Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss have big plans for the crypto exchange, Gemini, not to mention their expectations for bitcoin.
In a panel discussion with “Bitcoin Billionaires” author Ben Mezrich and The Wall Street Journal’s Paul Vigna, the Winklevosses discussed bitcoin and the crypto landscape. In what appears to be a packed house, they left no stone unturned, including that of their chief rival, Mark Zuckerberg. Excerpts from the event were tweeted by a New York-based analyst whose Twitter handle is @WillTradecipher, which Gemini then retweeted.
While the bitcoin price currently has a market cap of $229 billion attached, Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss believe it’s early days for the crypto ecosystem, saying:
“We still think it’s the bottom of the first inning.”
About to go onstage at the 92nd St Y w/@benmezrich @tylerwinklevoss @winklevoss to talk crypto. #BitcoinBillionaires pic.twitter.com/EQVEto2Rvf
— Paul Vigna (@paulvigna) July 9, 2019
Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss first invested in bitcoin in 2013, but they weren’t sold on the cryptocurrency right away.
“It didn’t make sense at first but after some tequila, it started making sense.”
Now, they reportedly “hold 1 percent of all bitcoin outstanding,” as per Mezrich on the panel, in response to which “Cameron nods his head and gives a smirk,” according to the Twitter thread.
Winklevoss Twins Welcome Mark Zuckerberg to the Crypto Party
The Winklevosses reportedly plowed millions from their Facebook settlement into bitcoin back then. Seeing that investment balloon to an estimated billion dollars today must have taken away the sting from having Facebook snatched away from them. The Wall Street Journal’s Vigna apparently asked them
“When you run into Zuckerberg at a crypto conference what will you say?”
The brothers showed no signs of resentment and if anything only seemed to gloat a little, saying:
“Welcome to the party, what took you so long?”
Incidentally, Facebook’s Libra coin is looking less and less like a cryptocurrency by the day. David Marcus, who is at the helm of Facebook’s Calibra division, reportedly wrote in a letter to lawmakers:
“We want, and need, governments, central banks, regulators, non-profits, and other stakeholders at the table and value all of the feedback we have received.”
Did Mark Zuckerberg even read the bitcoin white paper?
Meanwhile, as policymakers grapple with how to handle Libra, they can’t stop bitcoin even if they tried. The Winklevoss twins said:
“To shut down bitcoin you have to shut down the internet…like North Korea. Countries will have to play with it.”
In addition to bitcoin, Cameron and Tyler also see a future where Ethereum and Zcash have a role, the latter of which will be in demand “for its privacy features.”
The Tortoise and the Winklevosses
As for Gemini, the crypto exchange founded by Cameron and Tyler, the competitive landscape is only heating up. Poloniex announced today that customers across dozens of countries could use credit and debit cards to buy bitcoin. Binance is coming to the U.S. And Coinbase is, well, still the most popular U.S. based crypto exchange. It turns out the Winklevoss twins have a competitive streak in them, after all:
“We want to be the fastest tortoise in the race.”
They are off to a running start.
Disclaimer: Direct quotes are based on tweets of the event.