Hedge Fund Billionaire Alan Howard is Still Backing Crypto Startups

British hedge fund manager Alan Howard has personally invested in about 40 cryptocurrency companies so far, including FTX and Polygon

article-image

Source: Shutterstock

share

key takeaways

  • Howard is reportedly working with a horizon of 10 to 15 years with regard to the crypto industry
  • His latest investments were a crypto brand studio and a ‘play-to-earn’ metaverse startup

British billionaire Alan Howard is among crypto investors who aren’t backing down throughout the recent turmoil. 

The 58-year-old hedge manager is still investing in the space. In mid-June, Howard took part in a $10.3 million pre-seed round for crypto brand studio ScienceMagic.Studios, notably after Terra collapsed.

He also participated in ‘play-to-earn’ metaverse startup Atmos Labs’ $11 million seed round, which closed around the same time — when crypto lenders were causing contagion across the market.

Howard has already funded 13 crypto-related projects so far in 2022, although most were before crypto markets tanked. He’s backed about 40 cryptocurrency projects overall, including exchanges FTX and Bitpanda, Polygon, Ledn and Block.one, Crunchbase data shows.

The billionaire, whose hedge fund firm Brevan Howard began trading cryptocurrencies last year, has invested his personal wealth into digital assets for several years. His first known investment was in European online broker nextmarkets in 2016.

The Wall Street Journal reported in March that Howard personally bought cryptocurrencies to protect against inflation, but it isn’t clear which asset or how much of it he bought.

It now appears that he wants to be involved in every sub-segment of the crypto industry. Forbes values Howard’s personal wealth at $3.2 billion.

The Financial Times reported Friday that key names in his crypto portfolio are trading-software firm Elwood, startup incubator WebN Group and Coremont, an operational services platform spun out of Brevan Howard.

Some of Howard’s investments from last year include crypto exchange Bullish, fintech firm Bottlepay, custody startup Komainu and privacy blockchain startup Iron Fish — showing diversification in his investments.

Alan Howard’s firm making ‘massive’ crypto push

One crypto executive who worked with Howard told the FT the billionaire has a 10- to 15-year vision, and that he piled into the sector when everyone ran out during the 2018 crypto crash.

He’s also said to have active participation with Brevan Howard’s $1 billion crypto vehicle, the BH Digital Multi-Strategy Fund, which invests in liquid cryptoassets and takes stakes in private blockchain companies.

A source told Blockworks earlier this year that Brevan was making an “absolutely massive push into crypto.” According to latest figures, the firm last managed total assets worth $23 billion.

Howard, formerly Brevan Howard’s CEO, began to take more of a backseat at the fund when he handed over the reins to chief risk officer Aron Landy in 2019. Howard still controls the firm overall. 

The recent market downturn has put off several investors, but long-term players are generally unfazed by such slumps. Chris McCann, a partner at Race Capital and early FTX backer, told Blockworks that the worst times are typically the best for venture investments.

Representatives for Brevan Howard didn’t respond to Blockworks’ request for comment by press time.


Start your day with top crypto insights from David Canellis and Katherine Ross. Subscribe to the Empire newsletter.

The Lightspeed newsletter is all things Solana, in your inbox, every day. Subscribe to daily Solana news from Jack Kubinec and Jeff Albus.

Tags

Upcoming Events

Salt Lake City, UT

MON - TUES, OCT. 7 - 8, 2023

Blockworks and Bankless in collaboration with buidlbox are excited to announce the second installment of the Permissionless Hackathon – taking place October 7-8 in Salt Lake City, Utah. We’ve partnered with buidlbox to bring together the brightest minds in crypto for […]

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research

Research Report Cover Vertex.jpg

Research

The proliferation of new perp DEXs has led to fragmented liquidity across various DEXs and chains. Vertex, known for its vertically-integrated DEX that includes spot, perpetual, and integrated money markets, is now tackling cross-chain liquidity fragmentation through horizontal integration with the launch of new Edge instances. Vertex's integrated offerings and cross-margined account structure amplify the benefits of new instances: native cross-chain spot trading, optimized cross-chain basis trading, consistent interest rates, reduced bridging friction, and more.

article-image

Plus, a dive into crypto’s ever-expanding unicorn club

article-image

Also, tokenization continues to grab headlines and one bitcoin miner stock soars Tuesday after inking a big deal

article-image

Fifteen million daily failed transactions disappeared from Solana

article-image

FTX debtors will pay the IRS $200M, with an outstanding lower priority claim of $685M

article-image

I’ve come to the realization that more attention is needed to create and sculpt the digital spaces where we live

article-image

The NYSE went down yesterday after a glitch caused a string of erroneous trades. Does DeFi fix this?