Former Coinbase Ventures lead Max Bronstein joins bridge project Synapse as COO

Max Bronstein, who previously held roles at crypto startups Coinbase and Dharma, has joined the C-suite of the core team at Synapse, a DeFi-focused firm.

Bronstein will serve as the team’s chief operating officer, focusing on “growth, strategy, and operations,” he said in a Twitter post.

Synapse is the team behind one of a growing number of cross-chain protocols, which seek to link disparate blockchains and allow users to transact between them. Synapse supports cross-chain swaps between 15 blockchains.

As The Block’s Tim Copeland has reported, cross-chain swaps are complex to stage-manage, owing to varying consensus mechanisms, transaction speeds and varying coding languages. In sum, there are numerous moving parts.

Indeed, the so-called bridges that serve as links between the chains have served as prime targets for would-be attackers. Past examples include last summer’s Poly Network attack and February’s Wormhole attack.

Just this week, a bridge between the Ethereum and Ronin blockchains was exploited, resulting in the loss of hundreds of millions of dollars worth of crypto. Synapse dodged the loss of some $8 million worth of crypto during an attempted exploit last fall.

Still, such mechanisms are at the heart of efforts to create an interconnected-multi-chain ecosystem, and numerous startups in the space have attracted venture capital with the aim of building out these capabilities.

It’s a goal that Bronstein highlighted in his post on Thursday:

“Onboarding millions of new users to crypto has come with creating new blockchains. Be they layer 2s, roll-ups, subnets, or app-chains, more blockchains and execution environments are required to usher in adoption,” he wrote. “As more blockchains come to market, the infrastructure required for users to seamlessly move between them will become even more vital.”

In an interview with The Block, Bronstein said that Synapse is aiming to differentiate itself by focusing on user interface. 

"We're aiming for a Coinbase equivalent in terms of security and peace of mind," he said. 

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