According to Simon Seojoon Kim, he began investing in Ether, the cryptocurrency that powers the Ethereum network, in the year it was founded, which was 2015.
As he invested a significant portion of his life assets in the new cryptocurrency, his pals warned him he was insane. He’d invested over $400,000 by the end of March 2017. Ether then started climbing.
While it’s difficult to verify Kim’s investments, one thing is undeniable: the value of Ether has skyrocketed since the beginning of the year.
It’s increased by more than tenfold in the last year. Meanwhile, Kim has established himself as one of South Korea’s most well-known blockchain proponents. He’s preparing a second blockchain fund this month after raising the first one in December.
Sean Park, a senior partner and managing director of Boston Consulting Group Inc. in Hong Kong, who worked with Kim on a blockchain project, described him as “like Yoda, the Jedi Master of cryptocurrency.”
Kim is one of a growing class of newly rich individuals who has built their fortunes via the use of virtual currency. The two most popular tokens, Bitcoin and Ether, continue to fluctuate dramatically, although both have reached new highs this year.
“The most successful investment is when you spot a fundamentally strong asset that’s either not getting much attention or being viewed negatively,” Kim said that in a Seoul interview about his early crypto wager.
By trade, the 36-year-old entrepreneur is a software engineer who has founded and sold two businesses. One was a dating app, while the other was a technology for teaching.
He co-founded Hashed, a venture financing business for blockchain companies, in 2018. It invests in businesses and helps them grow by forming partnerships, offering financial guidance, and even assisting with public relations.
In December, Hashed raised $120 million for its first blockchain fund. According to the firms’ half-year business reports, it was backed by South Korean behemoths Naver Corp. and Kakao Corp.
This month, Hashed plans to raise at least 200 billion won ($173 million) for a second fund, according to Kim.
Hashed generally invests between $1 million and $10 million in each startup. Following a seed round in 2019, it joined billionaire Mark Cuban in a $7.5 million investment round for Vietnamese game developer Sky Mavis in May. According to Kim, the company also invested $2.5 million in Loco, an Indian gaming streaming platform.
Hashed, on the other hand, has attracted major participants such as internet giant Naver, South Korea’s third-largest publicly traded business by market capitalization. According to Naver, which has invested 14 billion won in Hashed’s first fund, Hashed has the greatest experience in the blockchain business. “Our investors want to maximize their profit,” Kim explained. “But they also want to learn about the market through us.
Kim Kyonghwan, head of Sungkyunkwan University’s graduate school of enterprise in Suwon, a city near Seoul, advises caution.
“Given that the blockchain industry is new, unpredictability can be a short-term risk,” he stated. “Still, I believe it’s a market that will ultimately be institutionalized and grow.”
Because the blockchain technology business is still in its infancy, Kim believes there is a lot of upsides. However, when it comes to crypto trading, he advises beginners to be cautious about attempting to earn rapid money.
Kim claimed he still retains most of his Ether holdings while sitting in a room named after Satoshi Nakamoto, the enigmatic creator of Bitcoin. He also claimed to be a big investor in the Luna currency token.
Kim, on the other hand, likes to stay away from traditional assets like bonds and commodities.
He and his wife even live in a leased apartment rather than purchasing their own home, he added.
He stated, “Traditional assets are not in my interest.” “They just seem too old and obsolete.”