Sequoia Capital just changed its "vision".
Sequoia's Twitter profile originally read: Helping adventurous people build great companies. Today, Sequoia changed it to read: "From idea to landing, we help adventurous people build great DAOs."
DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization), translated as "island" in Chinese, is an evolutionary version of the organizational form of company and a Decentralized organizational form derived from the core idea of blockchain.
The organizational form of (traditional) company has gradually fallen out of fashion. As can be seen from the changes in its profile and a series of recent investment actions, Sequoia considers investing in DAO and the blockchain entrepreneurs behind DAO as the future.
This is not the first time Sequoia capital has courted blockchain entrepreneurs. It started investing heavily in blockchain startups five years ago. However, a series of bright performances in the blockchain industry in recent months and the emergence of more specialized blockchain investment institutions have given the capital giant a renewed sense of urgency.
Sequoia Capital 'in a hurry'
Sequoia Capital's recent moves in the blockchain space have been dazzling.
On December 1, Sequoia Capital first invested in CertiK, a blockchain security company with more than 200,000 daily active users. Then, on December 3, Sequoia tweeted that it was auctioning a 2005 YouTube investment memo as an NFT, which sold for more than $800,000. On Dec. 8, Sequoia Capital revised its twitter profile to help the adventurous build great DAO.
And that's just in the space of a week or so.
Sequoia is eager to let blockchain entrepreneurs and the general public know that it pays close attention to and attaches great importance to investment opportunities in the blockchain field. Articles he wrote in selling memo NFT "why should we be in the form of NFT auction 2005 YouTube investment memorandum in has realized the importance of block chain technology and application," the influence of block chain much more than money and digital goods valuation and way to trade, decentralized protocol and new entities like DAO could reshape everything, From how products are built to how people communicate and create communities."
However, the rapid development of blockchain and the expertise of competitors, so that Sequoia a bit "anxious".
In June 2021, the old rival A16z raised more than $2.2 billion in crypto venture funds, becoming the world's largest crypto venture capital institutions with capital management scale.
Then in November, Paradigm announced a $2.5 billion venture fund, surpassing A16z. Paradigm was founded by Matt Huang, a former Redshirt Partner, and Fred Ehrsam, founder of US-listed cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase. Their combination, so that some industry insiders believe that sequoia more than block chain "gene".
The talent and financial muscle of these two competitors is not to be snipped at, which has forced Sequoia capital to bow down and woo blockchain entrepreneurs on Twitter.
This year, the rapid rise of digital currency and the sudden outbreak of NFT in the field of blockchain also let sequoia and other investment institutions set off a "war to grab people".
While several investors were heavily involved in the NFT deal, Sequoia seemed to be on the fringe, missing out on OpenSea, currently the largest NFT platform by users, with A16z and Coinbase Ventures both taking part. Given the current trend of increasing the number of traders, OpenSea is expected to become a blockchain platform with millions of users in the near term.
"Sequoia Capital is worse than the top VCS in the crypto industry in terms of both quality and quantity of investment projects," an industry insider told Huxun. "Sequoia China has often been able to give valuable development advice to Internet companies, but this ability has not been reflected in the blockchain field."
DAO and Tao
Lao Tzu once said, "Tao can be tao and unchangeable Tao."
This simple six words, but ever-changing. If the comma is placed in a different position, it can be interpreted in a completely different way. One explanation is "a road in one direction, can walk, but is not suitable to go all the way."
This explanation is well suited to current investors and investment institutions. Internet this direction, can invest, but is not suitable for investment all the time.
And from the Internet company to DAO (decentralized organization), Sequoia's investment direction also has a very obvious change.
Before sequoia China, or sequoia headquarters, the Internet is the most important part of their investment map. Sequoia China was once considered to be investing in more than half of China's Internet investment institutions, is investing in China's largest Internet unicorn investors. But that has quietly changed. Sequoia China frequently reduced its holdings of Meituan, Pinduoduo and other Internet companies this year. Meituan has cut its holdings more than a dozen times this year alone. Its stake fell to about 5.29% from 12.05%.
In contrast, Sequoia has continuously published its understanding of BLOCKCHAIN projects such as NFT and DAO on media platforms, and invested in more and more blockchain start-ups. According to incomplete statistics, sequoia (Sequoia Capital, Sequoia China, etc.) has invested in more than ten blockchain enterprises such as CertiK, FTX, Fireblocks and paypal Finance this year alone.
The whole development route is changing, capital is the first to change the "road", and many Internet giants are also sensitive, began to change the name of the road development.
For example, when Facebook changed its name to "Meta", it hoped to expand into a broader market like meta-universe through its layout in AR, VR, blockchain and other fields. Us payments giant Square has also changed its name to "Block", meaning that mobile payments have peaked, while the blockchain market looks like a "virgin territory" waiting to be explored by innovators.
Today, both investors and Internet giants have two paths ahead of them. One leads to the meta-universe, which is where the social giants are headed. One leads to DAO and Web 3, the vision of payment giants like Square. If you were at the helm of sequoia, which one would you choose?
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