Focusing On International Expansion, Square Hires Former US Trade Negotiator Demetrios Marantis To Head Policy Efforts

Square has made another key hire today — Demetrios J. Marantis will be leading the company’s international government, regulatory and policy work. Marantis most recently served in President Barack Obama’s Cabinet as the Acting United States Trade Representative, and was the U.S.’s chief trade negotiator.

“Square is already having a meaningful impact on local economies in the US and Canada,” said Square co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey in a release. “Demetrios’ invaluable experience will help Square provide powerful business tools to local entrepreneurs around the world.”

Marantis, who is a lawyer, first served in the White House as the Deputy United States Trade Representative, where he was responsible for U.S. trade negotiations and enforcement in Asia and Africa. In March 2013, Marantis assumed the duties of Acting United States Trade Representative. Before joining the Administration, Marantis served as Chief International Trade Counsel for the Senate Finance Committee, where he advised Congress on trade and economic issues.

It looks like he’ll be working on international and regulatory issues for Square. International expansion for payments companies is especially challenging because of the regulatory and security issues in various countries. The company recently expanded to Canada, its first market outside the U.S. Square says that gross payment volume over the first six months is 90 percent higher per capita than it was in the U.S. at the equivalent point in time. Square has yet to launch in the UK, but competitor PayPal here entered the market a few months ago.

It’s also worth noting that Square is ramping up leadership and executive hiring. Last week, Square announced that Alex Petrov, a former PayPal exec, joined as Vice President of Partnerships. Previously, Square brought on a new global business lead from Google.