I had the opportunity to speak with David Drake, Chairman of LDJ Capital, and advisor to over $1.5 trillion in assets under management, on why maintaining a board of advisors while breaking into the cryptocurrency space is vital.
Drake, a financial pioneer, has done what many have been unable to do — harmonize investment with cryptocurrency. Having represented the U.S. Department of Commerce at the EU’s Transatlantic Forum and the UK Parliament, Drake’s intricate understanding of the cryptocurrency markets will help to drive the industry in a positive direction.
Drake has been the advisor to at least fifteen ICOs which raised significant amounts of funds within a six-month period.
Andrew Rossow: From your background and experience, what do you feel is the biggest challenge facing the cryptocurrency space right now?
David Drake: Not knowing the right questions to ask, and even where to get started. Knowing who to trust and who to listen to becomes extremely intimidating and problematic. What we are facing is a brand new area—blockchain. We are attempting to streamline it in comparison to an already solidified and streamlined industry, e.g., [the] stock market. It becomes time-consuming in learning this space, because individuals are having to work with new lending facilities to use blockchain and cryptocurrency.
In other words, venture capitalists and other executives are advertising this market to the world, without realizing blockchain has a dozen moving pieces.
Rossow: What can you tell us about cryptomining?
Drake: Cryptomining is a mass market where investors understand the assets, whereas cryptocurrency doesn’t have an asset. Instead, it only has the promise of being valuable. With mining, there is a quickness to it, which makes it easier to understand that cost and what you can value it at and sell it for. In a sense, the mining equipment becomes the “treasury department” of your coin’s money.
Rossow: How do you feel about millennials getting involved with this space?
Drake: It resonates—they understand it much better than the majority of us. Why? They can seamlessly access content from their smartphones, smart devices, and computers. The ability for them to access information globally, without other people telling them what went up or down in the stock market or crypto market, is fascinating. They are able to own the space, and a complicated one [for] that matter.
Rossow: What advice do you have to venture capitalists, business executives, and investors?
Drake: Get advisors that can understand this area. Specifically, those who have access to the right questions and knowledge surrounding it. There are thousands of promises out there, but nobody owns the space right now.
A business needs an individual who can guide it and not push it into what they have. You’re looking for an [individual] that doesn’t push the business or investor in just one direction. Watch out for that ulterior motive.