In the 1990s, Marc Andreessen catapulted to fame as co-founder of Netscape Communications Corp. Today he is one of the worlds most influential venture capitalists, on the strength of the Menlo Park, California, firm he started in 2009 with longtime business partner Ben Horowitz, and on the strength of his own personality. The $4.2 billion-under-management Andreessen Horowitz has invested in such storied Silicon Valley successes as Airbnb, Pinterest and Twitter. And Andreessen is an unrelentingly energetic voice for the industry, regaling his 418,000 Twitter followers with his latest opinions on the tech scene. The 44-year-old general partner has been signaling his firms intentions to be more aggressive in financial technology than others around Sand Hill Road have been. Recent moves into fintech reflect Andreessen Horowitzs all stages portfolio approach. The firm led a $58 million Series C round for London-based money transmission service TransferWise in January; made a flurry of digital currency and blockchain investments (21 Inc, Circle Internet Financial, Coinbase); and is a seed investor in Robinhood, a commission-free brokerage app. In August, Andreessen brought in as a fintech-dedicated general partner Alex Rampell, a 34-year-old serial entrepreneur who co-founded e-commerce advertising and payments company TrialPay, now part of Visa, as well as lending start-up Affirm, which raised $275 million in May, with Andreessen Horowitz participating. Andreessen, who declined to be interviewed for this article, told the New York Times in August that finance has historically been an entrepreneur-driven field, with Rampell chiming in that it is ripe for disruption.
The 2015 Fintech Finance 35 Click below to view profiles