David Rubenstein—co-founder and co-chairman of private equity firm The Carlyle Group—has said the “genie is out of the bottle” when it comes to cryptocurrencies.
“I have not bought cryptocurrencies, but I have bought companies that service the industry, because I think the genie is out of the bottle, and I don’t think the industry’s going to go away any time soon,” he said during an episode of “Invest Like the Best” podcast.
By his own admission, Rubenstein’s view on crypto has changed; he was “skeptical of crypto in the beginning” as he believed there was nothing underlying cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, or Ethereum.
“It’s clear to me now that many younger people don’t think there’s much underlying the dollar or the euro or other currencies,” he added.
The billionaire investor also pointed to the crisis in Ukraine as an added reason for his renewed optimism about cryptocurrencies.
“If you’re in Ukraine, or you’re Russia, and your country has lots of challenges and you want to have some assets, having some cryptocurrency probably enables you to feel better than you can have something that’s outside of the government’s control,” Rubenstein said.
Billionaire perceptions of crypto
Rubenstein is not the only billionaire who has recently changed his view on cryptocurrencies.
Earlier this month, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon praised both decentralized finance (DeFi) and blockchain technology.
“Decentralized finance and blockchain are real, new technologies that can be deployed in both public and private fashion, permissioned or not,” he said, before adding that JPMorgan remains “at the forefront” of these innovations.
Previously, Dimon had made headlines with his negative stance on crypto.
In May 2021, Dimon said he had no interest in cryptocurrencies, despite the fact his clients did.
Five months later, he doubled down, saying he thought Bitcoin was “worthless.”
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