Ahead of a possible initial public offering that could come later this year, cryptocurrency startup Coinbase Inc. has welcomed two new people to its board.
One is Gokul Rajaram, a veteran executive at Google Inc., Doordash Inc. and Square Inc. But arguably the marquee appointee is Silicon Valley legend Marc Andreessen.
Andreessen is the co-author of Mosaic, the co-founder of Netscape and the co-founder of Andreessen Horowitz, a top-tier Silicon Valley venture capital firm. Putting aside Andreessen’s long history in tech, he has been a long supporter of cryptocurrency.
“Marc Andreessen has a storied history in Silicon Valley and was an early believer in the potential of crypto,” Coinbase co-founder and chief executive Brian Armstrong wrote on Medium. “As far back as 2014, he penned a seminal op-ed in The New York Times that introduced many to bitcoin for the first time.”
Exactly when Coiunbase is going public is open to speculation, but it may even happen before the end of the year.
“The future of Coinbase, including any IPO, is likely to be a bellwether for the crypto industry as a whole,” Jeff John Roberts at Fortune wrote. “While the industry has grown enormously — the value of Bitcoin in circulation is now worth over $200 billion — and made inroads into traditional finance, crypto has not entirely shaken its outlaw reputation.”
Indeed, though cryptocurrency as a investment has matured over the years, companies in the market are still looked at with a level of suspicion, sometimes justified. Coinbase, the leading U.S. crypto firm should at least in theory be looked at positively, but even in 2020, some still have hangups on cryptocurrency.
Coming into its IPO, Coinbase has raised $547.3 million in venture capital, according to Crunchbase. Investors include Tiger Global Management, Y Combinator Continuity, Wellington Management, Andreessen Horowitz, PolychainSection 32, Balyasny Asset Management, Draper Associates, Battery Ventures, Greylock Partners, Tusk Ventures, Spark Capital, Bank Of Tokyo, USAA, DFJ, BlockChain Capital and the New York Stock Exchange.
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