Meet the team

The Global Digital Assets team combines the executive team of two of North America’s leading blockchain companies in finance, development, marketing & capital markets.

GDA FOUNDERS & BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Michael Gord

Co-Founder & CEO

Michael Gord is the co-founder & CEO of Global Digital Assets (GDA) Group of Companies, which are, focused across capital markets verticals in the blockchain industry. Michael is the Managing Director of the XDB Foundation, the leading protocol focused on branded stablecoins, and the CEO of MLG Blockchain, focused on enterprise and government consulting and development. Michael has advised on over $20.5 Billion in digital asset offerings, helped to secure over $5 Billion in asset placements and has worked with Fortune 500 companies and global governments. Michael was one of the first advocates for digital assets in Canada, built the first university communities for blockchains in Canada and was the first enterprise blockchain developer that TD Bank hired. Michael has introduced digital assets to tens of thousands of people through his initiatives.

David Shafrir

Co-Founder & President

David is a serial entrepreneur with a proven track record of bringing disruptive technology to market and generating strong returns for investors. David excels at identifying value, creating a vision and executing said vision through sound strategic development. David intuitively sees the various threads of opportunity that wind throughout an organization and uses his strong relationship skills and industry insights to bring these opportunities together into a coherent objective. David was the catalyst behind bringing 4 ventures from the technology and advertising space to market. Since those exits, David has gone on to launch Secure Digital Markets followed by Global Digital Assets, where he occupies the roles of CEO & Executive Chairman respectively. Through these roles, David has committed himself to facilitating digital asset liquidity and blockchain adoption on a global scale.

Zach Friedman

Co-Founder & COO

Zachary Friedman is the co-founder & COO of Global Digital Assets (GDA) and its portfolio Companies, which span across a variety of capital markets verticals in the blockchain industry. Zachary is also the COO of Secure Digital Markets (SDM), a leading global digital asset brokerage and holds advisory positions at several notable emerging technology companies. Through his time at SDM, Zachary has worked with world leading institutions, Family offices, governments, exchanges and Fortune 500 companies alike. He has facilitated first-hand over $2 billion of digital asset transactions. Prior to making his foray into blockchain, Zachary has scaled ventures in both the consumer tech, and pharmaceutical industries, with a notable exit to wework in 2015. Zachary who is extremely passionate about entrepreneurship previously launched his own accelerator W5 and co-produced Elevate Toronto, Canada’s largest technology conference

GDA LEADERSHIP TEAM

Mostafa Al-Mashita

Mostafa Al-Mashita

VP, Sales & Trading

Mostafa previously worked as head of business development at Secure Digital Markets where he built relationships with institutions and private individuals looking to buy large blocks of bitcoin. Mostafa has a leadership role with Monsterball and is a graduate of Western University.

Karl Samsen

Karl Samsen

VP, Capital Markets

Karl is a dedicated entrepreneur with a financial background and advisory experience to family offices, private M&A transactions, consulting of Blockchain Development Companies and Real Estate Development / Tokenization Projects in North America. Previously Karl was on the leadership team at MLG Blockchain.

Jean Luc Gustave

Jean-Luc Gustave

VP, ASIA

Jean-Luc was previously MD at SORS Digital Assets and the blockchain lead at several Asian based family offices. Jean-Luc is now leveraging his experience to expand GDA to Asia with a HK headquarters. Jean-Luc has a Masters of Law from Université Panthéon Assas (Paris) and a Banking degree from the University of Luxembourg.

Rich Zhou

Rich Zhou

VP, Finance
Rich was previously the Controller and Head of FP&A for a Canadian Challenger bank, where he raised over $60M of Venture Capital funds. Prior, he has also been involved in large M&A transactions such as the Walmart Canada Bank sale. He is a Canadian who was originally from China and has lived in Japan.
Ather Ahmed

Ather Ahmed

VP, Commercial Solutions

Ather Ahmed MBA/CSM brings forth over 18+ years of marketing, sales and merchant processing. Ather has previously launched and managed several successful multimillion dollar start up businesses in multiple industries including healthcare, consumer goods, and SAAS. Ather is currently VP of Commercial Solutions at GDA.

Jonah Mirsky

Jonah Mirsky

Marketing & Operations associate

Jonah was previously head of IR at Secure Digital Markets where he built relationships with institutional capital groups. Jonah now increases scale and distribution of digital assets by managing multi-touch marketing campaigns. Jonah has entrepreneurship major from Dalhousie’s Rowe School of business.

Will Bartlett

Will Bartlett

Research Associate
Will has work experience with RBC, Cushman Wakefield, and has specialized in blockchain since 2018. After graduating McGill University as a Finance Major, his work experience has included a mix of capital markets, valuations, and marketing, with a focus in direct response marketing.
 
Ryan Mueller

Ryan Mueller

VP, Compliance
Ryan has deep experience in risk management, fraud prevention & investigation, operational compliance, and regulatory compliance. Since 2003 he has worked in organizations ranging from start up to enterprise level in stored value, ewallet, payment processing, and various crypto focused companies.

SELECT PARTNERS

Alpha Sigma Capital

Alpha Sigma Capital

ASC focuses on investing in growth companies via digital assets, private and public equity, mergers and acquisitions, and special situations.

Proof Capital

Proof Capital

Merchant bank based in Calgary that is engaged in corporate advisory services, asset management, & direct investment in alternative assets.

Lehman Bush

Lehman Bush

LehmanBush LehmanBush is a China-based investment and project management consulting firm with international operations.

12 Peers Capital Markets

12 Peers

12 Peers Capital Markets, Ltd. (12 Peers) is a broker dealer incorporated in the Cayman Islands and registered with the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (CIMA).

Dentons

Dentons

Dentons is the world's largest law firm, delivering quality and value to clients around the globe. Dentons is a leader on the Acritas Global Elite Brand Index.

Appleby

Appleby

Appleby is one of the world’s leading offshore law firms. The Group has offices in the key offshore jurisdictions of Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Guernsey, the Isle of Man, Jersey, Mauritius, and Seychelles.

Imperium Investments

Imperium Investments

Imperium Investments is a private equity group that aims to bring worldwide application of high-performance computing through immersion cooling.

Fireblocks

Fireblocks

For institutional traders that need to move digital assets without the operational or security headache. Fireblocks streamlines operations by bringing all your exchanges, OTCs, counterparties, hot wallets, and custodians into one platform.