Category Archives: Mike Novogratz

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Bitcoin’s Mr. Big, Michael Novogratz Donates to Princeton Students

Bitcoin's Mr Big, Michael Novogratz, Donates to Princeton Students

Mike Novogratz, ex-hedge fund manager and Bitcoin Billionaire has made a donation to students at the prestigious US university Princeton.

Novogratz is a well-known Bitcoin pundit and CEO of Galaxy Digital Holdings Ltd, a merchant banking institution dedicated to the digital assets and blockchain technology sector. Better known for his bullish predictions, last year he suggested that the crypto market cap was en-route towards a 20 trillion-dollar evaluation.

The donation – an undisclosed amount – is aimed at supporting Princeton’s “Novogratz Bridge Year Program” which gives students a gap year opportunity to work in Bolivia, China, India, Indonesia, or Senegal. Princeton University’s web page outlines the program’s aims:

“In addition to supporting community-based initiatives at each program site, Bridge Year aims to provide participants with a greater international perspective and intercultural skills, an opportunity for personal growth and reflection, and a deeper appreciation of service in both a local and international context.”

Both Michael Novogratz and his wife, Sukey Cáceres are both alumni of Princeton University and were happy to donate to their old alma mater. Novogratz sees the programme as essential leadership training, commenting that it offers “abundant opportunities for introspection and personal growth. Students return from it with a real sense of purpose, and an interest in being of service to their communities, and to the world.”

Novogratz suggested that he was proud to donate what he referred to as the couple’s 2017 “crypto winnings,” commenting that the opportunity for students to experience another culture was a way of building bridges, not walls; comments made in clear reference to US President Trump’s measures to protect the US border with Mexico.

Princeton’s President, Christopher L Eisgruber responded to the donation by commenting that  “extraordinary gift will enable generations of Princetonians to embark on a path of global citizenship as Bridge Year scholars.”

US Ivy League Universities have been in the crypto news over the past year with both Columbia and Stanford opening blockchain research centers in 2018, hot on the trails of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Add to these, Miami University in Ohio, Montclair State University, and the University of Pennsylvania, amongst others and the direction of blockchain education in the US is very clear; there is no way but up.

 

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Lending Productivity Defies Crypto Industry Downturn

Lending Productivity Defies Crypto Industry Downturn

Despite the 2018 market downturn, one clear beneficiary seems to have gained from Bitcoin’s drop in value over this past year.

Creditors targeting cryptocurrency investors who have chosen to hold their coins rather than sell at low prices have benefited, as well as finding business through investors who want to stock up on cheap coins for short sales.

A Bloomsburg report has suggested lenders been doing their own productive mining picking up sales throughout the bear market. The report suggests that the market is “putting lenders on both sides of Bitcoin’s bust: Helping believers pay their bills while awaiting a rebound, and also enabling bets by people who think the drop has further to go.”

One lender BlocFi, which lends fiat to cryptocurrency depositors, commented that its customer base and revenue had increased by 100 percent during the latter part of 2018 after Mike Novogratz invested $52.5 million in the firm. CEO Zac Prince suggested this kind of business was low risk, confirming that the company had never suffered losses from this kind of activity.

Genesis Capital, another lender had issued $700 million in loans with a current $140 million outstanding loans. The company’s CEO Michael Moro said that the company had been in profit since its launch in early 2018, commenting: “We’ve certainly proven that there is market demand, that there’s product fit and that it’s time to invest even more in this side of the business.”

Salt Lending, another lending company is doing so well that it is forced to expand its operation to deal with new businesses, adding new employees to the 80-person team every month.

Clearly, the bear market has a bullish side for those approaching cryptocurrency from an entirely different angle, where Bitcoin’s misfortune becomes a provider of business.

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Mike Novogratz Increases Galaxy Digital Shares Stake to 80%

Mike Novogratz Increases Galaxy Digital Shares Stake to 80%

Chief executive officer and founder of merchant bank Galaxy Digital, Mike Novogratz, has increased his portion of shares in the firm to nearly 80%.

Unpeterbed by Galaxy Digital‘s 19% loss in share value over 2018, Novogratz has reportedly purchased an additional 7.5 million ordinary shares in the company worth around USD 4.8 million. This represents 2.7% of the aggregate shares in the company, bringing his total stake in the stock to 79.3%.

Since New York-based Galaxy Digital Holdings Ltd. was first listed on Canada’s TSX Venture Exchange in August 2018, the cryptocurrency bear market influenced their poor market performance as the bank places a heavy focus on cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies. Ex-Goldman Sachs’ partner Novogratz, however, has continued to insist the market direction will change in 2019, predicting institutional investors will bring ”new highs” to Bitcoin’s price.

Novogratz’s move has succeeded in boosting the price of Galaxy Digital shares for now at least, with their value up 36% at the time of press, reaching USD 1.36 according to MarketWatch.

The ex-hedge fund manager of the Fortress Investment Group has been a longtime proponent of cryptocurrency, with around 20% of his net worth said to be distributed between Bitcoin and Ethereum.

 

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Upbeat Investors Maintain Bullish Predictions, Diversification

Upbeat Investors Maintain Bullish Predictions, Diversification

The likes of billionaire Tim Draper who is never short of making upbeat predictions regarding cryptocurrencies are not mainstream investors and are their observations are unlikely to have their desired impact on markets.

This is not to say that the next run on crypto markets could be a huge surge towards Bitcoin’s heady highs of 2017. This according to many is reliant not on input from players such as Draper and ex-hedge fund manager and CEO of Galaxy Investment Mike Novogratz, but more on historically-based theory.

Novogratz claims have done rather well from investing in cryptocurrency but the key is how much has he been able to lose. He stated in 2017 that 20% of his net worth was in Bitcoin and Ethereum, claiming that he made USD 250 million from cryptocurrency from 2016-2017.

It is worth considering then, the other 80% of his non-crypto assets. Like Tim Draper and any sensible investor, he diversified his investment portfolios early on, thereby enabling him to take the sort of hits that would be terminal for most other cryptocurrency investors.

Draper, holding an MBA from Harvard Business School, comes from a long line of banking venture capitalists and is far too canny to be totally crypto-asset dependent; another who can ride any storm with a 100% guarantee of survival.

This is obviously not the case for normal retail investors and individual traders, who take a deep breath with every dip in the market, waiting eagerly for the SEC to wake up and realize that cryptocurrencies are here to stay.

Jim Breyer, a billionaire venture capitalist, added that the world’s best computer scientists are heading to the blockchain space and this is where the future lies:

“So many of the very best computer scientists and deep learning PhD students and postdocs are working on blockchain because they have so much fundamental interest in what blockchain can mean. You don’t want to bet against the best and brightest in the world.”

Cryptocurrencies are clearly not a fad, but those warnings about not overloading one’s cryptocurrency portfolio but maintaining a sensible split between crypto and fiat remain true, at least until the market stabilizes. Billionaires are quite happy spending other people’s money. It may be more advisable to listen to Wall St which tends to be far more stoic, based on what horse racing pundits would call “form”.

The form is that over the past nine years, Bitcoin has survived five bubble-crash-build-rally cycles seeing it fall by about 85% on average and then recover to a new all-time high. From USD 19,500, Bitcoin has dropped about 82% in value and the 85% point would be at around USD 2,950.

So, another drop towards this figure shouldn’t surprise, nor should a bull run following that level. Bitcoin could still be first past the post. It’s early days.

 

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Galaxy Digital Down 70% Since Launch, Halts Trade After 18.6% 2-Hour Plunge

The stocks of Galaxy Digital Holdings Ltd, a major cryptocurrency-oriented hedge fund owned by billionaire Mike Novogratz, has declined from a listing price of USD 3.03 to USD 0.90 as of today, 28 November.

Yesterday, 27 November, was a particularly harsh day for GLXY, with an 18.6% drop in less than two hours, which caused the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) to temporarily suspend the trading of GLXY. The fund