Hot on the heels of Coinbase expanding its crypto fund to U.S.-based investors, the company’s own CEO has unveiled a fund of his own — but this time it is focused on philanthropy.
GiveCrypto.org is aiming to raise $10 million by the end of this year — it has already secured $3.5 million — with a view to growing its total pot to $1 billion over the next two years.
Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong said he’s been inspired by the Gates Foundation and acts of charity from the crypto community — including Ripple donating millions in XRP to schools, the Pineapple Fund and OMG giving $1 million to GiveDirectly — all of which he said shows that crypto can have a positive impact worldwide.
“People who invested early in crypto have amassed an enormous amount of wealth in a relatively short amount of time. Yet the reputation of the crypto community has been dominated by images of ‘bros in Lambos,’ whose antics get a lot of attention. This doesn’t represent the best of our community. Most people I respect and know in the crypto ecosystem believe we have a responsibility to help this technology reach a much wider audience,” Armstrong, who has personally donated $1 million to GiveCrypto.org, wrote in a post on Medium.
The Coinbase chief said the fund will offer a mix of direct-cash transfers and crypto-to-crypto disbursements — as well as “hodling” — to get funds to those who are deemed to need it.
On that subject, Armstrong said that when the time is right, GiveCrypto.org will find trusted local “ambassadors” to handle payments, while it may also collaborate with nonprofits and develop systems to track the money flow, as organizations like GiveDirectly already do.
A big focus looks to be the unbanked — crypto can reach those outside of traditional financing and cut out the potential for foul play by going direct — but it isn’t yet clear how the recipients of the donations will be selected. But then again, the charity fund is still being assembled — on that note, it is currently hiring for an executive director who’ll be involved in making calls like that and shaping the fund.
Note: The author owns a small amount of cryptocurrency. Enough to gain an understanding, not enough to change a life.