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A top Facebook exec is jumping on the bitcoin bandwagon

David Marcus, vice president of Messaging Products at Facebook, speaks on stage during the annual Facebook F8 developers conference in San Jose, California, April 18, 2017.

Stephen Lam | Reuters

David Marcus, vice president of Messaging Products at Facebook, speaks on stage during the annual Facebook F8 developers conference in San Jose, California, April 18, 2017.

A top Facebook executive is joining the board of cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase.

David Marcus, head of Facebook’s Messenger service, will join the venue’s board of directors, Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong said in a blog post Tuesday.

Coinbase is currently the most popular app on Apple’s App Store, according to data by market insights firm App Annie. It has experienced a number of outages in recent weeks as investment in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies has surged.

On Tuesday, the platform told users that transactions in Ethereum and Litecoin were temporarily disabled. Although it did not immediately explain why, the company said in a statement last week it had been “experiencing record high traffic” after its website went down for about an hour.

Coinbase said it would look to harness Marcus’ experience in payments and mobile technology. The Facebook Messenger chief has also served as president of PayPal.

“David’s perspective and experience in bringing innovative and impactful products to market will be invaluable to Coinbase as we grow,” Coinbase’s Armstrong said in a statement Tuesday. “David’s knowledge of both the payments and mobile space will help guide us in achieving our mission of creating a truly open financial system that will bring opportunity to people all across the globe.”

Marcus said he had been “fascinated” by the cryptocurrency space for five years.

“I’ve been involved with, and fascinated by cryptocurrencies since 2012, and I’ve witnessed how Coinbase has started democratizing access to this new asset class,” he said. “I’m convinced that what the company is working on has the potential to materially change the lives of people around the world, and I’m looking forward to working with Coinbase and its leadership team to help make this vision a reality.”

CNBC has reached out to Facebook for comment.

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