Talking Romance, Armenia, and Crypto with Stephen Colbert
The Initialized exec team traveled to Omaha for the Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting where we soaked up all the great investing energy around Warren + Charlie; said a few words to the NYTimes about why a VC fund (especially so early in crypto) would be among all these value investors; and Garry dressed up as a hotdog. Good times.
It's been 5 years since I appeared on The Colbert Report to promote my nationwide bus tour for my national bestselling book, Without Their Permission. I've been pretty busy since then, so I was especially happy to catch up with Stephen about helping lead the Reddit turnaround, returning to Initialized Capital, and most important of all: becoming a husband and a father. Stephen and I talked about how that was all thanks to a fake rat and a very real rabbit (RIP).
We also got some cryptocurrency discussion in there. Watch it all on Youtube.
The interview was edited down for time and I had a longer segment about Armenia and my POV as the descendant of immigrants who fled the Armenian genocide for how I think about crypto as a powerful new, borderless store of value that people own for themselves. Not only is it a desirable alternative to a lot of very volatile currencies it’s also a potential sanctuary from the reach of unstable or even potentially life-threatening governments. We’ll see a population move a lot of currency to crypto in the next five years when a government somewhere in the world breaks down and hyperinflation ruins life savings.
I’m not the only person with strong opinions on the subject of crypto: my partners at Initialized are all great people to follow: Garry Tan, Brett Gibson, Kim-Mai Cutler, and Vince Chu are all great people to follow. There are also thought-leaders in the space we respect a lot for their thoughts on the subject: Ari Paul, Chris Burniske, Eric Meltzer, Nic Carter, Ryan Selkis, and Sizhao Yang.
The team asked me to test my VC powers in a fun game guessing what 10 apps did based only on their names. I did worse than I expected…
But it was fun!
Although it’s not our core focus, Initialized has made some big bets in the crypto space and it’s paid off in the quality and quantity of new projects we get the chance to meet. Beyond being the first seed investor in market leader, Coinbase, we’ve also backed DDEX (decentralized exchange), Cointracker (Crypto portfolio tracker + tax manager) and one more big one that hasn’t been announced yet.