BRANDs

We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator’s crypto lead admits

THIS NEWSLETTER IS SPONSORED BY
We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator's crypto lead admits 1
We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator's crypto lead admits 2

We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator’s crypto lead admits

by Tom Matsuda
We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator's crypto lead admits 3
Quick Takes
  • In an exclusive interview with The Block, Harj Taggar, fintech and crypto lead at Y Combinator, reveals YC didn’t believe in crypto when Coinbase took part in its summer 2012 program.
  • Despite its early reticence toward crypto, the startup accelerator has backed huge players like OpenSea and Coinbase and now boasts a record 27 web3 startups in its winter 2022 cohort.
Back in 2012, when Y Combinator (YC) partner Harj Taggar coached a nascent Coinbase through the startup accelerator’s summer cohort, he wasn’t exactly a crypto aficionado.

“To be completely blunt with you, we did not believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase in 2012,”  Taggar says over a video call.

He recalls how he associated bitcoin with “a bunch of shady stuff” such as Silk Road, a now-defunct dark web marketplace.

Bitcoin “seemed to attract people who wanted to buy drugs and order assassinations online or something,” he says. “And then at the same time, I knew hardcore computer science people who were really excited about setting up a mining rig and solving hard math problems to get bitcoin.”

He’s changed his tune to such a degree that he’s taken over running the crypto group in YC’s current winter cohort, alongside his colleague Dalton Caldwell.

The accelerator — famed for launching the likes of OpenSea, Stripe and Coinbase — counts a record 27 crypto startups in its latest winter cohort, meaning 32% of its total crypto portfolio resides in the current batch. 

Read Full Article
We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator's crypto lead admits 4
You Should Know
Polygon unveils identity service leveraging zero-knowledge proofs
The service, called Polygon ID, will help in verifying users’ information while preserving their on-chain privacy. Using Polygon ID, applications running on the blockchain will be able authenticate user data while keeping sensitive information private. 
Read Full Article
A professional art appraiser explains why valuing an NFT is ‘totally different’ than judging a painting
After training as an art appraiser, putting valuations on paintings and sculptures for collectors and insurers, Caroline Taylor is among the vanguard embracing this new world. And with everyone from Madonna to Visa buying NFTs, The Block sat down with Taylor to understand how pros like her start putting a dollar figure on a few lines of code.
Read Full Article
Axie Infinity’s Ethereum sidechain Ronin hit by $600 million exploit
In a blog post, developers said that the exploit — which took place on March 23 but was discovered earlier Tuesday — resulted in the loss of 173,600 ETH (worth roughly $590 million at current prices) and 25.5 million worth of the stablecoin USDC.
Read Full Article
THIS NEWSLETTER IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY
We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator's crypto lead admits 1
Since 2018, Copper has been the leading provider of digital asset infrastructure to institutional investors around the world.

Build on award-winning MPC custody, Copper’s products and services ensure asset managers have the fastest and most secure method for connecting their crypto with the exchanges and counterparts that matter the most.


Get in touch to find out more about
  • Copper Unlimited: the most awarded institutional custody application 
  • ClearLoop: the only off-exchange settlement network with direct access to leading spot and derivative exchanges
  • CopperConnect: the fastest way to connect secure MPC custody to the world of DeFi
  • The Walled Garden: 45 exchanges and more than 500 supported digital assets – all in one secure, closed trading ecosystem.
Visit our website, or connect with us on: Twitter | LinkedIn | Telegram
Learn More
Events
We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator's crypto lead admits 6
Register here
Tweet for Thought
We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator's crypto lead admits 7
See on Twitter
SPONSORED POST

Multichain: The Next Frontier in DeFi

by Matrixport
Institutions are already ramping up their interactions with protocols across multiple chains like Solana and Polygon — marking the multichain network as an essential element to bring in the next billion users into crypto. 
Learn More
You are receiving this e-mail because you are subscribed to The Block’s free newsletter. If someone shared this newsletter with you, you can easily subscribe to receive it in your inbox here. If you’re looking for even more content, we have a separate newsletter for The Block Research, which you can sign-up for here.
We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator's crypto lead admits 8

The Block

45 Bond Street, Floor 5, New York, NY 10012

U U Preferences

We didn’t believe in crypto when we funded Coinbase, Y Combinator's crypto lead admits 9

Related Articles

Back to top button