Kavita Gupta, Founder of Delta Blockchain Fund, on The Crypto VC Landscape and The Role of Institutional Demand | Ep. 287

In an exclusive interview with cryptonews.com, Kavita Gupta, Founder & General Partner of Delta Blockchain Fund, talks about how institutional demand plays a pivotal role in driving Bitcoin’s price and expanding the crypto industry and the evolving crypto VC landscape.

About Kavita Gupta


Kavita Gupta is the Founder and General Partner of Delta Blockchain Fund. She has over 18 years of investment experience via The World Bank, IFC, and Eric Schmidt Family office and started one of the first Blockchain early-stage funds, ConsenSys Ventures, and accelerator Tachyon. Kavita has invested first checks into sector-defining companies such as Polygon, Starkware, Quantstamp, and Sorare to name among over 100 companies – she is also a visiting scholar at Stanford University teaching the Beyond Bitcoin class and an advisor to the Hus Institute, the UNICEF Giga project, the Katapult investment fund, the International Emmys and more. In 2015, Kavita received the UN Innovation Award for being one of the core members of creating green and social impact bonds.

Kavita Gupta gave a wide-ranging exclusive interview, which you can see below, and we are happy for you to use it for publication, provided there is a credit to www.cryptonews.com.

Highlights Of The Interview

  • Institutional demand plays a pivotal role in driving Bitcoin’s price and expanding the crypto industry.
  • SEC decisions and regulatory hurdles and wield influence over crypto markets and investor sentiment.
  • The evolving crypto VC landscape, particularly in light of the pending spot Bitcoin ETF approval.
  • The impact of global and geopolitical events on market dynamics.
  • How a spot Bitcoin ETF approval could reshape the crypto investment landscape, driving capital influx.

Full Transcript Of The Interview


Matt Zahab
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to the Cryptonews Podcast. We are buzzing as always. It’s your host, Matt Zahab, still coming in hot from Mexico, still having to wear a cap as the hair do is out of control right now. Looking like Ronald McDonald. Next time you guys see me, I’m going to go see a lovely Mexican barber and he is going to get this taken care of. But enough about me. Time to jump into the star of the show, the one and only Kavita Gupta on the show today Founder and General Partner of Delta Blockchain Fund. She has over 18 years of investment experience via the World Bank, IFC and Eric Schmidt Family office. We’ll can’t wait to get into that and started one of the first blockchain early stage funds, Consensys Ventures and accelerator, Tachyon. Kavita has invested first checks into sector defining companies such as Polygon, Starkware, Quantstamp and Sorare, wow, to name over 100 companies. And there’s also a visiting scholar at Stanford University teaching that beyond Bitcoin class as an advisor to the Hughes Institute. Absolutely pumped to have you on Kavita. Welcome to the show. Super pumped to have you. How you doing?

Kavita Gupta
Thank you so much, Matt. And I’m very excited. And you are in Mexico, and I’m super jealous.

Matt Zahab
But you are at least kicking it in the best city in the world, and that is the one in only New York City.

Kavita Gupta
Yes, minus the weather right now.

Matt Zahab
Yes, minus the weather. Crazy news, folks we are recording on November 22nd by the time this episode airs. It will be towards the end of November, but the big talk of the day is one day after the maybe one of the GOATs, depending on how you define GOATs and depending on what you think of them, but the one and only the Godfather of Crypto CZ got canned yesterday, four billion in fines, which again for him is like me getting a coffee at Starbucks. But he got a four billion dollar fine water under the bridge for him. He may or may not spend some time in jail. He has to take a couple years away from Binance and absolutely mayhem, banana lands. Kavita what do you make of all this news and is this good or bad for the crypto industry long term here?

Kavita Gupta
No, so I feel like this was a long time due for CZ. He had a very good understanding that this is going to happen. I think it’s a very well closed or negotiated deal, which has been going on for over a year now. And there was already a news spreading out even like four months back that CZ is returning money from the fund. He has raised as a Binance and already planning who’s going to take over if he has to step down from CEO. So there were already some sort of internal story circulated in a closed group of people. I heard it around three and a half months back about how the plan, but the dollar number of the settlement was something which came out. And as you mentioned, and I completely agree, I think it’s just like a very sweet slap on the wrist for CZ. And even the 500 million, which he has to do personally is like, let’s go buy chocolate and have a good Christmas or a thing. The main question out here is, is that a bad legal framework or fair? And to be very honest with you, and maybe I’m biased because as a crypto native since 2013 and as a person who is way more towards how crypto people are thinking, if you don’t have a clarity on regulations, you really can’t go and say you did wrong because you never told us what is wrong.And I think Arthur Hayes case was one of the first one of, hey, we need KYC, but there was no regulations on KYC. It was not positioned as this has to be done for crypto exchanges for the longest time, even after Arthur Hayes was convicted for money laundering under the very similar cases. So I think for CZ, this is actually his Christmas. And I definitely consider him a good, even though I think Binance, when it started as an exchange, a lot of people had a lot of questions. There were always speculations or suspicions. Is there a Chinese money, which he has proven not to that extent? There was always during FTX, before FTX, around Luna crash. Does it has equal liquidity? Will it be able to survive? It has. I think with this big two Binance was way before Coinbase launching a lot of derivative products, but also creating its own chain. And Binance Smart Chain is one of the biggest technology infrastructure play in Asia. You can hardly see a company, especially in infrastructure gaming coming out of Asia, which is not on BSC. I feel like it’s just not an exchange. It is actually a whole legacy company. And Binance continues to survive. I mean, there’s still question whether they will be able to be able to operate in US or not. And the answer may change in one year’s time, but outside US, Binance is the biggest exchange in the world and continues to be.

Matt Zahab
And just to fortify your point here, it’s not even just the exchange. It’s the ecosystem as a whole. And I’m a big believer in the importance of singular words and what that does for an asset class or just a categorization of things. When you think of crypto, and if I’m like, Kavita, you can name a couple words or a couple companies like Binance might very well could pop up when you say that. And I think that really does move the needle. I think it is powerful when you have such a powerful brand. You know, it’s almost like Apple, Microsoft being synonymous with computers and tech. Like Binance is synonymous with crypto as a whole. And we do need to shout out CZ. I think it’s hilarious. All the memes going on right now. I’m sure you’re loving them as well. I saw one today where someone like Facetune CZ over Leo DiCaprio in the famous Wolf of Wall Street scene where he’s like, I’m not leaving. And it’s just too good. It’s too much fun.

Kavita Gupta
So I just want to say I’m met with a thought. One was in 2018 during TechCrunch Zoom and one was afterwards in UAE. I have to say, for somebody who already been positioned as one of the biggest player in the space, but at the same time always, I don’t know whether it’s media or the operational Binance, who knows the reality, but also with a little bit of suspicion. He has been so humble, open and straightforward with the questions he has been served on the plate that has been very interesting and amusing at the same time, because that’s not what you expect. But I generally feel, I want to now loop in a very important question which you asked, is it a bad thing for crypto or a good thing? I feel like cleaning up of these and having and providing very clear guidelines of what’s and what’s not going to be acceptable is actually a really good thing for the institutional adoption in the crypto industry. And we have already started seeing that with the price movement, but also we’re going to see it with the technology more on the TradFi space. Absolutely amazing.

Matt Zahab
I love that. Another hot take that’s been buzzing around Twitter recently is CZ and Binance. Well, Binance isn’t getting pushed out, but CZ got pushed out to fortify the space as a whole, get rid of those bad actors, people practicing malpractice, just like you just discussed. And this will pave way for the ETF. And BlackRock, the biggest asset manager in the world, is not going to come in and open an ETF in a space where bad actors are still present. Yes, there will always be a couple of bad apples in the apple tree, but we are getting rid of them one by one. And the big boys and the big gals are the ones we’re going after first. This can’t be nothing but good for the ETF, right? Like this has to be all systems go, green light city, population us for January coming around.

Kavita Gupta
So absolutely yes for ETF, but I would not categorize that we are going after people who are all bad actors. I feel like of course there are SBF of the world, which is absolutely, there’s no gray area. Yeah, you can’t justify to be gray anymore. But at the same time, I generally believe like Kraken getting fine or Coinbase getting fines or BlockFi of the world or the CZs of the world. I think that is more about unclear gray area regulatory stuff, which has not hurt people, which has not really a block, is a different case. Of course, which got the whole FTX trauma, but not that the founders wanted it or did bad accounting or bad decision making to take people’s money and buy yachts. It’s not three year capital. It’s not Luna. But I feel like these are the cases where the lack of clarity or conservative or probably a negative perspective by the regulatory body towards crypto has really taken a front seat. So I just want to like put it in context that just because people who created crypto what it is today, right? DeFi wouldn’t have existed, options and futures wouldn’t have existed if Binance wouldn’t have been offered yet for a long time. Yes, taking an inter looping of pools which Kraken has done for institution has paid way for the Lido’s and the institutional staking of the world. In 2017, when we first invested in BlockFi people, having the value that your crypto can be converted into USD to buy a house and it has a real value associated with it at converting into the extent today of Gemini and earn and all those things wouldn’t have existed. So I feel like, yes, there have been amazing founders and entrepreneurs way beyond just these people but a lot in the ecosystem who has really set up the first and the second phase of crypto and blockchain. And now we are ready, government is ready and I think regulators are ready to take it and for the BlackRocks and Goldman Sachs of the world to come and the big boys to continue to now take this and make it as a big derivative product and build money.

Matt Zahab
It’s so true. I can’t wait for this to happen. I know this is a bit of a cop-up question and no one likes the timetable questions, but when do you think the ETF is ready to pop off? Everyone’s saying, Jan, do you think Jan’s a legitimate estimate slash hypothesis a little later, a little earlier?

Kavita Gupta
I think Q1 for sure. For multiple reasons, and this is my personal belief not that I have some insight knowledge about it. I believe that first of all, next year is a big election year, and both parties need some wins. And this has been a very hot topic, not only for the financial industry, but the young voters across both aisle. So I feel like we suddenly going to see a lot of support for the crypto industry, especially with the bigger cases have been moved and the regulators have proven their point that they’re here, they are watching and they will take action. I think we need to move forward with it. That’s one. I think the second more important thing for the ETF is the ruling from the court, which has completely put has pushed SEC in the corner by asking really legitimate questions and saying, please explain why it won’t work and why would you object this now it’s not like media asking or closed door meetings having no answers. Like now you have to come and make your case like anybody else has the lay of the land and I think that’s what’s going to push it.

Matt Zahab
Yeah, that’s, I mean, some of the older interviewing questions were just absolutely nonsensical and just the power that SEC has, I mean had and still has is it’s crazy. And imagine if there were a couple of people closer to our age, you know, who actually were calling the shots at the SEC instead of, and no offense to the old folks. I know you always got to respect your elders and I do respect my elders, but a couple of you guys and gals just maybe, you know, retire, take a look at my hat, go play some golf, enjoy life, like stop going at all us crypto folks. We’re not all bad people, you know, smell the coffee a little, but that’s just not how life works.

Kavita Gupta
And if you have that people don’t take our taxes.

Matt Zahab
Yes. Very true. Let’s get into Delta for a second here. And when we dive into Delta Blockchain Fund, which is obviously your fund, you and your team’s fund, you are founder and GP there, we will have so many different areas to jump into. And this excites me a ton. I think a good place to start is give us the inception story of Delta, a couple of your early investments, why you jumped into those and then we’ll move a little forward and talk about some of the biggest themes and trends and areas of crypto that get you and the team the most excited present day.

Kavita Gupta
Thank you. Delt started because I basically have been in the space since 13, initially just mining while I was still working at the World Bank IFC and then doing investments at Google X, Fund Office. And then I started playing with the whole ICO craziness in 2016. And I was like, no, it’s not amazing. There was, I think the big point when I said, it was like, what the hell is happening here? This is either the biggest scam or the biggest goal, which is yet to be proven goal, is when after a day or two slunch of noses, it’s FDV was bigger than the market cap of Google. And I was like, what the hell is happening? Who are these people who are buying it? And it just basically as a student, as a person who has been computer engineering and economics as masters, I was just super curious. How does this hold economics work? And how does this market and buy and sell and exchange and everything around it works? And which got me super into it and started one of the first funds in the space. And it was very moved in early because I felt like I have missed a lot of my friends or mentors, like a lot of my mentors were like one of the first people at Google. And so I definitely missed that time. Then there were a lot of my colleagues and friends who were first in Facebook and Twitter. And I have missed that too. So I was like, this is interesting. I’m going to give it a try. Maybe it will be good to be one of the first ones. And that’s how we started. And because there were very few, there were limited 203 funds. There were very limited amount of structure money, which was available in the space back in 17. I was very lucky to be like first checks in BlockFi, Polygon, Starkware, Quantstamp, Sorare, OpenSea Separate, like a bunch of stuff and really see the evolution of the founders. So by the time I reached 21, by then I have already parted ways from my first fund back in 19. I was already teaching at Stanford, beyond Bitcoin. I was spending a lot of time with founders on campus. I realized that I was getting a lot of opportunities to join the existing Web2 big funds to start their crypto blockchain arms and be the GP. And but I felt like, let me see, as a woman, will I be able to raise money for a fund? I think it was a personal journey to try. And I was like my worst case scenario, I’ll join one of the funds and still do investments, which I love.

Matt Zahab
Well said.

Kavita Gupta
And I wasn’t sure because I have not raised money for the fund ever before. It was my first time. I did not have a lot of contacts with respect to family offices or institutions. But I had amazing mentors like my first boss, Nina Shapiro, who has the first ever and the only ever women treasurer of IFC in the history of IFC. I talked to her. I talked to a couple of other really big founders, CEOs of public companies who have been my mentors in my life. And I realized, let’s take this bet. And one after another, it’s just amazing in three months, not only we closed the targeted amount of 50, but we were completely over subscribed all the way to 65 in our first close. And so somehow got lucky and had a great track record and put it all together. And then we went back to when we started thinking, how are we going to be different? Because suddenly in 21, we saw over 50 funds, 30 funds coming into the space all over the world. With some just the mainstream funds, people who never had any experience in crypto, just starting it because that was the big wave at that time. So we as a team started thinking, how are we going to be different? And what we realized is our whole team, me, Konstantin, Smith, Mudet, the co-team, we are all actually super crypto natives since 2013. And we understand the evolution, but we are also deep Web2 users. So we understand infrastructure and the gaps of infrastructure. And that’s what we decided that we’re going to invest into pick and shovels, the most non-sexy things in blockchain.

Matt Zahab
I love that.

Kavita Gupta
Without which you can never really build a beautiful house. If your piping is not working, your bathroom is busted, your house is not livable. So that’s what we started picking. So we started looking into, everyone was going for cross chain applications. We were going for cross chain swap infrastructure platforms. So that’s something like layer swap, which even in today’s time has been consistently over a million dollar revenue quarter by quarter in today’s time and completely profitable. They have not even touched the VC money they have raised because they don’t have to. What they are doing is, if you have your modular blockchain, let’s say you are on base, you are on Soria’s platform or anything, you never have to think about as a user, oh, I have USDC or I have Solana USD or I have some other token, you just go on a completely new chain and you do your transactions and it will just take care of all possible swaps at the back end without you ever thinking. And that’s what’s going to drive the adoption. Or something like Karma3Labs, which is identity compute, another very important thing. We hear about a lot of social identities, which are needed, like Farkasta is doing a great job, Lens is doing an amazing job. But who’s going to really under all these different social identities, who’s going to come and really compute it for you and put it universally everywhere. And that’s where I feel like the non-sexy shovel comes in and need the cool investments out there. So we did that, we did Airstack because developers and user consumer indexing needs to be way more easier and way more faster. We are doing a lot of cross-chain analytics tools for the developers, but also for chains to use. For an example, if you move your money from polygon to let’s say Solana through two bridges, both Polygon and Solana also needs to burn and settle and have to have dashboard immediately in a live way, see it and that particular app, if it’s, let’s say, are we doing it from one to another to do it? And so token flow comes in that category, you have a Solity comes in that category. So a bunch of those, I can keep on going. Sorry, Matt, I don’t want to take your whole 45 minutes, just fight it about the companies we have invested in.

Matt Zahab
No, this is great. And again, I love the sort of first narrative that you guys sculpted and went after, which was again, the unsexy, you know, pick and shovels, the infrastructure, the house, the plumbing, the HVAC, you name it. That’s what you need. That’s, and it moves the needle. It’s no different than investing in, you know, something like AWS, where everyone thinks of Amazon as the, oh, it’s the company that ships stuff to your doorstep the same day or the next day, which I love. But like, if you’re in tech, AWS is just as powerful if not more powerful. So just a great little example there. Let’s talk about your firms and obviously yours current events and current trends, current things that you guys are really focused honed in on right now. We have GameFi popping off. We have everything in the Solana ecosystem popping off, although we don’t know if that’s going to last, but still what sort of trends or what sort of narratives you guys really focused on current day Q4 2023.

Kavita Gupta
As I said, we watch every trend. Like right now, every other conversation is about IntentFi. And how are you going to use intents for the DeFi, which is actually just a six year version of saying predictive markets or prediction markets, right? There has been the last two quarters, everybody. And now it has become like a Holy Bible that if you are creating something, you have to drop ZK somehow in the ADEC, right? Or you have to drop AI, even though nobody’s talking about how the hell are you going to get data? Data is so difficult. And it’s a cumbersome game till today to get data on chain, right? The on chain data. And so how are you even going to get a clean data to build AI predictive algorithms? But sure, let’s just put AI in the next. So we have been seeing lots and lots in the last two quarters. I think we have to take a step back and acknowledge and be okay with this acknowledgement that it’s not even a decade old industry. Ethereum’s mainnet launch or a pre-net launch was 2015, which was literally hasn’t really started building up like 17 and 18. Still we were investing in crypto sides of things, right? Only 2021 is when DeFi started popping up, real NFT trading start popping up. So we are under a five year old real tech industry. So yes, we can have a lot of narratives and a lot of really nice themes going on, but the thing is our infrastructure is not there. We are at the infrastructure where AOL was. We are still not at Gmail stage. We are reaching the Hotmail stage.

Matt Zahab
Well said. Love that analogy.

Kavita Gupta
We are not there. So I love all the hype because there is so much money because of crypto and tokens associated with this industry that the hype is very high. But we have to give a pat on our shoulder. And I say it in a very positive way. We have to give a pat on our shoulder that the tech industry, which is really under a five to six years, is being talked about globally. Institutions wants to adopt it. Governments are printing their identity on it. We have got a huge adoption, but we don’t have the universal tech for billions of people to adopt yet. And that’s where Delta comes in. And that’s where we are pushing in not very trendy things, but every infrastructure thing, which can make those trendy things to exist on top. So I can give you all the trends, thousands of dex, which we are seeing every week. And how do we know what people are talking about month by month, how the trends are changing? But that’s not our personal play.

Matt Zahab
I love that. Kavita, we need to take a quick break and a huge shout out to our sponsor, The Show that is PrimeXBT. And when we get back, we are going to keep talking about the global and geopolitical events and how they impact market dynamics. And we’re going to keep diving into the VC crypto landscape. But until then, huge shout out to PrimeXBT, longtime friends of cryptonews.com and longtime sponsors of the Cryptonews Podcast. PrimeXBT is a robust trading system that offers beginners and professional traders reliable market data and performance. It doesn’t matter if you’re a rookie or a veteran, you can easily design and customize your layouts and widgets to best fit your trading style. PrimeXBT is also running an exclusive promotion for listeners of the Cryptonews Podcast. The promo code is CRYPTONEWS50, all one word, CRYPTONEWS50, all one word folks to receive 50% of your deposit credited to your trading account. And now back to the show with Kavita. I would love to go right into the day to day of yourself and your team. I feel like a lot of people over the last 10 years now want to become venture capitalist. I don’t feel like it was sort of two on the radar 10 years ago, but now you see that it is truly a pretty sweet job. I mean, yes, you have to work your tail off as you should in any, you know, highly paid and highly sought after job, but you get to put money and faith into teams that are going to obviously give you guys a bunch of money back and change the world, which is something that’s pretty frigging cool and something that I would love to do one day as well. With that being said, walk me through your day to day, in my mind, Kavita, I feel like you get hundreds of pitch decks a day, your analyst sends over the best ones, you analyze them, you follow up with the team, book meetings, see all the pitches, hear all the pitches, maybe go meet them in person, feel them out, send them money, check up on them. The rest is history. How far off am I? How far on am I? Give me the spiel here. What is the day to day of the life of Kavita?

Kavita Gupta
I think everything that you said definitely exists in my life on the daily basis, but much more. But before I start there, I want to burst a bubble. There has been, there was a Twitter thread, I think. Somewhere started by, I think Sam Altman created one Twitter thread, I don’t know. I think following the news nowadays, maybe he had a fight with one of his VCs or something where he said, Messy job is not a full-time job or something. And I love Sam, he’s a friend, but like, come on. He has been a community president. I hope he wasn’t doing that because we don’t. It’s a tough life. I know when you’re a founder, you feel like as a founder, your life is tough. You have to build, that’s just true. Of course, I always jokingly and endearingly say, a founder till series A is like a peon. It’s like a janitor because they have to do everything. Like we don’t have the luxury of saying, oh, somebody else will do it. No, if you have to clean the floor, if you have to build a deck, if you have to go and make it to that meeting, you just do it, right?

Matt Zahab
A true wearer of all hats. You wear every hat there is.

Kavita Gupta
Yeah and with humility, and you have to just do it. And I feel like there is founders life is tough. But now, as a founder, you always feel like, oh, these people just do meetings and chill, and go to these events or host these events. But here is the real life behind the curtain. These dark circles are very well-earned, living a VC life for over a decade. You have thousands of decks, and you have to go through every deck, even though you have a strong feeling that as soon as you open the deck, that this is gonna be bullshit, and I don’t want to spend another second on this. You still have to give that deck the equal respect, the equal time, the equal brainpower of the whole team, and then take a vote. That’s at least how we do it at Delta. We have a daily standing team call, which has technical team members, which has business team members, sometime marketing members, joining, and everyone, pitch in, go through every deck. Anyone who has individually received the deck by mail, by Twitter, by Cole, LinkedIn, by people who have sent it to us on Telegram, on Slack, we combine it together in one channel. We go through it, we give 5 to 10 minutes to eat, and we use our brainpower. After that, there is follow-ups of things which we are interested. Sometimes we want to learn, sometimes it’s a founder’s place, sometimes it’s a product play. Based on various different things, then there is a first call of somebody from investment, somebody from technical team getting together, doing those calls, understanding, coming back to the team call, talking about it, everybody using brainpower again. Then senior member going, we do three to four, then there’s a deep diligence process which works, right? Because sometimes the product is very different, that you have to go deep into tech, and then you have to go to the codes. And from the codes, we also have to now compare that whatever the founder is saying really exists. Do we also understand? Because we don’t know everything. You come across genius founders, and you start questioning your own, you have existential crisis once in a while, right? And sometimes the founder has said something completely different, and the codes are copy pasted from some reddit thread, and you are like, what the hell is happening here? You know? Yeah. So it’s a whole spectrum. It can go anyways, same thing on business side. There is a new terminology which we have started rolling our eyes on. People have started giving you, hey, are you revenue positive? Yes, our ARR is this. And I’m like, bro, this is February. How are you calculating your ARR in millions when the reality is you just get in game? It’s a while. It is, I think sometimes there are days when I feel like back to back for nine hours, I’m gonna hear stories, then I’m gonna put in three hours to collaborate those stories and make some sense out of it. And then the real diligence work starts. So it is the job where you have to always be out and about, always need to have a nice humble face and a smiling face and give respect because every founder is out there working the best they can do. They have put a lot of things on hold to take a founder’s life. It’s not a glamorous life. I know we love to make founders like Sam or Elon or Jack looks very crazy life, but there are only 100 of them out of millions of people who are trying to be founders. So it is a way to have, then apart from just this process, the events you have to do, as you would know the crypto conferences just never stops. There was no beer market for crypto conferences. It’s still wild. You have to go, you have to have your presence. You meet people in person. You host people. You go to hackathons. You judge. I recently judged ETH Lisbon, which absolutely loved. But between the travel, between your emails, between every Telegram messages, between going through 1000 decks and talking to so many founders, plus as a GP of the fund maintaining investor relations, accounting, operations. It is a lot. It’s not as slack as it looks like.

Matt Zahab
That’s so true. Kavita, we are getting a little tight for time. I do have a couple more questions and we’ll wrap up here. I’m a big story fan. I love stories. Stories are what make the world go round. And you must have one or two stories where you were grinding, hauling ass all day long like you normally do and you’re on deck number 98 of 100 on that day. And it is just a, wow, holy shit, this team and this idea and this company is going to be incredible. Do you have any stories for us like that where you came across a deck and you were like, holy shit, this is a gold mine.

Kavita Gupta
Yeah, it does happen once in a while. It doesn’t happen as often as we would love to have it, but it does happen once in a while. So I’ll give an example, I’m thinking. So I think ASTAC was one of those example. Token Flow was another one, Fortify is another one. I remember when we looked at ASTAC, it came from a very well-respected VC from traditional world who knew the founder and has done a small check. That was the time there was one after another, we had 40 pitches for indexing. We were like, okay, we know we need to do a move in the data indexing play, and that’s a big one that’s still not solved to the extent the graph is great, well, it is another great one, but we thought there was still a big space to be covered. We kept on thinking and then we looked at ASTAC, wasn’t very sure that the initial deck wasn’t very convincing, but we had to do a call because it came through somebody we respected a lot, and then I decided, I somehow didn’t do the first call, the team did and they came back and they’re like, we’re not sure but the founder is great. So we went on the second call and everybody walked out saying, what he’s saying versus what we understand is there are different but what he’s saying if that does exist, then this is great. So it took us longer, it was not a regular process. We kept on being unsure, but we are very glad we did that and not only we did, then we actually increased our amount in the next round because we got so excited by them and we have such a big conviction in them. So once in a while it does happen, that’s why you have to be in a full energy even on your 98th day. You never know.

Matt Zahab
Such a cool story. I always have these weird, you know, not dreams and visions is definitely the wrong word, but just role playing with a, you know, a VC does day to day. And I always picture like out of the blue, like you get the next Facebook or you get the next, you know, Insta or you get the next Twitter or TikTok, whatever the case is, it just pops up on your screen, you’re on your MacBook going through the deck almost, you know, not half asleep, but so tired of shitty decks. And then boom, you’re just like, Oh my goodness, I’m done. My job’s done. I know, like anything else in life never happens like that. But it’s cool to think about. Kavita, the last question, the role of institutional demand. A lot of people shit on crypto VCs on crypto institutional investments. And I think it comes from a jealousy thing, because you guys get to come in and move the needle where you choose, whereas the average show on Josephine doesn’t really have a chance. And it’s no different than anything else in life. Money makes the world go around. And when you have a lot of capital, you can move mountains. And that’s just the way it goes. And it’s never going to change. The role of institutional demand is absolutely paramount. Everyone has seen a time after time, every single bull market, all the big institutions come in, we see the influx of funds coming in, we see the inflows. It’s huge. What is the true role of institutional demand in crypto and how big of a part does it really play in the overall space?

Kavita Gupta
It’s a huge part because not only it pushes, see, institutions have been there for over 100 years, right? They have a way with the regulators and with the governments to accept a derivative product or an offering and make that offering global. So we are talking about trillions, multi trillions of dollars, which can really not only make this industry a 10 year old, industrial, 15 year old industry based on, you start from 2009 or 2015, Bitcoin versus ETH, but not only just legit, but something which opens up to every Tom, Harry, Sam sitting in a tier three city across the globe. And I think that’s huge power, right? And then that gets the right risk associated, right? People behind it. So institutions are huge. I mean, the reasons stablecoins have become that big is not because of the crypto-native people, but that institutional approach for USDC and USDT and now governments are talking about CBDC. And I think ETF is just the beginning, Matt. I truly believe ETF is like these institutions, small hanging, testing water scheme. You’re going to see in the next big cycle some of the best derivative products for their wealth, punishment units for all their HNI’s, you know? And that’s when the real power of money, which is still unlocked to this space, is going to have the feeling or the real Christmas.

Matt Zahab
And that’s just to use. And again, I always, every guest comes on and there’s a couple of really big snippets and absolute lines of gold that I come away with. And my biggest one from you today, Kavita, was your analogy of AOL, Hotmail, Gmail. We’re still at AOL stage, you know? And that’s a great one. Cause again, everyone who’s been through that understands that. And I can’t wait to see what is going to come. Kavita, you absolutely crushed this. Thank you so much for coming on. I know we barely scratched the surface. I would love to have you on for round two as you and the team are always in the pulse. You guys are both buzzing. Before you go, can you please let our listeners know where they can find you personally and Delta Blockchain Fund online and on socials.

Kavita Gupta
Yes, if you’re building something great and you think we should absolutely look at it, please do check us out at www.deltafund.io. That’s our website. We have a bunch of email addresses. I’m also very active on Twitter. My handle is @KavitaGupta19, please find me, send it to us. And then contact at deltafund.io is the email which generally we give to people to send their texts. But we are around the impossible conference, find us.

Matt Zahab
I love that. Kavita, thank you so much for coming on. Truly appreciate it and wishing you and the team all the best and can’t wait for round two.

Kavita Gupta
Thank you, Matt. Have a great time.

Matt Zahab
Folks, what’s an episode with Kavita Gupta, the Founder and General partner of Delta Blockchain Fund. She has been in the space for a hot minute and dropped tons of knowledge bombs left, right and center, everything on the Crypto VC landscape. The role of institutional demand, you name it, she covered it. Huge shout out to Kavita and the team for making this happen. If you guys enjoyed this one and I hope you did, please do subscribe. It would mean the world to my team and I. Speaking of the team, love you guys so much. Justas, my amazing sound editor. Appreciate you as always and back to the listeners. Love you guys. Keep on growing those bags and keep on staying healthy, wealthy and happy. Bye for now and we’ll talk soon.