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Crypto Fund Pantera Capital Is Seeking $175 Million For Its Next Venture

As reported by Ethereum World News previously, Pantera Capital has been an integral part of this flowering industry for over five years. Along with recently reaching a five-year milestone, the industry veteran has also posted a lifetime return of 10,000 percent (100x) on its foremost fund, an astounding feat to say the least.

It seems that with a recent announcement, which has been relayed by TechCrunch, that Pantera is looking to continue to achieve astonishing ROIs (return-on-investment) with a recent move to open its third venture fund.

Pantera made its debut in the nascent crypto and blockchain industry in 2013, raising $13 million for its first fund. Later, the San Francisco-based firm raised nearly double the previous amount for its second venture fund. While those funds succeeded as aforementioned, posting staggering returns through investments into early-stage crypto tokens and blockchain-centric projects, Pantera’s aspirations have not been quenched. So most recently, the investment company is seeking upwards of $175 million for its third venture fund, an increase of over seven-fold from the second investment round.

Paul Veradittakit, a partner at the firm, gave a statement on the ambitious target amount, noting:

“[The target amount is a] function of how fast the space is moving, the talent coming in, the opportunities, and the sizing of rounds. With more interesting later-stage investments [on our radar], too, we want to be flexible and able to move with the market.”

According to a document recently filed to the SEC, Pantera has already made a substantial amount of progress, garnering over $71 million in capital allocation from 90 individual investors or investment groups. Veradittakit notes that this new investment vehicle will be a so-called “evergreen fund,” where it will be structured to have an “indefinite” lifespan that lets investors come and go as they choose.

Previous venture investments include early-stage allocations into BitStamp, Xapo, Ripple, and Circle, which have quickly grown to become foremost players in the crypto asset industry.  So it goes without saying that Pantera’s venture investments span this multi-faceted industry and are rather successful as well. As Veradittakit puts it:

“Pantera has invested in lots of wallets and exchanges focused around the world, in Coinbases of different geographies, in enterprise-related blockchain companies. More recently, we’ve funded everything from big data to decentralized application platforms.”

Pantera’s Three Primary Investment Strategies

Many are hopeful that this new fund will succeed, with the firm utilizing venture strategies, along with three following investment strategies that have helped it excel in this nascent industry.

Firstly, Pantera has a fund that exclusively invests in initial coin offerings (ICOs) that look promising to the firm’s assessment and analysis team. As CEO Dan Morehead elaborated, this specific fund buys pre-sale ICOs, which are often early-stage investments when the risk/return ratio is at its peak.

Morehead added the fund does not only invest into ICOs but also provides “the right connections,” creating a symbiotic partnership to benefit both parties.

Secondly, Pantera has a Bitcoin-centric vehicle that has been likened to a hedge fund, with this being the firm’s flagship fund. As aforementioned, the fund has obtained a staggering 10,136% return “net of fees and expenses” on the original investment.

Last but not least, the American company’s last fund invests in established cryptocurrencies via exchanges. Utilizing a machine learning algorithm, the fund can automatically invest in cryptocurrencies, while also fitting its investments to the needs of Pantera’s executive team.

It is unclear in what direction the fund will head, but as the aforementioned firm partner notes, this industry is still in its infancy and there is still a lot of opportunity for growth.


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Five Reasons Why Experts Say it isn’t Too Late to Buy Bitcoin

In late 2017, Bitcoin and the cryptocurrency market stole the headline in the global business scene. BTC price reached an all-time high (ATH) in mid-December 2017 prompting a mad rush into the market. However, sentiment seems to have died down significantly with the price of BTC losing more than 60 percent since the start of 2018.

Some critics say that the crypto-honeymoon is over. However, anyone familiar with the market knows that it passes through bear and bull run cycles. The following are five reasons given by experts to support the claim that it isn’t too late to invest in the market.

Bitcoin is 2018’s Bear Market

Almost every savvy investor will say that bear markets present a golden opportunity to buy assets for a much lower price in preparation for the next price upswing. Bitcoin is for all intents and purposed the quintessential bear market of 2018.

BTC is currently trading at $7,380 which is still way off its 2018 high of $17,500 in early January. Bitcoin has declined by more than 70 percent on more than one occasion after which the top-ranked crypto always returned to set a new ATH. According to the CEO of Blockchain Developers, Dean Anastos, there is a good chance that Bitcoin will experience another price push that will see it achieve a new ATH.

Cryptocurrency Regulations are Imminent

The slow pace of development on the regulatory front has been identified as a reason for the 2018 cryptocurrency bear market. The year started off with negative policies in India, South Korea and concern from the United States.

However, since the middle Q2 2018, there has been a noticeable softening of some of these negative policies. South Korea is considering legitimizing ICOs once more, and Malta has taken giant strides in establishing itself as a crypto-friendly country. Commenting on the positive regulatory news so far, Myntum founder and CEO, Kevin Barry, said:

The SEC’s announcement that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are not securities is a welcome development and will allow for additional mainstream investment. Individuals and businesses can now purchase cryptocurrencies knowing that they are not purchasing a security.

The influx of Institutional Investors

One of the direct consequences of clearer regulations is the influx of institutional investors into the cryptocurrency market. Crypto firms like Coinbase and Gemini have been creating useful products for big-money investors. 2018 has also seen an increase in custodial tools for virtual currency assets.

According to Patrick Gray, the CEO of HashChain Technology:

Major corporations and financial institutions have been investing heavily in cryptocurrencies. These are significant steps taken by some of the most influential companies in the world and a testament to how favorable general public opinion is getting.

Uncertainties and Risks in Traditional Asset Classes

The brewing trade war between the United States and China continues to gather steam, leaving many markets in limbo. In the EU, Brexit is yet to be finalized. Ray Youssef, the CEO of Paxful believes that:

With continued U.S. interest rates tightening, it is sure to put downward pressure on gold and traditional safe-haven assets. Crypto could be the one non-traditional investment that performs well in 2018/2019.

Viable Means of Portfolio Diversification

If traditional assets are getting riskier to invest in, then now more than ever is the time to consider portfolio diversification. Cryptocurrencies constitute a viable alternative investment class. What’s more, they aren’t tethered to the mainstream market.

According to Anastos:

Cryptocurrency helps to diversify asset classes, which has been influential for countries that have suffered from hyperinflation such as Venezuela and Zimbabwe.

Many experts believe that crypto adoption will continue to increase exponentially thereby driving prices upwards as tokens gain more utility. Commenting on this potential, Gray said:

Cryptocurrency adoption is currently 0.2 percent and has been doubling by 100 percent a year. At this rate, the potential and opportunity over the next ten years are vast. Despite some downturns, that kind of growth potential and growth rate shouldn’t be overlooked.

Do you agree with the opinions of the experts that it isn’t too late to invest in cryptocurrencies? Keep the conversation going in the comment section below.

Image courtesy of Coinmarketcap.


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Steve Bannon is Buying The Dip on Cryptos

Steve Bannon, one of the masterminds behind Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and a former member of his presidential cabinet, has found a new passion in addition to politics: Cryptocurrencies

US President Donald Trump (L) congratulates Senior Counselor to the President Stephen Bannon during the swearing-in of senior staff in the East Room of the White House on January 22, 2017 in Washington, DC. / MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images

Trump’s well-known advisor, famous for citing Nazi Propagandist Leni Riefenstahl as a source of inspiration and driving Trump’s victory through campaigns designed by Cambridge Analytica, has now taken the promotion of cryptocurrency quite seriously.

According to The New York Times, Steve Bannon has a view of cryptocurrency that is more philosophical and political than pragmatic:

“It’s disruptive populism … It takes control back from central authorities. It’s revolutionary.” said Steve Bannon during an interview at his Capitol Hill townhouse in Washington.

This perspective, similar to that of the great proponents such as Roger Ver and John McAfee, has strong support in the political sectors linked to the right wing.

According to Steve Bannon, the use of cryptocurrency is also an excellent tool for a better exercise of politics in general:

“It was pretty obvious to me that unless you got somehow control over your currency, all these political movements were going to be beholden to who controlled the currency,”

According to the New York Times, in addition to the famous political tours, Steve Bannon arranged interviews and closed meetings with significant crypto investors.

The well-known newspaper points out that in several of these interviews, conducted through Bannon & Company, Steve Bannon “said he had a “good stake” in Bitcoin.”

Bannon does not provide information about the projects he works on. His investments in cryptos and ICOs are secret because “he worries that the controversy that comes with his name could have a bad impact on projects just getting off the ground.”

Steve Bannon: Controversial but Well Prepared

Steve Bannon has taken on the task of researching not only bitcoin but also the possible consequences of the massive adoption of cryptocurrencies.

After an interview with the Ikigai hedge fund, Timothy Lewis, one of its co-founders was surprised about how well Steve Bannon knew the crypto sphere:

“I didn’t know what to expect going in, but he had clearly done his homework,”

Timothy Lewis

Steve Bannon’s vision and interest in cryptocurrencies are not a good sign for some people in the crypto sphere who think that Trump’s friend’s bad reputation can hurt the ecosystem:

“It almost seems like a natural progression for a man who gained prominence by shoveling out unfounded conspiracies to now shilling complex technology and financial instruments to an unsophisticated investing public,” said Colin Platt, a cryptocurrency researcher, and adviser.

Colin Platt

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German Bank Survey Shows High Percentage of Cryptocurrency Awareness in the Country

A recent survey by the German bank, Postbank revealed that many in the country maintain an active interest in the emerging cryptocurrency market. Even with the 65 percent decline in the value of the market since the start of 2018, Germans appear to be buoyed by bitcoin and other digital assets. Germany is already a crypto-friendly nation that doesn’t even tax small purchases made with bitcoin, treating them instead as legal tender.

Anonymity and Potential for High Investment Yield

Anonymity and high investment yields rank as the two most attractive propositions offered by digital currencies. The crypto market is incredibly volatile with wild price swings a ubiquitous part of the digital currency narrative. Thus, there is always the possibility of making huge gains, as well as catastrophic losses. Between November and mid-December 2017, the price of bitcoin tripled from $6,000 to $19,500. By February 2018, bitcoin prices had plunged below $6,000. Many other coins followed the same trajectory between November 2017 and February 2018.

How Demographics Affects Cryptocurrency Perception in Germany

A breakdown analysis of the survey throws up some interesting insights about how cryptos are viewed in Germany along gender and generational lines. For example, 60 percent of the female responders identified regulations as their reason for maintaining an interest in cryptos. Whereas, 56 percent of the male responders chose the possibility of earning huge profits as their incentive for being interested in the market. Only 51 percent of men and 36 percent of women chose regulations and high yield respectively.

Concerning age demographics, the younger generation seems to be abreast with the latest in the industry. People between 18 and 34 years of age indicated the most interest in digital currencies according to the study. In fact, more than half of survey participants in that age bracket declared excitement at the prospects and opportunities in the market. Six percent of them said that they had an investment in different coins while another 14 percent said they would probably do so in the coming months.

Many Germans Claim to Know Much About Cryptocurrency

An average of 20 percent of the survey participants claimed expert knowledge of the cryptocurrency market. However, experts like Thomas Mangel, the Postbank Chief Digital Officer is advising caution. Commenting on the survey, he said:

Due to the media hypes, many people overestimate their knowledge of the opportunities and risks of cryptocurrencies as an investment. Despite all the fascination, young investors should not lose sight of offers from the established banking system. Anyone who already makes an investment in securities as an investment should certainly not invest in cryptocurrencies because of the high risks involved. Because this type of investment is highly speculative.

Mangel also said people tend to overestimate their knowledge of cryptocurrencies especially in the area of risk. He also said people needed to educate themselves on the tax implications of cryptocurrency investments before jumping into the market. As part of the survey, Postbank added many critical warnings. The bank also offered cautionary nuggets to guide people through the still murky waters of the digital currency market.

What other countries do you think such high level of cryptocurrency awareness exists? Will Germany become a global leader in the cryptocurrency trading market? Let us know your views in the comment section below.

Images courtesy of Pixabay and Wikimedia Commons.