The firm was founded by Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz, and it has been one of the most active firms in the space, creating a $350 million fund dedicated to crypto investing. The company is also part of the Libra Association, which is the organization tasked with bringing Facebook’s proposed cryptocurrency Libra to fruition.
General partner and co-head of the crypto fund, Chris Dixon, said he thinks crypto could “have the most impact in the world.”
“If this works the way we hope it does, it will be a new way to build start-up,” he said. “You can build social networks and marketplaces using a lot of these concepts that have pretty profound business and social societal implications.”
Dixon said the free course is being offered with “no strings attached,” and that no companies will need to give up any equity stake to take part. It will last seven weeks in February, and about 40 entrepreneurs are going to take part. After the seven weeks are over, the course will be available for free online.
“Our general view is if we build goodwill, people will want to come to work with us — so it’s in that spirit,” Dixon said. “If they do go start a company, we hope we’ll be one of their first phone calls, but there’s no requirement for that.”
The key topic of the course is going to be how to navigate through regulatory issues.
The issue of regulation is especially at the forefront of the controversy surrounding Libra, with many countries and regulators worried that the currency could be used for illicit purposes, or destabilize the global economy.
“I understand that there are issues to work through,” Dixon said. “When these brand new areas emerge, no one, including the regulators, understands what the best practices are — it takes time for respective parties to come together and figure out how to balance innovation and consumer protection.”