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Uniswap Boosts Legal Arsenal with Coinbase Attorney as CLO in SEC Struggle

Shalini Nagarajan
Last updated: | 1 min read
Uniswap SEC

Decentralized finance (DeFi) exchange Uniswap has hired former senior Coinbase attorney Katherine Minarik amid the possibility of enforcement action from the US SEC.

Minarik, who shared the news on X, has taken on the position of Chief Legal Officer at Uniswap.

“It is impossible to spend time in crypto and not be inspired by the potential of DeFi to change the world,” she wrote. “So I am humbled to be taking on this new role at Uniswap Labs, continuing another part of the fight for economic inclusion and the future of finance for all of us.”

Uniswap Fills Legal Gap as SEC Threat Looms


Minarik has taken the reins following a four-year stint at the crypto exchange giant Coinbase. She will fill previous CLO Marvin Ammori’s place. Ammori announced a shift to a part-time role at the startup late last year.

Her appointment comes two months after the SEC signaled potential legal action against Uniswap for allegedly breaching federal securities laws.

In its Wells notice, the SEC claimed the Uniswap Protocol itself is an unregistered securities exchange. It also stated that the UNI token qualifies as an investment contract and that the user interface acts as an unlicensed broker-dealer.

DeFi Exchange Calls Out SEC’s ‘Weak’ Claims


In response, Uniswap strongly contested the SEC’s claims, calling them “weak” and out of line with court decisions. The crypto exchange argued that the SEC was unreasonably broadened the definition of securities, exchanges, and contracts.

Uniswap further criticized the SEC’s approach, which implied that anything carrying value stored digitally could be classified as a security.