The Blockchain revolution is upon us. Meet German Kaplun, Artyom Inyutin, Julian Zegelman and Igor Shoifot. They have created TMT Blockchain Fund.
One of the most successful tech focussed venture capital firms in the world has made a move in to the decentralized blockchain and cryptocurrency space.
TMT Investments, a phenomenally successful venture capital fund traded on the London Stock Exchange – which has previously invested in companies including Taxify and Pipedrive – has announced the birth of its crypto focussed sister company TMT Blockchain Fund to “embrace a new economy with its new kinds of assets and new mechanisms of wealth growth.”
TMT Blockchain Fund is a separate firm which has been co-founded by four of the biggest names in Angel Investment, all boasting success as serial entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and angel investors. The new $60 million fund will focus on investing in firms that focus on blockchain and cryptocurrencies, with a portion of the fund available to invest in with crypto itself.
The very nature of a background in venture capital means that TMT Blockchain Fund will impose a stress tested approach to deal sourcing, scaling and exiting portfolio investments. Backed up by a proven track record of a $1B unicorn and dozens of successful start-ups with up to 17,000 percent revenue growth, TMT Investments’ returns have been in the top 10% of global VC funds.
The co-founders of TMT Blockchain Fund are serial entrepreneurs, VCs and early blockchain supporters who have invested in incredible fast-growing companies, shipped products to tens of millions of users and scaled to triple digit revenue growth across multiple industries. Between them they boast more than 60 Companies funded, with 18 profitable exits. There have been $70m funds managed by the fund’s partners and $300m follow on funds raised by portfolio companies.
All four are proven early trend spotters. Previous investments were followed by Google and Microsoft and some of their portfolio companies were sold to the likes of AOL, Yahoo and Cisco to name a few.
TMT Blockchain Fund is aiming to harness the synergy between blockchain technology and venture capital to gain fast liquidity with digital assets. The firm plans to invest in blockchain start-ups in the traditional venture capital fashion by offering cash in return for equity, before any potential ICO. Specific companies have yet to be announced, but targeted companies will be at the intersection of blockchain and fintech, large decentralized applications and various private blockchain infrastructure opportunities. The aim is for investment in 20 to 40 start-ups.
By helping companies in the period prior to their ICO’s, TMT Blockchain will aim to teach the companies how to build a sustainable business model.
Where TMT Blockchain’s fundraising stands apart is with its cryptocurrency component. Of the fund’s $60 million total, $45 million will come from traditional investors or limited partners. It is the raising of the other $15 million which is the differentiator as TMT will do this by selling its own cryptocurrency tokens to outside investors. Those investors could then potentially buy and sell those tokens on public exchanges.
“We want to give both smaller individual investors and large traditional LPs an equal opportunity to participate as it is not economically feasible to accept small fiat investments in a traditional VC fund. The ICO process provides an efficient channel for smaller investors to participate. Because we are a blockchain-focused fund, we want to tokenize a portion of the fund and go through the process that many of our future portfolio companies follow,” commented Founding Partner, Artyom Inyutin.
The Fund, through the combined networks of its partners, advisors and portfolio companies, has early access to wide-ranging investment opportunities before they become known to the wider public.
TMT tokens will be used as a traditional security only sold to officially accredited investors. Unlike the case with the typical ICO start-up, that stance would allow TMT to know the names of its investors. Three key advantages of the TMT token include its leverage, in that it gets better terms on pre-sales than individual investors with smaller checks. Secondly, it is fully transparent and compliant with SEC regulations and other relevant regulatory requirements. Thirdly it is risk diverse – the fund offers a portfolio of investments for potential higher return and larger diversification of risks than exposure to individual cryptocurrencies.
The four experts who co-founded TMT Blockchain Fund have picked the best applications of blockchain that serve large market needs, successfully investing in high-profile blockchain projects and launched numerous key blockchain ecosystem service providers.
German Kaplun, Founding Partner is also the co-founder of TMT Investments PLC. German co-founded of RosBusinessConsulting (RBC) in 1993 which launched over 70 start-ups. In April 2002, RBC successfully conducted Russia’s first IPO on Moscow’s MICEX and RTS stock exchanges with its market capitalization reaching $1.7bn at one point. German is one of the most renowned media managers in Russia and he holds a PhD from the Plekhanov Russian University of Economics.
Artyom Inyutin, Founding Partner is also a co-founder of TMT Investments PLC. With more than 14 years’ experience in investments, Artyom is a prominent IT and media entrepreneur, who has launched dozens of highly successful start-ups.
Julian Zegelman, Founding Partner is an experienced corporate lawyer, serial entrepreneur and angel investor. He is a Managing Partner at Velton Zegelman PC, a boutique corporate and securities law firm focussing on corporate law, securities, venture capital and cryptocurrency law. He is currently acting as the company’s counsel in numerous high profile global token sales. Julian is also a co-founder of BitFin Capital, a blockchain focused VC fund and an advisor to numerous blockchain companies. He is a multiple winner of the prestigious California SuperLawyers® award.
Igor Shoifot, PhD Founding Partner co-founded Fotki.com which boasted more than 25M users and later sold vInternship.com to the Manhattan Institute of Management. He has started and has run more than a dozen start-ups and incubators in Europe and Asia and consulted many top funds. Igor has written a chapter in the book ‘Masters of Corporate Venture Capital’, co-developed a Stanford graduate course ‘Recreating Silicon Valley’ and has been a lecturer at UC Berkeley and New York University.
Although TMT Blockchain Fund is a nascent company, the combination of a proven track record, with a straightforward vision and nurtured by an insightful team promises to be an exciting development for blockchain and crypto start-ups across the globe.
“We don’t just write a cheque, we get involved. By providing unique scaling expertise, deep reach into distribution channels and access to top talent we are keen to demonstrate that the future of the new economy is incredibly bright,” said Founding Partner, Igor Shoifot PhD.
“You only have to look at the lack of big guys involved at the moment to see we why we are moving so fast,” added Founding Partner, Julian Zegelman. “There were only 50 VC Investments in Blockchain in 2017. Put that next to the 8,000 total VC investments in the same year and the opportunity is obvious.”
“It is estimated 4 billion people use the internet. Of that, only 11 million hold crypto wallets. That number will only go one way and that’s exponential increase,” concluded Founding Partner, German Kaplun.
TMT Blockchain Fund will be holding its ICO in Summer 2018
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Notes to editors:
TMT Blockchain Fund is a $60M investment fund focused on investments in early stage blockchain driven start-ups. TMT Blockchain Fund is the second fund from the founders of TMT Investments PLC, a publicly traded venture capital fund on the London Stock Exchange, performing in the top five per cent of global VC funds. Founding partners German Kaplun, Artyom Inyutin, Igor Shoifot and Julian Zegelman successfully invested in numerous high profile blockchain projects in the past three years, built a $1B+ tech unicorn in Eastern Europe and launched a number of key blockchain ecosystem service providers. Investments include Protocol Labs (Filecoin), ShapeShift, Bitso, Cindicator and Telegram.
This is a sponsored press release and does not necessarily reflect the opinions or views held by any employees of The Merkle. This is not investment, trading, or gambling advice. Always conduct your own independent research.
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