Andreessen Horowitz seeks $4.5bn for new crypto investments

Andreessen Horowitz plans to raise up to $4.5 billion for a new set of cryptocurrency funds, aiming to more than double the amount it raised less than a year ago, in a sign of the growing frenzy surrounding digital assets.

The Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm told investors last week that it planned to raise up to $3.5 billion for its latest cryptocurrency venture fund and up to $1 billion for a separate fund focused on early-stage investments in crypto. digital asset startups, people briefed on discussions said

Andreessen plans to finalize the new funding by March, one of the people said. The firm declined to comment.

Andreessen is known as one of the top venture capital firms in Silicon Valley, having previously been an early investor in Facebook, Twitter, Airbnb, Stripe, Coinbase, and many other leading tech groups.

If successful, Andreessen’s loot would easily outstrip any other funds raised to place early bets on the cryptocurrency startup.

The move indicates how major venture capital firms are increasingly piling into crypto, fueling a boom that has spawned hundreds of projects aiming to displace traditional finance.

Investors typically balk at venture capital firms trying to raise money so quickly and in such large amounts, preferring to keep funds small and focused on performance.

However, Andreessen and other tech investors have recently had little trouble raising billions of dollars from large institutions to bet on cryptocurrency projects, flooding the sector with unprecedented sums.

Paradigm, a firm run by former Sequoia Capital partner Matt Huang and Coinbase co-founder Fred Ehrsam, raised $2.5 billion in November for what was then the largest cryptocurrency venture fund.

Global venture capital firms raised $10.7 billion for crypto-focused funding in 2021, compared to $5.2 billion raised the year before, according to data from PitchBook.

The cryptocurrency arm of Andreessen, led by Chris Dixon and two other investment partners, previously raised $2.2 billion for its most recent fund in June, more than double its initial goal. The firm has already invested most of that fund.

A $1 billion fund for early cryptocurrency investments would be double the next largest fund for similar investments of any kind, a $500 million fund raised by Greylock Partners in September. At the time, Greylock called it “the largest venture capital group in the industry dedicated to supporting founders from day one.”

Investors poured $31.6 billion into crypto startup deals last year, nearly seven times more than in 2020, according to PitchBook, as hedge funds and other non-traditional backers looked to profit from the rapid growth of startup projects. digital assets.

Andreessen was one of the most active cryptocurrency investors last year, landing big deals in gaming startup Sky Mavis, blockchain developer Solana Labs, and non-fungible token marketplace OpenSea.

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The firm’s fundraising push follows the departure of one of its top partners, Katie Haun, who left to start her own investment group. Haun plans to raise at least $900 million for two separate cryptocurrency funds. Andreessen has committed to investing $50 million in the funds.

This month, Andreessen said it had raised $9 billion for its latest venture capital, growth and biotech funds, bringing the company’s assets under management to more than $28 billion.

Andreessen told investors last week that he also planned to raise up to $500 million for a new fund focused on gaming investments, people briefed on the discussions said.

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