Marc Andreessen: Bitcoin Will Work in a Spectacular Way

October 19, 2014 09:30 UTC

Bloomberg Markets magazine interviewed Marc Andreessen at the firm’s headquarters in Menlo Park, the Washington Post reports.

Marc Andreessen, co-author of Mosaic web browser and co-founder of Netscape Communications, is one of the persons who invented today’s Internet. Since Netscape was bought out by America Online (AOL) in 1999, Andreessen has spent his time making other key innovations and investing in technology ventures at his Silicon Valley venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz.

Andreessen’s current interest is upending finance as we know it today, with cryptography, Bitcoin and the technology of open, distributed blockchains.

Also read: Netscape Founder Wishes He Invented Bitcoin

He says that the slow-moving financial establishment isn’t able to cope with the needs of the citizens of a globally connected world, and therefore fast-moving disruptive alternatives are stepping in. He thinks that the Bitcoin ecosystem is working exactly as its designer wanted, and the Bitcoin price will stabilize with time.

We Can Reinvent the Entire Thing

Some key excerpts of the Washington Post article:

“To me, it’s all about unbundling the banks. There are regulatory arbitrage opportunities every step of the way. If the regulators are going to regulate banks, then you’ll have non-bank entities that spring up to do the things that banks can’t do. Bank regulation tends to backfire, and of late that means consumer lending is getting unbundled.”

“We’re not going to go backward. When people start doing things a better way, it kind of doesn’t matter what the old way was.”

“The start-ups chasing disruptive technology aren’t working within the existing system. This is the cryptocurrency phenomenon. If it works, we can re-implement the entire financial system as a distributed system as opposed to a centralized system. We can reinvent the entire thing.

“Bitcoin is clearly in this category. With Bitcoin, there are advantages to decentralizing the financial system in order to do commerce. For instance, you can make payments in all but four countries. {Forget] about all the different currencies and banking systems; it’s a truly universal way to transfer value.”

“[Bitcoin] will either work or it won’t. And if it doesn’t work, we will lose all our money. But if it does work, it will work in a spectacular way. Our investments will pay off 1,000 to 1 or 10,000 to 1 or some other crazy extreme, because these markets are so big.”

“Speculation was the way to get the thing established. [Now,] you can actually do things with it. With scale and time, the volatility will vanish. The designer of the system, I think, would say that the system is working perfectly.”


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Last modified: October 19, 2014 09:32 UTC

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