Chris Dixon of A16z said the new crypto fund comes as we “enter the golden age of Web3.”
Silicon Valley VC giant Andreessen Horowitz is betting big on blockchain with a new $4.5 billion fund for crypto startups.
The crypto fund includes $1.5 billion for seed investments and $3 billion for venture investments. It is the largest fund of its kind ever raised, bringing the total crypto funds raised by the VC firm to date to over $7.6 billion.
Andreessen Horowitz, aka A16z, has been investing in crypto since 2013. Now it believes that blockchain technology will be the next big revolution in computing.
Chris Dixon, managing partner and founder of Andreessen’s crypto arm, said that “we are now entering the golden age of Web3,” where programmable blockchains are “sufficiently advanced” and a “diverse array of apps has reached tens of millions of users.”
“More importantly, there has been a huge wave of world-class talent arriving at Web3 in the past year. They are brilliant and passionate and want to build a better internet,” he wrote in a blog post announcing the new crypto fund. “That’s why we decided to go big.”
Dixon said A16z will use the fund to invest in promising Web3 startups at every stage, including those developing Web3 games, decentralized financial and social media platforms, and NFT communities.
It comes at a particularly turbulent time for the crypto industry. Cryptocurrencies across the board have fallen in value in recent weeks and Christine Lagarde, head of the European Central Bank, warned earlier this week that crypto assets “are worth nothing”.
But Arianna Simpson, general partner at Andreessen Horowitz, thinks it’s a wise decision to invest in a period of recession.
“Bear markets are often when the best opportunities arise, when people can actually focus on building technology instead of being distracted by short-term price activity,” Simpson told CNBC.
We will also continue to grow the a16z crypto operations teams that provide world-class support to our founders, in research and engineering, security, talent and people, law and regulation, go-to-market and much more. Lake.
— AriannaSimpson.eth (@AriannaSimpson) May 25, 2022
Andreessen Horowitz has gone out of his way to dominate the crypto sector and has supported dozens of startups in this space to date, including a recently launched blockchain venture from controversial WeWork founder Adam Neumann.
Last month, A16z also said it launched a new crypto research lab that aims to boost Web3 startups by bringing academia and industry together.
“Research labs like DeepMind and OpenAI have taken the field of AI to new heights,” General Partner Ali Yahya tweeted then. “We plan to do the same for crypto and Web3.”
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Chris Dixon at thenewsupdate Disrupt in 2015. Image: Noam Galai/Getty Images for thenewsupdate via Flickr (CC by 2.0)