Daniel Barabander

Deputy General Counsel

Daniel serves as Deputy General Counsel at Variant, leveraging his unique background as a former founder and software engineer turned lawyer to help our portfolio companies adopt a regulatory strategy from a tech-first perspective.

Prior to joining Variant, Daniel practiced law at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP, focusing on advising crypto clients through regulatory issues. He was also a lead attorney in drafting an influential brief on behalf of the DeFi Education Fund in SEC v. Coinbase, explaining why, based on a technical review of how the Coinbase wallet functioned, the SEC’s broker charge regarding the wallet could not stand.

Before transitioning to law, Daniel was a founder of Haywheel, a Y Combinator-backed startup that built a platform to help restaurants more efficiently order ingredients from artisanal food vendors.

Daniel is an active writer and thought leader on the convergence of law and technology, co-authoring influential pieces such as a comprehensive review of the DOJ’s indictment against Roman Storm, the developer of Tornado Cash. This publication provided a deep dive into the intricacies of the Tornado Cash code and zero-knowledge proofs, clarifying why the protocol developers did not meet the criteria to be classified as a money transmitter under FinCEN’s guidance.