After a major misfire with Facebook, Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss was not going to miss a new opportunity: Bitcoin. Story of revenge in the name of constellation, Gemini, and of which the protocol of Satoshi was the main instrument …
The meeting that changes everything
It all starts in 2012. Brothers Winklevoss are at a crossroads. Following their trial against Mark zuckerberg, who they accused of stealing their idea to create Facebook, the twins have just bagged $ 65 million. With this money, they founded Winklevoss Capital, an investment company in new technologies.
Their meeting in August 2012 with Charlie Shrem and Eric Voorhes, from the very young exchange site BitInstant, will then be decisive.
It is on the advice of the investor David Azar, met … accidentally on vacation in Ibiza, that the Winklevoss brothers are organizing an appointment with the BitInstant exchange team. Its founder, Charlie Shrem, then in the process of fundraising, makes them discover Bitcoin, how it works, why it exists. The brothers are conquered. They raise $ 1.5 million for BitInstant, including $ 550,000 out of their own pocket.
At the same time, they also start buying bitcoin, with the ambition to acquire close 1% of all bitcoins in the world, or almost 150,000 bitcoins. They invest at each dip, such as during the hack of MtGox or the arrest of Ross Ulbricht, the creator of Silk Road. Between 2012 and 2013, the brothers bought $ 11 million worth of bitcoins. The strategy pays: In 2017, this gem made them the first billionaires in bitcoins.
Gemini, conquering the institutional world
Charlie Shrem’s lack of professionalism, as well as security failures and BitInstant’s lack of ambition, prompt the Winklevosses to distance themselves from the company. In 2013, they announced a new project: Gemini, a bitcoin investment fund for institutional players.
It takes them almost two years to overcome multiple legal obstacles who get in their way. In 2015, the Winklevosses get their BitLicense, the license issued by the State of New York which gives cryptocurrency firms the right to operate.
Gemini is the first crypto platform to obtain the famous sesame. Very early on, the Winklevosses indeed understood the importance of working hand in hand with regulators. After all, they are from New York, the city of Wall Street and the world’s tightest financial regulations. Bitcoin Couldn’t Thrive only by making its place in this institutional world.
Gemini is launched on October 25, 2015. It is the first regulated dollar / bitcoin exchange platform open to American institutional clients, mostly New Yorkers, such as financial institutions, banks, or even pension funds.
Tyler’s and Cameron Winklevoss’ regular contact with the DRY, the American regulator, for the establishment of a AND F Bitcoin-based exchange-traded funds, which are slow to be approved, inspire confidence in traders and investment funds.
Gemini is a success in the institutional world. In late 2017, the Chicago Stock Exchange, the CBOE, one of the largest in the world, even decides to go through Gemini to launch its Bitcoin futures. It is a consecration.
The bunny and the turtle
Always one step ahead, the twins put the security, the regulation and innovation at the service of their business. In contrast to Coinbase, the hare, whose take-off resembles that of a rocket SpaceX, Gemini firmly established its domination. It’s the turtle from the Fountain Tale. Its institutional and regulatory bases make it a serious enterprise and for which nothing seems impossible.
After the Anglo-Saxon world, she is quietly, but surely, conquering Europe and asia.
Hyperactive and hands-on, the Winklevoss brothers have invested in more than fifty companies related to cryptocurrencies. Their extension seems unstoppable. Their determination, unshakable. Install ideology cypherpunk at the heart of the economic world: you had to dare, but the strategy pays off. It even brings in tens of millions of dollars each year to Gemini.
With a hundred employees, a dozen securely tradable cryptocurrencies, and a business that continues to grow, the Winklevoss have taken their revenge on Facebook. And they don’t seem ready to stop there.
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