Andreessen Horowitz came about in 2018. It started life focusing on traditional investment sectors, then branched out into the crypto sector with a fund called a16z. At the time of writing, the company has said that this fund is worth $350 million, which is $50 million more than when it launched. It’s a lot of money in anybody’s estimation, but in comparison to Andreessen Horowitz’s $7 billion in total managed assets, it’s more like spare change that they found down the back of the sofa. The relative amount isn’t what’s important though. What matters is the fact that an investment fund of Andreessen Horowitz’s reputation has signaled a great deal of confidence in the crypto sector.
The firm hasn’t just limited its investment portfolio to cryptocurrencies, however. Andreesseen Horowitz and a16z have taken a broader view and sunk some of their speculative cash into a number of crypto startups, with names like Coinbase, Maker, Filecoin, dYdX, and CryptoKitties among them. Alongside Polychain, it put $105 million into a cloud-based blockchain start-up called Dfinity back in August 2018, and that comes on the heels of a combined $61 million in a Prior round six months earlier.
Even putting aside a16z, Andreesseen Horowitz is a huge fund that’s shown an appetite for what the cryptocurrency industry may have to offer in terms of growth potential. And in April of 2020 it announced a restructuring plan that would affect its business from top to bottom, registering its employees as financial advisors. This is a fundamental shift in perspective that would give it the legal basis to enter into much more risky ventures in future. Ventures like cryptocurrencies.