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The Swarm Team

The Swarm Core Team is a diverse set of professionals who bring deep experience from the finance, technology, and blockchain worlds.

Our Swarm partners have engineering backgrounds, and include an investor and Board Member of the BankerBay deal origination platform & VC (Timo), and a former technology startup founder & CEO with private equity experience from Deutsche Bank and Allianz (Philipp).

Other team members bring experience from Microsoft, Facebook, UBS, and several technology and community focused startups. Our advisors include Ethereum Co-founder and Jaxx Founder Anthony Di’Iorio, Sequoia Heritage Fund Co-founder Mark Oei, and AlphaBit Chairman and Safe Cash CEO Chris Kitze. Swarm Fund is represented by Michael Terpin’s Transform Group.

Team Milestones

Philipp Pieper

CEO & Co-Founder

Philipp is a serial tech entrepreneur and became interested in decentralized technologies in 2015, when interacting with BitTorrent, Inc. and the Mozilla Foundation. After holding various private equity and management positions within Deutsche Bank and Allianz Group, Philipp was founder and CEO of Proximic, a global data provider for digital media buyers (acquired by comScore in 2015), and is mentor at Stanford’s StartX, Singularity University, and TechCode. He holds degrees in engineering and business administration and attended Berlin University of Technology and UC Berkeley, Haas School of Business.

Timo Lehes

Co-Founder & Chief Investment Officer

Timo has over 20 years of experience from starting, running, exiting and investing in software companies. Throughout his career, Timo has invested in more than 40 companies. With a specific focus on Fintech, he has contributed to the creation of several alternative investment platforms. He currently serves as a board member at BankerBay, the world’s largest deal origination platform for mid-market Private Equity deals. He holds degrees in engineering and business administration from Chalmers University of Technology and early stage investing from continuing studies at Stanford School of Business.

Chris Eberle


As Swarm’s COO, Chris is responsible for the voice of Swarm in the market, the activities, growth and engagement of our community, and the ongoing business strategy and operations of the organization. He brings experience including multi-million dollar P&L ownership, multi-billion dollar revenue strategy & delivery ownership, and leadership in product development, marketing, and strategic partnerships at technology startups and large companies. Chris has built and managed global teams in business and technical roles at Facebook, Federated Media, AOL, and Meebo (Google). An accomplished writer and speaker, Chris has met with influencers ranging from Michael Bolton to the Dalai Lama, and has presented to C-level executives from some of the largest brands in the world. He is an alumnus of Syracuse University and The Harvard Business School.

Jazzwall Sharad

VP of Product

Jazzwall has been implementing and orchestrating enterprise IT projects and graduate tech-training programs at Swiss and Wall Street banks for the last decade. Hard to put in a box, Jazzwall is a project manager, full stack developer, professional photographer, entrepreneur, and particularly interested in crypto markets. He studied at UC Irvine and the University of California, Berkeley.

Katerina Kan

Sr. Project Manager

Katerina is a visionary entrepreneur focused on building a sustainable global paradigm through business and communication. She applies the principles of symbiotic environments and energy optimization to her background in administration, management, commerce, and customer service. Katerina cofounded three startups prior to being invited onto Swarm, and is an alumna of the Academy of Art University, San Francisco.

Frank Taylor

Head of AI

Frank brings nearly 20 years of experience with expertise in Statistical Modeling and Machine Learning. He has served as Senior Data Scientist and ML engineer at Hotel Tonight, Earnest Inc., Personagraph among others, and is advisor to and has provided solutions for a multitude of startups. He is currently directing his efforts toward decentralized machine learning, differential privacy, and working to advance the domain of Artificial Intelligence in the future decentralized ecosystem.

Vivian Jane Smith

Account Manager

Vivian Jane is passionate about connecting real people to real power in ways that support both individual potential and a harmonious global paradigm. To that end, employing two decades of experience as a top sales leader, human wellness guide, and energy medicine practitioner, she is a fervent advocate for the widespread adoption of blockchain technologies that allow decentralized governance and financial sovereignty. Her goal is to empower everyday people by spreading awareness and application of these revolutionary new systems.

Sam Stone

Special Ops

Sam has a varied background that makes him an invaluable asset to the Swarm Team. He launched his first venture at 19, a private mathematics tuition college in Sydney. After completing a Bachelor of Commerce (Finance) at UNSW, he worked as a Futures Broker for ANZ Investment Bank, after which he co-founded a tech startup in the leadup to the 2000 dot-com crash. After some years backpacking, Sam was offered a position as Provincial Logistics Coordinator with UNOPS in Afghanistan, successfully implementing the first Afghan parliamentary election. He then completed a Master of International Public Health at Sydney University, briefly volunteering with Oxfam, then settled into a 10-year career as Digital Director for an Australian advertising agency. In this time, Sam developed a passion for disrupting traditional industries, co-founding a social shipping service with Swarm colleague Alexander Lieders. In early 2017 Sam became interested in blockchain technology, and after helping Swarm promote their public token sale in October of that year, joined the team full time in January 2018.

Chris Kitze

CEO at Safe Cash, Co-Creator of FLASHcoin, Chairman of the AlphaBit Digital Currency Foundation

Chris is a serial entrepreneur who has created companies with over $7 billion of market capitalization over his 25-year career. He’s been part of the Lycos’ IPO team, was founder and CEO of (IPO: 1998), and was CEO of NBCi, formed by the merger of and, in addition to other companies in digital media and payments, such as and Unseen.

Anthony Di Iorio

CEO & Founder at Jaxx & Decentral, Founder at Ethereum

Anthony Di Iorio is a serial entrepreneur, VC, community organizer, and thought leader in the field of decentralized technologies. Born and raised in Toronto, Di Iorio is the former Chief Digital Officer of the TMX Group and Toronto Stock Exchange, founder and CEO of Decentral, a software development company focused on blockchain technologies, and founder and CEO of Jaxx, a multi-token, blockchain interface that provides a unified experience across 9 platforms and devices. In 2013, Di Iorio funded, and along with Vitalik Buterin and 3 others founded the smart contract platform Ethereum.

David Drake

Founder and Chairman, LDJ Capital

David Drake, through his family office LDJ Capital, has acted as GP & LP investors with his partners in fund-of-funds, realty funds, venture capital funds & hedge funds. Mr. Drake’s investments currently have 50+ global directors that maintain relations with institutions & family offices with $1.5 trillion in assets.

Robert Rosenblum

Partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati

Robert Rosenblum is a corporate and securities partner in the Washington, D.C., office of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. Rob focuses on the representation of financial services firms in sophisticated regulatory, transactional, and product development projects, advising them on federal securities laws and related financial services laws and regulations. He is well known nationally for helping companies structure their businesses and operations to avoid inadvertently becoming investment companies, as well as to avoid registering as investment advisers, broker-dealers, commodity trading advisers, or commodity pool operators. Rob also assists early-stage and other companies whose businesses require them to register in one or more of these capacities.

Vivek Krishnappa

Former Managing Director, Securities Lending, Blackrock

Business strategy, corporate development, product strategy and general management
• Launch new business lines – products, distribution, operations
• Identify & build needed talent, technology and industry relationships
• Adapt business models to fit changing regulatory & market demands
• Prioritize customer success, smart product innovation and good communication
• Boost collaboration, creativity and results

Joel Dietz


Joel is an original founder of Swarm, going back to the first iteration of the project in 2014, and continues as an advisor while he pursues personal passion projects. Joel co-founded the first smart contract educational channel (EtherCasts), the Ethereum Silicon Valley meetup, and wrote the original “AppCoin Manifesto.” Joel facilitated the “LoveNest” blockchain-community living space in Palo Alto, holds awards from Google and, and has presented on topics including Decentralized Autonomous Society, DAO Democracy, Futarchy, and Liquid Democracy. He holds degrees from Brown University and the University of Pennsylvania.

Adam Apollo

Founder, Guardian Alliance & Trust Exchange

The Guardian Alliance is a collective of individuals and organizations who are dedicated to preserving individual sovereignty while maintaining collective safety and harmony. They provide advanced metaphysical and self-development training in a variety of fields for personal empowerment and collective coherence.

Matthew Tan

Founder, CEO at Etherscan

Creator of the leading Ethereum Blockchain Explorer, API & Analytics Platform –

Brad Nye

Founder, Tribalize Summit & Burning Man organizer

Brad is a seasoned entrepreneur and most recently, Founder and CEO of WeVu. As a proven community builder, prolific events producer and marketing professional, Nye has founded and operated two very successful organizations: VIC, a 3,000-member technology trade association in Southern California and Artsfest, which advanced the arts by curating over a hundred events annually in multiple locations across the San Francisco Bay Area. Previously, Nye spent fifteen years in entertainment industry-related marketing, promotion, licensing and merchandising, and event/television production positions including management roles at Twentieth Century Fox and Universal Pictures. Nye is a graduate of UC Berkeley.

Mark Oei

Investor, former Sequoia Heritage

Mark Oei is a Director at Pharos Science & Applications Inc. He is an Advisory Board Member of the Kellogg Real Estate Program. He served as the Managing Director at Sequoia Heritage. Mr. Oei joined the firm as a Founding Member in July 2010. Prior to founding the firm, Mr. Oei was a Managing Director at Oaktree Capital Management, LLC. He joined the firm in 2003 and was a senior member of the Real Estate Opportunities team and a member of the Asia Real Estate Opportunities team. Previously, Mr. Oei was a Vice President at Morgan Stanley for five years where he was an Acquisitions Officer in the Real Estate Private Equity Funds and Mergers and Acquisitions department. Mr. Oei was responsible for acquiring and managing investments in Asia. While at Morgan Stanley, he was involved in the acquisitions, dispositions and recapitalizations of real estate assets and companies. Mr. Oei also formed Morgan Stanley’s asset management subsidiary in Korea and served as its Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board, growing the company from ten professionals managing $100 million in assets, to 60 professionals managing $1 billion in assets. Prior to the Real Estate Private Equity Group, he also served as a generalist Investment Banker for two years, executing merger and acquisition transactions, high-yield debt offerings and initial public offerings. Prior to that, Mr. Oei worked for four years as a Senior Consultant in the Real Estate Consulting Group at KPMG Consulting. Mr. Oei is also an independent real estate investment advisor to multi-national corporations and high net worth individuals. He has been involved in acquisitions and management of the real estate funds, including many of the international investments. Mr. Oei is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of California. He holds an M.B.A., with an emphasis in Finance and Management and Strategy, from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University and a B.S. in Business Administration from Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.

Bogdan Fiedur

Crypto Hacker

Full stack developer and entrepreneur. Since the beginning of 2016 involved in “Smart Contract” design and implementation for Ethereum, using Solidity. Knowledgeable in all aspects of e-commerce website, back-end and front-end. Experienced in setting up network environment, running and maintaining servers. Experienced in supervising teams of developers, preparing technical design documents, preparing testing plans and integrating existing applications with newer technologies.

Gabriel Zanko

Fin-Tech Entrepreneur

Fintech entrepreneur & advisor. Founder of MobileyourLife and involved in the AI-Fintech space, providing solutions in the B2B space. ICO advisory in Fundraising Capital and International Business Development. Gabriel has been involved with, DreamTeam,, FluzFluz, Elpis Investments, HorizonState, Genesis Vision, and NAGA Coin.

Hideto Tomabechi

CEO at Cognitive Research Laboratories
PhD, Computational Linguistics, Carnegie Mellon

Dr. Tomabechi is a respected cognitive scientist and author of numerous bestsellers, who has developed and licensed several hit software applications. Fulbright scholar at Yale who later earned PhD at Carnegie Mellon (where he is currently a fellow at CyLab), pioneered the field of computational linguistics and published papers on speech recognition, neural networks, and peer-to-peer systems. Leads world peace initiatives as Japan representative of the U.S. NPO Better World Foundation. Holder of highest rank of Knight Grand Cross. Recently published book on improving life through changing one’s attitude and assumptions, Dr. Tomabechi advises private and public-sector clients on fintech–particularly blockchain and crytography–and other areas of national importance.

Mark Friedler

Blockchain Advisor & Crypto Investor

Mark is a serial entrepreneur, advisor and blockchain leader. He has a background in B2B cloud services, sales and marketing, games and entertainment. He was founder/CEO of, the world’s largest video games website and ad network and exited through AOL Time Warner’s acquisition. He’s founded 4 companies and been an executive at Oracle, TimeWarner/AOL and Philips. Recently, he was interim president of rideshare company ICars and Senior Director at Oracle Marketing Cloud and Data Cloud. He was Managing Director of Teleworld, an interactive voice, TV and online services provider to MTV. Mark’s first business introduced chocolate chip cookies stores to Sweden. He also works with early stage founders at TechStars. At 16, he rode his bicycle from New York to Seattle.