One of the well-known names in the crypto space is Andreessen Horowitz, as the venture capital firm is also referred to as a16z.

It recently announced that it has hired a new head of policy and it is none other than the former head of the CFTC, Brian Quintenz, who will be serving in this role.

The new hire

Quintenz has been part of the crypto venture capital firm since September 2021 when he joined a16z as a senior advisor.

He worked as the head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) under both former presidents of the US, Obama, and Trump.

While he had worked at the CFTC, he had overseen Bitcoin futures contracts listed in the US markets and tokenized commodities had also been created in his tenure, amongst other crypto-related developments.

Anthony Albanese, the managing partner at Andreessen Horowitz, talked about appointing Quintenz for the role of head of policy.

He said that Brian had played an important role in helping the company as well as their portfolio in navigating the complexity of DC.

He also said that the events that had taken place last year in the crypto market had made it evident that there is a lot more regulation needed in the Web3 and crypto space.

Albanese added that it was yet to be ascertained as to how this legislation would take shape, but it is likely going to have a major impact on the Web3 space.

Crypto regulation

Albanese went on to say that Andreessen Horowitz has always been in favor of crypto regulation, as long as it is thoughtful.

He also added that it had never been more essential than it is today. He said that it was time for impactful legislation to be introduced.

The CFTC and SEC have already increased their activity where the crypto space is concerned and there are several bills in progress in the Senate as well as the House of Representatives.

As a matter of fact, even the crypto industry is now talking about regulation, given the disasters that have taken place this year.

According to Albanese, the next few weeks would see the new Congress come in and it would be an important time in the history of Web3 because DC policymakers are taking a close look at crypto’s future.

The problems

Quintenz had given an interview back in September in which he had stated that the current regulatory environment for crypto was extremely complex.

He also asserted that new technology adoption was becoming difficult because of the approach that some regulatory agencies had taken in this regard.

In fact, Quintenz called out the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as well as its chairman, Gary Gensler.

He stated that had they taken the task seriously, they would have managed to establish a regulatory structure for crypto the same way as securities and not put the entire ecosystem at risk.

The announcement from a16z comes after Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts senator, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the New York Representative, had expressed concerns about the lobbying efforts of the crypto sector back in October.

They had said that the industry has been hiring hundreds of former government officials, which can undermine the trust that people have in financial regulators and corrupt the entire policymaking process.