In a significant move that highlights the growing interest in fintech and web3, Eight Roads Ventures, a prominent investment firm managing assets exceeding $11 billion, has announced the hiring of Nao Kitazawa, the former CEO of Coinbase Japan, as a venture partner. Backed by Fidelity, Eight Roads Ventures has a successful track record of supporting innovative and disruptive companies globally.
Expressing his enthusiasm for the new role, Kitazawa shared his motivations in a recent LinkedIn post, stating,
“I am thrilled to join Eight Roads Ventures to pursue my love for fintech and web3. It is an honor to be a part of a firm renowned for its successful backing of groundbreaking companies.”
Kitazawa departed from Coinbase Japan earlier this year after dedicating nearly five years to the company. At the time, Coinbase announced its decision to exit the Japanese market due to prevailing market conditions.
This strategic appointment comes amid Fidelity’s expanding involvement in the crypto space. Just last week, EDX Markets, a Fidelity-backed cryptocurrency exchange, revealed its launch plans despite regulatory challenges posed by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission and the prevailing bearish market sentiment.
Fidelity’s crypto arm, Fidelity Digital Assets, made waves earlier this year with the quiet launch of its platform, enabling millions of users to trade Bitcoin and Ether without paying commissions.
With Eight Roads Ventures’ existing investments in notable crypto startups like Kaiko and Fireblocks, Kitazawa’s arrival as a venture partner is expected to bring substantial value to the firm’s portfolio. Eight Roads Ventures, formerly known as Fidelity Ventures, has been investing since 1969 and has expanded its presence across Europe, Asia, and the United States. In 2022, the firm unveiled a $350 million technology investment fund for China and a $250 million healthcare and life sciences fund for India.
The addition of Nao Kitazawa to Eight Roads Ventures further solidifies the firm’s commitment to fostering innovation in the fintech and web3 sectors. With Kitazawa’s extensive experience and expertise, Eight Roads Ventures is poised to continue identifying and supporting groundbreaking companies at the forefront of these rapidly evolving industries.