Andreessen Horowitz Gets FTC OK for Unspecified Coinbase Transaction

It is unclear at press time whether the approval is for a16z’s previously disclosed purchase of shares in Coinbase or for a new purchase.

Sep 24, 2020 at 7:08 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. UTC

Andreessen Horowitz’s (a16z) late-stage venture fund has received a green light from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for a transaction involving Coinbase. It is unclear at press time whether the approval is for the fund’s previously disclosed purchase of shares in the cryptocurrency exchange or for a new purchase.

  • The VC giant’s $2 billion fund, Andreessen Horowitz LSV Fund I, L.P, received antitrust clearance from the FTC in a filing dated Sept. 22 involving “Coinbase Global, Inc.”
  • Given that Coinbase’s $8 billion valuation would represent nearly half of a16z’s $16.6 billion assets under management, it’s extremely unlikely the clearance is for an outright purchase.
  • a16z most recently participated in Coinbase’s $300 million Series E in October 2018. Its first investment in the crypto exchange came in 2013’s Series B, a round it led. 
  • Since a16z already has a stake in Coinbase, it’s likely the FTC clearance is for the firm’s previously disclosed purchases of Coinbase shares, or for a purchase of additional shares. The exchange is reportedly considering going public.
  • A Coinbase spokesperson confirmed that “Coinbase Global” is the firm’s parent entity but would not comment further. A spokesperson from a16z declined to comment on the record.
  • Coinbase has had close ties with a16z since at least 2013. The exchange added a16z chief Marc Andreessen as a board observer in August.

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