Arianna Simpson talks crypto at Disrupt and why a16z bets billions

Investing in crypto is not for the faint of heart. The volatile crypto landscape is littered with the remains of high-profile collapses, like Terraform Labs, Three Arrows Capital and FTX. Still, some VC firms — especially investment powerhouse Andreessen Horowitz (commonly known as a16z) — remain bullish on crypto.

In May 2022, a16z announced a fourth crypto fund to the tune of $4.5 billion, which brings the total amount of funding it has raised for crypto and web3 alone to more than $7.6 billion.

The company seems intent on staying in an industry from which many traditional VCs have stepped away. We want to know why. We also have questions about their web3 investing strategy, and more. This is why we’re thrilled that Arianna Simpson, general partner at a16z, will join us for a fireside chat at TechCrunch Disrupt 2023 on September 19–21 in San Francisco.

Hear a16z’s Arianna Simpson at TechCrunch Disrupt 2023

No matter how you invest it, that $4.5 billion fourth fund is an outsized number. We’ll ask Simpson whether the opportunities are equally outsized and where she sees them taking shape. We’re also curious about how the company navigates not only the ecosystem’s infamous instability, but also the effects of recent high-profile bank closures on crypto and looming regulation.

We’re interested to get Simpson's take on the future of web3 — as the industry matures and reaches beyond tech and gaming enthusiasts to include a broader consumer audience. And that’s just for starters. Pretty sure we’ll come up with even more questions between now and September.

Arianna Simpson, a general partner at a16z, invests in crypto. Prior to joining the VC firm, Simpson founded Autonomous Partners, an investment fund focused on cryptocurrencies and digital assets. She also helped launch Crystal Towers Capital, an early-stage fund investing primarily in Y Combinator companies.

Previously, Simpson worked in sales and product roles at Facebook and BitGo, an enterprise security company for bitcoin and other digital currencies. She earned dual degrees in International Politics and Spanish from the Schreyer Honors College at Penn State University.

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