Andreessen Horowitz associate Marc Andreessen
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Andreessen Horowitz is launching a multibillion-dollar fund to spend money on a risky ecosystem it is betting can be as influential because the web.
The Silicon Valley enterprise capital agency, based by Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz, introduced its new $2.2 billion cryptocurrency-focused fund on Thursday. It plans to deploy that capital throughout blockchain and digital asset start-ups.
“The scale of this fund speaks to the scale of the chance earlier than us: crypto will not be solely the way forward for finance however, as with the web within the early days, is poised to remodel all points of our lives,” Katie Haun and Chris Dixon, companions who run Andreessen’s cryptocurrency group, stated in a weblog put up.
The corporate’s first crypto-focused fund was launched three years in the past, throughout what’s now generally known as “crypto winter.” That 12 months, the worth of bitcoin cratered roughly 80% from the highs in 2017. The most recent fund additionally comes at one other bearish second for bitcoin.
The world’s unique cryptocurrency has misplaced roughly half its worth for the reason that excessive close to $60,000 in April. This week alone, it is on observe for a 20% loss. Haun and Dixon famous the asset class’s volatility, and stated “costs might fluctuate however innovation continues to extend via every cycle.”
“We imagine that the following wave of computing innovation can be pushed by crypto,” the companions wrote, including that they are “radically optimistic about crypto’s potential.”
The agency is understood for early bets on corporations like Facebook, Instagram, Lyft and Pinterest. Andreessen Horowitz made its first transfer into the digital asset area via Coinbase in 2013. Coinbase went public through a direct itemizing this 12 months, and is down roughly 50% from its itemizing day excessive.
Andreessen Horowitz can also be an early investor in Fb-backed digital forex venture libra, now generally known as diem, which has gone via a sequence of rebranding and confronted opposition from world regulators.
The agency has stakes in corporations like OpeanSea and Dapper Labs, powering the current NFT increase and stated it plans to deal with “decentralized finance.” Often known as “defi,” the time period used to explain conventional finance purposes, like lending or banking, constructed on the identical expertise that underlies bitcoin. The agency stated it plans to carry these crypto investments for a decade or extra.
These digital asset investments are being pushed by companions Haun, a former Justice Division prosecutor, and Dixon, who based and ran two start-ups earlier than becoming a member of Andreessen Horowitz. Haun helped launch the Justice Division’s first authorities activity power for crypto and labored on the primary high-profile cryptocurrency-related case, Silk Street.
Andreessen Horowitz additionally introduced a wave of latest hires for the fund, together with former Securities and Alternate Director Invoice Hinman, who will be a part of the agency as an advisory associate. Rachael Horwitz, who led communications at Twitter, Google and Fb, joined as an working associate.