billion United Nations Agency Crypto Fund

Blockchain product leader Mehran Hydary, blockchain strategist Ariana Fowler, blockchain lead Christina Lomazzo, UNICEF office of innovation co-founder Chris Fabian, and Unicef France web marketing Hubert Chaminade prepare to announced the Unicef UNICEF

When Christina Lomazzo was a teenager, she used to hop back and forth across the U.S. Canada border for fun. A native of Ontario, with a father born in Italy, Lomazzo grew up speaking French, English, and Italian, and when things were slow in her hometown she and her friends would pile into a black SUV, cross the Detroit River to the United States and watch all-star Rasheed Wallace and the Detroit Pistons. Instead of buying each other presents when she was a kid, Lomazzo’s family took trips around the world.

Now the 28-year-old former project coordinator for the Bank of Canada and cofounder of Deloitte’s government blockchain practice is leveraging her international background at the United Nations, where in September 2018 she was hired as the United Nations Children’s Fund’s first head of blockchain, the technology behind bitcoin that makes transactions across borders as easy as if borders didn’t exist at all.  After 14 months’ work at the imposing United Nations Plaza in New York, Lomazzo and her international team today announced the Unicef Crypto Fund, a prototype that lets the agency accept bitcoin and ether donations and invest them directly into blockchain startups

In addition to investing cryptocurrency into early-stage, open-source companies working with children, the fund represents the first time any UN agency, much less one that generated $6.7 billion revenue last year, will be able to accept bitcoin and ethereum donations. The prototype, launched today with a donation of 1 bitcoin and 10,000 ether from the Switzerland-based Ethereum Foundation, has signed agreements with Unicef USA, Unicef France, Unicef Australia, and Unicef New Zealand to start accepting cryptocurrency donations immedi...

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