Coinbase Co-Founder Recalls Beginning of 2012 when Bitcoin Was at $6

UTC by Bhushan Akolkar · 3 min read
Coinbase Co-Founder Recalls Beginning of 2012 when Bitcoin Was at $6
Photo: Brian Armstrong / Twitter

From a two-bedroom apartment beginning to hiring first 1000 employees in just two years, to seeing major attrition, and coming back from all the tough times, Coinbase has had a pretty good rise in its crypto journey.

On Wednesday, April 14, the crypto community witnessed a historic moment with the first crypto firm going live on Wall Street. Coinbase (NASDAQ: COIN) debuted on Nasdaq with a listing price of $381. However, due to the choppy market, the stock ended closing at $328. As of the closing, the company’s valuations stood at $83 billion. This was still 30% higher than the reference price Nasdaq had suggested on Tuesday. Just before the Coinbase listing, Bitcoin and the overall crypto market also registered a record rally. BTC price shot all the way to hitting its all-time high above $64,700 levels. Coinbase co-founder Fred Ehrsam takes us down memory lane as the company goes public on Wednesday.

He recalls how he and Brian Armstrong started the company together in 2012 from a two-bedroom apartment. At that time, Bitcoin (BTC) was just trading at a mere $6.

Back then, “bitcoin was the crazy idea that the world could have digital money for everyone,” writes Armstrong. Fred also writes that the two co-founders had only one mission, making crypto easy-to-use for all.

More interesting is how the two co-founders met each other. As Fred recalls they first interacted on Reddit having a bullish view on Bitcoin (BTC) and the overall crypto space.

Coinbase Co-founder Recalls How They Got 1000 Employees in Two Years

Fred says that during the beginning of Coinbase, they chose not to adopt a conventional method of hiring. “For our first hire, we selected a whip smart fanatical lumberjack over a Google manager,” he said.

With time, the popularity of cryptocurrency and so did the company grew in size. Moreover, this growth looks pretty strong when we look at the numbers. In the first two years of business, Coinbase had more than 1000 employees working for the company.

However, Coinbase has its own set of challenges and it was a “serious hardship” says Fred. Adding further he notes:

“In the 3 years between 2014 and 2017, the outside world thought crypto was dead. Over a third of employees left”.

Fred says that Ethereum’s entry into the market unlocked a new dimension for the crypto space. Apart from just a tradable asset, Ethereum “showed that crypto native applications were possible, opening up a whole new world of possibilities”.

As of data, the crypto market has witnessed massive innovation. With DeFi to NFTs, the crypto sphere has unlocked huge opportunities across a massive spectrum of industries. Institutions, corporates, banks, and other FinTech services are now deep into the game.

Signing off, Fred notes:

“I feel honored to be a small part of this journey which will transform society for the better. I salute all the crypto builders exploring this fertile and critically important frontier. And I look forward to seeing what we all create together”.

We would like to know what are your views on crypto? Are we just getting started or you think that crypto has touched its full potential already?

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