Rapper Nasir Jones, identified higher as Nas, has emerged as an unlikely winner in at this time’s Coinbase IPO. An early investor within the firm, the rapper’s stake is price a minimum of $40 million. The cryptocurrency alternate was valued at $99.6 billion at this time when buying and selling started and reached a valuation of over $100 billion in minutes.
Jones’ QueensBridge Enterprise Companions was an early backer of Coinbase, becoming a member of the corporate’s $25 million Collection B spherical in 2013. His agency invested between $100,000 and $500,000, its typical amount. (QueensBridge wouldn’t verify the particular quantity.) That spherical valued the corporate at about $150 million based on Pitchbook—lower than 1% of its worth at this time.
On the time of the funding, shares of Coinbase’s Collection B had been price $1.00676, that means Jones’ agency would have between 99,239 and 496,642 shares, based on CoinDesk. On the share worth of $415 that the inventory reached minutes after buying and selling started, these shares had been price between $41.2 million and $206 million.
“Lengthy crypto perpetually…. in illness & in well being,” Jones tweeted this morning, simply hours earlier than Coinbase began buying and selling.
When QueensBridge invested in Coinbase, cryptocurrency was nonetheless a nascent business and offered sizable threat (it nonetheless does, to be truthful). Different main cryptocurrency exchanges like Gemini and Stellar had not but been based. Coinbase’s different buyers embody top-tier enterprise corporations like Andreesen Horowitz—whose cofounder Ben Horowitz is a pal of Jones—and Union Sq. Ventures. Different celebrities, like basketball participant Kevin Durant, have additionally invested.
Jones’ enterprise capital portfolio expands past simply Coinbase. Named after the New York housing challenge the place he grew up, QueensBridge has invested in additional than 100 firms, together with Casper, Dropbox, FanDeul, Parachute, Lyft
“There wasn’t a time when [rappers] didn’t take into consideration investing,” says Nas. “It simply so occurs that the world is opening up,” Jones instructed Forbes in 2018.