Chris Larsen has spent several decades in the financial services industry, playing a key leadership role at disruptive companies E-Loan and Prosper, where he had to navigate a tricky and fast-evolving regulatory obstacle course. He will likely draw upon these skills again in his latest role as CEO of OpenCoin.

Before joining OpenCoin, a virtual-currency venture in the same realm as Bitcoin, Larsen headed Prosper, an eBay-style marketplace for peer-to-peer loans. Prosper launched in 2006, and by 2008, the Securities and Exchange Commission took notice of the company and determined it was offering unregistered securities. Prosper went quiet for nine months to retool the business — a "good learning experience," Larsen says.

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