Seeking to defy the odds of a prolonged bear market, billionaire investor Tim Draper has unveiled a new crypto-centric venture studio, Draper Goren Blockchain (DGB). It comes with a clear mission: to accelerate “DeFi innovations,” layer-2 network scaling solutions, and consumer apps including gaming and social experiences.
Draper, a household name in the blockchain world, has been investing heavily in a plethora of crypto related ventures for years. The outspoken Bitcoin bull has not shied away from price predictions, either, calling for a price of $250,000 for the leading cryptocurrency on multiple occasions (it has thus far peaked around $69,000 in 2021).
His founding partners, Alon Goren and David Bleznak, are also crypto-natives. The latter has invested alongside Draper in their previous venture, Draper Goren Holm, and is a board member for social analytics platform LunarCrush and Ownera, an institutional-grade network for digital securities.
Meanwhile, Bleznak led DeFi aggregation and trading platform Totle, along with a stint at Coinbase overseeing institutional products. He was also a venture partner at Draper Goren Holm.
Alon Goren spoke to Decrypt about the specifics of Draper Goren Blockchain’s approach, explaining that they don’t intend on running it like Y Combinator or Techstars. They’re in it for the long haul with each company.
“We plan on spending the next 10 years working with each company,” he said, investing between $25,000-$100,000 in pre-seed startups. There will be an additional focus, Goren told Decrypt, on partnering with select entrepreneurs to build companies “from scratch.”
Despite the United States’ prominent economic status in the world, its lack of regulatory clarity on crypto alongside the increasing rate of enforcement actions by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) provide a unique challenge to Draper Goren Blockchain.
“Our current regulatory environment is a shitshow,” said Goren of the United States. He added that he is “sad” to see more and more American crypto entrepreneurs moving overseas amid the regulatory climate—while the ones staying, he told Decrypt, have to grapple with substantial amounts of uncertainty and doubt.
Even so, the investor remains optimistic. Goren thinks the nature of the technology will eventually make the “whims of regulators” obsolete, predicting, “We will all be OK.”
Draper Goren Blockchain’s main focus—spanning those interests in DeFi, scaling solutions, and consumer-centric applications—is to help boost mainstream crypto adoption.
“The bridge to the masses is still lacking,” said Goren. While he sees “amazing, novel technical innovations” supporting the core crypto community, the longtime partner of Draper and Bleznak explained that the broader goal is to improve the crypto user experience and mainstream acceptance.
“That’s changing daily,” he said about movement towards adoption, claiming that “it’ll likely happen in a whirlwind overnight like it did with adoption of the web.”
According to Goren, the accelerator will not work with schedules or cohorts, but rather discover and experiment with ideas as they come. Draper Goren Blockchain’s first set of deals and incubated companies will be announced soon, he added.