Ian Bessarabia

Market Development Lead - Foreign Exchange, Fixed Income & Innovation - Africa at Thomson Reuters

Ian is the Market Development Lead at Thomson Reuters – a position he took up in August 2016. In this role, Ian is strategically focused on laying the groundwork for customers to efficiently implement enabling technology platforms, manage real-time workflows, increasing customer experience and profitability.

As cryptoassets and blockchain gain more prominence in the marketplace, as an edge-walker, Ian is deeply involved in researching and engaging with the technology.

Ian has spent the past 10 years working closely with financial market players, central banks and regional bodies in Sub-Sahara Africa, supporting these organisations to improve their business processes. Prior to joining Thomson Reuters, Ian was the Business Development Manager at SWIFT.

Preceding this, Ian spent 12 years RMB Asset Management, focusing on improving operational procedures and efficiencies, in domestic and international financial markets. Ian played a key role, representing the Investment Management community, with the migration to a dematerialized and automated market through the establishment of Strate in South Africa.

In addition, Ian has held senior positions in various industry initiatives, including holding the position of chairperson of SUSA (SWIFT Users of South Africa), as well as the South African representative on the Maintenance Working group for Trade Initiation and Confirmation messages.

Ian, currently represents Thomson Reuters on the South African Financial Blockchain Consortium (SAFBC), a consortium aimed at educating and bringing the benefits of blockchain technology to the industry for the benefit of the entire country.

Ian has a Bachelor of Commerce in Business Management and Economics from the University of South Africa and a Diploma in Strategic Business Management from the University of Cape Town.