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Report: Andreessen Horowitz is Prepping a New Crypto Fund
Venture Capital, Capital Markets, FinTech
Silicon Valley venture capital heavyweight Andreessen Horowitz is prepping an exclusive fund to buy and sell cryptocurrencies, Recode reports.
Andreessen Horowitz has already beenactive in the blockchain and virtual currency space, investing in “blockchain companies like Coinbase, in crypto-specific funds like Polychain Capital and in initial coin offerings, but, as a fund, it has not yet publicly traded the actual assets like bitcoin,” according to Recode.
Two job listings posted on Andreessen’s website say that the firm is hiring for a “separately managed fund focusing on crypto assets.” Andreessen has so far only invested out of two types of funds: One for early- and late-stage startups, the latest closed in 2016 totaling $1.5 billion; and one for bio investing, which last year equipped the firm with $450 million to invest in a specific class of companies.
The job postings did not specify how much this fund would gather under management or when it would begin investing. Andreessen Horowitz also doesn’t define “assets” in the job postings, so it’s possible that the firm could choose to run its token- and blockchain-related startup investing out of this pool of capital, as well. Plus, the industry could look very different in just a few years.
The two job openings include one for legal counsel, who “would be responsible for making sure Andreessen Horowitz’s crypto investments are SEC-compliant,” Recode reports. The other position would be a finance manager whose responsibilities would include being able “to help the firm assign a valuation to its crypto assets, which isn’t easy given how volatile some cryptocurrencies have proven to be.”
Recode notes that VC firms have thus far shied away from the cryptocurrency space, especially because regulatory concerns make the market tricky to navigate.
But few funds have a track record in this space like Andreessen Horowitz, which is one of the most active venture capital firms in cryptocurrency investing, under a team led by general partners Chris Dixon and Alex Rampell, who are looked to in Silicon Valley as guiding lights for understanding the asset class. Andreessen Horowitz investments in addition to Coinbase range from well-known companies like Ripple to newer deals like CryptoKitties.
That being said, some investors believe there’s a lot more money to be made and faster in the currencies themselves than in the companies that are merely organized around them.
Andreessen Horowitz declined to comment to Recode about the job openings.
Photo: JD Lasica