Ms. Kari Larsen

Ms. Kari Larsen

Counsel & Co-Head of the Global FinTech Team, Reed Smith LLP

Kari has extensive international experience in building businesses and managing global commercial, legal, and compliance risks. For almost 20 years, Kari has represented clients in US and EU regulatory, legislative, risk management, compliance, internal control and transactional matters related to exchange and over-the-counter commodities, options, and derivatives markets, with a particular focus on cryptocurrencies, digital assets, energy, agricultural and environmental commodities. She is considered a leading strategic advisor to businesses regarding the development of profitable inventive products, including FinTech and RegTech innovations, while navigating complex regulatory regimes.

A seasoned public policy analyst with extensive regulatory and government relations experience, Kari has particular experience assisting clients in their interactions with the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), and advising clients on the implications of the Dodd-Frank Act, EMIR, MiFID I and II/MiFIR, MAD/MAR, and other matters related to US, UK and EU commodities law and regulation. She has advised clients in connection with initial coin offerings (ICOs) and token sales, futures exchange trading and clearing issues and rule compliance, commodity trading agreements, transactions involving the acquisition and disposal of energy and non-energy commodity portfolios, assets and businesses, structured transactions, and the purchase and sale or transportation of commodities.

Kari has been at the forefront of legal developments in financial technology since before the term FinTech was coined, having served in general counsel and chief compliance officer roles for international startup exchanges prior to joining Reed Smith. Kari advises FinTech and digital business clients on federal and state regulatory and compliance matters, including, privacy, data and cyber security, information governance, anti-money laundering, Bank Secrecy Act and Know-Your-Customer matters, vendor management, consumer protection and contract drafting and negotiations. Prior to entering private practice, Kari was international operations counsel for the Enforcement Division of the CFTC. Combining her in-house and regulator experience, Kari has been a pioneer in RegTech legal developments advising financial services firms and other regulated entities on how to utilize innovations such as digital ledger technology to streamline regulatory compliance and improve operational efficiencies. She is regularly invited to speak at FinTech conferences regarding RegTech, digital currency and blockchain solutions in particular.

Publications
• 4 October 2017 "SEC Enforcement Action Involving Initial Coin Offering Muddies Jurisdictional Waters"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Authors: Herbert F. Kozlov, Michael Selig, Matthew H. Kita
• 2 October 2017 "The SEC Announces Two New Initiatives to Address Digital Token Sales"
Technology Law Dispatch; Co-Author: Matthew H. Kita
• 2 October 2017 "Crypto Token Cyber Crimes the New Focus for SEC"
Financial Regulatory Report; Co-Author: Matthew H. Kita
• 2 October 2017 "SEC Creates New Units Focused On Cyber Crimes That Will Cover Crypto Tokens"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: Matthew H. Kita
• 27 September 2017 "CFTC Brings Enforcement Action Involving a Fraudulent Bitcoin Robo-Trader"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Authors: Peter Y. Malyshev, Michael Selig
• 15 September 2017 "The FCA Speaks Out on Initial Coin Offerings"
Technology Law Dispatch; Co-Authors: Brett Hillis, Alexander Murawa
• 14 September 2017 "The FCA offers its two cents on Initial Coin Offerings"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Authors: Brett Hillis, Alexander Murawa
• 8 September 2017 "Blockchain-Related Companies Facing Increased Scrutiny from the SEC"
Global Regulatory Enforcement Law Blog; Co-Authors: Aron Izower, Michael Selig
• 6 September 2017 "No Summer Vacation for Distributed Ledger Technology"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Authors: Brett Hillis, Michael Selig, Alexander Murawa
• 1 September 2017 "SEC Securities Trading Suspension for Three Blockchain- Related Companies"
Technology Law Dispatch; Co-Authors: Herbert F. Kozlov, Aron Izower, Michael Selig
• 29 August 2017 "SEC Suspends Trading in Securities of Three Blockchain-Related Companies"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Authors: Herbert F. Kozlov, Aron Izower, Michael Selig
• 15 August 2017 "ISDA Considers the Suitability of Swaps Documentation to the Blockchain"
Financial Regulatory Report; Co-Authors: Brett Hillis, Michael Selig
• 15 August 2017 "Suitability of Swaps Documentation to the Blockchain Considered by ISDA"
FinTech Update; Co-Authors: Brett Hillis, Michael Selig
• August 2017 "The Proliferation of Blockchain Laws Across the United States"
Payments & FinTech Lawyer; Co-Author: Kimberly Chow
• 27 July 2017 "SEC Exercises Jurisdiction over Initial Coin Offerings"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Authors: Herbert F. Kozlov, Michael Selig
• 27 June 2017 "An Overview of the CFTC’s Modernized Recordkeeping Requirements"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Authors: Peter Y. Malyshev, Michael Selig
• 20 June 2017 "New State Blockchain Legislation Clarifies Legal Status of the Technology, Counsel"
Technology Law Dispatch; Co-Author: Kimberly Chow
• 19 June 2017 "Nevada Passes FinTech Law, Counsel"
Financial Regulatory Report; Co-Author: Kimberly Chow
• 19 June 2017 "Nevada Passes FinTech Law"
Financial Regulatory Report; Co-Author: Kimberly Chow
• 19 June 2017 "New State Blockchain Legislation"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Author: Kimberly Chow
• 15 June 2017 "The UK FCA Publish Discussion Paper on Distributed Ledger Technology, Counsel"
Technology Law Dispatch; Co-Author: Brett Hillis
• 15 June 2017 "FCA Releases Discussion Paper on Distributed Ledger Technology" Co-Author: Brett Hillis
• 13 June 2017 "New Policies Released Under the Illinois Transmitters of Money Act, Counsel"
Financial Regulatory Report
• 13 June 2017 "Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation Issues Regulatory Guidance on Digital Currencies,
Counsel"
FinTech Update
• 25 May 2017 "What’s next for the advertising industry? Blockchain, Counsel"
AdLaw By Request; Co-Authors: Keri S. Bruce, Douglas J. Wood
• 19 May 2017 "“LabCFTC” Launched by the CFTC"
Financial Regulatory Report; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• 19 May 2017 "CFTC Launches FinTech Innovation Initiative “LabCFTC”"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• 5 May 2017 "Conference of State Bank Supervisors Files Lawsuit against OCC to Stop Special Purpose FinTech Charter"
FinTech Update; Co-Authors: Robert M. Jaworski, Evan Thorn
• 27 April 2017 "Blockchain Technology Draws Request for Information from UN"
Financial Regulatory Report; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• 27 April 2017 "UN Seeks Comments on Blockchain Technology"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• 25 April 2017 "Consultation Document Published on FinTech by European Commission, Counsel"
Financial Regulatory Report; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• 25 April 2017 "European Commission Requests Comments on FinTech"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• April 2017 "RegTech is the New Black – The Growth of RegTech Demand and Investment"
The CAPCO Institute Journal of Financial Transformation
• 31 March 2017 "Second Bitcoin ETF Rejected by SEC, Counsel"
Financial Regulatory Report
• 31 March 2017 "SEC Rejects Second Bitcoin ETF Due to Lack of Regulatory Oversight, Counsel"
FinTech Update
• 31 March 2017 "SEC Rejects Second Bitcoin ETF Due to Lack of Regulatory Oversight"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• 20 March 2017 "FTC’s FinTech Forum continues focus on emerging technologies including AI and Blockchain Technologies"
Technology Law Dispatch; Co-Authors: Gerard M. Stegmaier, Kimberly Chow
• 15 March 2017 "Federal Trade Commission Considers the Implications of AI and Blockchain Technologies"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• 13 March 2017 "BATS BZX Exchange’s Proposal Disapproved by the SEC"
FinTech Update
• 13 March 2017 "SEC Rejects Bitcoin ETF Proposal Citing Lack of Regulation"
Financial Regulatory Report
• 2 March 2017 "Regulators Prepare for Innovation in Distributed Ledger Technology"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• 27 February 2017 "Proposed 2017-2018 New York Budget Covers Current Exempt FinTech Companies"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: David G. Krone
• 24 February 2017 "NY Proposed Budget Would Expand NYDFS Authority over FinTech Lending Companies"
Financial Regulatory Report; Co-Author: David G. Krone
• 13 February 2017 "ESMA Publishes Report on Distributed Ledger Technology"
Financial Regulatory Report
• 13 February 2017 "Blockchain Technology Report Released by ESMA"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: Michael Selig
• 1 February 2017 "FINRA Issues Report on Distributed Ledger Technology"
Financial Regulatory Report
• 1 February 2017 "Blockchain Technology Report Issued by FINRA"
FinTech Update
• January 2017 "Regulation Automated Trade: The CFTC's Supplemental Proposal And Beyond"
Futures & Derivatives Law; Co-Author: Peter Y. Malyshev
• 20 December 2016 "U.S. CFTC Approves a Position Limits Reproposal and Finalizes Aggregation Rules"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Authors: Michael Selig, Patricia Dondanville, Peter Y. Malyshev
• 14 December 2016 "Illinois Releases Proposed Guidance on Application of State Money Transmission Law to Digital Currency
Activities"
Financial Regulatory Report; Co-Authors: Evan Thorn, Robert M. Jaworski
• 6 December 2016 "OCC Announces Special Purpose Charters for Fintech Firms"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: Evan Thorn
• 23 November 2016 "Swiss Government establishing “crypto-bank” as new category of Financial Institution and creating new
FinTech company license"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: Roberta G. Torian
• 23 November 2016 "SEC Forum on FinTech Innovation Discusses Leveraging the Blockchain to Enhance Transparency,
Verifiability and Governance in Corporate Processes"
FinTech Update; Co-Author: Anthony J. Ford
• 23 November 2016 "Leveraging the Blockchain to Provide an Unalterable, Distributed Ledger for Transactions, Supply Chains
and Other Corporate Processes"
Technology Law Dispatch; Co-Author: Anthony J. Ford
• 14 November 2016 "CFTC Approves Supplemental Proposal to Regulation Automated Trading"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Authors: Michael Selig, Peter Y. Malyshev
• 11 July 2016 "EU brings virtual currency exchanges and wallet providers under the EU Anti-Money Laundering Directive"
Reed Smith Client Alerts; Co-Author: Richard G. Swinburn
• 2007 "Migration – European Restructuring"
IFLR; Co-Author: Georgia M. Quenby

Speaking Engagements
• 7 February 2018 Using Blockchains – Challenges and Opportunities in the Energy and Commodities Markets
• 18 October 2017 Technology & Artificial Intelligence in Privacy Compliance, Webinar
• 30 August 2017 Smart Contracts: Navigating Legal, Regulatory and Consumer Protection Issues
• 23 August 2017 Blockchain What Marketers Need to Know
"Blockchain: What Marketers Need to Know "
• 5 May 2017 Digital Leader Technology Panel, Washington, D.C.
• 25 April 2017 Chamber of Digital Commerce Q2 Membership Meeting
"European Commission"
• 19-21 January 2017 Derivatives and Futures Law Committee Meeting, Naples, Florida
"New Products/FinTech"
• 25 October 2016 Emerging Issues in Global Digital Currency Payments
• 4 October 2016 Understanding Critical Assets in a Shifting Global Economy, London, United Kingdom
• 4 October 2016 CGOC Meeting, London, United Kingdom
"Understanding Critical Assets in a Shifting Global Economy"
• 16 September 2016 Regtech Summit USA, Chicago, Illinois
"Panel Discussion: Managing Regulation Complexity - From Siloed To Connected."
• 9 June 2016 Finance Revolution: Fintech, Funding, and Global Innovation, New York, New York
• 4-6 May 2016 38th Annual FIA Law & Compliance Conference on the Regulation of Futures, Derivatives and OTC Products
(L&C 2016), Baltimore, Maryland
"Lunch & Learn: Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain Technology--Truth or Dare?"
• 3 March 2016 The Developing Legal and Regulatory Challenges of Bitcoin and Other Virtual Currencies, New York, New York
"Commodities Law/Foreign Exchange Panel"
• 22-24 June 2015 37th Annual FIA Law & Compliance Division Conference on the Regulation of Futures, Derivatives and OTC
Products (L&C), Washington, D.C., United States of America
"What's on the Horizon - Both New and Notable"

Notable Quotes
• 24 April 2017 "'Smart Contracts' Demand Sharper Tech Skills From Lawyers, Experts Say" New Jersey Law Journal
• 30 January 2017 "Everything You Need to Know About RegTech" Bloomberg BNA
• 22 June 2016 "Fintech spawns Regtech to automate compliance with regulations" Bloomberg BNA