Mike Novogratz brings on former UBS director as Galaxy expands its trading business

Quick Take

  • Galaxy Digital, the merchant bank started by famed trader Michael Novogratz, is scooping up Wall Street talent. 
  • The firm hired Joshua Lim, formerly a director at UBS, as director of trading strategy. The firm has also brought on former employees of Citigroup and Goldman Sachs. 
  • The new hires joined 20-year trading-veteran David Sweet, head of quantitative trading at the firm. 

Galaxy Digital, the cryptocurrency firm started by famed trader Michael Novogratz, has beefed up its trading unit with a number of hires, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. 

The firm, which started trading on Canada's TSX Venture Exchange in August, was formed at the end of November 2017. Its business spans four units: trading, asset management, advisory, and principal investing. And in recent weeks the firm has brought on a number of former Wall Streeters to staff its trading business, according to a source. 

Earlier in September, the company welcomed Joshua Lim, who joined the firm from UBS, the Switzerland-based financial-services firm, according to a source. At UBS, Lim was a director on the firm's central risk book team. He got his start at UBS in May 2017.

Previously, Lim held positions at Circle, the cryptocurrency trader and exchange operator. He started his career at Goldman Sachs in 2009 as a derivatives trader. 

Elsewhere, the firm's trading unit has recently brought on former employees of Goldman Sachs and Citigroup, the source said. 

The new hires joined David Sweet, a 20-year veteran of the trading world, who is head of quantitative trading at the firm. He joined Galaxy from Teza Capital Management in 2017. Sweet's hire had not been previously reported on. 


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Notably, Sweet was the head of the equities desk at KCG, the trading firm acquired by Virtu in 2017, according to his LinkedIn profile. Sweet also worked at financial-crisis casualty Lehman Brothers. 

The crypto world's assault on Wall Street talent has been well documented. Coinbase, for instance, snagged a number of employees from New York Stock Exchange, and its cross-town rival Kraken has brought on its own financial-service veterans, including folks from Credit Suisse and Jump Trading. 

Although Galaxy's trading business has staffed-up, it is one that suffered serious losses in the first quarter of 2018, according to a Bloomberg News report. Per the July report, the firm's trading business had $13.5M in realized losses and another $88.5M in paper losses related to crypto. Still, Novogratz is bullish on his firm's future. 

"We have assembled a world-class team with deep institutional knowledge and expertise and have also made significant strides in scaling our four core business lines," Novogratz said in a statement at the time of the Bloomberg report. 

© 2023 The Block. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

About Author

Frank Chaparro is the Editor At Large at The Block. Chaparro started his career at Business Insider, where he specialized in the intersection of digital assets and Wall Street, market structure, and financial technology. Soon after joining Business Insider out of Fordham University, Chaparro was interviewing top finance and tech executives, including billionaire Mark Cuban, “Flash Boys” star Brad Katsuyama, Cboe Global Markets CEO Ed Tilly, and New York Stock Exchange President Tom Farley. In 2018, he become a sought after reporter in the crypto world, interviewing luminaries such as Tyler Winklevoss, the cofounder of Gemini, Jeremy Allaire, the CEO of Circle, and Fundstrat head Tom Lee. He runs his own podcast The Scoop and writes a biweekly eponymous newsletter. He leads special projects, including The Block's flagship podcast, The Scoop. Prior to The Block, he held roles at Business Insider, NPR, and Nasdaq. For inquiries or tips, email [email protected].