For all the knocks he’s taken from and over his interest in crypto markets, Skybridge CEO Anthony Scaramucci says he hasn’t lost any enthusiasm for Bitcoin.
“I’m not a cold figure in this space. I’m not an evangelist. I’m not one of these religious figures that’s going to chant ‘Bitcoin über alles’ no matter what is going on in life,” he told Decrypt during a recent interview for the gm podcast. “So I want to frame it from that perspective, and then tell you that I’m more bullish now than I’ve ever been.”
He’s up against some strong headwinds. By the time Sam Bankman-Fried’s crypto exchange FTX filed for bankruptcy in November, he’d become professionally and personally close to Scaramucci. They partnered to host the Crypto Bahamas conference last April. In September, FTX acquired a 30% stake in SkyBridge for $40 million. And when Bankman-Fried’s empire went bust, Scaramucci said on CNBC that he was “working to buy the equity back.”
Now, he’s got his sights set on Bitcoin’s next boom cycle and hoping that regulators can get out of their own way. The way he sees it, Bitcoin really started accumulating interest from a wider audience from late 2021 through the end of 2022.
“Prior to that, there was sort of a microbrewery known as Bitcoin. And people liked the beer that was coming out of the microbrewery,” Scaramucci said. “And then all of a sudden it had this Budweiser Light distribution explosion where everyone in the world and their mother was talking about Bitcoin.”
But he wouldn’t go so far as calling himself a Bitcoin maximalist. “They have no willingness to compromise,” Scaramucci said. “They have guns and ready-made food in their basement and they hate the government.”
He had harsh words for regulators, too—especially Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler.
“None of the stuff that he does makes any sense to me,” Scaramucci said. “He's got the SEC in complete disarray.” He also posited that Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren has been acting like she’s “Washington's shadow president for financial services.”
So he takes some solace in the fact that, at least according to him, Bitcoin should be categorized as a commodity and not regulated by the SEC.
“I think it feels like money to me and feels like a commodity,” he said. “I think that these things that earn, or you have these staking positions where foundations give you more of something, I think anything that has an earning mechanism to it probably is a security.”
The last word
Scaramucci said: “We need this, you know guys. Hong Kong is open for business for crypto. They're not stupid. They go, ‘Ah, the U.S. is gonna blow this. That's fine, we're gonna switch our position.’ The UK: They screwed up with Brexit. They all know it, but they're open for business for crypto. You know, our supposedly socialist neighbors to the north have two or three cash Bitcoin ETFs. We've got Gary Gensler and Elizabeth Warren.”